When I lived in the Middle East over this past decade, I was pleasantly surprised that the one-time superstar of boxing was still almost universally recalled. This was true even amongs some 6th graders whom I taught.
Muhammed Ali is also reknowned as a man of peace and a man of both civic and universal consciousness. This week he has thrown his weight behind the effort to free the so-called HIKERS, whom Tehran has recently put on victims of a Stalinist-type of Show Trial.
Reuters has reported, "Boxing great Muhammad Ali, one of the most prominent U.S. Muslims, has appealed to Iran's supreme leader to show mercy and free two Americans held on suspicion of espionage, families of the men said on Wednesday."
The article goes on to note that "Shane Bauer and Josh Fattal were arrested in July 2009 along the Iraq border -- they said they may have inadvertently crossed into Iran while hiking -- in a case that has further strained relations between the United States and Iran, already frayed over Iran's nuclear program. (A third American, Sarah Shourd, was released on $500,000 bail in September and returned home.)"
Finally, Reuters reported, "The 69-year-old former world heavyweight champion, who said he was welcomed warmly on a past visit to Tehran, asked in a letter to Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei that "mercy' be shown for the two men, said Jeanie Kahnke, a spokeswoman for the Muhammad Ali Center in Louisville, Kentucky."
If you are reader hearing of their case for the first time, please click on this page and read more.
Then consider signing the petition.
Finally, if you have any sway at all with the Tehran regime, ask them to do what is right and finally achieve some appreciation again in the West, the South, The North, and the East.