We never felt the frosty winter air of that November night as we sat in the unusually crowded Shannon Room. There was a palpable sense of excitement, which diffused all over campus as students sang the national anthem at midnight.

I didn't vote for Obama, nor had I memorized the words of "Amazing Grace," yet I certainly felt that bright and beautiful thrill as we reveled in Obama's victory.

Many things have changed since then. More than one economic crisis has come to pass, hurricanes have raged and abated, Osama bin Laden was found and finished, but, like all Arabs, there was one matter that preoccupied me: America's attitude toward the Middle East.

Like most of my relatives in Morocco, I believed that Obama's victory would usher in radical, positive changes in the region. That now strikes me as truly na‹ve. As I listened to Obama's recent speech at the United Nations on September 21, the last of my hopes dwindled away.

In January 2009, it looked as if we were on for a fresh start to tear down Bush's manichean us-versus-them attitude, find a solution for the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, push for more democracy in the Middle East, and make efforts to impede religious extremism.

The Cairo speech later that year seemed to pave the way for a whole new era of international relations. But on that ill-fated Wednesday last month, I could only empathize with Mahmoud Abbas as he listened to Obama's address while holding his crestfallen face in his hands.

I ran to my Religion and Politics course immediately after listening to the speech, yet even Professor Franco's enthusiastic lecture could not curb my disillusionment. Although we were discussing democracy and the legacy of the American forefathers, all I could see was American hypocrisy.

I grew up in a country where anti-American attitudes are rampant and mainstream, but I do not mean to communicate the resentment of my fellow Moroccans.

However, I can assuredly say that what little credibility America had in the Arab world vanished when it opposed the Palestinian bid for U.N.-sanctioned statehood.

The United States has consistently professed its support for all people appealing for liberty through peaceful means. Since when is resorting to the United Nations a violent means of applying for statehood?

Why is this legitimate demand from the Palestinians vetoed while the state of Southern Sudan was expediently established earlier this year?

Precisely one year ago and in front of the same audience at the United Nations, Obama declared that "true security for the Jewish state requires an independent Palestine." He gave due consideration to Israel's security concerns while recognizing the occupation under which Palestinians have lived for decades.

However, his recent U.N. address struck me as more of a petty re-election sermon than anything else. Admittedly, as he said, "the Jewish people carry the burden of centuries of exile, persecution, and the fresh memory of knowing that six million people were killed simply because of who they were," but how can the Palestinian bid for statehood be a threat to Israel when its existence would set the stage for state-to-state negotiations?

Perhaps some will read this as the cliché spiel of an Arab Jew-hater, yet all my life I have tried to override that stereotype. From learning Hebrew at Middlebury the summer of my sophomore year to working for an Israeli NGO in Paris last summer, I have always endeavored to look beyond the conventional image of ethnic, political and religious confrontation between Jews and Muslims.

Like Obama, I believe in the pursuit of peace, but I cannot help being perplexed by his speeches. It is not his fault that the region is in tatters right now; as cheery as the brave Tunisians and Egyptians appear to be on the cover of Time Magazine, nothing has yet been resolved in these states.

Nevertheless, Obama's praise for the Arab Spring merely accentuates the double standards of America. After his most recent speech, I did not applaud.

Salma Berrada is a member of the Class of 2012.