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Obama Wishes 'Ramadan Kareem' to Muslims

By Garance Franke-Ruta
President Obama released videotaped Ramadan wishes Friday, sending "best wishes to Muslims in America and around the world" and wishing them "Ramadan Kareem" on "behalf of the American people, including Muslim communities in all 50 states."

The remainder of his remarks in the five-minute YouTube clip seemingly provide a tutorial on the meaning of Ramadan for non-Muslim viewers tuning in to watch, and outline the basics of his views on issues of importance to the Muslim world. The president makes sure to mention "my own Christian faith" and the values shared by Islam and Christianity when it comes to service, even as he speaks of Muslim ceremonies he knows well.

He also recapitulates his basic foreign policy positions involving Muslim nations. "We're also committed to keeping our responsibility to build a world that is more peaceful and secure. That's why we're responsibly ending the war in Iraq," he says, adding, "That is why we strongly and actively support a two-state solution that recognizes the rights of Israelis and Palestinians to live in peace and security. That is also why America will always stand for the universal rights of all people."

"I want to reiterate my commitment to a new beginning between America and Muslims around the world," he continues, emphasizing his Cairo message of seeking common ground and that "an important part of this is listening."

"In last two months, American embassies around the world have reached out not just to governments but directly to people in Muslim-majority countries," he says, adding, "We have listened, and, like you, we are focused on pursuing concrete actions that will make a difference over time. ... These consultations are helping us implement the partnerships that I called for in Cairo."

The president lays out collaborations with international health authorities to eradicate polio in Muslim-majority nations, and to mitigate H1N1 flu transmission risks during the Hajj, the annual pilgrimage to Mecca by devout Muslims which this year will fall at the end of November.

"May God's peace be upon you," he concludes.

Translations of his Ramadan message are provided on the White House Web site in Arabic, Bengali, Dari, French, Hindi, Indonesian, Pashto, Persian, Punjabi, Russian, Turkish and Urdu.

No English transcript is provided.

By Web Politics Editor  |  August 21, 2009; 12:16 PM ET
Categories:  Religion  
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I DO NOT nor do I agree with questioning President Obama'a assertion that he is a Christiam just as I do not want my own assertion of faith questioned. He says he is a Christian therefore we accept that assertion. All I'm asking is where is the You Tube for Christians, the You Tube recognizing the National Day of Prayer, which by the way can apply to all faiths that pray. As stated before, lead by example, please.

Posted by: sbsb | August 23, 2009 11:54 AM | Report abuse

RAMADAN started yesterday.

OBAMAS HAVE TAKEN their vacation at the same time.

Hmmmm, is there a connection, I dont know, just asking??

Posted by: yojoe | August 23, 2009 10:24 AM | Report abuse

To: "His act of not showing up for National Day of Prayer Service is not condemnable. This is because ( in these tough times ) , it is more important to keep USA's ties strong with other countries and try to improve our economy rather than trying to keep our people happy and reaping nothing out of it." You miss the point, IT IS AT THIS VERY DIFFICULT TIME that he should be joining the National Day of Prayer, to pray for the United States AND the world, peace for all faiths. I beg to differ, "reap nothing of it", how about an answered prayer or maybe even just a show of solidarity with Americans who do believe it matters! Lead by example, please.

Posted by: sbsb | August 22, 2009 7:03 PM | Report abuse

The "Birth Rants" will continue until Obama produces the vault records the State of Hawaii are holding but Obama refuses to produce. Was Obama born in the hospital he claims or did his family commit fraud in registering his birth at home. Until the original birth certificate, vault records or hospital records are produced the vetting process remains incomplete. We all know the records are being held by the State of Hawaii and only require a release to be signed by Obama. This issue is not going away and will be here if Obama decides to try and run again in 2012. This was a failure on the part of the Democratic Party to vet Obama before they placed his name on the primary ballot.

Posted by: Bubbette1 | August 22, 2009 3:47 PM | Report abuse

Obama's best wishes to all Muslims. Abdullah, Abdull and just plain Dull. So what is planned to honor all Zoroaster's? Hindu's? Church of the Infinite Frizbee? We cannot discriminate as we abandon separation of Church and State. Next up Harold Koh will implement his plan for application of Sharia Law and move to place foreign treaties over the Constitution.

Posted by: Bubbette1 | August 22, 2009 3:39 PM | Report abuse

The comments I have seen so far are racist and based on loose grounds..........

Obama's message reflects USA's tolerance, respect and will to move forward with the Islamic countries rather than Bush's acts of spreading widespread violence which deepens hate for PEOPLE of states in hearts of muslim terrorist and strengthens their will to spread terrorism and target the innocent people.

His act of not showing up for National Day of Prayer Service is not condemnable. This is because ( in these tough times ) , it is more important to keep USA's ties strong with other countries and try to improve our economy rather than trying to keep our people happy and reaping nothing out of it.

