Saturday, 15 November 2008

Obamahathir Who?

It is no secret that I am a fan of M. Bakri Musa's writings. His commentary a couple of days ago describing Mahathir as Malaysia's Obama, drew a slew of responses in blogosphere. There have been bouquets and brickbats and I too am inclined to disagree.

It is well known that Mahathir is a Mamak (part Indian) and Obama is half white. Mahathir is perceived (or shall I say, positioned) as a Malay and Obama is viewed as a Black. So how can Bakri Musa draw his conclusion when Mahathir was PM is a Malay majority country whereas Obama's achievement is considered prodigious for a black in a white majority country.

There is no like for like comparison. Having said that, I think a Mahathir can never become President of America as yet...he has no White ancestry. Could an Obama be PM of Malaysia? Well, only if he is Muslim and used his middle-name i.e. Hussein.

Anyway who is this Obama? Perhaps this pictorial that has been spreading on the www by email will tell us more. Thereafter, you can compare by yourself whether Mahathir is our Obama.

Where did this man Barack come from? A picture is worth a thousand words! Pictures that turn a US President elect into a humble human being! Enjoy....


Father: Born in Kenya , Barack Obama Sr. came to the University of Hawaii in order to study for a degree in economics. This photograph hangs on the wall of his stepmother's house in Kogelo , Kenya.

Mother: Though she has signed this sophomore yearbook photograph of herself "Stanley" — her parents named her Stanley Ann at birth — Obama's mother was known as Ann for most of her life. After attending Mercer Island High School in Washington , she enrolled at the University of Hawaii , where she met Barack Obama, Sr.

Parents: Barack Sr. and Ann Dunham married in February, 1961 and Barack was born six months later. Their union did not last long, however. In 1963, Barack Sr. essentially abandoned his family to continue his studies at Harvard .The marriage ended in divorce in early 1964.

The Young Obama: For the first six years of his life, Barack lived in Hawaii .
Mother & Son:
Father & Son: Reunion. After the divorce, Barack Jr. only saw his father one more time, in Hawaii , in 1972, when this photograph was taken. The senior Barack then returned to Kenya , where he worked for a US oil company and the Kenyan government. He died in a car accident in 1982, at the age of 46. Barack Obama Sr. poses with his son in the Honolulu airport during Obama Sr. 's only visit to see his son while he was growing up in Hawaii . Young Barack was in the 5th grade when the photo was taken.

Grandparents: THE DUNHAMS: precocious, self-assured Stanley Ann (left); her impetuous father, who named his only child after himself; her mother, Madelyn, the quiet, firm influence in the home.

Barack Obama walks with his grandmother Sarah Hussein Obama at his father's house in Nyongoma Kogelo village, western Kenya , in Aug. 2006. (AP file)

Barack Obama with his grandmother, Sarah Hussein Obama , in Africa.

In this Obama Family photo are: (bottom row, from left) half-sister Auma, her mother Kezia Obama, Obama's step-grandmother Sarah Hussein Onyango Obama and unknown; (top row from left) unknown, Barack Obama, half-brother Abongo (Roy) Obama, and three unknowns.

Mother Remarries: In 1967, his mother remarried and the family moved to Indonesia. Pictured below at their home in Jakarta , Ann Dunham poses in this undated photo with her second husband, Lolo Soetoro , their daughter, Maya, and Barack Obama.

Barack walks along Waikiki Beach shortly before he and his mother moved from Hawaii to Indonesia to live with her second husband, Lolo Soetoro , in 1967.

Half-Sister: Maya Soetoro, the daughter of Barack's mother and her second husband, Lolo Soetoro, sits beside the young Barack, Ann and grandfather Stanley Dunham in this photograph taken in Hawaii the early 1970s. Ann came back to Hawaii to attend graduate school in 1974 and remained until 1977, when she returned to Indonesia.

Barack poses with his mother, Ann , half sister, Maya, and maternal grandfather Stanley Dunham in Hawaii in the early 1970s after the family returned from Indonesia. Neighbors remember the close relationship between youngBarack and his grandfather.

Family Ties: When Ann returned to Indonesia , the young Barack remained behind in Hawaii , where he was raised by his maternal grandparents. He eventually attended Columbia University in New York , where this photo was taken in the 1980s.

A page from Barack Obama 's senior yearbook features his personalized message to family, friends and teammates. (Photo from The Oahuan yearbook)

Barack Obama hugs his younger half sister Maya at his high school graduation.

