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Obama sets up cell to fight rumours on Net
June 11, 2008 18:43 IST
Barack Obama [Images] is in the final stages of putting in place a crack team of cybernauts that will respond aggressively to rumours that the presumptive Democratic candidate for the US presidential election is "unpatriotic and a Muslim."
White House contenders Obama and John McCain [Images] are rolling up their sleeves for a gruelling, five-month slog to the election as they trade fire over the economy, the war in Iraq and issues of individual merits that many believe could get personal and dirty.
The rapid response internet war room team will track and respond immediately to online inaccurate informations about the Illinois senator.
"The only way to run a campaign is to respond immediately when inaccurate information is put out. They are saying he is a Muslim. He is not," Jen Psaki, a spokeswomen for Obama was quoted as saying by the The Times.
She said the "war room" team was being finalised.
As he prepares to take on Republican McCain in the election campaign, the democratic candidate is well aware of the danger of rumours, amid survey showing that a significant number of Americans believe he is a Muslim or are suspicious about his background.
Analysts believe that such doubts were a factor in his poor showing with white, blue-collar voters during his primary battle with Hillary Clinton [Images].
Chain e-mails and blog sites have made the claim that he is a radical Muslim who was sworn in as a US senator on the Koran, with many focusing on his middle name of Hussein, which was taken from his Kenyan father.
Obama's Kenyan father, who left the family when he was two, was a Muslim, but not particularly religious. The Illinois senator lived in Indonesia from the age of six until 10 with his white, American mother and Indonesian stepfather, who was a Muslim, the report said.