NewsHour Arts Correspondent Jeff Brown was in Lebanon, Egypt and Kuwait during the transition from President Bush to President Obama preparing a number of arts pieces, but also talking politics.
The Obama inauguration also took place with the backdrop of the violence in Gaza and ramped up tensions between the Arab countries and Israel.
"What is he doing right now about Gaza? Why isn't he doing more?" was the question he heard repeatedly.
This video begins with people in the Middle East voicing their hopes and concerns about America's new direction.
"I hope he will have a wise team around him, and I hope he will be objective and just, not like George Bush, who was thinking about me and only me. I love the American people. I'm against the government, but not the people." - Hossan Salem, Hezbollah supporter
"What I do want to happen with Obama is what I wanted to happen with Bush, and before him with Clinton, and before him with Bush father, a solution, a state for the Palestinians, the right of return, dismantling of the settlements, and removing the wall, and Jerusalem as a capital for Arabs and Jews."- Walid Jumblatt, Lebanese politician
"He talks about talking to your enemies, engaging with people with whom he disagrees. That's a positive sign about getting together, resolving issues peacefully. Those are all positive vibes." - Rami Khouri, American University of Beirut
"I saw my children in front of the TV until 5 o'clock in the morning, waiting for the election, and I couldn't believe they are interesting in supporting Obama to that extent. And at 5 o'clock, my daughter, Fapah, she said, "Mommy, he won," which is -- you know, I think everybody has hope of -- of Obama to change the situation." - Azza Fahmy, jewelry maker
1. What does the word "Arab" mean?
2. Which countries are considered "Arab" countries?
3. Look at a map, which countries border Israel? What do you know about Israel?
1. What did you learn from this video?
2. How do you explain the different viewpoints expressed?
3. Why is the Middle East important? Do you think it is the most important foreign policy issue? Why or why not?
4. What do you think President Obama will do about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict?