Tags: obama | muslim | times

New York Times Spins Obama Muslim Ties

Monday, 13 Oct 2008 10:12 PM

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The New York Times on Monday offered its own spin about the questions raised about Barack Obama and his ties to the Muslim faith.

The Times pinned the blame on this "persistent falsehood" about Obama on an Illinois man named Andy Martin.

In a story headlined "The Man Behind the Whispers About Obama," the paper said Martin had singlehandedly fomented the claim that “Obama is a Muslim who has concealed his religion.”

The paper also claimed Martin had a past psychiatric illness and had made anti-Semitic statements.

But the Times ignored the allegations by many others that Obama is hiding his upbringing as a Muslim.

Notable is Daniel Pipes, a respected Mideast expert and scholar who has a distinguished record in policy matters.

While accepting Obama's claim that he converted to Christianity in his 20s, Pipes says Obama has been "lying" when he says he was never raised a Muslim and never attended a mosque. [See: Pipes: Obama Is Lying About Muslim Past]

Obama was born to a Muslim father. His mother remarried to an Indonesian man, also a Muslim.

In Indonesia, Obama was registered in two schools as a Muslim student. As such, he prayed with Muslim students and studied the Koran.

The Times downplays Obama's ties to Islam in its account: "Mr. Obama was raised mostly by his white mother, an atheist, and his grandparents, who were Protestant, in Hawaii. He hardly knew his father, a Kenyan from a Muslim family who variously considered himself atheist or agnostic, Mr. Obama wrote. For a few childhood years, Mr. Obama lived in Indonesia with a stepfather he described as loosely following a liberal Islam."

As Pipes notes, several reports like the Times' have only confirmed that not only was Obama raised partially as a Muslim, but that he studied the Koran and attended mosque, albeit infrequently.

On Pipe's blog he links to a Los Angeles story that details Obama's Muslim upbringing. [See the Los Angeles Times story: Islam an Unknown Factor in Obama Bid]

Major media outlets that have done in-depth reporting on Sarah Palin's religious past and faith seem dismissive of any question about Obama's childhood faith and the fact that evidence directly contradicts claims today made by Obama and his campaign.

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