Maof

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Thu, 4 Jun 2009

http://www.danielpipes.org/blog/2009/06/assessing-obamas-cairo-speech.html 

Barack Obama's mention of "seven million American Muslims" in the course of his rambling and complex six-thousand-word address to the Muslim world from Cairo symbolizes the whole message.

Study after study has found that demographic figure about three times too high. But Islamist organizations like the Council on American-Islamic Relations and the Islamic Society of North America relentlessly promote the notion of seven or even ten million American Muslims. Obama's accepting their version amounts to a giveaway, a cheap way to win the approbation of Islamists who so widely influence Muslim opinion.

"Giveaway," indeed, defines the whole speech – inexpensive nods, tips of the hat, and salutations to win Muslim favor without initiating new approaches or embarking on new policies. The speech confirms Obama's personal efforts (note how, in keeping with his past practice, he uses the word "respect" ten times in this speech) as well as the established practice of American political leaders to promote Islam, tell Muslims what their religion really means, avoid references to radical Islam, and excoriate violent Islamism while accepting the non-violent variety.

On other issues too – Afghanistan, Iran, Iraq, Arab-Israeli conflict, democracy – Obama reiterated his known policies.

In brief, he broke little new ground but raised to new heights the art of sugaring words in ways appealing to Islamists.  



Russian version
An introduction to MAOF
Haim Goldman

Dear Friends,

Would you believe that the undersigned has anything in common with

-- Professor Victor Davis Hanson (Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University),
-- Dr Charles Krauthammer, (Washington Post, Time, The Weekly Standard),
-- Caroline Glick (Deputy Managing Editor of the Jerusalem Post),
-- Jonathan Tobin (Executive Editor of the Philadelphia Jewish Exponent).

Amazingly, the editors of the MAOF website decided that the missives of the undersigned are worthy of translation and posting along the articles written by these distinguished authors.

The first letter was published without the consent of the undersigned.
However, after thorough examination of the laudable attitude of MAOF and of the excellent contents of the website, the undersigned had most graciously granted his permission for publication of his missives in both English and Russian.

“Analytical Group MAOF” [1] is an organisation founded about ten years ago by Russian-speaking Jewish intellectuals. The attitude of MAOF is definitely pro-Zionist -- unambiguously and unapologetically.

One of MAOF’s primary purposes is providing information and analysis about Middle-Eastern and world affairs as well as about Israel’s history, values and dilemmas. In addition to extensive publication activity in various media, MAOF also organises excursions and seminars. While the vast majority of the contents of the MAOF website is in Russian, texts originally written in English are provided in the original [2] as well as in Russian.

There are arguably about 250 millions of Russian-speakers worldwide and many of them do not read English. The indisputable motivation for the author’s permission was to grant those millions of disadvantaged people the grand benefit of reading the author’s ruminations. If the author is ever maliciously accused that his tacit motivation for authorising the publication was his craving to be listed along with the above-mentioned distinguished writers, his plea will definitely be “nolo contendere”.

The editors of MAOF expressed their gratitude by granting the undersigned a privilege that no other author got – the opportunity to review and correct the Russian translation before publication. The original letters of the undersigned are at [3] and their Russian version is at [4]. At of today, only two letters are posted but several other letters are pending translation.

You are kindly ENCOURAGED TO RECOMMEND the MAOF website to your friends and colleagues worldwide, particularly those who speak Russian. Those who do not enjoy the benefit of proficiency in the exquisite Russian language can find many thought-provoking and inspiring articles about Middle-Eastern and world affairs in the English section [2].

Sincerely,

Haim Goldman
28.10.2006

REFERENCES:

[1] http://maof.rjews.net
[2] section.php3? sid=37&num=25
[3] authorg.php3? id=2107&type=a
[4] authorg.php3? id=2166&type=a