The crafting of Obama’s Cairo speech to world’s Muslims,0,7995544,full.story

From the Los Angeles Times
The Cairo Address

Pete Souza / The White House
President Obama and aides discuss his address to the world’s Muslims, delivered June 4 from Cairo. The team solicited input from dozens of people.

The president worked with dozens but put his own delicate touch onto a blunt address that would grab global attention — and some criticism.

By Christi Parsons

August 2, 2009

Reporting from Washington — He sat with his legs crossed in an armchair in the Oval Office, his brow furrowed. Aides clustered on the couches around him. They could see Continue reading

Groups encourage Obama administration to hire more Muslim Americans,0,176096.story

From the Los Angeles Times
A book of resumes from some of the best and the brightest is sent to the White House. It’s part of an effort to get the administration to focus on a group that has at times felt slighted — or worse.

By Noreen S. Ahmed-Ullah

March 29, 2009

Reporting from Chicago — In a bid to get more Muslim Americans working in the Obama administration, a book with the resumes of 45 of the nation’s most qualified — Ivy League grads, Fortune 500 executives and public servants, all carefully vetted — has been submitted to the White House.

The effort, driven by community leaders and others, including Rep. Keith Ellison (D-Minn.), was bumped up two weeks ahead of schedule because White House officials heard about the venture, said J. Saleh Williams, program coordinator for the Congressional Muslim Staffers Assn., who sifted through more than 300 names.
Continue reading

Are American Muslims ‘under more scrutiny’ with Obama?

Are American Muslims ‘under more scrutiny’ with Obama? By Rachel Zoll, Associated Press


NEW YORK — Many American Muslim leaders are eager to help President Barack Obama improve the image of the United States in the Islamic world, but they worry that their contribution might not be welcome.

The broad suspicion of Muslims in the country since the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks persists in keeping many U.S. groups from working with the Muslim community, they say. “These issues are not going to go away just because we have a president now who has more understanding of the Muslim world,” said Salam Al-Marayati, executive director of the Muslim Public Affairs Council, an advocacy group based in Los Angeles. “We’ll actually be under more scrutiny now that these issues are going to be raised at the top of the Obama administration.” Continue reading

Arabs hope for Obama change, Israelis expect more of same


CAIRO (AFP) — Arabs were hopeful on Wednesday that President Barack Obama will amend US policy on the Middle East, while Israel expects little change in the wake of its deadly assault on Gaza.

Egypt, a close Washington ally with ties both to Israel and Palestinians, urged Obama to place the Palestinian cause at the top of his agenda as the Islamist Hamas faction said it will judge Obama by his acts. Continue reading

Among Young Muslims, Mixed Emotions on Obama

November 7, 2008

It was easy for them to love the candidate. With the same passion, and for the same reasons that millions of other young people did, they loved Barack Obama’s call to activism, the promise of change, the sheer newness of the guy.

What was hard was feeling they could not show it because they were Muslims.

“I pretty much kept away, because I didn’t want to appear with an Obama button and have people look at me and say: ‘Oh, a Muslim girl supports him. Aha,’ ” said Sule Akoglu, a 17-year-old New York University freshman, who wears a head scarf.

Like just about all the Muslim students who gathered Wednesday night at the university’s Islamic Center on the day after the election, Miss Akoglu described a mixture of delight and frustration at the successful campaign of the nation’s first black president-elect. Continue reading