September 26, 2008
Barack Obama and SlaveryBy Bill Warner
Slavery still stalks the American consciousness, its wounds yet festering in many hearts. If Barack Obama were to set his mind to it, he could heal much of the damage this peculiar institution wrought on our national soul. This great and tragic error that must be given justice. Obama is the best person in the world who can recognize, remember and honor the deaths of 125 million and the enslavement of tens of millions of people.
His unique qualifications can be found in his names. Until he was 20 years old, he went by the first name Barry. Then he decided to be called Barack Hussein Obama, his original birth name.
Many people seem to the names "Barack" and "Obama" are African names. They are not.
Baraq [Barack] was the name of the winged horse-like creature that took Mohammed to Paradise in the Night Journey. Baraq can also mean God's blessing. Obama is Swahili for Osama, who was one of Mohammed's chief warriors. Osama also means lion. Hussein reminds some Americans of Saddam Hussein, and Obama's supporters get upset if it is used. Hussein was the name of Mohammed's grandson. So Obama's entire name is based upon Islamic mythology and African conquest. Barack Hussein Obama means [Allah's blessing] [Mohammed's grandson] [One of Mohammed's finest warriors].
Obama's name reveals a part of history that is unknown or hidden about America, Africa and slavery. It also reveals a history of the destruction of native African civilization. His name came from his father, a so-called Arab African. The word Arab is the clue to the hidden history.
Kafirs (non-Muslims) rarely refer to Islam, but call it by an ethnic name whenever they can. When Islam conquered the Middle East, the conquerors were not called Muslims, but Arabs. In Eastern Europe the Muslim invaders were called Turks. In Spain conquering Muslims were referred to as Moors. Thus it is that the Islamic culture in Africa, Arab African, is referred to with an ethnic name, Arab Africans, like Obama's father, are Muslims who leave behind their African culture and adopt the Arab culture.
The Arab African Muslim has always been associated with slavery because Islam is the driving force in the history of world slavery.
Islam's connection with slavery starts with Mohammed. The exact details of how slaves are taken are described in detail in the Sira, Mohammed's biography. The Sira is a sacred text since it relates Mohammed's words and deeds, called the Sunna. Everything he did is the perfect pattern of behavior for all Muslims.
Mohammed was involved in every single aspect and detail of slavery. He bought and sold slaves both retail and wholesale. He gave them as gifts, used them for sex, received them as gifts, stood by as slaves were beaten, attacked. He enslaved tribes, and owned black slaves. Indeed, his rise to political success was financed, in part, by the profit of his slave trade.
So the sacred pattern of Mohammed and Islam is the enslavement of non-Muslims, kafirs. For 1400 years Islam has enslaved all races and cultures including Christians, Buddhists, Hindus, Jews, Zoroastrians, animists, and atheists. Only Muslims are free of being enslaved.
What Obama could do
Obama could tell us that there is only one way to understand Africa and slavery and that is to understand political Islam. For 1400 years Islam has steadily been at work in Africa. The easiest place for Americans to see Islam's annihilation of kafir civilization is in North Africa and Egypt. Egypt used to be a Christian and Coptic (the descendants of the Pharaohs) country. North Africa was a Greek and Christian culture, and at one time a part of the Roman Empire.
The first Islamic assault on African culture was the jihad that annihilated Coptic Egyptian culture and Greek culture in Northern Africa. Today these areas are Arabic and Islamic.
That was just the thin end of the jihad wedge. Over the next 1400 years, Islam took approximately 25 million slaves out of Africa. An Arabic word for African is abd, the same word that is used for black slave. Arabic has about 40 words for slaves. White slaves are mamluk. Islam took more than a million European slaves into slavery. The highest priced slave in the Meccan slave market was a white woman.
There is great deal of collateral damage when a slave is taken. A warring party attacks a tribe and when enough of the protectors are killed, the rest will surrender and become slaves. All of those who were strong enough to work were taken away in a forced march for days. But there are many who are left behind -- the young, the old, and the sick and injured.
