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Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review Nov. 29, 2005 / 27 Mar-Cheshvan, 5766

Muhammad Ali v. George W. Bush

By Daniel Pipes



Ali, just awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom by the President, makes the universal "you're crazy" sign to him
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The President has just honored with the Presidential Medal of Freedom someone whose life features a sordid personality, ugly career, vicious politics, and extremist religion


http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | George W. Bush honored the former boxer, Muhammad Ali, and thirteen others with the Presidential Medal of Freedom, called "the nation's highest civilian award," on Nov. 9 at the White House. The president praised Ali for his sports accomplishments and called him "The Greatest of All Time."

Fine, but he then proceeded to laud Ali's exemplary character: "The real mystery, I guess, is how he stayed so pretty. It probably had to do with his beautiful soul. He was a fierce fighter and he's a man of peace. Across the world, billions of people know Muhammad Ali as a brave, compassionate and charming man, and the American people are proud to call Muhammad Ali one of our own."

In this giddy, fawning statement, Bush did not, the Washington Post astringently noted, "mention Ali's very public opposition to the Vietnam War, which led the prizefighter to lose his boxing license for three years when he refused to serve in the Army." Worse, his refusal to fight was not because he was "a man of peace" but rather because his allegiance was to the stridently anti-American, anti-white organization known as the Nation of Islam, headed by the malign Elijah Muhammad.

Forty years ago, Ali explained his draft evasion: "War is against the teachings of the Holy Qur'an. I'm not trying to dodge the draft. We are supposed to take part in no wars unless declared by Allah or The Messenger [i.e., Elijah Muhammad]. We don't take part in Christian wars or wars of any unbelievers." A draft evader, incidentally, is particularly ill-suited to receive the Medal of Freedom, which was created in 1945 to recognize "notable service" in World War II.

The president also did not touch on Ali's religious side, but Mark Kram did his 2001 book, Ghosts of Manila: The Fateful Blood Feud between Muhammad Ali and Joe Frazier: "Ali broke every tenet of real Muslim law, from whoring to being truant at Temple service; he was a religious fake who abdicated his personal worth to the Black Muslims for their expediency and draft evasion, [and was] therefore, counterfeit down to his socks."

As he aged, Ali did become more devout, but in unfortunate directions. He declared himself against "the entire power structure" in the United States, which he declared run by Zionists who "are really against the Islam religion." He became so radical a Muslim that the notorious Council on American-Islamic Relations, North America's most powerful Islamist group, also honored him with an award in June 2004. As its press release stated: "Ilyasah Shabazz, the daughter of Malcolm X, presented the first Malcolm X award to Muhammad Ali."

(Ali was spectacularly ill-suited for this award too. Malcolm X had served as his role model until 1964, but when Elijah Muhammad ejected Malcolm X from the Nation of Islam, Ali ignored Malcolm X's entreaties and turned viciously against him. He threw Malcolm X away, in the words of journalist Sunni Khalid, "like a pork chop.")

Bush's praise for Ali's compassion, charm, and beautiful soul are horribly misplaced. (As were large donations from General Electric and Ford to the hagiographic "Ali Center" that opened days later in Louisville, Kentucky.) Ali's unvarnished legacy is an exploitative personality, sordid career, vicious politics, and extremist religion.

Bush himself got an unexpected glimpse of the real Ali during their brief White House encounter. I'll let the Washington Post describe the incident:

Bush, who appeared almost playful, fastened the heavy medal around Muhammad Ali's neck and whispered something in the heavyweight champion's ear. Then, as if to say "bring it on," the president put up his dukes in a mock challenge.

Ali, 63, who has Parkinson's disease and moves slowly, looked the president in the eye   —  and, finger to head, did the "crazy" twirl for a couple of seconds. The room of about 200, including Cabinet secretaries, tittered with laughter. Ali, who was then escorted back to his chair, made the twirl again while sitting down.

And the president looked visibly taken aback, laughing nervously. Was Ali making a political statement?


Awarding of the Presidential Medal of Freedom to Muhammad Ali gratuitously celebrated a man profoundly opposed to Bush's own, his party's, and the country's principles. It represents, I submit, the nadir of his presidency.

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JWR contributor Daniel Pipes is director of the Middle East Forum.

© 2005, Daniel Pipes