Rushdie stabbing reminds us Iran is still world’s top terror state

Reuters reports that a man stormed the stage at the Chautauqua Institution and stabbed British author Salman Rushdie in the neck as he was being introduced. The topic of discussion was “the United States as asylum for writers and other artists in exile and as a home for freedom of creative expression.” Chances are exceptionally high that this was the work of a jihadist.

For those too young to remember, “The Satanic Verses” was published back in September 1988. And because of the book’s purportedly impertinent treatment of the prophet Muhammad, it was banned in Rushdie’s native India and dozens of other nations—including virtually every Muslim-majority country in the world. Though Rushdie would later become a powerful advocate of free expression, he initially turned on his own book, apologizing numerous times for its contents. “I profoundly regret the distress that publication has occasioned to sincere followers of Islam,” he said in one statement, asking his publisher to hold back release of the paperback edition of the book. As a matter of self-preservation, his position was understandable.

And, still, it was all to no avail. Iran’s supreme leader Ayatollah Khomeini issued a fatwa against Rushdie, contending that even if the author “became the most pious man of all time” it was the duty of every Muslim to “employ everything he has got” to murder the writer.