Estimates vary, but from 5 to 10 people left behind died as the result of taking one slave. So for 25 million slaves, we have the deaths of 125 million Africans over a 1400-year period.
When the story of slavery is told in America, as in the movie Roots, the sailors get off the boats and capture the Africans and make them slaves. Wrong. Wrong. Wrong.
When the white slaver showed up in his wooden ship, he made a business deal with a Muslim wholesaler. Jihad was the machinery that Mohammed used, and his model worked well in Africa as slavers filled the slave pens for the same reason that Mohammed did it: profit. Whites only traded slaves with Islam for about 200 years. Islam was in the slave trade before and after selling to the West.
If you would like to learn about the Arab African slave traders that came from the same area of Africa that Obama's father came from, read Tippu Tip and the East African Slave Trade (Leda Farrant, Northumberland Press, 1975). Tippu Tip looked African, but he was 100% Arab and Muslim. By the way, Arab is not a racial term, but a cultural/language term.
But the slave trade had another effect. Africa slowly became Islamic. Jihad worked in many ways to bring about conversion. Sometimes trade introduced Islam and a hybrid Islam/native African religion evolved. Then jihad was used to purify and remove the African culture to result in a purer Islam. But in the end, half of Africa fell to Islam.
The oddest thing is that many people have the idea that an Arab African is the same as African. When the Arab culture replaces the native African culture the culture is not African. African culture is no more Arab than Hindu culture is Arab. Sharia law is just as foreign to native African culture as it is to ours.
The magnitude of this problem is seen in Darfur, where Arab Africans are destroying Africans who are not yet Arab enough. This is a centuries-long jihad to annihilate the native African culture. This process is no different than the process by which Coptic Egypt became Arab Egypt. Islam is not a religion but a complete civilization whose stated goal is to replace all other civilizations. There has never been a historical example of a country that kept its native culture after Islam entered. So Africa is an ordinary historical example.
The ignorance about the history behind Obama's names is the root of why he can achieve such an impact. Obama represents the chance to help heal the curse of slavery in America by revealing its complete history. He is a descendant of a white woman who had slave owners in her ancestry. His African father descended from those who enslaved the Africans. Obama is descended from slave owners and slave traders, but he does not have a single drop of slave blood in him.
Since race trumps all, everyone sees him as being representative of America's slave descendants. It becomes true simply because in a race/culture-obsessed society, some want it to be true. Obama's slave ancestry is a fiction and not reality.
So Obama is half enslaver, by ancestry, and half slave, by choice. He is the most uniquely positioned to tell the truth, the complete truth about Islam, Africa, America and slavery.
Now here is the last little twist to Obama's name. He called himself Barry, an Irish name, for many years in America. He changed what he wanted to be called after he went to Pakistan for a three-week stay. He left America as Barry and returned as Barack.
Some whites may have bought slaves from Islam for 200 years, but after that, their culture was first to outlaw slavery. So Obama changed his name from a culture that abolished slavery to a name from a culture that has enslaved others for 1400 years and has a highly detailed doctrine of slavery.
This is the world that Obama spans: from slavery abolition to the eternal enslaver. He represents hope to many American descendants of slaves, but his ancestors were never enslaved. No one else could tell the story that Obama knows. He could tell the story of how 125 million Africans died. He could tell the story of how 25 million Africans became slaves. There is an enormous irony that descendants of the slaves that his ancestors created now look to him for justice. And he could give them real justice by telling the complete truth of their enslavement. Only he has the power to make others listen.
Obama has shown himself to be a world citizen with his speech in Berlin, and his speaking the truth of the complete story of slavery would be historic, and could reverse centuries of ignorance and lies. He can stand up and tell the world the true complete story of slavery. It would change history far beyond the election cycle.
Bill Warner is director of the Center for the Study of Political Islam.