Barack Obama shakes hands during his graduation ceremony from Punahou School in 1979. While in his early teens, Obama chose to stay at the school and live with his grandparents after his mother decided to move back to Jakarta , Indonesia.

At his high school graduation, Barack Obama gets a hug from his grandmother Madelyn as his grandfather Stanley beams. His maternal grandparents raised Obama in Hawaii while his mother was living in Indonesia.
Maya Soetoro-Ng, Barack Obama 's half sister, teaches her Education in American Society class at the University of Hawaii.

Michelle: Barack met his wife in the late 1980s, when the two worked at the prestigious Chicago law firm Sidley & Austin. They were married in 1992.. Shortly thereafter, they spent a Christmas in Hawaii , where this photo was taken

The wedding day of Barack Obama Jr. and Michelle LaVaughn Robinson ...... (Courtesy of the Obama Family).
Barack and first born


When it is still hot, then it would be good to share this list of fifty things you might not know about Barack Obama.

  • He collects Spider-Man and Conan the Barbarian comics
  • He was known as "O'Bomber" at high school for his skill at basketball
  • His name means "one who is blessed" in Swahili
  • His favourite meal is wife Michelle's shrimp linguini
  • He won a Grammy in 2006 for the audio version of his memoir, Dreams From My Father
  • He is left-handed – the sixth post-war president to be left-handed
  • He has read every Harry Potter book
  • He owns a set of red boxing gloves autographed by Muhammad Ali
  • He worked in a Baskin-Robbins ice cream shop as a teenager and now can't stand ice cream
  • His favourite snacks are chocolate-peanut protein bars
  • He ate dog meat, snake meat, and roasted grasshopper while living in Indonesia
  • He can speak Spanish
  • While on the campaign trail he refused to watch CNN and had sports channels on instead
  • His favourite drink is black forest berry iced tea
  • He promised Michelle he would quit smoking before running for president – he didn't
  • He kept a pet ape called Tata while in Indonesia
  • He can bench press an impressive 200lbs
  • He was known as Barry until university when he asked to be addressed by his full name
  • His favourite book is Moby-Dick by Herman Melville
  • He visited Wokingham, Berks, in 1996 for the stag party of his half-sister's fiancĂ©, but left when a stripper arrived
  • His desk in his Senate office once belonged to Robert Kennedy
  • He and Michelle made $4.2 million (£2.7 million) last year, with much coming from sales of his books
  • His favourite films are Casablanca and One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest
  • He carries a tiny Madonna and child statue and a bracelet belonging to a soldier in Iraq for good luck
  • He applied to appear in a black pin-up calendar while at Harvard but was rejected by the all-female committee.
  • His favourite music includes Miles Davis, Bob Dylan, Bach and The Fugees
  • He took Michelle to see the Spike Lee film Do The Right Thing on their first date
  • He enjoys playing Scrabble and poker
  • He doesn't drink coffee and rarely drinks alcohol
  • He would have liked to have been an architect if he were not a politician
  • As a teenager he took drugs including marijuana and cocaine
  • His daughters' ambitions are to go to Yale before becoming an actress (Malia, 10) and to sing and dance (Sasha, 7)
  • He hates the youth trend for trousers which sag beneath the backside
  • He repaid his student loan only four years ago after signing his book deal
  • His house in Chicago has four fire places
  • Daughter Malia's godmother is Jesse Jackson's daughter Santita
  • He says his worst habit is constantly checking his BlackBerry
  • He uses an Apple Mac laptop
  • He drives a Ford Escape Hybrid, having ditched his gas-guzzling Chrysler 300
  • He wears $1,500 (£952) Hart Schaffner Marx suits
  • He owns four identical pairs of black size 11 shoes
  • He has his hair cut once a week by his Chicago barber, Zariff, who charges $21 (£13)
  • His favourite fictional television programmes are Mash and The Wire
  • He was given the code name "Renegade" by his Secret Service handlers
  • He was nicknamed "Bar" by his late grandmother
  • He plans to install a basketball court in the White House grounds
  • His favourite artist is Pablo Picasso
  • His speciality as a cook is chilli
  • He has said many of his friends in Indonesia were "street urchins"
  • He keeps on his desk a carving of a wooden hand holding an egg, a Kenyan symbol of the fragility of life
  • His late father was a senior economist for the Kenyan government

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