I represented the Bush II regime's foreign policy with the dog on cat photo in a recent post here.
It seemed to me that photo was how the world was seeing what the Bush II regime was doing in the world as Bush II said in rhetoric that he was "bringing peace and democracy" to Iraq.
The mid-east curse "may the Americans bring democracy to you" is an illustration of that perception.
There is no doubt most Americans will see President Obama's speech directed toward Muslim's as improved rhetoric coming from us.
It is improved rhetoric, because the Bush II regime rhetoric was declaring that they would nuke any nation Bush II thought needed to be nuked, even if there was no military provocation.
Everyone presumed that Bush II dogma was directed toward the Muslim world, and The Holy Warmaker In Chief catapulted that notion along with his missives to foreign leaders wherein he quoted and interpreted vague apocalyptic Bible verses as justification for his holy wars, which he believed would improve the world.
But improving our rhetoric can hardly be a panacea or policy basis for any improvement in real world conditions with Muslims, at least in the bloody and dark wake of the past Bush II ship of state.
Even the republicans are attempting to improve their rhetoric these days, which signals to everyone that political rhetoric is just another way to lie.
The world would be encouraged if we did not spend more on the military each year than all the other nations added up spend by $123,000,000,000 dollars; yes, each year if we add up the two largest nation's military spending besides us China and Russia, that sum is less than the $123,000,000,000 more than the whole world we spend each year.
Our mad, mad, mad military spending spree speaks loudly for sure; our invasions, destructions, and occupations of nations speak very loudly too.
Therefore, many are going to see this new rhetoric as a case like the rapist who, upon the request of the victim, put on a condom before raping her. It did "improve" the situation, since she was then protected from STD's.
But some improvement signals get lost in the noise; so like the rapist who later at trial said "I used a condom as she requested", the effort at improved relations will take much more than those rhetorical type gestures.
For that we will have to ask them what is good for them instead of telling them what is good for them, as they gaze up the barrel of our militarism.
If they do not want to be raped, the condom is irrelevant in the final analysis.