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Old photos, new questions about Obama nativity

Posted By Jerome R. Corsi On 10/29/2009 @ 12:00 am In Front Page | Comments Disabled

After WND’s stunning disclosure yesterday that Michelle Obama publicly admitted her husband’s mother, Stanley Ann Dunham, was “very young and very single” when giving birth to the future U.S. president, three photos of Barack Obama Sr. have now surfaced, raising further questions as to whether the two were actually married.

The photos of Barack Obama Sr. attending a University of Hawaii party in the early 1960s, which surfaced on the Internet, show him enjoying the company of fellow students without the presence of Ann Dunham. His demeanor evident in the three photographs suggests a familiarity with women that would give no indication he was engaged to be married or already wed to Ann Dunham.


Barack Obama Sr. at party with University of Hawaii students in the early 1960s

While the possibility remains the photographs were taken before Obama Sr. met Ann Dunham, the testimonies from Obama’s fellow students at the University of Hawaii that accompany the photographs make no mention that Barack Obama Sr. was ever associated with Ann Dunham, at the time the photographs were taken, or later.

The photographs are identified as having been taken at the home of Arnie and Suzie Nachmanoff in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, “in the early 1960s.”

One photo shows Barack Obama Sr., smoking a cigarette and talking with an attractive young woman identified on the website only as “Dorothy.”

The other two photos show Barack Obama Sr. seated on the floor with other students at the party, again without Dunham.

Several testimonies “by some old friends of Barack Obama when we were in Honolulu, Hawaii,” are posted on the website, reminiscing about Barack Obama Sr.

Several of the testimonies note that Obama had the historical distinction of being Hawaii’s first African university student; none of the testimonies make any reference to courtship with or marriage to Dunham.

The website, obviously supportive of President Obama, was created by Naranhkiri Tith, a student at the University of Hawaii’s East-West Center at the same time Barack Obama Sr. was enrolled. Tith went on to serve for 20 years on the senior staff of the International Monetary Fund.


Barack Obama Sr. at party with University of Hawaii students in the early 1960s

“Although [Barack Obama Sr.] was not an East-West Center grantee, he was always with us, especially at a Guest House owned and operated by the Asia foundation, situated on the top of a road leading to Manoa valley,” Tith Naranhkiri recalled in an essay titled “Remembering my friend Barak (sic) Obama” that “Atherton House was a place where most East-West Center grantees gathered for a drink or a chat.”

Naranhkiri said in the 1980s an IMF colleague on a mission to Kenya gave him Obama’s telephone number in Nairobi.

“Needless to say that I was very happy to be able to be in contact again with Barak (sic), after more than ten years of silence,” Naranhkiri continued. “We had a long conversation and we were able to talk to each other a few more times until one day, when I called him and his secretary told me over the phone that he had passed away of an accident.”

Naranhkiri makes no reference to recalling Ann Dunham at the University of Hawaii or of discussing her with Barack Obama Sr. in their subsequent telephone conversations after the president’s father had returned to Kenya.

Robert M. Ruenitz, another student at the East-West Center when Barack Obama Sr. was enrolled, had distinct recollections of the president’s father living alone in Hawaii.

“For any of us to say we knew Obama well would be difficult,” Robert M. Ruenitz wrote. “He was a private man with academic achievement his foremost goal. He lived somewhat like a hermit in a small room up in the valleys of Manoa. I visited him there on my Lambretta and wondered how he sustained himself outside of his focused attention to his academic pursuits.”

WND has established that Barack Obama Sr. always maintained his bachelor apartment at 625 11th Avenue. The only family resident at 6085 Kalanianaole Highway – the birth address published in August 1961 in the Honolulu Advertiser and the Honolulu Star-Bulletin – were Ann Dunham’s parents, Stanley and Madelyn Dunham.

“In my mind, I always picture him at a certain spot under a large tree, just outside the University library,” Bob Craft, another East-West student, recalled. “There a small group of us would frequently gather, standing around for a short while chatting.

