Americans and, for that matter, all Westerners are treated hereabouts with a warmth and gratitude rarely seen in any Muslim country–even those with 100,000 American troops–in probably half a century or more. People smile and go out of their way to say hello to them, and are almost shockingly courteous. It is that oddest of oddities, an Arab war zone where foreign joggers are regarded, not with hostility or even that sympathetic puzzlement reserved for the insane, but with a friendly wave or a toot on the horn.
Yes, Nordland found a place where Americans don't encounter the lack of gratitude they find in countries occupied by US troops. He went on:
In other parts of the Mideast, one refrains from advertising American nationality, if only just in case. This is a part of the world where, other than outside American embassies, the Stars and Stripes are most often spotted ablaze and stomped upon.
Here, crowds of chanting youth fly it proudly.
Where is this place so strikingly free of anti-American sentiment? The dateline is much more familiar today than it was then: Benghazi, Libya.