The Iraqi leg of Barack Obama’s world tour is now over. And given the unexpected boost from Nouri al-Maliki and the absence of any major gaffes, it’s hard to imagine his little day trip having gone much better. (Perhaps a little less stammering in explaining his opposition to the surge in this interview.) So how was it for the Iraqis? Uh, how was what? A compilation of some man-on-the-street quotes gleaned from reportage on Obama’s short Iraq adventure suggest an Iraqi populace largely underwhelmed by—if not completely unaware of—Obama’s message of hope, change and withdrawal. What could possibly have happened to these people to make them so very jaded and distrustful? Oh, right.
Let’s go to the quotes: