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I'm with Juan Cole. This guy thinks it was a good idea to put a novelist under a death threat? Let him go live among his brethren. And make THEM listen to his music.

BTW, from what I've seen of Muslim names, "Yusuf Islam" is like "George Smith," frequency-wise.


Nance, Did you follow the link or had you already seen Cole's page?

Have you read a good article on this story? I still haven't found one. There may be 256 Yusuf Islams on the list, and another 640 Youssefs, but as far as I can tell whoever stopped the Cat was looking to stop that particular Yusef and they wanted to stop him enough that somebody called the plane to let them know they would do it, so I'm wrong about his being the victim of a functionary with a clipboard. If I was a good blogger I'd update. But that makes me even more curious as to how he got a visa!


I read it before. And no, I have yet to find a comprehensive story about it -- I think editors hear, "Cat Stevens" and immediately throw the assignment to the arts/entertainment desk. As for the visa, I don't think British nationals need one to be U.S. tourists, do they? We don't need one for their country. Just show up, say, "I'm a tourist" and you're in for 90 days.


You mean I can just waltz over to see the Queen any time I want? Neato.

Dick Walker

And of course, Mussolini's flunkies never did get those vaunted Italian trains to run on time. Any more than the security patrols making everyone's airport visits even more off-pissing than before are making us appreciably safer.

Great piece and very amusin'.


Thanks, Dick, and welcome to the site.

I haven't been on a plane since 9/11 so I haven't had to deal with it. But the descriptions of the Kafka-esque horrors I've heard from friends and relations who've had to endure the airports, the next time I have to go somewhere far away, I'll walk before I'll fly.

Although I'll probably get stopped at the street corner by someone with a clipboard.

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