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Muhammad Aliís "Beautiful Soul"
http://netwmd.com ^ | December 1, 2005 | Daniel Pipes

Posted on 12/01/2005 8:18:33 AM PST by forty_years

In an article two days ago, "Muhammad Ali v. George W. Bush," I castigated President Bush bestowing a prestigious award on former boxer Muhammad Ali and for lavishly praising Ali's beautiful soul, his compassion, and his being a man of peace. I offered some evidence to the contrary and concluded by calling this incident "the nadir of his presidency."

The column prompted a fair amount of comment, positive and negative. I'd like to note here two noteworthy responses. One is from Judea Pearl, father of the late Daniel Pearl, murdered by Islamists in Pakistan in 2002:

When Danny was in captivity, we pleaded with Louis Farrakhan and Muhammad Ali to use their influence in the Muslim world and issue an appeal for his release. Farrakhan said: "Not ready." Ali did not hesitate a minute and issued a plea that only Satan could resist; it was published next day in Pakistan. Ali further called me by phone and insisted on being invited to the party, once Danny is released. Jesse Jackson then made a statement, without our even soliciting him. At that point, Farrakhan came back and said: I am ready. But by then, it was too late. I appreciate Ali's coming forward and, when I spoke at Danny's memorial (which Ali and his wife attended), I called him "a champion of humanity." Later on, though, when we asked him to join the Honorary Board of the Daniel Pearl Foundation, he declined on the grounds that he must focus his energy on his own foundation.

To which my response is this: I am delighted to hear that Muhammad Ali did these good deeds. But by 2002 he was far along with Parkinson's disease, so his decisions were largely made by his handlers in his name. These do not provide real insight into his character.

That character, rather, was shown earlier, when Ali had full control of his facilities. To understand that better, I turn to Jack Cashill, author of the forthcoming book, Sucker Punch: The Hard Left Hook That Dazed Ali and Killed King's Dream. Cashill sent me a copy of the book manuscript and it, to say the least, confirms my thesis about Ali's poor behavior. Here is an excerpt, reviewing Ali's negative accomplishments during his first crucial years in the public eye, 1960-75:

With due understatement, Cashill comments that this summing up, "however unpleasant, sheds some useful light both on the young Ali and the generation that made him."

I repeat: this is not someone suitable to be honored by the president of the United States.

http://netwmd.com/blog/2005/12/01/192


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Government; News/Current Events; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: ali; beautiful; bush; compassion; danielpipes; freedom; george; man; medal; muhammad; peace; presidential; soul

1 posted on 12/01/2005 8:18:35 AM PST by forty_years
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To: forty_years

Ali was a rotten sportsman who make the ex-con Sonny Liston appear as a refined gentleman by comparsion.


2 posted on 12/01/2005 8:19:59 AM PST by Pittsburg Phil
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Comment #3 Removed by Moderator

To: Chevy Sales

The definition of "punch drunk" (on Islam).


4 posted on 12/01/2005 8:22:03 AM PST by forty_years ('Nuff Talk, More Action!)
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Comment #5 Removed by Moderator

To: forty_years

Anyone who alines themselves with Muhammed has lost their soul.


6 posted on 12/01/2005 8:25:36 AM PST by BigFinn (A very unpolitically correct MERRY CHRISTMAS!)
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To: forty_years
Ali helped launch the career of Don King.

Anyone who would do this to America just has to be an evil person.

7 posted on 12/01/2005 8:36:37 AM PST by Restorer (They want to die. We want to kill them.)
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To: forty_years
I repeat: this is not someone suitable to be honored by the president of the United States.

Agreed. The Presidential Medal of Freedom has undergone very serious devaluation over the last decade.....

8 posted on 12/01/2005 8:39:29 AM PST by Rummyfan
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To: Pittsburg Phil
"Ali was a rotten sportsman who make the ex-con Sonny Liston appear as a refined gentleman by comparsion."
I was just a kid at the time (about 13-14), but I remember feeling sympathy for Liston, despite his reputation, when Clay/Ali taunted him.
9 posted on 12/01/2005 8:40:00 AM PST by Steve_Seattle
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To: Restorer
...cept Don King was very vocal in his support for GWB during the campaign.

Was that an embarrassing good thing ?
10 posted on 12/01/2005 8:42:03 AM PST by stylin19a
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To: Rummyfan
The Presidential Medal of Freedom has undergone very serious devaluation over the last decade.....

