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"The face of globalization is contradictory," said U.S. President Barack Obama during his speech at Cairo University on June 4th. "Trade can bring new wealth and opportunities, but also huge disruptions and change in communities." In all countries, change brings fear of loss of control over that which we cherish most about our communities, families, traditions and our faith, said Mr. Obama.
But human progress cannot be denied, and no development strategy can be based only upon what comes out of the ground, nor can it be sustained while young people are out of work. Education and innovation will be the currency of the 21st century, said President Obama. The United States is already beginning to emphasize investment in these areas, something that Muslim countries also should
"On education, we will expand exchange programs, and increase scholarships, like the one that brought my father to America. At the same time, we will encourage more Americans to study in Muslim communities. And we will match promising Muslim students with internships in America; invest in online learning for teachers and children around the world; and create a new online network, so a young person in Kansas can communicate instantly with a young person in Cairo."
To further economic development, President Obama proposed to create a new corps of business volunteers to partner with counterparts in Muslim-majority countries, and to help create connections between business leaders, foundations and social entrepreneurs in the U.S. and Muslim-majority countries. Mr. Obama also promised to create a fund to support technological development in Muslim-majority countries, and to help transfer ideas to the marketplace so they can create more jobs.
"All these things must be done in partnership. Americans are ready to join with citizens and governments; community organizations, religious leaders, and businesses in Muslim communities around the world to help our people pursue a better life."