Email from Malcolm Down the Publisher of Taming the Tiger
Dear Concerned Christian
Many thanks for your email which I have copied to Tony in the hope that he will be able to answer specific questions that I am unable to.
I do not intend to answer every point you raised but can say that during the process of commissioning the book we wrote to several people who have known Tony for a while for character references. These included George Verwer at OM and one of Tony's former pastors. Their feedback did not give us any concern over the authenticity of the story.
The book was written by Angela Little following a series of interviews with Tony. Angela is a good friend and experienced writer who kept in touch during the whole process and shared any concerns she had at the time. Obviously when Publishers decide to publish biographies there are inherent risks as many of the stories in the book cannot be reasonably substantiated. To cover this we have each of our authors sign a legal and binding contract which puts the responsibility of the authenticity of the manuscript firmly with the author. Should a case arise where a legal challenge is made to that authenticity the costs are borne by the author himself so the incentive is very much for the author to tell the truth. To date over the 6 years since the book was first published no such challenge has ever been received. It seems people are happy to condemn Tony and accuse him of being a liar through websites but no one actually is willing to take up their claims through the legal system.
Your accusation regarding the plagarisation of the teaching material needs further clarification. As I was unable to find any reference to it in the thread - perhaps you can give more a specific name and contact email. I know Tony has used material from several sources but that would be true of most teaching books as very little is actually completely original these days. I'm attending Tony's Passion teaching conference on Saturday so it would be useful to know before then.
Finally it would be good to know who you are if you are happy to reveal your identity. It would be useful to know who you are and perhaps meet up over a coffee to discuss your concerns in detail - If you live in the London area why not get across to Westminster on Saturday for the conference so I can introduce you to Tony himself?
My Reply to Malcolm the Publisher
I hope you are well.
I do not intend to give you my name as I think an authority within the Christian Church should carry the weight of this. Also Tony’s response to the person who says he copied his teaching materials has been to say that he remembers him and that he had a problem with women. I don’t want personal abuse in return for questioning someone in the public eye.
The link on the thread to the person who claims Tony copied his materials is on this page and you can also read into the next pages where the discussion about this continues:
There is a great deal of unresolved questions about Tony. You yourself could suspend further publication until the questions are answered.
This website entry predates Tony Anthony’s book
Here is a passage from the website:
‘.. Viper consisted of intimidating strikes that could inflict heavy psychological damage by drawing lots of blood without causing life-threatening damage. Its trademark was the tongue strike - two fingers aiming often at arteries and veins. Cobra, in contrast, did not emphasize highly recognizable or showy techniques but rather very serious strikes to nerves and pressure points. Its characteristic hand technique was an open hand with the thumb curled underneath in order to maintain dynamic tension. Python, in addition, relied on the leopard fist for its pinpoint strikes and included grappling techniques..’
Taming the Tiger page 38 has the following:
‘’…. The viper inflicts heavy psychological damage by drawing lots of blood, "Lowsi told me." it's trademark is the tongue strike." He positioned two of my fingers. "Aim at arteries and veins," he said, demonstrating the stabbing technique in the air. Next he took my hand and opened it up curling my thumb underneath." This position keeps a dynamic tension characteristic of the cobra," he said. "the cobra concentrates its strikes on nerves and pressure points." Lowsi went on to explain the way of the python, with its pin point strikes and grappling techniques(pg 38).
Did Lowsi say these words? Malcolm I am personally asking you – does it appear to you that these words have been copied and placed in ‘Lowsi’s’ mouth?
If you can see that the above questions Tony's truthfulness then you should conduct a thorough investigation.
Have you met his mother? Why doesn't he contact her?
Do you believe it's acceptable to not be able to speak Cantonese after going through all he describes in the book - right through into late teenage years and then winning his last World title at the age of twenty? Tony says he understands more than he speaks. Are you prepared to keep publishing his book on that basis?
Where are the major International scandals, related to which Country was behind the attacks and what Nationals were killed, when Tony killed various assailants of the Saudi Ambassador at various times? There is no record of any such attacks and killings is there?
It may cost you money to stop broadcasting this story at this time - but establishing the truth is worth it isn't it?
'... Should a case arise where a legal challenge is made ... the costs are borne by the author himself so the incentive is very much for the author to tell the truth. To date over the 6 years since the book was first published no such challenge has ever been received. It seems people are happy to condemn Tony and accuse him of being a liar through websites but no one actually is willing to take up their claims through the legal system.'
If you think individual members of the public shouldn't have to pay to go through legal channels before Malcolm pays attention to questions and takes them seriously - and you've got a serious question you think he should know the answer to, instead of promising answers frm Tony that never come, then you can drop him a line.
'We have had no direct contact'
I noticed this in Tony's previous email:
'...In your email you mentioned that an "author" accuses me of plagiarised their materials. Well if this is what the person believes then it is strange that we have had no direct contact from the person, and they have chosen to express their complaint on your discussion forum.'
Bigguy1 posted this description of direct contact on 29th Oct 2009:
'..When I first met Tony, he was running children's programs for local churches. He had no theological training and no resources of his own whatsover. He couldn't even write his own book. Angela Little wrote it for him. Then, all of a sudden, he acquires a library of resources which clearly would have taken theological training and decades to build and research. Doesn't this strike you as a bit odd? How could he write all these resources in a few short months, as a children's worker, without experience and theological training?
I will tell you. He acquired my materials through deceit and trickery. He was given the opportunity to use the resources without charge and with permission, as long as acknowledged the fact, and didn't change the content, but he refused on all counts.
When asked how he could justify how he acquired them, and how he could continue using them without permission or acknowledgement, his answer was "I thought about all you wrote before you came along. So, really all you did was write down what I already knew." Sometimes he would argue, quite unbiblically, that "all Christian material belongs to God and is free for any Christian to use if it advances the Kingdom." In the end, his response changed to "we wrote the materials together." And off he trotted into the sunset.
Let me assure everyone who reads this thread: Tony Anthony had absolutely no input into the resources he plagiarised and is currently using.
In the end, and after a long period of time, my board, against my wishes, gave Tony permission. Tony, of course, was thrilled. In God's eyes, though, the offense against his brother had already been committed.
Can I tell you how I felt about Tony's actions towards me, before he was given permission? I felt invaded, plundered, betrayed, cheated, and deceived by Tony. To this day, he remains unrepentent. He has made absolutely no attempt to put right the wrong....'
I do believe there has been direct contact between Tony and the person who accuses him of plagiarising his materials and Tony is not truthful when he says, 'we have had no direct contact from the person'.
This is the same pattern of selective answering of some questions, but not others, without answering any major question conclusively, thoroughly and convincingly. Sad.