Unconventional thinking about the Middle East.

Sunday, December 30, 2007

Obama, Apostate?

I'm wondering why no one in the Arabic media has made this point: technically, Barack Obama was born a Muslim (...according to Muslims) but he chose Christianity. Doesn't this make him an apostate by shari'ah law and existing "secular" law in most of the Islamic world?

Some Western pundits have made the case that electing Obama as president would win over Muslims who are skeptical over America's "crusading" image. But isn't the opposite true? Isn't it illegal for Obama to exist in countries like Pakistan, Indonesia and Egypt, let alone a place like Saudi Arabia?

Turkey has had a spate of murders targeting Christian missionaries over the perceived slight of turning Muslims against their faith; something that in Turkey is far from being universally condemned. How would lay Turks deal with a President Obama making a state visit to Ankara? Would he be seen as a "friend" or as a walking, talking provokation?

Apostacy is one of these black and white issues in most of the Islamic world. Shouldn't these gushing, clueless pundits address such an angle before making the case to elect Obama based on his "unique" background--which is Obama's own main selling point?

Shouldn't the NYT bureau in Cairo pose this very question to the scholars of al-Azhar Islamic University?

Obama should immediately make a campaign pledge that as president he would coerse America's Muslim allies into enacting wide-ranging religious freedoms reforms. Most of these countries have a terrible record accepting their own long-established religious minorities let alone an individual's right to choose another faith. Of course, freedom is not a piece-meal affair; it too is either black or white. Only democracy can guarantee such rights...But would Obama be brave enough to adopt George Bush's freedom agenda?


Anonymous Salameh Nematt said...

Interesting point, but I believe the fact that Obama's father abandoned him as a kid, and his mother raised him as a Christian absolves him of responsibility. That's my fatwa for whatever it is worth. However, I believe an Islamic fatwa declaring him an apostate and calling for Muslims to spill his blood would probably guarantee him his party's nomination for president.

2:54 AM, December 30, 2007

Blogger bg said...


excellent points/questions, none of which will even be pondered, never mind asked of Barack HUSSEIN Obama under the MSM's strict double standard rule.. not to mention their delving into the practices of his racist church preachings.. oh wait, it's only racist if it's pro-American or adhere's to white causes only.. gah!!


3:06 PM, December 30, 2007

Anonymous Anonymous said...

It seems the conflict in the Warka Bank issue is family related. Read the latest news from this link:


2:25 AM, January 04, 2008

Anonymous Abbasi said...

You're wrong in evaluating Turkiye as it's not an islamic state as it's AKP government which is a puppet of US supported US violence in Iraq no matter what Turkish community thinks. I try to follow your articles but what I just see is another puppet of US. Just continue to takle your cheques from CIA Mr.Nizam. Muslims are aware that this is the new Crussaders invasion which will turn as a nigtmare on the supporters including you.

5:29 PM, January 11, 2008

Blogger Orville said...

Nibras, I've been asking the same thing. And I e-mail a list of Ayatollahs and Sunni Sheikhs asking for a ruling. If you'll indulge me I'll post what I've received back.

The question I posted was this:
If a Muslim man and a Christian woman have a child, is it necessary that the child be raised Muslim? If the child (a male) chooses to become Christian by following his mother's religion is it permissable?

اذا كان للرجل المسلم و زوجته المسيحة طفل هل من اللازم ان الطفل ينتهج دين ابه او من الممكن ان يكن مسموح له تدين بدين امه؟ شكرأ جزيلأ

And a variation:

1-If a Muslim man and a Christian woman have a child, is it necessary that the child be raised Muslim? 2-If the child (a male) chooses to become Christian by following his mother's religion is it permissable?

اذا كان للرجل المسلم و زوجته المسيحة طفل هل من اللازم ان الطفل ينتهج دين ابه او من الممكن ان يكن مسموح له تدين بدين امه؟ شكرأ جزيلأ

So far the Offices of Grand Ayatollahs Mousavi, Khamnei, Al-Maiad, and Hamedani have responded. Our Sunni friends have been less forthcoming with responses.

Here are their answers:

From al-Maiad; *على الأب المسلم أن يربي أولاده على الإسلام
عقيدة ومفاهيم وسلوكا فهو خاتم
الأديان السماوية المقدسة مع حفظ إحترامه للأ
م المسيحية وعدم المساس بكرامتها
الدينية وإذا بلغ الطفل سن الرشد وجب عليه أن
يبني عقيدته بنفسه على أساس علمي
وسيدله المنهج العلمي أيضا على الإسلام خاتم
الديانات السماوية الشريفة.*

بسمه تعالي
سلام عليكم
ج:اللازم للاب ان يذكر لولده دلائل حقانيّة الاسلام و يربّي ايّاه والاسلام دين المنطق و الاستدلال.
حسین نوری همدانی

Mousavi handwrote his and scanned it saying:
بسمه تعالى على الاب ان يسعى في تدين الطفل بدين الاسلام. و الله العالم.
(clearly God is most knowing but it's always good to have a little earthly backing I suppose).

Khamnei's office responded with:
Salamun `alaykum wa Rahmatullahi wa Barakatuhu.
The answer is as follows:

Bismihi Ta`ala
1) He should follow his father’s religion.
2) That is impermissible.

With prayers for your success,

Will keep you abreast of any Sunni followup.


