Stewart-Colbert “sanity” rally features Yusuf Islam, who called for the murder of Salman Rushdie

OsborneYusufIslam.jpgOsbourne and Yusuf Islam: Take off that cross, you uppity kaffir

This is an example of the Leftist/Jihadist Alliance, or perhaps of the cluelessness of the Left, or perhaps of its indifference to the freedom of speech that Islamic supremacists wish so ardently to extinguish. Take your pick. “Stewart-Colbert ‘sanity’ rally draws thousands,” by Hope Yen and Calvin Woodward for the Associated Press, October 30 (thanks to Weasel Zippers):

WASHINGTON — In the shadow of the Capitol and the election, comedians Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert entertained a huge throng Saturday at a “sanity” rally poking fun at the nation’s ill-tempered politics, fear-mongers and doomsayers. […]

Ozzy Osbourne and Yusuf Islam, formerly known as Cat Stevens, engaged in something of a battle of the bands as the heavy-metal rocker barged in on the folkie’s hit, “Peace Train,” in a mock clash of music and cultures….

“Cat Stevens Gives Support To Call for Death of Rushdie,” by Craig R. Whitney in the New York Times, May 23, 1989:

TONDON [sic], May 22 — The musician known as Cat Stevens said in a British television program to be broadcast next week that rather than go to a demonstration to burn an effigy of the author Salman Rushdie, ”I would have hoped that it’d be the real thing.”

The singer, who adopted the name Yusuf Islam when he converted to Islam, made the remark during a panel discussion of British reactions to Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini’s call for Mr. Rushdie to be killed for allegedly blaspheming Islam in his best-selling novel ”The Satanic Verses.” He also said that if Mr. Rushdie turned up at his doorstep looking for help, ”I might ring somebody who might do more damage to him than he would like.”

”I’d try to phone the Ayatollah Khomeini and tell him exactly where this man is,” said Mr. Islam, who watched a preview of the program today and said in an interview that he stood by his comments….

Yes, now he denies having said it. But considering that he has been an ardent orthodox believer ever since his conversion, and that all the schools of Islamic jurisprudence do mandate a death penalty for blasphemy, I find his denials unconvincing.

I have previously linked to the video of Yusuf Islam saying what he now denies, but this morning I found this notice where it had once been at YouTube: “This video is no longer available due to a copyright claim by Yusuf Islam.” Interestingly enough, however, old Joe Islam doesn’t seem troubled by YouTube postings trampling on the copyright for his jahiliyya hippie songs.

UPDATE: Here is the video, thanks to Evan Mark:

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  1. says

    Cat Stevens went nuts a long time ago.

    “Tea for the Tillerman” is a nice memory of his pre-insane conversion to Islam.

    Anyone who voluntarily embraces Islam has bats in the belfry.

  2. says

    Hmmm. I think when my colleagues talk about the rally at lunch, I’ll ask what they think of Yusef Islam’s comments about Salman Rushdie.

  3. says

    From post above…Most people, no matter how well educated and accomplished, are blithering idiots, and that is the dying truth.

    A former Sheriff had this to say about that…’Some people are educated beyond their intelligence’…He also said that ‘not all long haired people are dope smokers, but all dope smokers were long haired people’…

    I always wondered why educated people frequently buy into primitive and/or brutal systems like communism, Marxism, Nazism, Islamo-ism…Maybe it was too much pot smoking in college…
    A UK study, that I don’t vouch for, found that young people who smoke just one marijuana cigarette, have a 40% chance of developing schizophrenia in later life…According to the study, 14% actually do…So who is it that smokes the most pot in the US? It’s not church going conservatives…It would seem that 10% of the 14%, are liberals and democrats…including Rasool Obama…According to that, the US gov is top heavy with drug damaged schizophrenics…But don’t worry, they are all educated…

  4. says

    I’ve tried reading Rushdie’s Satanic verses and it just seemed like a dense tangle of metaphorical weirdness. I gave up. I wonder if Cat Stevens had any more success than I did before he jumped on the fatwa bandwagon.

  5. says

    As a professional musician, I at one time, respected the work of Cat Stevens. However there are 3 songs I never, ever play, even though I can.
    1) Stairway To Heaven-I have heard it butchered by too many wanna-be players
    2) Dust In the Wind-I remember when White Clover, a previous name for the band were coke snortin’ whiskey freaks turned Christian.
    3) Anything by Cat Stevens-Turned Y. Islam, Peace Train became a murder condoning wreck!
    Peace!(as in Gandhi or the Dalai Lama)not the lies of Islam Peace!

