By NBC News' Moufaq Khatib
AMMAN, JORDAN -- Cries of "The world has changed! Bush is out!" rang out from a café as people watched news of Barack Obama's historic win here in Jordan.
The American presidential campaigns were closely followed here, with Arab media channels like Al-Jazeera dedicating more time and attention to the U.S. vote than they normally give to elections here or in other Arab countries.
Newspapers also followed along, with one headline stating that a black man with a white heart would turn the United States into brightness, as opposed to a white man with a black heart that would turn it into darkness.
Meantime, many in this Muslim country were angered by the perception that John McCain's campaign attacked Obama for having ties to Islam.
"Because his middle name is linked to Muslims, they attacked him," said Hasan al-Barari, a columnist for al-Rai, a government newspaper.
"They left voice messages for hundreds of millions of Americans. … saying not to elect Obama (because) he is connected to terrorists," he said.
"Imagine, if I am Muslim and I hold Mohamed as a Muslim name, what do you think?"
'Change' ahead for neighbors?
The United States' policies and problems in the region have had a huge affect on Jordan, with half million displaced Iraqis and more than twice as many Palestinian refugees now live here.
Given America's direct involvement in these issues, many here wonder how Obama's slogan of "change" will be enacted.
"Look what Bush did to Iraq," said Kadim Jasim, an Iraqi refugee living in Jordan.
"Bloodshed everywhere. No security. Iran now controls Iraq through their Iraqi allies. No water. No electricity. And no life," he said, adding that living under Saddam Hussein's dictatorship was preferable to the current situation in his home country.
"I hope Obama will be better than his predecessor, particularly in (the area of) foreign policy and know how to confront those issues," Jasim said.
Obama win likened to Hamas victory
Others here felt that the general deterioration of global politics and the economy spurred Obama's win.
Palestinian refugee Hussein Hashim likened the Democrat's win to Palestinians electing Hamas in Gaza a couple years ago.
"Hamas won because the Palestinians were fed up with Fatah corruption, and they elected Hamas because the Palestinians needed changes," he said.
"Bush and the Conservatives made it very difficult everywhere, and I see it is the right time to see new faces in the White House, helping the Americans as well as other nations."