Salman Rushdie vs Pankaj Mishra vs Mo Yan

The literary world is no fun without a controversy or two. This time, it’s about Rushdie calling 2012’s Nobel Prize Laureate a “patsy” for declining to sign a petition calling for the release of the imprisoned Chinese Nobel peace prize laureate Liu Xiaobo.

Pankaj Mishra responded in an article published in The Guardian. But things were far from over. Now Rushdie is breaking apart Mishra’s article, sentence by sentence, saying that the latter “makes a series of confused, dishonest and wrong-headed assertions”, and also “misrepresents me”.

“I have never made the claim that the Bush administration was resolved ‘to bring democracy through war in Afghanistan. I did say that, in the immediate aftermath of the 9/11 attacks, the reprisal attack against the al-Qaida-Taliban axis was justifiable, not to ‘bring democracy’, but to respond to an act of war. In Afghanistan a terrorist group had taken over the levers of a nation state and used that state as a base from which to attack the United States. For all I know, Mishra may feel that instead of fighting back, America should have apologised to al-Qaida for its foreign policy misdeeds and accepted that those killed in the Trade Centre towers deserved to die. I do not accuse him of that. Neither should he accuse me of what I did not say.”

[via the Guardian]

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