The speech, which you can read here, was missing a few things:
1. The word TERRORIST. “Violent extremism” doesn’t happen on its own. It’s done by terrorists.
2. Details on closing Gitmo “by early next year.” Surely Pres. Obama realizes that it’s not enough to say “I have ordered the prison at Guantanamo Bay closed by early next year.” Where will those terrorists be sent? What will be the international reaction?
3. A firm position on women’s rights. As Peter Ladou said regarding the tepid language on this issue:
Is that a joke?
With women being stoned, raped, abused, battered, mutilated, and slaughtered on a daily basis across the globe, violence that is so often perpetrated in the name of religion, the most our president can speak about is protecting their right to wear the hijab? I would have been much more heartened if the preponderance of the speech had been about how in the 21st century, we CANNOT tolerate the pervasive abuse of our mothers and sisters and daughters.
Most troubling of all, the speech lacked
4. An unequivocal, firm stance on democracy: A “commitment to governments that reflect the will of the people” is not enough. Tyrants since the dawn of history have been summoning the masses to demonstrate their regimes “reflect the will of the people.”
Additionally, the statement, “America does not presume to know what is best for everyone” is equivocating on a moral point. America, from its birth, has been a champion of democracy, and should remain stalwart in its position.