I was conflicted about the speech. At first I didn't think it was so good. Everyone seemed to think that he was paving a new way by mentioning the '67 borders. Big deal! Hasn't this been around awhile? Democracy Now! brought up a speech Bush made that was nearly the same exact thing. Neither of them addressed Jerusalem. Jerusalem is as occupied as Gaza and the West Bank, yet the US doesn't want to recognize that fact.
Obama did change US policy, but it wasn't with the '67 borders. He referred to the "Jewish state," rather than the "Israeli state." A state for Jews, not a state for all Israelis- Jew, Christian, Muslim, Arab, Polish, American, etc. If he did indeed mean to say that, then he canceled out part of his speech. He is sanctioning, protecting and encouraging discrimination based on religion.
Now, I realize it was in fact a great speech, with the exception of every place he mentioned Israel. And those places he talked about equality and oppression- because I know he was excluding Israel from these lofty goals and very conditional support for Arab nations.
Full text at:
First, Obama discussed the "Arab Spring." That part was ok, except he got it wrong when he spoke of Israel.
"Antagonism toward Israel became the only acceptable outlet for political expression."
This sentence may be true of the corrupt Arab leaders, but the implications of it are false. What is implied here when paired with the statement about the West being the source of all ills is that people are brainwashed and there is no reason for the antagonism toward Israel. Israel's original land theft and declaration that this is exclusively their homeland, denial of Palestinian rights and self determination, and continued violation of international law is no reason for antagonism??
In describing America's role in and after the Arab Spring:
"...standing up for Israel’s security and pursuing Arab-Israeli peace."