Barack Obama has been president eight months, he has given a wonderful speech addressed to the Muslim world, but according to Admiral Mike Mullen, chair of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the US continues to bungle its relations with Muslims. Those who hoped Obama would usher in a new era must confront the reality that not much has changed. Obama continues Bush rendition policies, he refuses to allow establishment of a Truth and Reconciliation Commission which might prove to Muslims Americans are ready to confront their mistakes. According to Mullen, “We hurt ourselves more when our words don’t aligh with our actions.”
Why hasn’t Barack Obama grasped the importance of confronting mistakes in the Middle East and letting the world know we acknowledge errors? Mullen made a perceptive remark by noting: “Most strategic communication problems are not communication problems at all. They are policy and execution problems.”
An inspiring speech is wonderful, but if it is not followed up by ACTIONS, then the momentary uplift will be lost.