The Sheikh of Bagdad

by Adnan Al Kaissy

Description: A short but powerful look at the long wrestling career of The Sheik of Baghdad Adanan AlKaissy. The book takes you back to his beginnings in Iraq prior to to takeover but Saddam Hussian. This book is every bit as much a history of the the turmoil in Iraq in the 1970's as it is a wrestling book. Alkaissy goes into great detail his rise as a amatuer wrestling star in Iraq that parralled the rise to power of Hussian. Much of the book focuses on his 1970's matches with wrestling stars like Andre the Giant, Goerge Gordeniko and Bob Roop that because of where and when they took place no one in the wrestling world heard of them but tens of thousands saw them at a soccer stadium in Iraq. ALKaissy paints a dark picture of his on and off again relationship with Hussian and the power that kept him from wrestling outside of Iraq for long periods of a time during these days. While a interesting politcal history of Iraq and AlKaissy is described in the book, his days as Billy White Wolf in the WWWF are only briefly mentioned and then only his early 1960's run and not the more memorable run in the mid 1970's as tag partner with Jay Strongbow and their run as tag champs. Also completely left out is the Ken Patera angle where White Wolf suffered a broken neck supposedly. Big parts of his career that do not even get a line in print.
Some great old photos are featured throughout the book but rarely do some of these events get mentioned. Also briefly covered is his runs in Texas and Hawaii. A little more gets covered on his AWA days and his run in the WWF in the late 1980's early 1990's as General Adanan. Over all its a interesting read if you want to know about the missing years of Adanan Al Kaissy's career. If you are looking for his Billy White Wolf days, this is not a book for you. His days as Sheik Adanan in the AWA and WWF are there and covered well. Like many wrestlers who write books, their selective memory highlights what they like to be remembered for. Sometimes and especially in his WWF days as General Adanan, his drawing power and importance on the shows is maybe bigger than most fans remember it as being.

Rating: Politically informative and to an extent entertaining, this book is well worth reading. You may not get all the info you want on his career but you will get things you never heard any stories of before. I give it a 6 out of 10.

Reviewed by Greg "Count Grog" Mosorjak on November 10, 2005.

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