There is a persistent rumour doing he rounds that the new American President, Obama, will give a speech from a Muslim capital within his first 100 days. The New York Times says "The list of Islamic world capitals is long, and includes the obvious —Riyadh, Kuwait City, Islamabad — and the not-so-obvious — Male (the Maldives), Ouagadougou (Burkina Faso), Tashkent (Uzbekistan). Some wise-guys have even suggested Dearborn, Mich., as a possibility." The New York Times goes on to suggest the most logical place is Cairo. However, we beg to disagree.
Our bet is that if the rumour is true, then Rabat in Morocco would have to be a strong contender. Why? Well, according to Sheriff Kora, a Master's Degree Candidate in Public Administration at the University of Texas, there is a very long history between the two countries. Sheriff points out that...
The friendship and diplomatic ties the United States has with the Muslim World spans centuries. For those uninformed or misinformed skeptics on Obama's interview with Al - Arabiya television network, please note that “the longest and oldest unbroken foreign treaty" of the United States of America is with the Kingdom of Morocco, a Muslim nation in North Africa.
When the 13 separate states of America declared themselves the United States, the Moroccan Sultan Sidi Mohammed was the very first sovereign leader to recognize the new American nation. The greatest heroes of American early history were the strongest proponents of friendship with Morocco. The treaty of friendship between our nations was urged on Congress by Benjamin Franklin, drafted by Thomas Jefferson, signed by John Adams and affirmed by George Washington in a letter to the Sultan. The treaty of American-Moroccan friendship is the oldest American treaty of its kind which is still enforced today. The oldest property owned by America on foreign soil is one of the most beautiful buildings in Tangier, Morocco; a gift to America from Morocco.
However, the New York Times, may well be right about Cairo. We noticed today that President Obama's new peace envoy George Mitchell arrived in Cairo today at the start of a Middle East tour, charged by President Barack Obama to "engage vigorously" to achieve real progress in the region.
Mitchell met briefly at the airport with European Union foreign policy chief Javier Solana, himself in Egypt to discuss shoring up a fragile truce in Gaza, before heading for talks with Egyptian officials, an airport official said.
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