The Costs and Requirements of Engaging the Muslim World
By Fawaz A. Gerges
Since his inauguration, President Obama has reiterated his commitment to engaging Muslim societies and altering Muslims’ negative perceptions of the United States. Time and again, the new president has stressed that “the United States is not, and will never be, at war with Islam.”
In his speech to the Turkish Parliament in April, Obama said that Americans will no longer view Muslims through the prism of terrorism. He told the star-struck Turkish parliamentarians: “I also want to be clear that America’s relationship with the Muslim community, the Muslim world, cannot, and will not, just be based upon opposition to terrorism. We seek broader engagement based on mutual interest and mutual respect.”
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