African Press International, Michelle Obama:
API to Release Audio of Phone Conversation Later Today
African Press International (API) insists that the air will be cleared today concerning their phone conversation with Michelle Obama.
API's latest story reveals that they will release the audio of the purported phone conversation on Tuesday at "1600 Norwegian time".
Update! API will come with more information on Michelle Obama tapes at 16.00 hours Norwegian time
API will reach out with important update to the readers at 16.00 hours Norwegian time. We have been through a lot of pressure after we published the story. The fact that some people want us to take decisions hurriedly does not help us much.
To those who want to listen and take us seriously:
The tapes are there and the truth must be told. If some people want to continue imagining that this may be an hoax or something connected with Nigerian scam, then let them continue believing so because we cannot force any one to believe in us.
There are those readers who have exercised their rights to doubt the story and there are those who believe that the story is true. API wishes to state once more that those who believe us will not be let down finally. We know that things have taken time but we would like you to know that API is not playing with the readers, we just decided to be careful because the same story will become very explosive when all unpublished contents come out.
There are a number of issues we want to clarify so that some commentators do not continue to mislead those readers who are interested in the truth in this Obama matter.
Some have stated that they have checked for information about API and that they are unable to find that API has existed since October 2006. There are those who claim that on the blog roll, the Rainbow Foundation shown there is bogus and we say their claim is saddening because they do so without knowing the real facts.
In API's original story last week, Michelle Obama allegedly discussed with the API correspondent many interesting things.
Is the story for real? Did it take place? DBKP does not know at this point.
Neither does anyone else, outside of the principals involved at this point.
More from the API story:
Rainbow Foundation was founded in Norway in 1995 and officially registered as NGO in the beginning of 1996 with the registration number shown on the top of this site. Rainbow still exists and continues to do a good job.
Rainbow Foundation, together with the Chief Editor of API initiated the establishment of API in the end of September 2006 and API became operational from October the same year. API has no problems using WordPress.com server because we find it very effective and we like it. Some are commenting that it is a cheap looking site but for us that matters less - it is the information we bring out to the readers that we consider to be of importance, not the way a site looks - if some people out there think we want a site that looks fancy, then they do not understand our operational methods and what we like to give priority. We are satisfied being here >: http://africanpress.wordpress.com and will continue using wordpress server because we find it fantastic and it serves our needs.
API is not in any way a scamming organization. We are genuine and those who believe in us make us proud and grateful. We will continue to bring news to the readers without favouring any political groups.
We would urge readers not to be negative when they do not have all the facts. We are not trying to get traffic to our site by constructing a story as some are trying to indicate.
Our important update will clear some of the things bothering some readers. We will not stop until the tapes are out there for the readers to judge for themselves.
Let there be known that we have genuine tapes and the person recorded is Michelle Obama, one who may become the next US First Lady.
African Press International has come in for some heavy flak for printing its original story, "Shocking development: Mrs Obama decides enough is enough: "My husband was born in Hawaii and adopted by his step father, does that make him unpatriotic; she asks", on a direct telephone to API." last week.
(ALSO at African Press International: The Obama tapes to be released)
It would be an understatement to say that the API website--which is hosted by WordPress--has been flooded with comments and traffic during the last five days.
The API story on Michelle Obama is different for a site which reports on such topics as "Sudan: Nine Chinese oil workers kidnapped" and "Tragedy: A former Kenya District Commissioner commits suicide".
Who is African Press International?
African Press International, in their own words:
"A “Daily Online News Channel” established on 30th.September 2006 by Rainbow Foundation (NGO) Reg.no. 976593510 and The Chief Editor who is a Member of Investigative Reporters and Editors".
The site, headquartered in Norway, has correspondents throughout Africa. These correspondents appear to be citizen-journalists in their respective countries.
BACKGROUND at DBKP:
* Michelle Obama Calls African News Organization Over Obama Birth Certificate Reporting - UPDATED
* African Press International, Michelle Obama: Editor Says He Has Audio Tape of Conversation
* African Press International: Open Letter to Michelle Obama from API Chief Editor
From Will Michelle Obama tape 'change political atmosphere in America'? and African Press International's
"Those who do not support Obama are actively pushing for the release of the recordings also, and we understand them very well. In many telephone conversations with them we, however, get disturbed when we realize that most of them want the recordings to be released because they want to use it to stop Senator Obama from being elected president
. They state clearly that if the story is true and released now, the contents will sa[v]e America from a constitutional crisis that may come if things come out after the elections that proves Obama was adopted by a foreigner, thus, disqualifying him from the presidency," Korir wrote.
The statement confirmed that API "has recordings of the conversation between API and Mrs. Obama" and "we confirm that the audio will be released to the public."
"In the last 24 hours, API has been consulting legal advisers on the way forward in order to avoid being sued by the Obama camp. API has realized that the contents of the tapes if made public may change the political atmosphere in America for ever, especially in the next few days," the statement said.
