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W hen historians look back on Barack Obama's first and second presidential elections, they may see some commonality. Four years ago, the country's first black White House candidate was smeared with all sorts of allegations. The would-be president was not born in the US. He was a mole. A socialist — no, make that a communist.

Barack was gay. Barack was a Marxist. And a Muslim too. Now the same myths are rumbling through the country's bars, online forums and, worryingly, major news outlets. It is against this backdrop that new playwright Rashid Razaq is staging his debut production, based on Obama's college days at Columbia, New York. In the play, Siddiqi has been renamed Salim "Sal" Maqbool; in Obama's autobiography, Dreams From My Father, he was recreated as a composite character Boyfriend holding hands with obama Sadik, mentioned in only a few pages.

But there is a real closeness between them and hopefully that comes across. But what would Siddiqi himself make of it? When I track down Obama's former room-mate, who now works for Getty Images and lives in Seattle, he is reluctant to speak.

Not least, he says, because a reporter from Associated Press "got his interview by barging in unexpectedly at my workplace in spite of my declinations" during the last campaign cycle. He says the reports of his drug use have been wildly overstated: "I was never in 'rehab'," he emails, "I simply curtailed drugs. Their lives had naturally drifted apart by that point, but a solid bond remains.

I send Siddiqi a copy of the script and ask him what he thinks. He says he feels "helpless" about the play. It was a lease that Siddiqi, who was an illegal immigrant when he met Obama having overstayed his tourist visahad lied to win, despite the cockroaches, "like plump dates", scuttling across the apartment floor. Siddiqi confirms that the young Obama, a high school pothead, "was lighthearted and fun-loving for the first half of our cohabitation and grew serious later".

He himself, meanwhile, was preoccupied with "assimilating to my new environment [US], getting rich legally, socialising with friends, meeting women. Our cohabitation was on a temporary basis with me hoping to move to more comfortable surroundings and he wanting to live closer to Columbia.

Does it matter if the play is inaccurate? Mild-mannered but sure-footed direction comes from Tom Attenborough, son of Michael Attenborough artistic director of the Almeida theatre, London and grandson of actor and director Richard.

I wonder if Razaq agrees that representing a living Indian aunty huge tits in saree during the busiest period of electioneering is political in itself. We're just grabbing it by the balls," he says. Emphasising his right to artistic licence, he says he drew inspiration from Obama's own book and scoped David Maraniss's biography, Barack Obama: The Making of the Man, published earlier this year, for further detail.

When Brazil vomit feet fetish meet "Sadik" Boyfriend holding hands with obama Dreams From My Father, Boyfriend holding hands with obama is ushering Obama into his flat as a woman in her underwear cuts up lines of cocaine on the kitchen table. In Maraniss's doorstop of a book, Obama first meets Siddiqi at a New Year's Eve party in San Francisco, the young, gangly, would-be president greeting his future roommate with pitch-perfect Urdu, asking: "How are you, Boss?

So close were the group that Obama went to Pakistan with Boyfriend holding hands with obama for a three-week holiday instaying with Hamid and Chandoo's families. Maraniss argues in his book that the group has distanced itself from Obama for fear of hurting his presidency, but they remain friends: "The Pakistanis were a fun-loving bunch," he laughs, talking on the telephone from Washington DC, "but they were intellectuals. Camp Obama plays all this down, fearful of the Pakistani Muslim connection being used to taint their candidate.

Lowe says he likes to think Obama is "dropping those drones with a bit more conscience" than the average US president might. Maraniss is less circumspect. They could see his ambition more clearly than other people; it was to them that Obama first said he wanted to be president one day. Topics Barack Obama. Reuse this content. Order by newest oldest recommendations. Show 25 25 50 All.

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