  6. says

    It’s important to remember that Stevens’ reputation continues NOW to be damaged by the claim that he was willing to call Khomeini himself to turn Rushdie into Khomeini’s assassins if he only could. This is a STRANGE thing for a reporter to get wrong, but if he got it wrong it sounds reckless, i.e. libellous under U.S. law and ESPECIALLY under English law. Every day that the website is on, it’s a republication of the claim. So it’s time for Stevens to hire a barrister and SUE the New York TImes in America or especially in London and reclaim his Peace Train reputation.

    [crickets chirping.]

  7. says

    “Sanity Rally” :))))))))))))

    In 1981, after signing his first solo career record deal, Ozzy Osbourne bit the head off a dove during a meeting with some record-company executives in Los Angeles.

    Yussuf Islam is a crazy muslim that threatened Rushdie in 1989.

    No comments…

    Rio – Brazil

  8. says

    You know, I usually enjoy what Colbert and Stewart do on their TV shows. It’s hilarious, and often right on the money. That makes it all the weirder to see them join hands with this death fatwa supporter..I just can’t understand it.
    That said, I won’t stop listening to ‘Morning has broken’. The song has no evil message, nor did Cat Stevens when he sang it.

  9. says

    I don’t think Colbert or Stewart know this about Cat Stevens though. They probably make the mistake of thinking ‘the enemy of my enemy is my friend’, thus thinking islam must be ok because the right is largely against it.

  10. says

    I think it’s likely that Ozzy has no idea that his free-reign creativity would be targeted under Sharia law. He wasn’t all too bright even before the chemical assault on his brain had made much progress. Old interviews leave no doubt about that.

  11. says

    Wow. Aren’t you the hypocrite Robert Spencer?

    I seem to recall your best buddy Pam Geller being somewhat of a genocide denier, and supporter of Serbian War criminals.
    I seem to recall her calling for the destruction of Al-Aqsa mosque.
    I seem to recall her voicing her support for Eugene Terrablanche, a South African White supremacist & advocate of Aparthied.

    I seem to also recall you posting a video promoting genocide of Pakistan, by a Fascist Hindu group that was involved in the Gujrat Riots several years ago, that resulted in the massacre of 100s innocent men,women and children.

    Aren’t you just an massive 2 faced hypocrite for bitching about him, when you’re buddies with a racist genocidal hate monger like Pam Geller?

  12. says

    I always loved Steven’s music. I can not help but want to hurl whenever I hear it now, since the Rushdie affair at least. When they played it at Starbuck’s, I complained to the manager about it. The “Peace Train” and all the other songs are ruined forever as far as I am concerned.

    Islam-Stevens also called for jihad against Israel not long after the Rushdie affair.

    It’s disgusting that the people who are up there with him are so clueless; or are they?

    In the very least, their silence equals indifference, which equals complacency, which equals complicity, which equals cowardice….


  13. says

    Has Stevens ever talked about his conversion? Of all the religions a lefty hippy like Stevens could have chosen, Islam seems the least likely. His apparent “peace and love” beliefs must have been rather weak, as after he was exposed to the underlying violence and depravity of Islam (I’m sure his recruiter led him there slowly) he didn’t blink.

  14. says

    “At 19, I contracted tuberculosis…and [this] paved the way for the life I now lead as a Muslim.”

    That’s … interesting. He was 19 in 1967. He didn’t visibly revert until the end of 1977.

  15. says

    I would also suggest to avoid being snookered by Ghandi. How daily he would give enemas to his teenage female acolytes and they would, in turn, return the favor. Ghandi held an abiding interest in bowel movements. Of course there was the time he told the Jews of Germany to relax, peacefully, I presume, and go along with the nazi program. How he was rather unconcerned with muslims decapitating Bombay Hindu babies during Partition. (BTW, how about those 1.5 million dead bodies when Ghandi finally got his way) How he wrote a letter of complaint to the South African authorities (when he lived there)objecting to Indians being included in the segregrating policies, of course the blacks he understood and agreed with but not the Indians. I could go one but then one could just rent the movie. Unfortunately I missed it but I’m sure his bowel fetish was amply portrayed.

  16. says

    Isn’t it obvious that Islam is a severe mental health threat?

