Dan Crosby of the Daily Pen web site has received much criticism from me for making stuff up, and calling it fact. He’s at it again in an article that I found at Obama Release Your Records titled “PBS documentary producers find no evidence Obama attended Columbia.” The documentary Crosby refers to is the excellent video from the PBS Frontline series titled “The Choice 2012.” Crosby writes:
However, when the producers attempted to film a segment about Obama’s attendance at Columbia University, they were unable to locate even one of Obama’s classmates from New York based University and, instead, recorded an interview with an alleged “roommate” who shared a rundown New York apartment with Obama.
I went through the video for any support for this statement, and there is no commentary at all about trying to find friends or being “unable to locate” anyone. One of Obama’s Occidental classmates, Sohale Siddiqi followed Obama from Occidental to New York and was labeled “roommate” in the video in the Columbia College segment and there is a photo of Obama and Siddiqi (mentioned as and as Sadik in Obama’s autobiography). I don’t know for sure if Mr. Siddiqu was a classmate of Obama’s (although I think he was), but the documentary did not include just one person labeled “roommate”, but two of them (and never uses the word “alleged” with either). The second roommate is Phil Boerner. A major contributor (both on screen and off) to the film’s Obama segments was David Maraniss, author of Barack Obama: The Story. In that book, Maraniss makes it clear that roommate Boerner was also a fellow student at Columbia, saying:
Boerner was accustomed to moving every few years and was feeling restless after two years in Eagle Rock. “I’ve had enough of Oxy, although I will miss many good friends I made there,” he wrote in his journal. “But the school was too small, the city too inaccessible (no car), and life too easy and the students too apathetic because of this. I feel that being in New York, and at Columbia, will alter all of these ‘toos’— Columbia is larger,
Maraniss, David (2012-06-19). Barack Obama (p. 385). Simon & Schuster, Inc.. Kindle Edition.
Maraniss also mentions in his book another classmate from Columbia who remembers Obama (and shared a Spanish class with him):
Three or four times a week, when there were open hours on the court late in the day, he would walk up to the Dodge Physical Fitness Center for pickup basketball games. Ron Sunshine, a freshman during Obama’s junior year, remembered asking him one day, “How did you get so good?”
Maraniss, David (2012-06-19). Barack Obama (pp. 432-433). Simon & Schuster, Inc.. Kindle Edition.
Since Maraniss is the major source of the Obama material in the film, certainly the sources he knew were available to the producers of the film. One commentator in the film describes Obama as leading an “almost monkish existence” at Columbia with a small circle of friends, but there were friends and classmates, and girlfriends that remembered Obama, and the makers of The Choice 2012 knew that.
Crosby’s article is a work of fiction, and completely worthless.
The Brietbart web site also confirmed that Obama graduated from Columbia in 1983.