As has the Nobel Peace Prize. It has become a complete joke.
11 posted on 12/01/2005 8:42:28 AM PST by Steve_Seattle
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To: forty_years

Can you post the book-cover picture for us from the link in the story pls. thx


12 posted on 12/01/2005 8:43:28 AM PST by TexasCajun
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To: Steve_Seattle

The Peace Prize..... Yasir Arafat and Jimmy Carter recent winners. And did you know that Stanley 'Tookie' Williams has been nominated too????


13 posted on 12/01/2005 8:45:27 AM PST by Rummyfan
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To: Restorer

Oh, come on : ) Big Don is a patriotic Bush lover!!!!


14 posted on 12/01/2005 8:45:35 AM PST by mpackard (Katrina Survivor.....)
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To: Rummyfan
"And did you know that Stanley 'Tookie' Williams has been nominated too????"

Seriously? Is that the Crips founder who's on death row?
15 posted on 12/01/2005 8:47:08 AM PST by Steve_Seattle
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To: forty_years
Liberals have to always rewrite history to favor their heros.

This book would be a good refresher on the real life and attitudes of Howard Cossell's best pal.

16 posted on 12/01/2005 8:48:18 AM PST by TexasCajun
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To: forty_years
I first heard of Ali during the run-up to the first Ali-Frazier fight in 1971 when I was 7 years old. Didn't know anything about the Nation of Islam at the time, but after watching a few interviews I was instinctively repulsed by the guy -- a loud, obnoxious, and anti-American. I wanted Frazier, who seemed like the opposite of Ali in nearly every way, to beat the hell out of him.

Turned out to be one of the greatest fights in boxing history, of course. .....and what a beautiful left hook it was that sent Ali to the canvas ;)

17 posted on 12/01/2005 8:50:16 AM PST by Mr. Mojo
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To: Restorer
Ali helped launch the career of Don King. Anyone who would do this to America just has to be an evil person.


18 posted on 12/01/2005 8:51:36 AM PST by drjimmy
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To: forty_years

...that wasn't so hard.

19 posted on 12/01/2005 8:58:46 AM PST by TexasCajun
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To: forty_years
Another great book on the real Ali (and it's not pretty):


20 posted on 12/01/2005 9:06:03 AM PST by Cincinatus (Omnia relinquit servare Republicam)
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To: drjimmy

IMHO, Don King is just too weird.

His politics are to his credit, but that don't make him any less weird.


21 posted on 12/01/2005 9:17:38 AM PST by Restorer (They want to die. We want to kill them.)
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To: forty_years

Muhammed Ali started the trend of loud-mouthed sports stars that has since begat the likes of Dennis Rodman, Charles Barkley, and Mike Tyson. Low-life pukes who have some modicum of talent in their vapid professions, but whose value as humans is limited to making their owners money.


22 posted on 12/01/2005 9:28:07 AM PST by IronJack
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To: forty_years

Technically, Ali wasn't a draft dodger or draft resister. He showed up at the appointed time at Houston Main and refused induction. Right or wrong he didn't flee to Canada, Amsterdam or Sweden. He showed up, declined and took his medicine.
As an American citizen and a Vietnam veteran I do not agree with his stand and do not understand mainly because of the benefits he derived from being an American.
I knew a lot of people who could have avoided Vietnam and some of them didn't return.
Slick Willie avoided Vietnam and has never faced the music.


23 posted on 12/01/2005 9:58:19 AM PST by OldEagle (May you live long enough to hear the legends of your own adventures.)
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To: Steve_Seattle

Yes, one and the same. He was nominated by a Swiss legislator - for all those children's books he has authored. I suppose anyone can be 'nominated'!


24 posted on 12/01/2005 10:00:34 AM PST by Rummyfan
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To: IronJack
Muhammed Ali started the trend of loud-mouthed sports stars that has since begat the likes of Dennis Rodman, Charles Barkley, and Mike Tyson. Low-life pukes who have some modicum of talent in their vapid professions, but whose value as humans is limited to making their owners money.

Not to mention jerks like John McEnroe, Tony Stewart, Bobby Knight, David Wells, Todd Bertuzzi, and John Daly.
25 posted on 12/01/2005 10:16:36 AM PST by drjimmy
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To: Rummyfan
"Yes, one and the same. He was nominated by a Swiss legislator - for all those children's books he has authored. I suppose anyone can be 'nominated'!"

