And he’s right. “Salman Rushdie attacks ‘censorship by fear’ over The Jewel of Medina,” by James Bone in the Times, August 16 (thanks to all who sent this in):
Salman Rushdie has criticised his publisher for withdrawing a controversial novel about the Prophet Muhammad and his child bride because of fears of a violent backlash from Muslims.
Random House, which published Rushdie’s recent books Fury and Shalimar the Clown but not The Satanic Verses, cancelled Sherry Jones’s debut novel, The Jewel of Medina, in the latest showdown between Islam and the Western tradition of free speech.
Rushdie, who spent years in hiding after Iran’s Ayatollah Khomeini issued a fatwa “” death edict “” for The Satanic Verses, accused the US publisher of giving in to intimidation.
“I am very disappointed to hear that my publishers, Random House, have cancelled another author’s novel, apparently because of their concerns about possible Islamic reprisals,” Rushdie said.
“This is censorship by fear and it sets a very bad precedent indeed.”