Jermaine Jackson: Islam would have saved Michael

Jermaine Jackson, who performed with his brother Michael as a member of the Jackson 5 and later became a high-profile convert to Islam, tells the BBC World Service that the faith would have saved him.

"I felt that if Michael would have embraced Islam he would still be here today and I say that for many reasons," Jackson tells the BBC's Ed Butler. "Why? Because when you are 100 per cent clear in your mind as to who you are and what you are and why you are and everybody around you, then things change in a way that's better for you. It's just having that strength. God is so powerful. He was studying. He was reading a lot of books, because I brought him books from Saudi Arabia. I brought him books from Bahrain. I was the one who originally put him in Bahrain because I wanted him to get out of America because it was having a cherry-picking time on my brother."


Butler asks whether Michael was willing to convert.

"Not that he wasn't willing to convert," Jackson responds. "All of his security became Muslims because he trusted Islam, because these are people who would lay their lives down and also who were trying to be the best kind of human beings they could possibly be not for Michael Jackson, for Allah. So having those people around, you knew that you would be protected because it is protection from God.


"Michael was most concerned about children around the world going to bed without food. He would talk about it. And he was concerned about our planet, what we are doing to this planet because of greed. And that was his whole thing to bring an awareness. He was doing these things before the Al Gores, and global warming-ists, he was on it. And he sung about it. He did videos about it. Spent millions and millions and millions of dollars on videos just to show the world for three minutes, look at what we are doing."

More excerpts from the interview, which is scheduled to air Friday, after the jump.On Michael’s child molestation charges and the posthumous adoration he should have received in life

Butler: Did you ever believe the child molestation charges brought against him?

Jackson: Do you believe them?

Butler: Well they were certainly discounted in court.

Jackson: He was cleared on all counts. The child Jordan Chandler came and said he had never touched him. His father committed suicide. And that's what I mean about the media to attack my brother and to shame him around the world because of something that they know he did not do. And still a lot of people don't want to believe it. The love that they are giving my brother now he is dead, is the love they should have shown him when he was alive. The FBI investigated my brother for 17 years and found nothing. And then they just vindicated him after his death. So that's the BS that America does. It's bullshit. And I will say they clearly should have given him that when he was alive. That would have made him feel better within his heart.

On life after Michael and being the Jackson family ‘rock’

Butler: What's it been like since Michael's passing?

Jackson: It's been tough. There aren't no words to describe the feeling. It's a feeling that one would only know once they experience it. We are just learning to live with it. We'll never get over it and it's very tough.

EB: Do you miss him?


JJ: I miss him very, very much because we've been so connected throughout our lives, since the very beginning. We share a history that's just unbelievable, from childhood all the way up to adult age. And what comes to mind is the memories of the tours and music and even before that, us just around the house, going to elementary school and things like that, it's amazing.

Healing comes from performing the songs, accepting awards on his behalf, doing tributes and things like that because it's just something that you can't explain. You have to just remember all the good memories and all the things that he did and that he's still doing and inspiring through his music and through his whole belief in trying to make this world a one-ness. That was his message in his music and his belief. That was his wake up.

Butler: You were there talking to the media on the day he died in Los Angeles. You were described as a "rock" to the family. Is that a role you recognise?

Jackson: I don't really look at it like that. I just step forward and take charge. I don't like hearing things that are not true about my family, it disturbs me quite a bit and I just have to say something and I have to let the world know that's not who we are, this is who we are. And when the media takes a left-turn then I have to get them back on track.

On visiting Michael’s body in the morgue and how the media only understood him after death

Butler: Shortly after he died you spoke movingly about going to visit his body in the morgue. And you said at the time "I thought all about what they put him through". Who are they?

Jackson: The media, the conspiracy, there are always people out to get you in your life when you are successful. My description of Hollywood is a beautiful woman with a sore on the side of her face and if you kiss her you will get infected. That's Hollywood. And they smile in your face and they mean something else. Everybody that pats you on your back is not your friend. And they understood Michael after he was gone, they didn't understand him while he was here.

On protecting Michael’s legacy and that of the Jackson family

Butler: Do you see your role now as protecting Michael's legacy?

Jackson: Not just my responsibility, the whole entire family's. Jackie's, Rebbie's, Tito's, Marlon's, Randy's, Janet's, La Toya's, myself. It's all of our role, to keep not just his legacy alive but the whole entire Jackson family. Because we are a family first, before all of this music and success. We're family. We were a family before that, even if that goes away we will continue to be a family.

Jermaine on his unborn daughters and naming his son ‘Jermajesty’

Butler: You have seven kids yourself now, having lots of kids seems to run in the Jackson tradition.

Jackson: Well there's seven, and I'm having two more girls. The reason being is because I have six boys and one girl now, so when I have two more girls I'll be just like my father - three girls and six boys.

Butler: Have you planned names for them yet?

Jackson: Mecca and Medina.


Butler: No J's this time? You have six Js. Jermaine Junior, you've got a Jermajesty.

Jackson: Yes. He's the nine year old. ...But there is Jermaine Junior, Jeremy, Jourdynn, Jaimy, Jaafar and Jermajesty, and my daughter Autumn, who is the one girl.

Butler: How did you come up with a name like Jermajesty? It's extraordinary.

Jackson: Jermajesty's name came from not knowing what I'm going to name him and it's part of my name which is J-E-R-M-A and instead of going I-N-E, I just said Jermajesty. And when I named him I didn't think it was going to do anything but the media jumped on it. But the name was made up. I didn't want him to have a nickname like Jerm or something so I said call him his name, Jermajesty, that's his name, Jermajesty.