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Adnan Al-Kaissie


Real NameAdnan Bin Abdul Kareem Ahmed Alkaissy El Farthie

Birthdate - 3/1/39

6’ 220 lbs. - Hopkins, MN

Athletic BackgroundWrestling (Oklahoma State), Soccer, Track & Field, Weightlifting

Teacher(s) - n/a

AliasesAdnan Kaissy, Billy White Wolf, Shiek Adnan Al-Kaissie, General Adnan

Peak Years`61-`69

Place in HistoryAlthough his autobiography was panned, the story of Adnan Kaissy is truly one of the most remarkable in pro-wrestling’s history.  The son of a mufti (Islamic preacher and legal expert), Adnan came from modest means, but was an exceptional athlete.  He famously attended the same high school as Saddam Hussein, although Kaissy pursued scholarship opportunities rather than becoming involved with Hussein’s politically minded group.  He came to the US and wrestled for Oklahoma State, one of the top wrestling factories in the world.  Wrestling at 191 pounds, he came in fourth in the 1958 and 1959 NCAA tournaments, even losing to the future Tim Woods in his second year.  Like Earl McCready, Leroy McGuirk and Dick Hutton before him and the Briscos after him, Kaissy was lured from the amateur ranks into the pro ranks.  Although he made his start as Adnan Kaissy, he soon transformed into a Native American and spent much of the 1960s and 1970s working under the guise of “Billy White Wolf.”  He was certainly not the only person simply playing the part of an Indian, but he was among the most successful.  His dark features were convincing once he put tassels on his boots and a headdress on his head.  Based in the Portland territory, Adnan earned degrees and coached wrestling at Portland State and the University of Oregon, while working as White Wolf.  In an era where many territories might feature a single Indian star, Billy White Wolf was able to receive pushes in Australia, Hawaii and Texas throughout the 1960s.  In the 1970s, Billy White Wolf had one of his most memorable runs, teaming with Jay Strongbow in the WWWF.  He had mastered his babyface act and was beckoned to bring it back to Iraq as the Ba’ath Party was coming into power.  Saddam Hussein had risen within the country and Adnan Al-Kaissie was an ideal national hero to bring home.  Matches with George Gordienko, Andre the Giant and Bob Roop were grand spectacles, although their worked nature was carefully guarded.  The success of the events made Al-Kaissie a very wealthy man with all the comforts one could ever want.  When he began to fear for his life, seeing so many of Hussein’s political allies being executed, Al-Kaissie fled the country.  Adnan Al-Kaissie returned to the United States and adopted the heel character that most remember.  Calling himself “Sheik,” donning a keffiyeh, thick mustache and mirrored sunglasses, Adnan Al-Kaissie was instantly a top heel in middle America.  After years of being the good guy, he simply flipped his role and it was a perfect fit.  The US was ripe with hatred for Middle Easterners and Al-Kaissie was better a fanning those flames than most.  Not unlike Skandor Akbar, he bragged about having oil money and he used his money and power to build an army.  Al-Kaissie turned Georgia hayseed Jerry Blackwell into a “Shiek Ayotollah” and they pursued the tag titles and drew very well.  Al-Kaissie moved out of the ring and bought the contract of former Olympian Ken Patera.  Blackwell and Patera, dressed in middle eastern attire and calling themselves Sheiks seems silly today, but it was a heated deal in the 1980s.  The AWA went into a decline and when the first Gulf War erupted, the WWF signed Adnan to manage the turncoat Sgt. Slaughter.  The angle was seen as tasteless by many, but General Adnan was pivotal in drawing heat alongside Slaughter.  Al-Kaissie continued to manage some and promoted as well.  When the regime of Saddam Hussein fell, he finally released his autobiography, feeling that he and his family would be free from any retribution.  Adnan Al-Kaissie has a legacy completely different than anyone else in pro-wrestling history.  He has impressive amateur credentials, he was a very successful babyface in his day under one persona, he became a national hero in his homeland and finished out his career with a completely different, but no less successful heel persona.