Nov. 13, 2008
Israeli Beduins claim link to Obama
JPost.com Staff , THE JERUSALEM POST
President-elect Barack Obama made history last week when he became the first
African-American to be elected into the White House. He is also the first
president with a father who is Muslim. And if all of those precedents weren't
enough, now a village in northern Israel claims that the president-elect is
also part Beduin, The Times reported on Thursday.
"We wrote a letter to him explaining the family connection." Abdul Rahman
Sheikh Abdullah, a 53-year-old local council member and spokesperson for the
Beduin village of Bir-al Maksour, told the paper.
According to the report, Abduallah said that it was his 95-year-old mother who
spotted the connection. In a video taped by The Times and posted on their
website, Abdullah described exactly how their family realized the link to their
"The way we discovered this was when he started appearing on television," he
said. "We the Beduin have a special quality, we know who a person is and to
which family he belongs, and according to his body movements, we knew that we
"We believe that two-thirds of a boy comes from his uncles on the mother's
side," Abduallah continued. "There is a resemblance to his uncles. After we
checked these thoughts and after we asked around, we realized that we were
related to Obama."
Although Abduallah said he had "official proof" to back up his claim, The Times
reported no such proof was produced. However, in the video, he said proof was
"As well as this proof.if we look at the Bush family, for example, if you look
at the son and the father, you see that they look similar," he told the paper.
Yet speculation alone has done wonders for the tribe, The Times said. According
to the report, their social standing has significantly increased, and people
have come from all over the region to visit them.
"People are very happy. It is the first time that we have a black and Beduin
president," Abduallah said. "When Obama won, we even named newborn babies after
"We grant a person we love and a person who is victorious either a sword, a
horse, or a bride," he continued. "But we do not want to give him a bride
because we do not want to upset his wife."
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