I'm not a big fan of the death penalty, but I am always suspicious of these death-row guys who become heroes of the Left. My suspicion is that they have become heroes to the Left because at some fundamental and devious level, they are basically unrepentant, no matter how they might try to appear to the general public. I think murderers who are truly repentant are unlikely to become icons of the Left.
26 posted on 12/01/2005 10:35:35 AM PST by Steve_Seattle
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To: drjimmy
Suffice it to say that before Muhammed Ali, sports stars were role models for children -- at least on the surface. Ali's bragging self-promotion put an end to that. After him, the more vain, the better.

Now that he is a drooling old fool, we're supposed to get all misty about his "contributions" to mankind. But nothing he can do will ever make up for the destruction of humility for which he was personally responsible.

Now he's got plenty to be humble about. And the previous poster was right: this man deserves our universal disgust, not a presidential award.

27 posted on 12/01/2005 11:45:21 AM PST by IronJack
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To: forty_years
"Mobutu Sese Seko Nkuku Wa Za Banga"

You're not going to believe it but that was exactly the sound my old Ford made just before the transmission went.

28 posted on 12/01/2005 12:08:04 PM PST by Jaxter ("Vivit Post Funera Virtus")
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To: BigFinn

I have a friend of the family who worshipped Ali, he had scrapbooks, rare pictures, etc. Ali signed most of the pages and pictures.

Say what you want about Ali, but he was kind to strangers and fans, I was supposed to go to meet him as a kid but I had to get up at 5 AM and didn't go.

Ali invited my friend to come to to Pennsylvania and stay on weekends whenever he wanted, he has tons of pictures of his visits. He allowed him to bring whoever he wanted too.

These scrapbooks are huge, I was alllowed to borrow them once. Ali was very kind to an ordinary Joe, Bundini Brown used to try and steal the scrapbooks though!

Jimmy Breslin mentioned my friend when Ali was first hospitalized, he came to visit Ali and said of him to the effect that he was the only person who didn't want anything from Ali except his friendship which he gladly offered.

Last I asked him, he couldn't get through to him any more because of all of the layers of people protecting him.


29 posted on 12/06/2006 3:50:21 PM PST by word_warrior_bob
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To: word_warrior_bob

I should also add that my friend is white, I think the Nation of Islam polluted his thinking only to a point and I make no apologies for for Ali. Just knowing this side of him takes SOME of the edge off his negatives.

Ali was surrounded by vultures, I think he took in my friend to try and maintain some connection with reality.


30 posted on 12/06/2006 4:09:02 PM PST by word_warrior_bob
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To: IronJack

"Suffice it to say that before Muhammed Ali, sports stars were role models for children -- at least on the surface. Ali's bragging self-promotion put an end to that. After him, the more vain, the better."

I disagree. I thought the same as you until I saw Ali once in the LAX airport spend 45 minutes dealing with the public. His limo was waiting outside the luggage return while Ali took the time to do every autograph requested. He must have held 10 kids up on his shoulder to have pictures taken. I've seen a lot of athletes do far worse. I was impressed with his quiet and humble approach to all who approached him.


31 posted on 12/06/2006 4:14:03 PM PST by DugwayDuke (Conservative have so many principles that they won't even vote for themselves.)
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To: DugwayDuke

Someone need to find the seventies Playboy interview with
him and read about what, he says, Allah will do to America
for its treatment of blacks.


32 posted on 12/06/2006 4:18:22 PM PST by SonnyBubba
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To: SonnyBubba

Under the influence of Elijah Mohammad — who preached that blacks should refuse to integrate with "white devils" — Ali made a point of dating only black women and lashed out at men and women who engaged in interracial sex. In an interview with Playboy, he declared: "A black man should be killed if he's messing with a white woman." When the interviewer asked about black women crossing the colour barrier, Ali responded: "Then she dies. Kill her.


33 posted on 12/06/2006 4:22:31 PM PST by SonnyBubba
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To: Restorer

Didn't Don King do time in prison for murder?


34 posted on 12/06/2006 4:23:03 PM PST by csmusaret (Urban Sprawl is an oxymoron)
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To: Rummyfan; Steve_Seattle

Actually Tookie isn't on death row...he's on DEAD row.


35 posted on 12/06/2006 4:26:43 PM PST by Positive (Nothing is sadder than to see a beautiful theory murdered by a gang of brutal facts.)
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To: forty_years
First time I saw the title, I thought misread it as Mohammad Ali: "Beautiful Sod"
36 posted on 12/06/2006 4:29:54 PM PST by Petronski (I just love that woman.)
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