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Tuesday, August 4, 2009
WND Tepidly, Deceptively Defends Kenyan Birth Certificate
Topic: WorldNetDaily

An August 3 WorldNetDaily article on reaction to WND's previous release of a document purporting to be a Kenyan birth certificate for Barack Obama concedes apparent problems with the certificate's authenticity but misleadingly defends it in other areas.

Responding to claims that the document is inauthentic because it purports to have been issued by the "Republic of Kenya" at a time when Kenya was not officially a republic, the article responds: "Kenya's official independence was in 1963, and any number of labels could have been applied to government documents during that time period," adding, "The 1963 independence is corroborated by several other information sources."

That's a disingenous defense. Nobody disputes that Kenya gained its independence in 1963. WND offers no specific evidence that Kenya was issuing documents describing Kenya as a republic between the time of its independence in December 1963 and official declaration as a "republic" in December 1964. WND cites only murky claims from a state-run Chinese news agency,  the "African history" page on, and "an online source" that is actually an online dictionary whose sourcing is unclear.

Further, as Media Matters points out, Kenya had an official status between December 1963 and December 1964: the Dominion of Kenya.

Further, WND's noting that Kenya's constitution was "adopted in 1963, amended in 1999" ignores the fact that it was also amended in 1964 -- the CIA's World Factbook specifically states that the constitution was "amended as a republic 1964."

Still, the article repeats the claim that the document "bears none of the obvious traits of a hoax."

The article goes on to state that Orly Taitz, who is introducing the purported certificate as evidence in one of her birther cases, "told WND she's been discussing the document with several individuals who apparently 'are willing to investigate.'"

But as we've previously noted, WND claimed in a press release that " is working with document experts in the U.S. and with sources in Kenya to determine its validity." So who's doing the investigating, Taitz or WND? Or are they working together?

This raises further questions about the apparently close, symbiotic relationship between WND and Taitz -- one that WND has failed to fully disclose to its readers.

Posted by Terry K. at 9:21 AM EDT

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