What is notable about this year’s remarks are the specifics in terms of dollar amounts. This isn’t likely to change anyone’s mind, but I think that it does show a responsiveness to the criticism.
Michelle and I send our warmest greetings to Muslims celebrating Eid al-Fitr here in the United States and around the world. During the past month, Muslims have honored their faith through prayer and service, fasting and time spent with loved ones. At this year’s White House Iftar, I was proud to spend time with some of the many American Muslims whose contributions enrich our democracy and strengthen our economy. Many of us have had the opportunity to break fast with our Muslim friends and colleagues—a tradition that reminds us to be grateful for our blessings and to show compassion to the less fortunate among us, including millions of Syrians who spent Ramadan displaced from their homes, their families, and their loved ones. To help the many Syrians in need this Eid al-Fitr, the United States is providing an additional $195 million in food aid and other humanitarian aid, bringing our humanitarian contribution to the Syrian people to over $1 billion since the crisis began. For millions of Americans, Eid is part of a great tapestry of America’s many traditions, and I wish all Muslims a blessed and joyful celebration. Eid Mubarak.