"API now understands the impact of the statements made by Mrs. Obama. The American people have reacted in a way we in API would never have expected.
"Many have question[ed] why Mrs. Obama would choose a little known online media group instead of the American media. API was chosen because of a Nairobi contact that did not like the way API was covering Barack Obama using information collected from American media outlets. The Nairobi contact prevailed upon Mrs. Obama to talk to API," the statement said.
"The only thing API may have done wrong is not informing Mrs. Obama that the conversation was being recorded. This is why it is taking time to release the recording while consulting a legal team because API wants to be legally safe from any Obama camp law suit," Korir wrote.
"API is not out to convince the American public of anything. We do not want to influence the outcome of the U.S. presidential elections. API got a true story and published it. The fact that the story has caused a stir was unexpected, but that does not mean API must rush in a manner that will cause problems to itself, just to satisfy those who want the audio tapes so badly," the statement said. "When the legal concerns are cleared, which is happening in a short while, API will make public all the recordings available. This will also include comments, not yet published, which will most certainly put the Obama campaign spokesperson who had dismissed the story off balance.
"Even if our recordings or any other recordings had surfaced after the elections and if the contents were damaging to the elected person that still could have caused any elected president to vacate the White House. We all know that the tapes released in the U.S. in 1974 forced President Richard Nixon out of office. The truth is the truth. The tapes during Nixon time did not lie. The same here. The recordings that API will release soon will not lie to the American people. Most probably, it will change the political landscape, something the Americans should start getting prepared to face," Korir suggested.
More from Will Michelle Obama tape 'change political atmosphere in America'?
After the initial API report, Tommy Vietor, an Obama campaign spokesman, told National Review's Byron York the conversation didn't happen.
"The answer is no, it's not real, the report is made up. She did not speak to the organization," Vietor said, according to York's report on National Review Online's blog
Korir, however, responded to WND's e-mail confirming the report is accurate.
"API hereby confirms to you that the story is true and if the huge interest on this particular story continues, we will post the recording on our website in the next immediate days," his e-mail said.
API asked Michelle Obama to comment on the detention of Corsi during his visit last week to Kenya, where he was investigating the presidential candidate's links to a controversial strongman serving as prime minister.
"When API asked Mrs. Obama to comment on why Dr. Corsi was arrested by the Kenyan government and whether she thought Kenya's prime minister, Mr. Raila Odinga, was involved in Dr. Corsi's arrest, she got irritated and simply told API not to dig [into] that which will support evil people who are out to stop her husband from getting the presidency," the publication reported.
Is the API story true?
DBKP has come under some fire for reporting on the African Press International stories--both from the Left and Right.
Some Obama supporters insist that the story is a scam: planted for nefarious purposes to damage the Obama campaign. According to this group, API's motivation is attention, smears, fun, profits, or [fill in the blanks].
We say: if the story is not true, there will be no damage done. The Obama campaign quickly denied the story, which came from, what some called "an obscure blog". The Obama campaign never bothered to deny or confirm the Larry Sinclair story, which was bogus.
Apparently, the Obama campaign takes the API story more seriously than it did the fantastic story of convicted conman, Larry Sinclair, about his 1999 wild nights of riding around in the back of a rented limo with Obama, engaging in cocaine and gay sex.
Some Obama detractors insist that the story is a scam: planted for nefariious purposes to damage Obama detractors who publish it. According to this group, API's motivation is to damage the credibility of Obama detractors.
We say: if the story is untrue, we fail to see how reporting on the story--on which DBKP has clearly stated our lack of confirmation--can damage credibility. If the story is true, we will report it. If it turns out to be untrue, we will also report that.
Unlike the Mainstream Media, which has lost both trust and customers by making the decisions its readers should make, our job here is neither to promote the story nor to debunk it--though if it turns out true, we will hammer on it.
If information proves it untrue, we will debunk it.
One comment: if Obama campaign had been forthright in its statements on the relationship between Barack Obama and Bill Ayers, we would put more stock in the campaign's almost-immediate denial.
Barack Obama himself, during the third debate, told John McCain to his face--and a national TV audience--that it was "absolutely untrue" that his first Illinois senate campaign was launched from domestic terrorist, Bill Ayers' living room.
Perhaps it was launched from Bill Ayers' kitchen, as John at Powerline mused.
But whatever contortions the Obama campaign might go through to justify that denial, it was grossly and willfully misleading.
That statement alone is proof enough to treat other statements about sensitive issues with a high degree of skepticism.
The Obama campaign's dogged refusal to release the Senator's medical and college records to the press also does not invite trust on their other claims. A press which clamored for John McCain's medical records in the Spring is silent on the matter of Obama medical records in the Fall.
Is the story about Michelle Obama calling African Press International and unloading on her husband's American opponents as "racist"?
We don't know at this point.
But we're going to find out soon--perhaps as soon as today.
by Mondo Frazier
images: dbkp file