Research Paper: American Foreign Policy Towards the Middle East

Pages: 2 (743 words)  ·  Style: Harvard  ·  Bibliography Sources: 1+  ·  Level: College Senior  ·  Topic: Mythology - Religion  ·  Buy This Paper

¶ … Age of Change: American foreign policy towards the Middle East under Obama (discourse analysis)

Perhaps the clearest shift in American attitudes towards the Middle East, as manifested by the Obama Administration, is exemplified Obama's decision to address the Muslim world directly in a speech at Cairo University. Obama deliberately chose one of the most modernized and secular venues in the Muslim world. He sought to connect with an audience of young people with educated and potentially changeable minds. Egypt alone of all the major Middle Eastern powers of the Islamic world has a peace treaty with Israel.

Obama spoke directly to individual Muslims as a diverse community: "So long as our relationship is defined by our differences, we will empower those who sow hatred rather than peace, and who promote conflict rather than the cooperation that can help all of our people achieve justice and prosperity. This cycle of suspicion and discord must end." Radicals had poisoned relationships in the past with the West, stated Obama -- so he reached out to individual, moderate Muslims in his speech at a place that exemplified peace, intellectual growth, youth, and vitality.

Obama's speech acknowledged that the Muslim world was not a monolith, but just as complex and diverse as the Christian world. Obama quoted the Koran, and stated "America and Islam are not exclusive, and need not be in competition." And quite movingly, Obama spoke of his own Muslim background: "Part of this conviction is rooted in my own experience. I am a Christian, but my father came from a Kenyan family that includes generations of Muslims. As a boy, I spent several years in Indonesia and heard the call of the azaan at the break of dawn and the fall of dusk. As a young man, I worked in Chicago communities where many found dignity and peace in their Muslim faith."

The rhetoric of the Obama Administration has not only been more conciliatory than the Bush Administration, but also showed greater insight into the diversity and intellectual depth of the Muslim world. It has stressed the similarities many Muslims share with Christian and Jewish-Americans like the Christian American president. Yet the policy of the Obama Administration has been more mixed.… [END OF PREVIEW]

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American Foreign Policy Towards the Middle East.  (2009, November 1).  Retrieved August 17, 2019, from

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"American Foreign Policy Towards the Middle East."  1 November 2009.  Web.  17 August 2019. <>.

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"American Foreign Policy Towards the Middle East."  November 1, 2009.  Accessed August 17, 2019.