David Letterman addresses Al Qaeda death threats in 'Late Show' monologue, top 10 list
Following Letterman's recent joke about the Al Qaeda line of succession, the heavily reported story of a jihadist calling for his assassination prompted increased security at the "Late Show" studio.
As first reported by the New York Times, Letterman's Aug. 22 broadcast includes multiple references to the unsavory news.
"Thank you very much for being here tonight," he says in the monologue. "We have great audiences night in and night out, but tonight especially, it means a lot to me. Tonight, you people are more, to me, honestly, more than an audience ... you're more like a human shield."
And, in typical Letterman fashion, his rationale for the threats goes back to a few of his career's bigger scandals, including his feud with Jay Leno and his poorly-received hosting gig at the 1995 Academy Awards.
"State Department authorities are looking into this," the host continues. "They're not taking this lightly. They're looking into it. They're questioning, they're interrogating, there's an electronic trail -- but everybody knows it's Leno."
The threats also figure into Letterman's top 10 list, which includes the particularly entertaining #4: "How can someone be so angry at a time when Kim Kardashian is so happy?"
We really can't imagine.