    And it kills certain artistic or truly creative powers, as in Music. Just compare the music of Cat Stevens to that of the drab nothings of Yusef Islam. But then neither Muhammad nor the devil can really stand music for pure aesthetic enjoyment (as opposed to militaristic arousal):

    Hadith Qudsi 19:5: “The Prophet said that Allah commanded him to destroy all the musical instruments, idols, crosses and all the trappings of ignorance.”
    Muhammad also said:

    (1) “Allah Mighty and Majestic sent me as a guidance and mercy to believers and commanded me to do away with musical instruments, flutes, strings, crucifixes, and the affair of the pre-Islamic period of ignorance.”

    (2) “On the Day of Resurrection, Allah will pour molten lead into the ears of whoever sits listening to a songstress.”

    (3) “Song makes hypocrisy grow in the heart as water does herbage.”

    (4) “This community will experience the swallowing up of some people by the earth, metamorphosis of some into animals, and being rained upon with stones.” Someone asked, “When will this be, O Messenger of Allah?” and he said, “When songstresses and musical instruments appear and wine is held to be lawful.”

    (5) “There will be peoples of my Community who will hold fornication, silk, wine, and musical instruments to be lawful ….” —
    ‘Umdat al-Salik r40.0

  17. says

    Yes, I noticed this when I read the coverage of the Saturday event(s) in the Sunday paper (Chicago Trib and NYT). Yusuf Islam, the great “scholar” of Islam who assured us almost 22 years ago when Rushdie was given a death sentence by that political-tyrant-who-called-himself-a-spiritual/religious-leader Ayatollah (Persian for “reflection of God”- these Muslim imams are certainly a humble, unassuming lot, aren’t they) Khomeini for the crime of WRITING A BOOK. This from the man who earlier on marketed himself as a great hippie minstrel and avatar of peace and love (he wrote “Peace Train”). And Stewart and Colbert have the conceit and gall to set themselves up as intellectually, morally, aesthetically, and spiritually better than the conservatives they mock. What a despicable group, what an awful world we live in. ICK!

  18. says

    Cat Stevens is an ignorant fool and a terrible moHAMmedan. The mere POSSESSION of musical instruments is a capital offense in his religion. And, to actually PLAY them, in PUBLIC, is absolutely DESPICABLE! The bad news is that, when those 12th century cretins finally execute sentence on him, they will probably also take out a large part of his audience. It’s amazing that his promoters will take the risk that the coming massacre will not happen during the performance for which they are liable.

  19. says

    it is soooo interesting that they only introduced yusuf islam as yusuf and didn’t add the islam. it’s really quite significant. i think the words in peace train “something good’s about to come” is really about sharia, now that i heard the bbc interview. the dude’s f’ing nuts, like anyone who converts to that barbaric religion has to be. to see jon steward and colbert as dhimmies just makes me think they’re dummies. it’s so sad.

  20. says

    it is soooo interesting that they only introduced yusuf islam as yusuf and didn’t add the islam. it’s really quite significant. i think the words in peace train “something good’s about to come” is really about sharia, now that i heard the bbc interview. the dude’s f’ing nuts, like anyone who converts to that barbaric religion has to be. to see jon steward and colbert as dhimmies just makes me think they’re dummies. it’s so sad.

  21. says

    You know what… Totalitarian arch-villains on the order of Stalin, Lenin and Mao best understood human nature which is for most is sheepish, naïve and slavish and they in-turn fed it the verbal garbage it craved to hear. Most people, no matter how well educated and accomplished, are blithering idiots, and that is the dying truth.

  22. says

    Colbert and Stewart can be entertaining, but they could do more in jest by exposing the liberal hypocrites. The truth is, they voted for the liberal hypocrites.

    Yusef Islam’s music as singer Cat Stevens was good, but who can listen to any of it now without being reminded of his contemporary transformation into a fatwa-supporting death cultist?

    Why support any of these people? We know where they stand NOW.

  23. says

    To understand _Satanic Verses_, you probably have to be a Briton of South Asian Muslim heritage. Not being one myself, I also found it a tangle of verbiage beyond my comprehension. And, I never liked Rushdie’s Leftism. Still, writing a dense mass of incomprehensible argot is not a reason to have a billion people wanting you dead.

  24. says


    I have the greatest respect for you and generally agree with your posts. In this case, however, I believe your generalization is flawed.

