« Reason for Hope | Main | Israeli Press Official Opens Up on His Experiences With Foreign Press »

November 08, 2010

Washington Post: Cat Stevens/Yusuf Islam a 'mellow folkie'

Washington Post coverage of television’s Comedy Central October 30 rally in Washington, D.C. wavered between credulous and collaborative. It included this uncritical reference to one of the rally entertainers:

“ .... [M]ellow folkie Yusuf Islam (formerly known as Cat Stevens) had an interruptive session with metal-head Ozzy Osbourne.?

A generation ago Stevens, from Great Britain, had a string of folk-rock hits. In 1977 he converted to Islam and changed his name.

In 1989, he supported Iranian leader Ayatollah Khomeini’s fatwa (religious decree) calling for the death of author Salman Rushdie. Rushdie’s novel The Satanic Verses was deemed blasphemous. Though Islam denied calling for Rushdie’s death, the author said Islam’s interviews made clear he upheld the fatwa.

In 2000, Israeli authorities deported him for allegedly helping raise funds for Hamas (Islamic Resistance Movement), the terrorist organization responsible for the murders of hundreds of Israelis and visitors to Israel.

In 2004, his name appeared on the U.S. “no-fly? list and Islam was denied entry. The British foreign ministry protested. Two years Islam was admitted into the United States without incident.

In 2009, Islam said he would donate the proceeds from a record to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA, the U.N. arm that perpetuates Palestinian “refugee camps?) and to the Save the Children organization. An Israeli diplomat criticized Islam for not donating to all children harmed by violence, Arab and Israeli.

Islam has received numerous awards, mostly in Europe, for philanthropic activities. When the U.S. government denied him entry in 2004, Stephen Schwartz, writing in The Weekly Standard, said the singer was not a terrorist but rather a Muslim fundamentalist of the intolerant Saudi Arabian, Sunni Wahhabi school.

Whatever Cat Stevens/Yusuf Islam has become, The Post’s “mellow folkie? doesn’t begin to


Posted by ER at November 8, 2010 05:52 PM


He also called for homosexuals to be killed on a TV debate.

Posted by: FromtheUK at November 9, 2010 04:40 PM

Overall, the issue is the unrepentant claims made by Cat Stevens/Yusuf Islam.

He stated, “He must be killed. The Qur'an makes it clear? and affirmed it, “yeah, its there in the Qur'an. I couldn't deny that? then reiterated it, “blasphemy, I could not tell a lie and confirmed that…the Qur'an considers it, without repentance, as a capital offense? and reinforced it, “blasphemy according to Islamic Law, I simply repeated the legal view? and further referenced, “Scriptural texts, based directly on historical commentaries of the Qur'an? and again, “Islamic view based on the Qur'an, the Prophet's sayings (peace and blessings be upon him) and the rulings of the Caliphs and renowned schools of Islamic jurisprudence.?

Research on this, including a timeline, is found at:

Posted by: Mariano at November 10, 2010 08:37 PM

Guidelines for posting

This is a moderated blog. We will not post comments that include racism, bigotry, threats, or factually inaccurate material.

Post a comment

Remember Me?

(you may use HTML tags for style)