The “Harry Potter” series by J.K. Rowling has received criticism from numerous religious groups since its inception, most pointing fingers at the books’ themes of magic and wizardry.
Josef Joffe, a fellow in International Relations at the Hoover Institution, is publisher-editor of the German weekly Die Zeit and writes at Harvard’s “Middle East Strategy” blog about a recent Iranian television program that painted the book series as a “Jewish conspiracy.”
Iran’s Protocols of Potter
It was high time that anti-Semitism would find something hipper than those dusty Protocols of the Elders of Zion, concocted sometime between 1895 and 1902 by Russian journalist Matvei Golovinski and then used by the pro-Tsarists to discredit reforms in Russia as a Jewish plot. Egyptian and Syrian state media have turned the Protocols into television series, trying to modernize the plot and bringing it forward into the 20th century.
Iranian TV has beaten them hands down with “Harry Potter and the Ziono-Hollywoodist Conspiracy.” J.K. Rowling, that English (and no doubt, fully Aryan) rose, as avatar of the globe-encircling Jewish kraken? Yes, though the evidence is a bit disjointed as the clip unfolds on YouTube.
The basic visual argument is hardly as compelling as the original Protocols which, after all, have real-life Jews who have real faces and names, working out complicated plans to conquer the world and pollute the race. You only get Harry and his buddies and professors flitting in and out of the picture while the voice-over proclaims a story line that actually has nothing to do with Messrs. Voldemort and Dumbledore.
It is “Witchcraft and Brainwashing” that spreads the “evil essence of Zionism.” This is how the logic apparently works: Since Harry Potter movies are all about W ‘n’ B, they are a Zionist tool. Along with “devil worship,” W ‘n’ B will corrupt “innocent children and youth” around the world. Why is this a Zionist tool? Because witchcraft was invented by the “rabbis of ancient Egypt.” Now we get a few seconds from the Order of the Phoenix even though it does not contain witchcraft-mongering rabbis. But wait. Aren’t those longbearded faculty at Hogwarts kind of Jewish-looking? Didn’t we see Jewish symbols in every Harry Potter movie? I swear, the kids were playing with dreidels in The Philosopher’s Stone. And when they assembled for a meal in The Order of the Phoenix, they were actually celebrating Passover. You thought the matzohs were crackers, eh? Whenever the kids joust and fight, they are actually preparing for the Last Battle that will do in or enslave all the Muslims.
As we hop along this warped path of Iranian TV logic, we also learn that the world faces a “cultural crusaders’ war” that is more powerful than any military assault the West has engineered in, say, Afghanistan and Iraq. How will the Jews attain world domination? By hastening Armageddon, the “End of Days,” which will deliver a kind of Jewish endsieg, the Nazi term for “final victory.”
What does this have to do with Harry Potter? Well, because in the next volume, Iranian TV intones, he finally wants to face down Voldemort. That will be the mother of all battles, to coin a phrase—a secret metaphor (and call to arms) for Armageddon.
Personally, I find this insulting to the Jews. Previously, the Iranian propaganda line painted the “Little Satan” as mighty regional superpower. Now, this TV clip puts down Israel/Jewry as a bunch of losers who no longer have the will and wherewithal to subjugate the Muslims directly and by force of arms. Now, they have to rely on a bunch of kids—on Harry and Hermione—to execute their evil designs.
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