Last week, Charles Johnson of LGF asked an intriguing question concerning Barack Hussein Obama. "How would the world’s 249 gazillion Muslims react to having an American president who is also a Muslim apostate?"
Both Charles Johnson and Robert Spencer of Jihad Watch have highlighted the fact that apostasy in Islam is often times punishable by death in many Islamic countries. But one of the problems that apostates face though (other than death threats) is being able to convince an Islamic court than they are in fact no longer Muslims. Just ask people like Abdul Rahman or Kamariah Ali of the difficulties they faced.
Barack Hussein Obama might have convinced some Americans that he is no longer a Muslim, but so far he has not convinced many in the world's most populous muslim country who still see him as a Muslim and a crusader for Islam and world peace.
Barack Hussein Obama's race, his staunch opposition to the war in Iraq, his sympathy to Islam and Muslims worldwide and his Muslim heritage receive the Indonesian media coverage. There is no mention of his apostasy.
A good example of how some of the Indonesian media is reporting on Obama's religion can be found in the following.
"Ayah kandung Obama disebut-sebut seorang Muslim, dan Barack Obama juga disebutkan pernah memeluk Islam. Setalah tinggal di AS dan diasuh neneknya, Obama mengaku telah memeluk Kristen. Masalah agama apa yang sekarang dianut Obama, itu adalah prinsip dirinya yang harus dihormati siapapun. Dan hanya Obama sendiri yang tahu dan akan mempertanggungjawabkan di hadapan Tuhan yang diyakininya."
begin my translation...
"Obama's father was mentioned to be a Muslim and Barack Obama had embraced Islam. After living in the USA and being taken care of by his grandmother, Obama claimed to embrace Christianity. The problem with religion and what is now followed by Obama is a principal he himself must honor. And only Obama personally will account before God for his beliefs."
What I found interesting in the article was the use of the word "mengaku" when refering to Obama's conversion from Islam to Christianity. The word "mengaku" in Indonesian means "claimed" and as such leaves the insinuation to the native Indonesian reader being that Obama might actually still be a Muslim. But this is how Indonesians see Obama, they don't see him as an apostate at all, they see him as a crusader for the cause of Islam.
The following post from an Indonesian's blog gives an indication of how Indonesians see Barack Hussein Obama. While there is much pride in his Muslim heritage, you will also notice no mention of his apostasy.
"The United States Presidential candidate had lived in Indonesia.
He had experienced childhood in Indonesia.
His stepfather was an Indonesian citizen.
And he was born to a Muslim father.
This person stands for anti-racism, anti-warfare and I am sure he has a good view of Islam"
Obama's popularity in the Muslim world though presents a troubling conundrum though. His popularity with Islam's so-called moderates in actuality lends more credence to the ideology promoted by fundamentalist groups such as Al Qaeda and Jemaah Islamiyah who will be eager to explain Obama's popularity in America as futher evidence supporting the acquiescence of the West to the superiority of Islam.
The words of Australia's Prime Minister John Howard might has seemed harsh, but the reality is that a pullout from Iraq and/or a vote for Obama will spell out a major victory for Al Qaeda.