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Reader comment on item: Confirmed: Barack Obama Practiced Islam
in response to reader comment: I can get you hours of video on Madrasa (Pesantren) activities if you like.....

Submitted by Gandydancer (United States), Feb 7, 2008 at 19:28

First, let me update the link to the article on this subject, deleted from Wikipedia, that I am reworking on on Antiwikipedia: http://www.antiwikipedia.com/Barack_Obama%27s_Connections_to_Islam.

Second, a question: Is the word "madrassa"/"madrasah"/etc. used in the Indonesian language(s)? My understanding is that it just means "school" in Arabic, but Insight magazine seemed to think it was equivalent to "seminary" and the article with the longer ABC news video( http://abcnews.go.com/Nightline/story?id=2823943) actually wrote "Madrassas are conservative Islamic schools, many of which teach a virulent hatred of America." So, as an Indonesian, do you use the word, and what would it mean for you?

The fellows with the flat round hats are not the part of the video I was referring to. And I see why you thought it was Fox -- but ABC has already switched back from the Fox clip at that point and are showing a clip of a middle eastern seminary as an illustration of what Obama's school was not. But my point was that when Obama is interviewed and says "The notion that somehow at the age of six or seven I was being trained for something other than math, science and reading is ludicrous" he is saying something contradicted by the one second of "Muslim religious class" shown at -01:49, were they are evidently, as you say, "learning the praying ritual".

Because Barry's (step)father was Muslim he was enrolled as a Muslim at both schools. He talks in one of his memoirs about opening his eyes and looking around during Catholic prayer at his second school and not seeing any angels, anfd I don't doubt that he was a skeptic during Muslim prayer as well. In fact, my guess is that his conversion to Christianity is political and that in his heart he still worships mostly at the Church of Obama. He has certainly shown a proclivity for being misleading about his religious background when convenient. Most recently, when campaigning in the Bible belt he told a potential voter "My mother was a Christian from Kansas. I've always been a Christian…. ", which is an absolute fib.(http://www.danielpipes.org/comments/119023) And Pipes is absolutely right that his website's denial that he ever prayed in a mosque is hard to reconcile with multiple testimony that he was taken there. Perhaps he had internal reservations and didn't, in that sense, "pray", but his failure to clarify that must be intentionally misleading even if it is not technically a lie.

Which I'm inclined to forgive him for. Convincing the rubes that you're more like them than you really are is SOP for any politician with a diverse constituency, and the ones who don't play the game don't win. An "honest leader" who "does not tell lies" is a hopelessly naive hope on your part. But it's unforgivable that the reporters who track him have never asked for clarifications or "noticed" the fibs.

Submitting....

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