8:30 AM, April 03, 2008

Blogger Orville said...

I'm pretty sure that means if Obama visits Iran as he's promised the Leader's office could try to legally justify his stoning.

8:31 AM, April 03, 2008

Blogger bg said...


Orville @ 8:30 AM..

i haven't finished reading your post yet because i felt the need to inform you that Obama's mother was not a Christian.. she was an Atheist..


11:10 AM, April 03, 2008

Blogger Orville said...

Obama's said the same thing a few times about his mother's faith.

"My mother was a Christian from Kansas."


The question posed to the Ayatollahs was how Islamic Law views the religion of the child born of a Muslim father and a Christian mother. Obama's mother was born Christian and since she never converted to Islam would be considered Christian. That she became an athiest in her later years, as her friends describe, would put her in a different category of the law, ملحدة (with its own punishments).

11:24 AM, April 03, 2008

Blogger bg said...


Obama, Apostasy, and Ahmadinejad's Iran


["The European Union has criticized the new penal code being drafted in Iran, particularly a section that imposes the death penalty for giving up Islam…Death for apostasy already exists in Iran under Sharia or "Islamic - law."]

Barack Obama's school days - 08 Jan 07

Confirmed: Barack Obama Practiced Islam


[To start with, about the Catholic school, Fransiskus Strada Asisia, which Obama attended 1967-70 (words in square brackets are added by me):

Interviews with dozens of former classmates, teachers, neighbors and friends show that Obama was not a regular practicing Muslim when he was in Indonesia, despite being listed as a Muslim on the registration form for the Catholic school, Strada Asisia, where he attended 1st through 3rd grades. At the time, the school most likely registered children based on the religion of their fathers, said [Israella Pareira] Darmawan, Obama's former [1st-grade] teacher. Because Soetoro was a Muslim, Obama was listed as a Muslim, she said.

The enrollment form from the Catholic school, which has been cited as evidence that Obama was a Muslim in Indonesia [including by the Los Angeles Times], also was rife with errors. It listed Obama as an Indonesian, listed his previous school incorrectly and failed to list his mother, Ann, at all.]

[During a recent visit to this public school, Barker found that

Weekly religious classes are required for all students, whether Muslims, Christians or Hindus, under the government curriculum. A new shiny mosque is in the corner of the courtyard. "The Muslims learn about Islam, prayer and religious activity," said Hardi Priyono, the vice principal for curriculum. "And for the Christians, during the religious class, they also have a special room teaching Christianity. It's always been like that."]

[All this matters, for if Obama once was a Muslim, he is now what Islamic law calls a murtadd (apostate), an ex-Muslim converted to another religion who must be executed. Were he elected president of the United States, this status, clearly, would have large potential implications for his relationship with the Muslim world.

In sum: Obama was an irregularly practicing Muslim who rarely or occasionally prayed with his step-father in a mosque. This precisely substantiates my statement that he "for some years had a reasonably Muslim upbringing under the auspices of his Indonesian step-father."]

regardless of his religion, Obama was born in America.. therefore he is an American, and one of America's most treasured liberties is "freedom of religion".. hence, Political Islamic countries cannot impose their beliefs on Americans..


11:55 AM, April 03, 2008

Blogger Orville said...

BG, I don't disagree with you at all that 1)Obama is a Christian 2) that he is free to choose his own religion as directed by his conscience and convictions, both in America and around the world. Freedom of religion is a self-evidant right of human beings.

What I think is being put forward by Nibras' post, and what I have tried to echo is that regardless of Obama's personal faith as he practices it, many Muslims might consider him a Muslim. That his father was a Muslim means many Muslims, including leading Muslim jurists, would feel justified in considering him Muslim according to their legal tradition. That he practiced Islam ever would be enough for a Muslim jurist to consider him having chose Islam as his religion and his current Christianity as a form of apostasy.

The issue is not his personal faith. The issue is how the Muslim world will react to this faith. There is a potential bomb which may need to be disarmed. According to Islamic legal tradition, by all accounts Obama should be considered Muslim and treated accordingly. This presents a potential stumbling block with regard to his relations with Muslim leaders. He has stated that he would talk unconditionally with the Islamic Republic and Syria. Technically (and I mean according to the technicalities of Jafari, Maliki, Hanifi, Hanbali, and Shafi'i Law), Obama is either a)Muslim or b) an Apostate. Because of this, his potential relationship with the leadership of a Muslim nation as fundementalist as Iran's, for example, will be fraught with difficulty. He will be approaching that country as the head of state of "The Great Satan" and as an apostate.

Does that clarify some?

12:16 PM, April 03, 2008

Blogger bg said...


Orville @ 12:16 PM.. :)

sorry if i appeared ignorant/clueless, i am well aware of the "one way street" syndrome in Islam/Arab nations..

oh btw, i believe Rev. Wright (close friend of NOI Louis Farrakhan.. who, along with Jesse Jackson, traveled to Tripoli together & visited with Qaddafi back in 84) is a former Muslim..

ps: both the Rev. Wright & Obama espouse Malcolm X philosophy, as well as Cones black liberation theology..



12:37 PM, April 03, 2008

Blogger bg said...


re: bg @ 12:37 PM..

ah, i see the Obama camp scrubbed
the Malcolm X link.. will try again..

In Defence of Hate Speech, Lies, and Obama.

just in case, you can link to it via this cached link..


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