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By Michael Benjamin The large group of revellers as they celebrate with the rest of the world The world stood still for one historic day, on Tuesday, as America’s first black, the 44th President, took the oath of office before millions of enthused viewers worldwide. Not since 1990, when Nelson Mandela’s long road to freedom culminated with his historic release from South Africa’s prisons, has the black Diaspora worldwide experienced such joy and fulfillment.The world watched in awe as the man who had displayed such fluency and eloquence during his historic campaign for the world’s most important office stuttered as he repeated the pledge of allegiance. Moments later, he went on to deliver the most touching and heart-warming speech ever heard by the Americans.However, even as the world celebrated this historic moment, some regions witnessed angry protests. In Iran, protesters burnt pictures of Obama and waved flags in protest of Gaza. The Internet was replete with reports of adverse occurrences around the world as Obama took the oath of office.Reports are that demonstrators waved Palestinian flags and chanted “Death to Obama,” outside the Swiss Embassy; and one report from Reuters said it obtained pictures of Obama’s image laid on the road for cars to drive on.In the rest of the world, the ascendance of the first African-American to the presidency of the United States was heralded as marking a new era of tolerance and possibility.The Obama fever also hit Georgetown in a special way. A large group of revellers, led by optician Don Gomes and organizer Dennis Atwell, braved the scorching sun to align with the rest of the world in celebration of the first black man to live in the White House.The two led a procession from the eastern end of Brickdam north into Camp Street, and then west into Middle Street, and into the Parade Ground, where they hosted a short ceremony, at around 13:00hrs, in synchronization with Obama’s inauguration.Dennis Atwell started the proceedings at Independence Park, belting out the ‘Star Spangled Banner.’Someone equalised the situation with the melodious National Anthem of Guyana. The tributes then poured in. Head of RK Security, Roshan Khan, had led the parade for the entire journey through the streets of Georgetown. He urged the large gathering to soak up the atmosphere.“This is an epic, historical moment for all mankind,Wholesale Jerseys,” he thundered. “Remember the day; feel the energy!” Political advocate Peter Ramsaroop could not let this moment slip by. He was in solidarity with the crowd.“As we celebrate this victory, let us hope that we in Guyana will witness an historic moment such as this, when we will be able to boast of having a Government for all the people. We need a Barrack Obama change,” he implored to rousing applause.Elections in Guyana have not generated such a common and collective response. Yes, there were crowds on the streets after elections. Unfortunately, there was no love for the elected President.Yesterday, during the march,Cheap NFL Jerseys, I heard someone jocularly saying,Wholesale Adidas Hockey Jerseys, “Is now I gon go fo me visa.” I am still to understand the depth of that statement. Many Guyanese believe that the draconian policies in Duke Street originated from Bush himself.The general sentiment is that Obama will relax the rigid policies at the American Embassy,MLB Jerseys From China, making ‘the land of plenty,Cheap NFL Football Jerseys,’ more accessible. The general view is that he will perform his magic act and transform America — and by extension, the world — into a prosperous place. The word on the street is that President Bush’s draconian policies had messed up the world. The man to put things right is Barrack Obama.This may be so, but the territory that harbours much resentment for America is the Middle East. Many people around these parts also heralded the inauguration but expressed reservations about how much Obama will actually change U.S. policy in a region where anti-American sentiment spiked during George W. Bush’s administration.Then there is Cuba. That country has endured an embargo placed on it by America, but has continued to toil on. The Bay of Pigs episode will still be indelible on the minds of the Cubans, but the recent changing of the guard may have a positive effect on the Obama-led regime.Then there is the belief that, despite his illness, Fidel Castro may still have a tight hold on the Cuban economy. Raoul’s decision to open up the Cuban economy, firstly allowing the ownership of cell phones,China Jerseys, and recently giving the nod for private citizens to construct their own homes, may contravene Fidel’s policy and drastically underline who is in charge.Then there is Hugo Chavez, whose alliance with Castro has placed him at the wrong end of America’s (or should that be George Bush’s?) wrath. It’s a messy situation compounded by the downturn in the US economy. Obama himself, during his Inauguration Speech, noted the adverse spin-off of the global economic crisis.He will be required to provide a quick-fix. Four years is hardly enough time to address these glaring problems.When Obama’s equal, Nelson Mandela, entered office, apartheid was at a diminishing stage. Yet he had the Herculean task of reinstating hope into the minds of the black masses. His greatest adversary came, not in the form of P. W. Botha or F. W. DeKlerk, but in a black brother, Chief of the Inkatha Freedom Party, Mangosuthu Buthelezi.Therefore, even as the world celebrates the crowning of the first black man as US President, one must not expect instantaneous miracles.Only time will tell if the Obama fever is effective enough to cause an epidemic. It is a long road to travel, and a very rough way to go.