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Trump May Pardon Muhammad Ali For Resisting The Vietnam Draft
President Trump, who received five draft deferments during the Vietnam War, said on Friday that he is considering issuing a pardon to legendary boxer and civil rights activist Muhammad Ali, whose conviction for refusing to be inducted was already overturned by the Supreme Court more than four decades ago.
- Trump did not elaborate on why he might pardon for Ali. He told reporters on Friday that he is thinking about pardoning someone who is “not very popular... I'm thinking about Muhammad Ali,” according to a pool report of the president’s remarks. (Ali, who was widely praised as one of the most admired athletes in history when he died in 2016, has previously received presidential medals from Bill Clinton and George W. Bush.)
- A spokesman for the American Legion said the group had no position regarding Ali.
- In 1967, Ali was sentenced to five years in prison for evading the draft. "I aint got no quarrel with them Viet Cong," the boxer told reporters at the time. Ali was also banned from boxing for three years and lost his heavyweight title.
- Ali did not serve any prison time. In June 1971, the Supreme Court ruled that the Justice Department was wrong when it recommended that Ali did not meet the requirements to be classified as a conscientious objector.
- “It is indisputably clear, for the reasons stated, that the department was simply wrong as a matter of law in advising that the petitioner's beliefs were not religiously based and were not sincerely held,” the court ruled.
- An attorney for Ali's estate, Ron Tweel, told the Louisville Courier Journal that Ali did not need a presidential pardon because “there is no conviction from which a pardon is needed.” Tweel told the newspaper: “We appreciate President Trump's sentiment, but a pardon is unnecessary.”
Once again, the United States and the Taliban are apparently close to striking a peace deal. Such a peace agreement has been rumored to be in the works longer than the latest "Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure" sequel. (The difference is Keanu Reeves has fewer f**ks to give than U.S. Special Representative for Afghanistan Ambassador Zalmay Khalilzad.)
Both sides appeared to be close to reaching an agreement in September until the Taliban took credit for an attack that killed Army Sgt. 1st Class Elis A. Barreto Ortiz, of the 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division. That prompted President Donald Trump to angrily cancel a planned summit with the Taliban that had been scheduled to take place at Camp David, Maryland, on Sept. 8.
Now Taliban spokesman Suhail Shaheen has told a Pakistani newspaper that he is "optimistic" that the Taliban could reach an agreement with U.S. negotiators by the end of January.
75 years ago, Audie Murphy earned his Medal of Honor with nothing but a burning tank destroyer's .50 cal and insane bravery
Editor's note: a version of this post first appeared in 2018
On January 26, 1945, the most decorated U.S. service member of World War II earned his legacy in a fiery fashion.
Florida senators are pushing for Purple Hearts for service members wounded in the NAS Pensacola shooting
Florida's two senators are pushing the Defense Department to award Purple Hearts to the U.S. service members wounded in the December shooting at Naval Air Station Pensacola.
The Navy Department is in the middle of a new force-structure review, which could change the number and types of ships the sea services say they'll need to fight future conflicts. But instead of trying to project what they will need three decades out, which has been the case in past assessments, acting Navy Secretary Thomas Modly said the services will take a shorter view.
"I don't know what the threat's going to be 30 years from now, but if we're building a force structure for 30 years from now, I would suggest we're probably not building the right one," he said Friday at a National Defense Industrial Association event.
The Navy completed its last force-structure assessment in 2016. That 30-year plan called for a 355-ship fleet.
When Oscar Jesus Temores showed up to work at Joint Expeditionary Base Little Creek-Fort Story each day, his colleagues in base security knew they were in for a treat.
Temores was a master-at-arms who loved his job and cracking corny jokes.
"He just he just had that personality that you can go up to him and talk to him about anything. It was goofy and weird, and he always had jokes," said Petty Officer 3rd Class Derek Lopez, a fellow base patrolman. "Sometimes he'd make you cry from laughter and other times you'd just want to cringe because of how dumb his joke was. But that's what made him more approachable and easy to be around."
That ability to make others laugh and put people at ease is just one of the ways Temores is remembered by his colleagues. It has been seven weeks since the 23-year-old married father of one was killed when a civilian intruder crashed his pickup truck into Temores' vehicle at Fort Story.