Well, what can I say? I’m embarrassed that Yusuf Islam was denied entry into the United States. I’m irritated that there is no disclosure as to why. And I’m afraid for what this means for the future of this country (especially for those of us who live here and are not yet citizens).

Still, I credit Islam for keeping his sense of humor over the whole ordeal:

“They diverted the plane at the last moment to a place called Bangor, which I’d never heard of, and suddenly I was surrounded by FBIs who interrogated me,” Mr Islam said today. “I wasn’t handcuffed or anything like that. They actually treated me very well. The one positive thing I can say is that a lot of security officers are pleased because they got my autograph.”

Read the whole story in Guardian Unlimited.

3 Comments on “Apparently, The Peace Train No Longer Stops Here

  1. It’s an odd story. I remember being told that he believed Salman Rushdie should be killed back at the time of that whole thing, though I’m not sure if that were actually true. And he does condemn the violence of 9-11 and the Russain school, not to mention Iraq. Though also, I can imagine it can get a little complicted trying to sort out what is an Islamic charity and what has connections to so-called terrorist groups.

  2. I looked it up–Islam said he supported the Islamic law which calls for the death of blasphemers, that Rushdie was a blahphemer, but that “that is not to say I am encouraging people to break the law or take it into their own hands: far from it. Under the Islamic Law, Muslims are bound to keep within the limits of the law of the country in which they live….”

    http://catstevens.com/articles/00013/index.html

    (oops. I trashed this comment previously to take care of my typos, not knowing it would stay in there as “removed.” Hope you don’t mind my commenting so much, Myf.

    Joe

  3. Mind? Hell no, I don’t mind! I love it. Thanks for commenting, Joe.

    I guess the problem I have with the whole scenario is that there has not been (at least that I’ve seen) any clear indication of why exactly he was put on the watch list. It makes me scared, this watch list. Did you know that Senator Ted Kennedy was kept off a flight because he has the same name as someone on the watch list? Luckily, he called Tom Ridge and got it straigthened. I wonder if it wouldn’t be advisable to let people know they are on the watch list and at least give them a chance to explain.

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