The fact that he is of mixed racial heritage was important for several reasons. Symbolically the union represents the union of the races, and intimates post-racialism. His mixed heritage made him agreeable to Afrikan Americans and many white Americans. The fact his mother was white and he was nurtured by white people was reassuring to white Americans; it allowed for a certain identification, and made him more worthy of their trust. Because his father was an Afrikan continental, it gave Obama an international-third world appeal. His father was Kenyan, a member of the Luo people, which made the Afrikan world embrace him as a “son of Afrika.” His father was a Muslim, Obama had an Islamic middle man, was conversant with Islam, and had attended a madrasha as a child, were all factors that garnered respect for him from the Islamic world. And because he self-identified and carried himself like an Afrikan American--his voice, his gait, his language--it endeared him to us.
Obama’s frequent reference to Martin King identified him with civil rights, and as a man of peace. His identification as a Christians helped to solidify his man of peace image. But it was his unwarranted, and even manufactured awarding of the Nobel Peace Prize that catapulted his image as a peacemaker. An image that would detract from the reality that Obama has more U. S. soldiers in combat in more nations in the world than Bush.
There is another aspect to all of this. Political democracy has various safety valves and assassination is one of them. When all else fails--kill the President. Kennedy was assassinated when he challenged the industrial military complex, that same complex President Eisenhower warned the nation about in his farewell address. Obama has already received an unparalleled number of death threats. He receives on average thirty threats a day, a 400% increase over the number his predecessor received. His security detail even before he was president had to be expanded. Various groups and individuals have covertly and overtly called for his death. These threats have come from irate individual citizens to radio personalities to politicians, and from established political and economic interest groups. When the uninvited Salahis were able to “breach” White House security in 2009 many people felt that incident was a way of sending the President a message. We can get you whenever we want to.
Nevertheless, the truth is, Obama is a politician. And from the beginning he was left of center on social issues, center on economic policy, and right of center on foreign policy. After all, he did leave Bush’s man Gates, former head of the CIA and a man who undoubtedly had ties to Iran-Contra, at the helm of the Defense Department. The point is, Obama may not simply but a pawn in the hands of the industrial military complex, and all of the other economic complexes. He may be complicit. I think we may have all been fooled. American has played the race card, electing a black man to act as its beard, as it continues to exploit, dictate and dominate world affairs. However, unlike in the past, this time America will entrench its power, especially in the new scramble for Afrika, in blackface.