Salman Rushdie attacked at lecture in New York

CNA Staff   By CNA Staff


Salman Rushdie speaks at the Frankfurt Bookfair, Oct. 12, 2017. / Markus Wissmann/Shutterstock

Denver Newsroom, Aug 12, 2022 / 12:01 pm (CNA).

The author Salman Rushdie, whose novel “The Satanic Verses” led to a call for his assassination from Iran’s Supreme Leader in 1989, was stabbed in the neck on Friday while onstage in New York state.

The Associated Press said one of its reporters “witnessed a man confront Rushdie … and begin punching or stabbing him 10 to 15 times as he was being introduced” Aug. 12.

Rushdie, 75, was preparing to speak at the Chautauqua Institution, an educational center and resort in Chautauqua, New York, about 70 miles southwest of Buffalo.

Henry Reese, who was to interview Rushdie about the U.S. as a haven for exiled writers and artists, also suffered a minor head injury. Reese is co-founder and president of City of Asylum, a nonprofit housing exiled writers.

The attacker has been arrested, and Rushdie has been taken to hospital.

Rushdie, who was born in Bombay in 1947, won the Booker Prize in 1981 for “Midnight’s Children.”

“The Satanic Verses” was published in 1988. The book of magic realism, set in the present day, includes dream sequences involving Muhammad. These were considered blasphemous by some Muslims.

Ruhollah Khomeini, then the Supreme Leader of Iran, issued a fatwa calling for Rushdie’s killing the following year. There was an assassination attempt that year, and in 1991 Hitoshi Igarashi, the Japanese translator of “The Satanic Verses,” was murdered.

A bounty has been offered for Rushdie’s killing, and he lived in hiding for some time.

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  1. Though Islam refers to itself as “The Religion of Peace”. serenity and tranquility seem to allude it too often. The news of the day gives a different impression as to the claims!

    Muslims that have converted to Christianity are outstanding representatives of the Christian faith. Praise God for their testimony.

    Psalm 119:165 Great peace have those who love your law; nothing can make them stumble.

    Psalm 34:14 Turn away from evil and do good; seek peace and pursue it.

    Psalm 29:11 May the Lord give strength to his people! May the Lord bless his people with peace!

    Psalm 4:8 In peace I will both lie down and sleep; for you alone, O Lord, make me dwell in safety.

    James 3:18 And a harvest of righteousness is sown in peace by those who make peace.

    Blessings for Rushdie and for all Muslims that they too come to the un-surpassing knowledge of Jesus Christ.

  2. About the novel, “Satanic Verses,” this further explanation of its origin: “The title refers to the Satanic Verses, a group of Quranic verses that refer to three pagan Meccan goddesses: Allāt, Al-Uzza, and Manāt. The part of the story that deals with the ‘satanic verses’ was based on accounts from the historians al-Waqidi and al-Tabari” (Wikipedia).

    Even the very first biographers wrote long after Muhammad, the first about one hundred twenty years after his death: Ibn Ishaq (704-773 A.D.). The only version of this lost work was edited by Ibn Hisham (d. 835 or 840), a full two centuries after Muhammad, and translated into English by A. Guillaume only in 1955 (“The Life of Muhammad”. Oxford University Press, 800 pages of small print).

    The “satanic verses” in the Qur’an refer to a visit Muhammad (as the revolutionary monotheist) is said still to have made one night to a pagan temple. The triad goddesses are the offspring of Allah and his wife. Charged with hypocrisy, Muhammad immediately regretted the one-night relapse and unambiguously clarified the distance between Allah alone and the paganism of Mecca.

    Related to which, Muhammad’s understanding of the Triune Oneness is distorted by the cultural imprint that the Christian Faith is only a (pagan-like) triad. And, further, the error identifies the triad as God, Jesus (under Islam, a prophet rather than “the word made flesh”), and Mary (there is no Holy Spirit).

    Muslims do not read the Bible, because they know (!) that under the Qur’an, as the final revelation (“the word made book”), all chronologically earlier scriptures—both Jewish and Christian—are corruptions of Islam as the definitively-restored natural religion.

    • I’m starting to think of Francis not as a new Luther but as a new Mohammed, seeking, in due course to erase all that preceded him. Of course he needs references to Christ from time to time, but essentially as a prop to confer an imaginary semblance of legitimacy for his agenda.

      • Or, maybe not a new Muhammad, but a sprout from the same trunk of natural religion?
        In olden times the Syrian scribes—forced converts to Islam—are thought to have inserted Christian references into the Qur’an, in order to make scavenger-hunt Islam more palatable. (Hold that thought…).

        The Qur’an borrow from the Pentateuch, in part to endorse the “law of Moses,” but so far as I can find, explicit reference is made only to the first four (affirmative) commandments, and not to the (prohibitive) final six (thou shalt not…). The parallel, some would say, is with current distortions of moral theology, which celebrate works of charity and mercy while discounting the absolute moral prohibitions as steadfastly affirmed (rigid?) in the Catechism and Veritatis Splendor.

        So, will the new super-dicastery of Evangelization peddle a generic Christianity unaccountable to the demoted “dicastery” for Doctrine of the Faith, or not?

        And, does “fraternity”—-with all of its favorable meanings–also represent an accommodation like that of the Syrian scribes of the 7th and 6th centuries? But, instead of making Islam more palatable to past-Christians (as in the past), does the current trajectory render a diluted Christianity more palatable to a resurgent Islam? Is Hollerich’s synodal “scientific foundation” (for jettisoning sexual morality) simply a natural religion (tending toward a folk religion) like Islam but cross-dressed in modern clothes? Bishop Batzing in an open collar rather than a turban?

        Osmosis works in both directions! Syrian-Islam and post-Christian Catholicism, both, as natural religions? No longer convinced, or forthright, or proclaiming (different from proselytizing), or even articulate about the divinely-revealed and gifted life of supernatural grace?

      • Seriously Edward J Baker? How do you extrapolate a judgement of Pope Francis from this article or is it that you have to negate our Pope as some badge of belonging to right thinking?…..
        “Of course he needs references to Christ from time to time, but essentially as a prop to confer an imaginary semblance of legitimacy for his agenda.”

        ……if you alone say so!

  3. In 1989, I, being a callow college student, was predicing that shocking and barbaric crimes like this one would surely knock some sense into the thick-skulled liberals who congregate at such places as Chautauqua. They would surely demand immigration policies to keep such people as this fanatic out of the country. Alas, since that time, there have been many such incidents, some far worse than this one, and the open-borders lunacy on the Left has only become more extreme. As the title of James Burnham’s classic put it, liberalism is the suicide of the West.

    • And from Tony W, it’s the thick skulled liberals who cop some flack. Indeed they need some sense knocked into them! Observations and insights inspired by what? Chautauqua is not your style? Not mine either but I hardly see it as a contributor to the social/spiritual malaise you are attributing. It’s a big world after all. Somehow for many in the USA it’s getting terribly small?
      Ok so lets think for a moment that you can have it your way. All the likes of Chautauqua are done away with. The Immigration policy now prevents all crazies
      ( Muslims, Aliens and others who encroach upon your national boarder i suppose ) are no longer a problem…. they are gone or only the nice ones remain. Your ‘Christian Nation’ has uniformity of doctrine from east to west, north to south. All people conform to ( your ) world view by some form of decree I suppose. The Christian world view according to the likes of you, because that is what it would be. Do you really think that would address ‘the human condition’ Jesus so clearly enunciated in his teachings as contained in the Gospels? Let your imagination run wild!

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