    I’ve smoked pot for 35 years, and I’m more right wing now than I ever was. Life has a way of forcing one to realize the warm and fuzzy idealism of the 1960s must make way for the cold hard realities of life. Pot helps one to deal.

    While there are a lot of loony lefties out there, not all of them are potheads, and vice versa.

  25. says

    William James: I would look into Gandhi a little more closely if I were you; I would call the “peace” he advocated capitulation unto death rather than “peace”. I’m not too sure about the Dalai Lama these days, either. He appears to be in favour of Islam, Marxism, anything at all.

  26. says

    Has Stevens ever talked about his conversion?

    I saw him speak a little about it on a TV program some time ago. He recounted how he went into the water at a beach in England and got into difficulties and felt he would have drowned but prayed and a wave swept him back onto the beach. A few days later his brother gave him a copy of an English translation of the Koran.

    That was all he said about it with no thoughts of why he concluded it was Allah who saved him. I presumed he thought it could not have been a coincidence. The rest as they say is history.

    I remember thinking it was odd that his brother would have had a Koran when the family, being ethnically Greek, would most likely have been Orthodox and if they had any interest in Islam it might have been expected to have been negative, based on the centuries of dhimmitude their ancestors would have endured under Turkish occupation/oppression.

  27. says

    And to add a bit more detail to the above I think he elaborated a tad on the nature of his prayer being along the lines of lord save me and I’ll give up the pot pop-star lifestyle and do what you want. I did a bit of youtube search and their are a few videos where he recounts this and a bit from his brother, who goes by the name of David Gordon, about the role he played. Some mixed up family.

  28. says

    “Cat Stevens went nuts a long time ago.

    “Tea for the Tillerman” is a nice memory of his pre-insane conversion to Islam.

    Anyone who voluntarily embraces Islam has bats in the belfry.”

    I completely agree, Courreges W!

    And Cat Stevens revealed even more nuttiness and an attraction to allah the pagan moon god in his “Moonshadow” song …

    “Oh, I’m bein’ followed by a moonshadow, moonshadow, moonshadow …Leapin and hoppin’ on a moonshadow, moonshadow, moonshadow”

  29. says

    Kepha and Bunty Hoven,

    Me neither. Bought the book sometime in the past ten years to see what all the fuss was about. Read a few pages and couldn’t get into it at all. I continued for a little while but eventually decided it was too bizarre and that maybe he was trying to be cute and I kept thinking, why can’t you just say what you mean? I kept the book around thinking maybe I could get into it sometime later, at another time in my life. No such luck. I sold it at a garage sale this summer. Sorry Salman. : (

  30. says

    @ Phoenix..

    You need to get facts correctly before you post lies and incomplete information. This concerns your point of genocide of “Pak” and Hindu fascism.

    First off, there was no genocide of Pakistan whatsoever as you claim. I would like you to substantiate your claim. Fact is, Pakistan committed a genocide of Hindus and Christians in East Pakistan in what is now Bangladesh. Throughout this genocide Hindu and Christian homes and properties were marked as H or C in yellow paint for the Pak army to destroy.

    As for the riots in Gujarat. People like you take perverted pleasure in perpetuating half-truths. The Hindus reacted strongly and spontaneously to a burning of 60 people alive in a train compartment by Muslims. Are you expecting Hindus to stand by and watch? If not for that burning there would have been no riots. Yes, innocents do die in riots, but thats the very nature of spontaneous retaliation.

    As for calling any Hindu a fascist, maybe you should look into your religion. Hindus dont have a concept of blasphemy. They are more tolerant than any other religious group. And if that doesnt show up a mirror to you of your own community, the Buddha was a Hindu. Connect the dots…

  31. says

    Isabella: I read an earlier book of his, “Midnight’s Children”; it was pretty bad. I perservered to the end but gave it away, which is pretty radical for stingy old me. So I was not interested in reading “The Satanic Verses”. I presumed it would be more turgid trash.

  32. says

    My husband is probably one of the few people around who has read all of ‘The Satanic Verses’.

    But then, he’s a sci fi fan, and there are science fiction books on his shelves that – to my perception, at least – are well beyond even Rushdie’s level of weirdness and turgidity; so I guess it didn’t bother him.

  33. says

    DDA, I also read _Satanic Verses_ through. But, then again, you probably know that we Puritans have a pretty stern sense of duty.