“All these years – I still believe that I can remember his voice distinctly, which had middle and high tones sitting on top of a deep rumble. I also remember him always being dressed in a white shirt and dark trousers, in contrast to everyone else who usually wore flowered Hawaiian shirts and shorts,” Craft continued, making no mention of Ann Dunham.


Barack Obama Sr. at party with University of Hawaii students in the early 1960s

Rep. Neil Abercrombie, D-Hawaii, told the Chicago Tribune that he was part of a group of graduate students at the University of Hawaii along with Barack Obama Sr. and Dunham who spent weekends listening to jazz, drinking beer and debating politics and world affairs. Another of Abercrombie’s recollections, however – that Ann Dunham “disappeared from the University of Hawaii student gatherings” only after Barack Obama Sr. was accepted to attend Harvard University – conflicts with new evidence.

WND has obtained evidence that Dunham enrolled in extension classes at the University of Washington in Seattle on Aug. 19, 1961, only 15 days after Barack Obama Jr. was born, and that she lived in an apartment in Seattle’s Capitol Hill area, never returning to Hawaii until after Barack Obama Sr. had left for Harvard.

The Chicago Tribune further reported that on a trip to Africa years later, Abercrombie caught up with Barack Obama Sr.

Barack Obama Sr. “was drinking too much; his frustration was apparent,” Abercrombie told the newspaper.

“To Abercrombie’s surprise, Obama never asked about his ex-wife or his son,” Tribune national correspondent Tim Jones wrote.

WND has reported the only documentation for Dunham’s marriage to Barack Obama Sr. comes from their divorce documents that list the marriage date as Feb. 2, 1961.

However, it isn’t clear Obama’s parents were married, since official records have never been produced showing a legal ceremony took place. No wedding certificate or photograph of a ceremony for Dunham and Obama Sr. has ever been found or published.

In his book “Barack and Michelle: Portrait of an American Marriage,” former Time magazine contributing editor Christopher Andersen elaborates: “There were certainly no witnesses (to the alleged civil-marriage ceremony on Maui in 1961 between Obama’s parents) – no family members were present, and none of their friends at the university had the slightest inkling that they were even engaged.”

Andersen further quoted Abercrombie as saying that “nobody” was invited to the wedding ceremony.

Obama himself, on page 22 of his autobiography “Dreams from My Father,” wrote of his parents’ wedding: “In fact, how and when the marriage occurred remains a bit murky, a bill of particulars that I’ve never quite had the courage to explore. There’s no record of a real wedding, a cake, a ring, a giving away of the bride. No families were in attendance; it’s not even clear that people back in Kansas were fully informed. Just a small civil ceremony, a justice of the peace. The whole thing seems so fragile in retrospect, so haphazard.”

President Obama’s birth story is further complicated by the fact that when Barack Obama Sr. arrived in Hawaii as a 23-year-old in September 1959, he already had been married since age 18 to a Kenyan woman named Kezia Aoko.

Obama Sr. ultimately had four children with Aoko, and there is no evidence to suggest he was ever divorced from Aoko, either in Kenya before he left for Hawaii or in Hawaii prior to the alleged marriage with Dunham.

On page 126 of “Dreams from My Father,” Barack Obama Jr. described his father’s marriage with Kezia in a quotation in which Ann Dunham says, “And then there was a problem with your father’s first wife … he had told me they were separated, but it was a village wedding, so there was no legal documentation that could show a divorce …” (Ellipsis in original text.)

Dunham apparently was suggesting bigamy was not involved in her alleged marriage since Barack Obama Sr.’s marriage to Aoko was a “village wedding” that possibly would not have been recognized as legitimate by Hawaii civil law. Barack Obama Sr. was reportedly a polygamist who had at least four wives, including Ruth Nidesand, who he met at Harvard and became his wife after she followed him back to Kenya.




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