An Aug. 20 WorldNetDaily article carries the headline; "Mystery solved! Why Americans think president is Muslim." And what's the solution that WND comes up with, via right-wing writer and radio host Chuck Morse? Obama secretly is Muslim.
"It's hard to reasonably explain Obama's cold relationship with Israel, his inaction in the face of Iran obtaining a nuclear bomb, his giving a green light to the building of a mosque near where Islamic fundamentalists hijacked passenger planes on September 11, 2001, and made them into missiles to destroy the World Trade Center in Manhattan," says Morse.
One possible explanation, says Morse, is the Islamic principle of Taqiyya – or the sanctioning of hiding one's Muslim faith.
It's ultimately fear of the president's multicultural background and suspicion about his childhood travels that drives public distrust over the president's religion, reported the Associated Press.
"Obama is the Christian son of a Kenyan Muslim father and a Kansas mother," writes Hillel Italie. "Born in Hawaii, he lived from ages 6 to 10 in predominantly Muslim Indonesia with his mother and Indonesian stepfather. His full name, Barack Hussein Obama, sounds Muslim to many."
The name "Hussein" doesn't just sound Muslim, says Morse. It is "reserved exclusively for Muslims." In addition, Islamic law upholds that children born to a Muslim father are automatically Muslim, says Morse. The president's stepfather, Lolo Soetoro, was Muslim. Obama's school records indicate that in Indonesia he enrolled as a Muslim in Catholic and Muslim schools, and in his autobiography, he acknowledged studying the Quran in Indonesia.
Morse notes that Obama confessed to converting to Christianity around the dawn of his political involvement, "under the tutelage of the racist anti-American and anti-Semitic pastor Jeremiah Wright," he said.
But leaving Islam, Morse says, is fraught with complications and deadly consequences.
"By converting out of Islam, Obama either became an apostate, a murtadd, in Arabic, or he began engaging in an Islamic-sanctioned deception and thus remained Muslim," says Morse. "If Obama truly left Islam, and actively embraced Christianity, he could be subject to severe penalties under Islamic law including the death sentence. Islamic Shariah law calls for the execution of any Muslim who becomes a murtadd."
t's conceivable, says Morse, that the president never truly left Islam at all, but professes faith in Christ as a cover for his true beliefs – an allowable offense for Muslims in certain circumstances.
The "Islamic-sanctioned deception," says Morse, remains the only explanation to escaping such punishment.
"The other possibility is that President Obama is engaging in a Taqiyya, which is a lie that is spoken in the greater interest of Islam," says Morse. "There are several quotes in the Quran and the Hadith, the Islamic holy books, that set the conditions under which it is permissible for the Muslim to lie regarding his identity and his intentions when dealing with non-Muslims and the non-Muslim world. Lying is allowed, even encouraged, by the Muslim according to Shariah law, if the lie in some way furthers the agenda of Islam.
"If Obama is indeed a secret-believing Muslim, as opposed to an apostate, the effects on public policy and on American society would be profound," adds Morse. "Whether Muslim or Christian, Barack Obama is the first 'Muslim president' in the same way that Bill Clinton was the first 'black president.'"
WND has tried to push the secret-Muslim thing at least once before, in a column by Pieder Beeli. And like Beeli, Morse gets the idea of taqiyya completely wrong. As we've previously noted, Hussein Ibish, senior fellow at the American Task Force on Palestine, has said that the idea promoted by people like Beeli that taqiyya "constitutes a carte blanche for all Muslims to lie to all non-Muslims" is false; rather, it permits Muslims to lie about their faith in order to save themselves from imminent harm or death. "If there is a major religion that does not contain a doctrine that might permit someone to recant at the stake or before the axe, I am not aware of it," Ibish adds.
Of course, the fact that right-wingers like Morse and WND love to perpetuate a lie couldn't possibly have anything to do with why people think this about Obama.