Monday, 05 February 2007

THE INSIGHT MAGAZINE ARTICLE ON HILLARY CLINTON

 

Ken Berwitz

Since I posted the fact that Insight Magazine did not claim Barack Obama had attended a madrassa in Indonesia (they reported that Hillary Clinton's people were floating the accusation), I've been accused of lying by several people.  Even worse (to them), this also makes me guilty of believing something reported on the Fox News Channel (Fox did a story or two about Insight Magazine's article, you see).

This being the case, I have decided to post the entire Insight Magazine piece, every word of it, so you can judge for yourself.  I challenge anyone to show me where Insight Magazine accuses Obama of attending a madrassa. 

Here it is:

-

Hillary's team has questions about Obama's Muslim background

Sen. Barack Obama approached the media after a meeting with President Bush at the White House on Jan. 5. (AFP/File/Mannie Garcia)

 

Are the American people ready for an elected president who was educated in a Madrassa as a young boy and has not been forthcoming about his Muslim heritage?

This is the question Sen. Hillary Rodham Clintons camp is asking about Sen. Barack Obama.

An investigation of Mr. Obama by political opponents within the Democratic Party has discovered that Mr. Obama was raised as a Muslim by his stepfather in Indonesia. Sources close to the background check, which has not yet been released, said Mr. Obama, 45, spent at least four years in a so-called Madrassa, or Muslim seminary, in Indonesia.

"He was a Muslim, but he concealed it," the source said. "His opponents within the Democrats hope this will become a major issue in the campaign."

When contacted by Insight, Mr. Obamas press secretary said he would consult with his boss and call back. He did not.

Sources said the background check, conducted by researchers connected to Senator Clinton, disclosed details of Mr. Obama's Muslim past. The sources said the Clinton camp concluded the Illinois Democrat concealed his prior Muslim faith and education.

"The background investigation will provide major ammunition to his opponents," the source said. "The idea is to show Obama as deceptive."

In two best-selling autobiographies"The Audacity of Hope: Thoughts on Reclaiming the American Dream" and "Dreams from My Father: A Story of Race and Inheritance"Mr. Obama, born in Honolulu where his parents met, mentions but does not expand on his Muslim background, alluding only to his attendance at a "predominantly Muslim school."

The sources said the young Obama was given the name Hussein by his Muslim father, which the Illinois Democrat rarely uses in public.

His father was black and came from Kenya. Mr. Obamas mother, the daughter of a farmer, came from Wichita, Kansas. Mr. Obama's parents divorced when he was two years old. His father returned to Kenya.

Later, Mr. Obama's mother married an Indonesian student and the family moved to Jakarta. Mr. Obama returned to Hawaii when he was 10 to live with his maternal grandparents.

The sources said the background check concerned Mr. Obama's years in Jakarta. In Indonesia, the young Obama was enrolled in a Madrassa and was raised and educated as a Muslim. Although Indonesia is regarded as a moderate Muslim state, the U.S. intelligence community has determined that today most of these schools are financed by the Saudi Arabian government and they teach a Wahhabi doctrine that denies the rights of non-Muslims.

Although the background check has not confirmed that the specific Madrassa Mr. Obama attended was espousing Wahhabism, the sources said his Democratic opponents believe this to be the caseand are seeking to prove it. The sources said the opponents are searching for evidence that Mr. Obama is still a Muslim or has ties to Islam.

Mr. Obama attends services at Trinity United Church of Christ in Chicagos South Side. However, he is not known to be a regular parishioner.

"Obama's education began a life-long relationship with Islam as a faith and Muslims as a community," the source said. "This has been a relationship that contains numerous question marks."

The sources said Mr. Obama spent at least four years in a Muslim school in Indonesia. They said when Mr. Obama was 10, his mother and her second husband separated. She and her son returned to Hawaii.

"Then the official biography begins," the source said. "Obama never returned to Kenya to see relatives or family until it became politically expedient."

In both of his autobiographies, Mr. Obama characterizes himself as a Christianalthough he describes his upbringing as mostly secular.

In The Audacity of Hope, Mr. Obama says, "I was not raised in a religious household." He describes his mother as secular, but says she had copies of the Bible, the Koran and the Bhagavad Gita in their home.

Mr. Obama says his father was "raised a Muslim, but by the time he met my mother he was a confirmed atheist...." Mr. Obama also describes his father as largely absent from his life. He says his Indonesian stepfather was "skeptical" about religion and "saw religion as not particularly useful in the practical business of making one's way in the world ...."

In the book, Mr. Obama briefly addresses his education in Indonesia. "During the five years that we would live with my stepfather in Indonesia, I was sent first to a neighborhood Catholic school and then to a predominantly Muslim school; in both cases, my mother was less concerned with me learning the catechism or puzzling out the meaning of the muezzin's call to evening prayer than she was with whether I was properly learning my multiplication tables."

 

Mr. Obama graduated from Columbia University and Harvard Law School; he became the first black editor of the Harvard Law Review. He later settled in Chicago, joined a law firm and began attending and helping local churches.

Mr. Obama is married to Michelle Robinson and they have two daughters, Malia and Sasha. In 1996, he was elected to the Illinois state Senate. Eight years later, he became a U.S. senator from Illinois.

The sources said Ms. Clinton regards Mr. Obama as her most formidable opponent and the biggest obstacle to the Democratic Partys 2008 presidential nomination. They said Ms. Clinton has been angered by Mr. Obama's efforts to tap her supporters for donations.

In late 2006, when the Illinois senator demonstrated his intention to run for president, the Clinton campaign ordered a background check on Mr. Obama, the sources said. Earlier this week, Mr. Obama established an exploratory committee, the first step toward a formal race

-

Let me make this as plain as possible.  If you can show me anywhere in that article - which, again, is printed in its entirety - where Insight Magazine itself accuses Obama of attending a madrassa, I will contribute $1,000 to the DNC. 

Trust me, this is the safest $1,000 I own. 

Now, maybe the several detractors who called me a liar would like to make the same pledge in reverse, and contribute $1,000 to the RNC if Insight didn't make the accusation. 

Don't hold your breath.


Buy Our Book Here!


Return to Current Blog
We're Hopelessly Partisan

hopelesslypartisan.com, is a web site which is dedicated to honest, blunt, debate on the issues of our time.


About Us



Privacy Notice: In conjunction with the ads on this site, third parties may be placing and reading cookies on your browser, or using web beacons to collect information.


At “Hopelessly Partisan” we discuss all issues, big and small. In here, nothing is sacred and nothing is out of bounds.

So settle back, preferably after laughing your way through a copy of “The Hopelessly Partisan Guide To American Politics”, and let the battle begin. In this blog, your opinion counts every bit as much as anyone else's, maybe even more.

And to show that my willingness to provide all sides of the issues is sincere, here are links to a variety of web sites, from the left, the middle (more or less) and the right. Read them and either smile in agreement or gnash your teeth in anger!!