Obama to address Muslim world again – from Egypt
The exact location within Egypt from which US president Barack Obama will deliver another speech to the Muslim world on June 4 has yet to be determined, White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs said Friday, May 8.
It is not clear if the US president was actually invited to visit Egypt. But Gibb stressed: “The scope of the speech, the desire for the president to speak, is bigger than where the speech was going to be given or who’s the leadership of the country where the speech is going to be given.”
From Egypt, Obama travels June 5 to the German city of Dresden and the former Nazi death camp at Buchenwald, in whose liberation Obama’s great-uncle Charlie Payne took part in 1945 as a soldier in the US army. debkafile‘s Washington sources commented that this visit is intended to highlight the Holocaust, which some Muslim leaders like Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad make a point of denying, as a factor in his commitment to Israel’s security.
Those sources were unable to explain why the president felt impelled to address the Muslim people again, or why Egypt was chosen, when US relations with President Hosni Mubarak are strained over the latter’s resentment of Washington’s rapprochement with Tehran and its criticism of Egypt’s human rights conduct.
The White House spokesman said: “I think in many ways, this is the heart of the Arab world.” The address is intended for the entire Muslim world, not simply Arab Muslims. It is part of Mr. Obama’s continuing effort to reach out to Muslims, as he did in a speech he gave in Turkey last month.
Two high-ranking US delegations which visited Cairo in the last ten days failed to convince Mubarak that the US president’s plans to engage Iran in diplomacy was not at the expense of Arab interests.
After Germany, Obama will then join commemorations marking the 65th anniversary of the D-Day landings in Normandy as guest of President Nicolas Sarkozy.