DIPLOMACY: Ali's Whipping

Trouble on a Mission Implausible

It had to be the most bizarre diplomatic mission in recent U.S. history. Two weeks ago, Jimmy Carter asked former Heavyweight Champion Muhammad Ali to undertake a five-nation African tour (Tanzania, Kenya, Nigeria, Liberia and Senegal) as his special representative to seek support for a boycott of the Moscow Olympic Games. Ali, who was traveling in India, accepted the assignment. By the time he had spent an hour on African soil, however, he was floundering like a Golden Gloves novice against a ring-wise pro.

Arriving in Dar es...

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