PEOPLE IN THE MIDDLE EAST KNOW THAT PRESIDENT OBAMA IS A MUSLIM, BUT MOST AMERICANS DO NOT KNOW THIS. THE LIBERAL MEDIA IN AMERICA WOULD NOT ACKNOWLEDGE TRUTH EVEN IF IT HIT THEM IN THE FACE. THE FOLLOWING ARTICLE WILL DISPLAY THE TRUTH:
WND’s report that Arabic-language and Islamic experts claim the gold band Obama has been wearing on his wedding-ring finger for more than 30 years is adorned with the first part of the Islamic declaration of faith naturally was met with skepticism in some circles, but Glenn Beck’s TheBlaze.com news service published a report citing a Duke professor who confirmed the WND experts’ assessment.
Earlier today, before it published the report, four members of The Blaze editorial team, including Editor-in-Chief Scott Baker, cautiously discussed the Obama ring story in their “Blazecast Rewind” Internet broadcast, without mentioning WND.
Baker, noting he had been inundated with links to the WND article, said he approached the story as he does other “memes” that float around the Internet and need to be either debunked or verified.
TheBlaze.com reporter Billy Hallowell told Baker he spoke with a professor from Duke who read the article, examined the photos and affirmed the conclusion of the WND experts.
“Based on what he saw, he said that this is, essentially, Arabic script on the ring and that it is the first part of the Shahada,” Hollowell said.
Hallowell pointed out the professor, who declined to be named, also cautioned that there is Islamic teaching that forbids wearing gold.
In WND’s report, Egyptian-born Islamic scholar Mark A. Gabriel, Ph.D., explained that despite prohibitions in Islamic law, many Muslim men wear gold rings, even in strict Muslim countries, particularly if they contain a religious message.
The Duke professor told Hollowell that it is, indeed, common for gold jewelry of that sort to be worn in the Middle East but often for superstitious reasons.
“Outside of the religious realm, it’s more about warding off bad spirits or protecting people from snake bites,” Hollowell said, citing the professor.
Later, TheBlaze.com posted a story by Hollowell reporting the WND article “has been making its way across social media and the blogosphere.”
In addition to citing the Duke professor who confirmed that the script appears to be Arabic and includes the first part of the Shahada, Hollowell reported he spoke with Harvard University’s Ali Asani
Asani, a professor of Indo-Muslim and Islamic Religion and Cultures, said that the images of Obama’s ring were not clear enough to make a determination.
“I’d actually have to see it much closer to see exactly what it says,” Asani told TheBlaze.com
Like the Duke professor, Asani believes that the first half of the Shahada is a statement that any monotheist, including a Christian, could accept, that there is only one God. Only the second part of the Shahada is exclusive, he said, declaring Muhammad is his prophet.
Meanwhile, a posting at the blog Irregular Times by JClifford compared photographs of Obama’s ring to examples of Shahada rings on the Web and concluded Obama’s ring “looks like it’s got some decorative swirls on it, and nothing more.”
However, Joel Gilbert, who was first to conclude that the ring bears the Shahada, has issued a more detailed follow-up report he prepared with the assistance of Yousef Shehadeh, a native Arabic speaker from Nazareth who studied Arabic for 13 years in the Holy Land and now works as a graphic artist in Los Angeles.
Gilbert, who has studied Arabic himself, told WND he sent close-up photographs of the ring to Shehadeh “cold,” without offering any opinion, and asked Shehadeh to evaluate them.
Shehadeh replied to him that the script on Obama’s ring is Arabic, and it is the first part of the Islamic declaration of faith.
As debate continues over the claim that President Obama’s wedding ring is inscribed with the Muslim declaration of faith, more analysis is coming from the Middle East.
Staffers in Jordan with William J. Murray’s Religious Freedom Coalition also believe the ring, which Obama wore on his wedding-ring finger for at least a decade before he married Michelle Robinson, pays homage to Allah.
“I sent the photographs to my office in Amman,” Murray wrote WND in an email. “This is the response: Yes, it is the Shahada, and the second part of the profession of faith is probably inscribed inside the ring.”
The Amman staffers said they have seen other rings like it.
Egyptian-born Islamic scholar Mark A. Gabriel, Ph,D., as well as a native-Arabic speaker employed by WND who has provided translations of critical Arabic statements, believe the ring is Islamic. A Duke professor interviewed by Glenn Beck’s TheBlaze.com news service also confirmed their conclusion.
Filmmaker Joel Gilbert has issued a detailed analysis he prepared with the assistance of Yousef Shehadeh, a native Arabic speaker from Nazareth who studied Arabic for 13 years in the Holy Land and now works as a graphic artist in Los Angeles.
Gilbert, who has studied Arabic himself, told WND he sent close-up photographs of the ring to Shehadeh “cold,” without offering any opinion, and asked him to evaluate them.
Shehadeh replied to Gilbert that the script on Obama’s ring is Arabic, and it is the first part of the Islamic declaration of faith.
The WND story was picked up today by the Saudi-owned paper Al-Arabiya.
The Huffington Post photographs
Some bloggers who are skeptical that the Obama ring is Islamic have questioned the authenticity of photos used in the analysis in the original WND story Wednesday.
A “computer software and graphics expert” cited by the blog ObamaReleaseYourRecords.com contends computer-imaging software was used to deepen shadows to make details in the lighted areas “look more like an Arabic letter rather than a squiggly design.”
Gilbert, who was first to conclude that the ring bears the Islamic declaration of faith, the Shahada, explained that the only adjustment he made to images from a 2010 Huffington Post feature was to reduce the contrast about 50 percent. His aim was to enable the detail in the ring to be seen without being overwhelmed by the background light.
The Huffington Post photographs were published in a March 18, 2010, article by Anya Strzemien, “Obama’s ‘Intricate’ Indonesian Wedding Band: A CLOSE-UP.”
Exhibit 1: Obama wedding ring photo No. 1, Huffington Post, March 18, 2010
Exhibit 2: Obama wedding ring photo No. 2, Huffington Post, March 18, 2010
A comparison of Exhibits 1 and 2 with the original Huffington Post article shows the photos, as presented in Gilbert’s analysis, were not altered, Gilbert contends.
ObamaReleaseYourRecords.com’s unnamed “computer software and graphics expert” concludes, however, “This is a major hoax in my opinion.”
The source pointed to a graphic analysis prepared by Gilbert that was posted on the website for his documentary film on Obama, “Dreams from My Real Father.”
Exhibit 3: Joel Gilbert graphic of Obama ring
But Gilbert insists he “made no alteration whatsoever” to the pattern on the ring.
The ring image in the lower left corner of his graphic, marked “Original,” he said, is the image found in the Huffington Post article, “with no computer manipulation done on the image of the ring itself.”
To demonstrate how the Arabic script letters fit over the unaltered Huffington Post photograph, Gilbert produced Exhibit 4.
Exhibit 4: Graphic by Joel Gilbert of Huffington Post photo, with overlay of Arabic script
He argues that while the original Huffington Post photograph loses some resolution on being enlarged, the details of the engraving remain clear, as does the fit between the letters engraved on the ring and Gilbert’s overlaid Arabic script.