In his one-hour speech Thursday in Cairo, U.S. President Barack Obama touched on the Olympic Games when he spoke about how American Muslims have enriched the United States. He was referring to the lighting of the Olympic Torch by an American Muslim – Mohammad Ali, final torchbearer and cauldron lighter at the Atlanta 1996 Summer Olympic Games.
When asked about the reference, Patrick Sandusky, spokesman for Chicago 2016’s bid for the Summer Olympic Games, told GamesBids.com, “the president has been an ardent supporter of the Olympic Movement for a very long time and the Olympic bid in Chicago since its inception. His speech was a great example of how the United States is reaching out to the world, extending a hand of friendship.
“We hope that we can demonstrate to the IOC that a Games in Chicago would further extend this hand of friendship, welcoming the world in the heart of our country, in the heart of our city, celebrating the world’s best athletes at the world’s greatest sporting and cultural event”.