Obama offers thanks to the Emir of Qatar–showboating some rather halting Arabic skills in addressing “His Highness Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani”–and praising the inspiring democratic example of the Arab Spring, which happened to leave the absolute monarchy of Qatar untouched.
He also offers support for his envoys, including Attorney General Eric Holder, who is attending the Arab Forum conference as the chief U.S. representative. The Arab Forum’s goal is to recover assets stolen by formerly autocratic regimes, including Tunisia, Egypt, and Libya. (But not Qatar.)
The video, posted on the White House YouTube channel today, makes no mention of 9/11, the rise of the Muslim Brotherhood, or the role of Qatar-based Al Jazeera in broadcasting radical anti-American propaganda. And while offering support for democratic change, Obama neglects to ask the Emir to step aside.
Ironically, Obama caused a scandal last year when CBS News caught him criticizing the Emir of Qatar after reporters had left a fundraiser in Chicago: “He is a big booster, a big promoter of democracy all throughout the Middle East…He himself is not reforming significantly. There is no big move towards democracy in Qatar.”
Obama has evidently chosen to make up for the insult–by insulting fellow Americans on 9/11.