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Obama author and expert Andy Martin continues to search for the truth: Is Barack Obama a Muslim? A Christian?

February 26, 2015

Almost eleven years ago Andy Martin posted an article and conducted news conferences that have become a part of American history: Andy said that based on his research, then-U. S. Senate candidate Barack Obama was a Muslim (see [5] below). Andy’s original research was based on a series of facts, all of which were subsequently confirmed by other media. Nevertheless, eleven years later doubts about Obama’s religion still resonate, most recently when putative presidential candidate Governor Scott Walker was asked by the Washington Post whether Obama is a Christian. Walker’s equivocal answer prompted yet another round of liberal attacks. In today’s column Andy, also a former theology student, provides a new round of analysis explaining why there is ongoing confusion about Obama’s religious beliefs. The controversy will no doubt continue to rage on. Andy still adheres to his now decade-long standard investigative Obama: find the facts, search for the truth. We hope you will agree.

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Andy Martin says that his original 2004 article claiming Barack Obama is a Muslim is still correct as a statement of Islamic theology

Andy says that he accepts Obama’s profession of Christianity but that the historical record remains opaque on how and when Obama formally became a Christian, if ever

Andy’s unique contribution to American history continues to resonate through political and media establishments.

Andy says he and Obama have become linked in American history, forever

(New York, NY) (February 26, 2015)

Last week, Governor Scott Walker was asked by my former editor at the Daily Illini, Dan Balz, if President Barack Obama is a Christian (see link [1] below). Walker’s reply triggered a new firestorm of criticism and controversy concerning Obama’s religion. One especially thoughtful and perceptive column I recommend appeared in the Boston Globe by Jeff Jacoby (see link [2] below).

I.

The Background concerning Obama’s or any candidate’s religion

President Barack Obama says he is a Christian. Many Americans either disagree with that assertion or express doubts. The liberal media establishment uses the disputed matter of Obama’s religion as a bludgeon with which to beat Republicans and conservatives.

What propelled me to question Obama’s origins? I had gone to the Illinois General Assembly as an intern. Decades later, Obama appeared as the state senator from Hyde Park, a neighborhood I knew well. So I knew Obama as a state senator in Springfield and had an “insider’s” insight into questions about him that were whispered about but which were never documented or researched.

I began the process of independent scholarly research because Chicago’s media were so infatuated with being a part of Obama’s “history” that local media abandoned any semblance of impartiality or professionalism about their hometown presidential candidate.

In August, 2004 while Obama was still a senate candidate I began with an article and conducted news conference which became part of American history. I made numerous assertions — all of which were ridiculed or ignored in 2004 — and all of which have ultimately proven to be correct. In particular, I focused attention on Obama’s family history as a Muslim.

I will be heading to Honolulu in May (2015) for yet another investigative trip concerning Obama’s history. Often I am asked, “Why bother, he will never be a candidate again?” But Obama will always be a part of our history. The disaster he is likely to leave in the wake of his presidency will make Obama an extremely controversial person in our national history. And much remains to be discovered about Obama’s hidden past. Just one example: how was Obama, a mediocre student, from an impecunious family, admitted to Occidental College? Who paid the Occidental bills for Obama’s attendance at a private institution, and what was the basis of his application to be admitted?

I believe that even today we have only scratched the surface concerning Obama’s family secrets. In 2008 I published the theory (not as an assertion of fact) that, based on my research in Hawai’i, Frank Marshall Davis was the president’s biological father. The DNA evidence which exists has yet to be connected; but my 2008 claim has now become part of the virtual Obama canon for conservatives.

My 2004 release questioning Obama’s religion and also exposing his “autobiography” as a fraud, continue to generate massive controversy. It is seldom that a historian, let alone a quotidian commentator such as myself, leaves such a mark on American history. But the Internet links below connect me to Obama, and link our names for eternity.

In light of the latest controversy over whether Obama is a Christian I am presenting my updated views and, of course, welcome your comments (and evidence if you have new information to provide me with).

I have always endeavored to maintain a measured and independent attitude towards Obama where my scholarly research is concerned. As a Republican, and partisan, I have come to intensely dislike Obama because of the damage he is doing to America both at home and abroad. But my personal feelings of antipathy have been walled off, to the fullest extent possible, from my scholarly inquiries into the president’s family history, religious history and educational history. I have a couple of interesting, long-delayed columns which I will try to get out in the next week, both of which will have controversial implications for my Obama oeuvre.