I also believe that this message was more inclined towards delivering the message of peace rather than showing love towards the relegion in particular.

so u guys should think in this direction too rather than criticizing the video for its flaws

Posted by: daniyal_farooqi | August 22, 2009 12:29 PM | Report abuse

1. There IS an English transcript:

2. Nice little snarks going on ie "he knows well". Guess there was too much focus on that rather than getting facts right. Surprise, surprise...

Posted by: mediasucks | August 21, 2009 10:01 PM | Report abuse

Get ready for the Islamic Antichrist

Posted by: notwaff | August 21, 2009 8:56 PM | Report abuse

(after Obama ignored the United States National Day of Prayer)
When it comes to Obama's faith, he's made it clear he is his own "god"
which is the position Obama made clear in his interview when he said :

* He will enter into heaven as "if I live my life as well as I can, that I will be rewarded"

* He defines sin as "Being out of alignment with my values"

* And sinning is "if I'm true to myself and my faith that that is its own reward, when I'm not true to it, it's its own punishment."

Obama fits the description provided by the apostle Paul in his second letter to Timothy. Paul says "men will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear." Obama's position on abortion, homosexuality and other issues (and his own mocking of the Bible), fits the description. And Pauls calls these people "evil men and impostors."

Spurgeon wrote "It were a sad dishonour to a child of God to be the world's favourite. It is a very ill omen to hear a wicked world clap its hands and shout 'Well done' to the Christian man."

Posted by: notwaff | August 21, 2009 8:53 PM | Report abuse

In the face of overwhelming evidence, JakeD's birther rants continue.

I believe the UW manual calls this "desensitization."

Is that the deal here, JakeD?

Those who are observing you want to hear your story.

Posted by: scrivener50 | August 21, 2009 5:50 PM | Report abuse

What a disgraceful man.

Posted by: Kansasgirl | August 21, 2009 5:46 PM | Report abuse


Too bad the question itself is nonsense. ;)

Posted by: Crucialitis | August 21, 2009 4:36 PM | Report abuse


No one ever questioned where President Bush was born ; )

Posted by: JakeD | August 21, 2009 4:33 PM | Report abuse

LMAO @ these teabagging birthers. You tin-foil hatters really are hilarious.

Posted by: mlrice710 | August 21, 2009 4:11 PM | Report abuse

"Yet, he personally addresses the Muslims of the world. He shook hands with the heads of state in Europe, but bowed down low to a Muslim Saudi king.
What are his true loyalties?"

Bush displayed similar sycophantic behavior in the presence of the Saudi King in case you've forgotten. It's standard fare to keep our oil prices and strategic positioning remotely optimal. The subtle implication of treason seems unwarranted.

As for our own displays: Proverbs 16:18, I'm secular and even I know pride goes before destruction. Also, regarding his Georgetown University speech: Do you really want Jesus associated with an address concerning mammon?

Sometimes humility attains one's goals.

Posted by: Crucialitis | August 21, 2009 3:58 PM | Report abuse

Obama did not participate in the National Day of Prayer. Obama requested that a cross and symbols for the name of Jesus be covered when he appeared at a Catholic university.
Obama had the Pentagon refuse a request for a flyover at the God and Country Rally (for the first time in 42 years)
Yet, he personally addresses the Muslims of the world. He shook hands with the heads of state in Europe, but bowed down low to a Muslim Saudi king.
What are his true loyalties?

Posted by: JEANNIEMAC | August 21, 2009 3:27 PM | Report abuse

A someone secular, I find this to be a smart decision. We've looked rather ignorant and even apprehensive for the past decade in regards to Islam. It's nice to see that he's doing something simple like acknowledging a holiday.

As for people complaining about national day of prayer - He'll probably mark the start of Easter and Christmas, so this is a bit of a non-issue. It's not like he's announcing the national day of Ramadan. Just acknowledging that Ramadan is important to many people in this world.

It's a good thing, it shows we're not isolationist xenophobic pricks.

Posted by: Crucialitis | August 21, 2009 2:52 PM | Report abuse

You've got to be kidding me, he is the first president to NOT show up for the National Day of Prayer Service in our country but he makes it a point to do this! Whatever

Posted by: sbsb | August 21, 2009 2:46 PM | Report abuse

On another front, Orly Taitz reportedly had a "Tizzy Fit" and started speaking in tongues sounding like Butterfly McQueen with "Where'd dey birth dat baby?" Back to Moldova, Orly?

Not to be outdone, House Minority Leader, John Boehner purportedly said he too would like to wish the Muslims well in their own tongue. What did he say?

"Wham Bam Alakazam!"

Posted by: NotBubba | August 21, 2009 1:03 PM | Report abuse

That's assuming that Obama is even a natural-born citizen.

Posted by: JakeD | August 21, 2009 1:02 PM | Report abuse

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