A lot has been said about the hostile rhetoric of the Bush years—something that is thankfully behind us. President Obama’s speech in Cairo [whitehouse.gov] yesterday was a good example of a new rhetoric. Continuing a recent string of improved rhetoric including verbal pressure on Israel to stop the settlement building and calling on China to acknowledge the dead from the Tienanmen Square massacre. Improving the rhetoric of the United States is a good first step, and while Noam Chompsky [chompsky.info] might not be happy [alternet.org] (then again he wouldn’t be very Chompsky if he was would he?) I welcome the change in rhetoric. No one can change the vast workings of the US government overnight —nor indeed in 100 nights. It will take a long sustained effort. Changing the rhetoric is the first and possibly the easiest step. Now the Obama administration needs to continue the backup rhetoric with reality. If Obama and his team can do that, then they will go down in history as one of the best administrations.