Before August, 2004 I was primarily known for my international commentary and expertise in Asia, the Middle East and points in between. Why I decided to research and expose Obama in August, 2004 I am still not sure. But I am sure my first column changed my life, just as I have had a significant influence on Obama’s life through my continuing questioning of his religious beliefs and other less visible aspects of his life story. Obama and I are far from the end of our journey together.

The claim by some that a candidate’s religion “doesn’t matter” and that we should only focus on “issues” is pure nonsense. Throughout history, but especially today in our media-saturated environment, people have always wanted to know the “inside” details about their leaders. What is different about Obama in the modern era is that unlike, for example, John F. Kennedy, where the gravity of his illnesses and the extent of his infidelities were concealed during his lifetime, doubts about Obama’s history have played out during his candidacy and presidency. The modern media world shines a very intense light on any and every aspect of a candidate’s life. The claim by some that we should only be interested or pursue “issues” advocated by a president, and ignore a president’s personal history, is ridiculous.

II.

The Generalities of Christianity

Christianity is not a religion with the formality of Judaism (where religion is passed through the mother) or Islam (where religion passes through the father). Anyone can say he or she is a Christian and essentially become one. In fact, we have a common refrain that someone has a “come to Jesus moment,” where someone is moved to accept Christ and profess that person’s new acceptance of Christianity. On a generalized basis, Obama must then be taken at his word, that he is a Christian. And, so, yes, today, Obama can and should be recognized as a Christian even if the formalities of his former religion, Islam, still attach to his life and bear witness to the conflicts between his public claims and private beliefs.

III.

The technicalities of Christianity

I studied to be a priest at the Institute of Theology at the [Episcopal] Cathedral of St. John the Divine in New York (the Institute has since been discontinued). While as noted above anyone can claim he or she is a Christian, to formally become part of my denomination and other mainline Christian churches you must satisfy one crucial point of passage: Holy Baptism. It is the fact and act of baptism that that brings someone into the Christian church.

Obama has never said when or where he was baptized. I asked Trinity United Church of Christ for Obama’s baptismal information and the church refused to disclose that information. My guess (and I do not state this as a fact) is that Obama has never been baptized, and thus never formally became a Christian under the rules and rituals of either the United Church of Christ (Trinity United) or any other mainline denomination. The United Church of Christ emphasizes the importance of baptism (see [3] below). My own church makes a very clear statement about the significance of baptism (see [4] below).

The bottom line: we do not know if Obama has ever been baptized, and Trinity UCC refuses to say, sowing further doubts as to Obama’s religious identity.

IV.

Obama-the-Christian in Washington

Washington, DC has a very vibrant, historic African-American Christian tradition. After Obama was elected president Washington, DC’s African-American churches competed to see if one of them could recruit Obama as a member. He has never joined an African-American church in the nation’s capital. Obama has probably attended my own church, St. John’s Episcopal, across from the White House, more than any one the African churches. And even at St. John’s, Obama’s attendance is purely self-serving, perfunctory and ceremonial. When Obama feels he is trapped or cornered and under scrutiny I often predict that he will make a cameo appearance at St. John’s. I am seldom wrong. But he has no consistent pattern of worship in Washington. Does Obama’s lack of attendance resolve the underlying issue of his religious loyalty? No. Obama is not required to have a religion; he only professes to have one. But like other pieces of the puzzle, his non-attendance at church and his perfunctory practice of Christianity point in a certain direction.

V.

What makes a Muslim? What do Muslims themselves believe about President Obama’s religion?

A.

What makes a Muslim?

There is no doubt as to what or who makes a Muslim: the father. Islam is transferred to offspring through the father, a direct contravention of Judaism where the mother’s role is sacrosanct. What are the undisputed facts: (1) Obama’s grandfather was a devout convert to Islam. (2) Obama’s father was raised as a Muslim. (3) Despite efforts to deny Obama Senior’s Islamic religion, the father was buried in Kenya with a Muslim ritual. (4) Most of Obama’s half-siblings in Kenya today are Muslims. (I am ignoring for the moment my theory that Barack Obama, Senior is not President Obama’s biological father; that is a separate issue that remains to be proven.)

The bottom line: I was absolutely correct in 2004 to say Obama was a Muslim. Islam passed to him at birth through his putative father. He has never openly disavowed his birthright. And, unlike Christianity, with few barriers or conditions to the profession of Christianity, or exit from Christianity, Islam is not an easy religion to abandon. Someone who announces he or she is abandoning Islam can become subject to a fatwa for blasphemy and be sentenced to death.

B.

What do Muslims believe about Obama?

