Splitting it off and then linking to it from the wiki gains nothing as the text of the interview is the same, except that it has Battuta's intro. Now, the merits or lack thereof of that intro notwithstanding (it was a point of contention for at least one or two people in the thread, after all), losing it could make some of the rest of the thread make less sense (maybe - I'm not sure if every reference to it was split out or not). So the net result of a split would be to add nothing to the wiki article, while potentially diminishing the readability of the original thread. I see no advantage.
If someone wants to add a link from the wiki article to the original thread, that's fine, as it puts the interview in context, and makes the discussion (some of which was quite interesting) available to the hypothetical wiki visitors who aren't also forumites. Beyond that, the status quo, IMO, is fine.