From ABC News:
ABC News got a hold of the audio of Malik's interview with Israel Army
Radio, and Malik said nothing of the kind.
You can't hear the questions -- only Malik's answers (listen HERE)
-- but whatever the interviewer asked about Obama's father's Muslim heritage, or
the Muslim minority in Kenya, Malik said, “I don’t think that’s in any way going
to be something to worry about. I myself am not speaking for him. But we are
here, we love people in general. People love us. I myself love people who love
me. You know, so, and I think it’s mutual. I can’t go in terms of Israel and
Kenya and America, and so forth, you know, but based on what else I’ve heard him say and what I know of him as an individual, I don’t think Israel should worry
too much, you know, about the connection. Because, I am a Muslim myself, and I
don’t think that my being a Muslim has got anything to do with my brother being
the President of the United States.”
It may be that the Israeli Army Radio interviewer asked about Obama
having a "Muslim background." But even if the interviewer did, Malik did not say
that or come close to saying that.
It could be that the interviewer used the
phrase, and Malik interpreted that in a way that squares with the Obama
campaign's story -- that Obama's father was a largely secular man born
Muslim. We don't know.
But nowhere in there does Malik expressly say anything about Obama
having a Muslim background.
And nowhere does he "confirm" anything about Obama having a Muslim
Malik refers to Obama having a "connection" to something, perhaps
Islam, which could clearly be a reference to Obama's father.
This interpretation spreading throughout the blogosphere and cable
news is just not supported by the facts. The paraphrase was sloppy, for such a
sensitive subject, and Malik's quotes don't even come close to supporting any
assertion that Obama himself has a Muslim background.