Over the years I have supported Palestinian nationalism and continue to do so today. I have many loyal readers and followers in the Middle East (both pro-Israel and pro-Palestine). My readers had a profound influence on my perception of Obama’s religion. When I started writing critical articles about Obama some of my friends and readers in the Middle East asked me to “go easy on Obama,” “because he is a Muslim.” “One of us.” Whatever Americans may believe, in the Middle East Obama is absolutely believed to be a Muslim and follower of Islam. In the Middle East and throughout the Islamic world Obama’s identification as a Muslim is not quite a “fact” but the widespread belief of adherents is very close to a “fact.” Muslims believe Obama is one of them.

VI.

What about Obama’s father and grandfather?

As I stated above, Obama’s grandfather was a convert to Islam (after abandoning Christianity). The Obama household into which President Obama’s father was born was strictly Muslim. President Obama’s father is alleged to have abandoned his birthright religion; clearly Obama’s father did not actively practice Islam while temporarily residing in the United States (not many people in any religion are active participants in their 20’s). But “abandoning” Islam is not a simple matter. There is no evidence in Kenya that Obama-the-father ever abandoned Islam. When he was killed in a car crash the president’s father was buried in a Muslim ceremony. Obama’s half-siblings are, as a group, primarily Muslims, another piece of circumstantial evidence in the overall puzzle.

Bottom line: Obama’s own professed family ties in Kenya all lead to Islam.

VII.

Will the “Is Obama a Christian/Muslim” debate ever end?

I first wrote about Obama’s religion in August 2004. Almost eleven years later the controversy rages, and mainstream media such as the Washington Post use Obama’s religion as a 2016 presidential candidate gotcha question. Will the controversy ever end? You be the judge. Does Obama want it to end? I am doubtful. Obama continues to stoke controversy about his religious beliefs by his relentless apologies for Islam, starting with his 2009 “apology tour” in Cairo. Obama’s bias-in-favor-of-Islam is so consistent his repetition becomes another piece of circumstantial evidence in Obama’s theology puzzle. Obama’s recent claims at the National Prayer Breakfast generated great controversy over his Islamic sympathies. His refusal to utter the words “radical Islam” are a continuing source of conflict.

We will no doubt have to wait for Obama to leave the White House to see if he ever again attends a Christian church, or any church, mosque or whatever. Until then, my original 2004 analysis remains definitive. There are still missing pieces in the Obama theology puzzle, but the overall picture is unavoidable. Obama was born a Muslim and has never openly disavowed his birth religion. He professes today to be a Christian; based on Christianity’s open standards his claim must be taken at face value. Game on.

LINKS TO THIS STORY (cut and paste the entire link below and not just the underlined portion):

[1] http://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/walker-says-he-is-unaware-whether-obama-is-a-christian/2015/02/21/6fde0bd0-ba17-11e4-bc30-a4e75503948a_story.html

[2] http://www.bostonglobe.com/opinion/2015/02/24/who-cares-whether-obama-christian-the-media-apparently/YJFpNtFPmF3A0tMgomROZM/story.html

[3] http://www.ucc.org/about-us_what-we-believe

[4] http://www.dioceseny.org/pages/228-concerning-baptism

[5] http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1189687/posts

New citations after emailing:

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ABOUT ANDY:
Andy is a legendary New Hampshire, New York and Chicago-based muckraker, author, Internet columnist, talk television pioneer, radio talk show host, broadcaster and media critic. Andy’s family immigrated to Manchester 100 years ago; today his home overlooks the Merrimack River and he lives around the corner from where he played as a small boy. He has forty-five years of background in radio and television. He is the author of “Obama: The Man Behind The Mask” [www.OrangeStatePress.com] and he produced the Internet film “Obama: The Hawaii’ Years” [www.BoycottHawaii.com]. Andy is the Executive Editor and publisher of the “Internet Powerhouse,” http://www.ContrarianCommentary.com. He comments on New Hampshire, national and international events with more than four decades of investigative and analytical experience both in the USA and around the world. For more, go to: http://www.AndyMartin.com

Andy has also been a leading corruption fighter in American politics and courts for over forty-five years and he is executive director of the National Anti-Corruption Policy Institute. He is currently sponsoring http://www.AmericaisReadyforReform.com. See also http://www.FirstRespondersOnline.us; http://www.EnglishforAmerica.org

He holds a Juris Doctor degree from the University of Illinois College of Law and is a former adjunct professor of law at the City University of New York (LaGuardia CC, Bronx CC).

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© Copyright by Andy Martin 2015 – All Rights Reserved

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