A Blog by the Editor of The Middle East Journal

Putting Middle Eastern Events in Cultural and Historical Context

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Jihadis and the Lord of the Rings

Sometimes stuff comes up that doesn't seem to fit in any of my categories. This one, discovered via The Arabist, is one of those.

Via a blog I hadn't seen before by a grad student at Indiana, Views from the Occident (which has quite a bit of unexpected stuff on it), an illustrated post on "Cyber Jihadis' Lord of the Rings Obsession." Yes, you read that right. Apparently online jihadi sites are fascinated by the film version of Tolkien's Lord of the Rings and keep using its imagery in their websites. Sometimes they portray their side using the evil Nazgul (Arabic means "the victorious faction" or "the victorious sect"):

But more often they're the good guys. Here they're elves fighting orcs:

Watch the videos over there too, though some are just plain weird. So's the whole theme. But an intriguing if rather odd observation.

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