Apparently there is no more security from Muslims, even in the universe of Star Wars. The producer of the Lego toy has had the opportunity of feeling this. The company has brought displeasure upon itself from the Turkish cultural community through a Lego building set with the Star Wars subject area.

(By Étienne Noir)

On the official community webpage, there is outrage over Lego and Star Wars. The drivel of the insulted Moslem brims here and there and toward the toy producer who is allegedly totally insensitive toward religion only for contextual errors. One has to let the agitation die on the tongue. Because the Turkish cultural community apparently has no idea about Star Wars and it senses attacks against Muslims everywhere. There is the bluster of incitement and the threat of legal steps. But what is this about? It has to do totally with “pedagogic explosives for children” – a smaller size wouldn’t have been acceptable among the Turkish lobby.

The unfounded accusation tells us, as is often the case, that if there is really nothing for the Outrage Commissioners to complain about, then religious feelings have been offended. Therefore, it is pointed out on the toy that it allegedly portrays a mosque and a minaret. “In fact, pedagogically objectionable shortcomings and questionable associations in the product from LEGO Stars Wars” were determined, claims Dr. Melissa Günes, General Secretary of the Turkish Cultural Community in Austria. Lego on the other hand defends itself and points to the faithful reproduction from the film.

Let’s put each single accusation under the loupe:

Accusation 1:

“Upon more accurate inspection, the completely built LEGO house and the tower belonging to it in fact are a 1:1 copy of the Hagia Sophia in Istanbul or the mosque Jami al-Kabir in Beirut and a minaret.”

Jabba the Hut lives in the desert. Therefore he has a half-round roof around the house, which is customary there. Like the mosque, both buildings are found in the same climatic landscape. To conclude that we’re dealing with a “1:1 copy of the Hagia Sophia in Istanbul or the mosque Jami al-Kabir” is absurd. The watchtower is a watchtower and certainly not a minaret. Both have in common that they are built up high. Is the television tower in Berlin also a minaret, then? The Muslims shouldn’t believe that, just because everything here in Central Europe turns on their wishes, this is also the case in the universe of Star Wars. These parts of the Star Wars films have been outfitted with great detail and full of fantasy, and were created back in a time when there was less political correctness. In addition, in the Star Wars universe, religions from our world play absolutely no role. As a religion, for example, the faith of the Jedi knight in the Force. There is no Islam there, even if that perhaps might not please Muslims. Off the subject of Islam a little, similar buildings of Christians, Hindus and Buddhists are also referenced. But over those, so far, there has been no outrage.

Accusation 2:

“Jabba’s palace in Star Wars is in fact populated by (pseudo-Buddhist) monks.”

No. If you watch the film or look at the toy, those are simply members of Jabba the Hut’s smuggling organization. There are extra-terrestrials and robots. An extra-terrestrial, for example, looks like a wild boar. Does the Turkish community somehow want to set Buddhist monks in the direction of pigs?

Accusation 3:

“The terrorist Jabba the Hut loves to smoke water pipes and have his victims executed.”

Jabba is no terrorist, rather he’s a common smuggler. He is certainly not of single opinion with the rigorous measures of the dark empire, but he is not a terrorist, rather he only follows his criminal doings (“King of Smugglers”). HE also kills, that’s true. Jabba is a sleazebag, that is indisputable. Interesting stories need an bad guy so that there can also be heroes.

Accusation 4:

“It is apparent that, for the figure of the repulsive bad guy Jabba and the whole scenery, racial prejudices and hidden suggestions against Orientals and Asians were used as deceitful and criminal personalities (slaveholders, leaders of criminal organizations, terrorists, criminals, murderers, human sacrifice).

Things can be exaggerated. The exaggeration starts already with the fact that, besides the word “criminal,” still various other forms of crime were mentioned. What else is a murder but a criminal? We will strike the “terrorist” right away because that isn’t true, and since when did “human sacrifice” get listed in a line-up with “criminal personalities”? Aren’t “human victims” also criminals in the view of the Turkish cultural community in Austria? How these fantasy figures could be attached to Asians and Orientals remains the secret of the zealous Turkish lobby. Interesting what one associates himself with there.

Accusation 5:

“Shocking is the red and black devil’s scowl at the top of the box on the right, which is at least an obvious signal that the toy should not lie under the Christmas tree on Christmas Eve.”

This has nothing to do with a “devil’s scowl,” but with the Sith Darth Maul, the disciple of Sith Lord Dark Sidous. The Siths are the evil ones, the dark side of the Force. It’s no wonder, then, that these figures are shaped this way. One should watch the films before finding something to complain about. Among the Turkish culture community in Austria, they surely still haven’t heard anything about Star Wars.

Accusation 6:

“The rockets, cannons, weapons like laser pistols, guns and Samurai swords (serve as feet of the B’omarr monk) and trap doors in the LEGO fortress buildings are pedagogically questionable.”

If one would proceed according to violence and the portrayals pertaining to it, then children really shouldn’t watch children’s TV anymore, various books would need to be prohibited, and of course the Koran couldn’t be read anymore. Things definitely don’t happen peacefully everywhere. What does the Turkish cultural community in Austria actually say to the “pedagogically questionable” models of education in Islamic countries?

Accusation 7:

“The combination of temple building and bunker facilities where shots are fired cannot be appropriate for children between 9 and 14 years old, most of all with respect to a peaceful cohabitation of differing cultures in Europe.”

For one, there is no temple, and apart from that, see the debunking of the previous accusation.

Accusation 8:

“One would expect more empathy and responsibility from a manufacturer of toys that has produced toys and models that are good for teaching for decades.”

One could expect more general knowledge from an association that calls itself a cultural community. However, the Turkish cultural community is just as well nothing more than a common lobby association for Islam that tries to advance its moral beliefs and ideologies with phrases from the vocabulary of liberal leftist do-gooders.

The communication of the ostensible cultural community contains still another few accusatory questions to Lego and all sorts of phrase mongering. The hope remains that Lego will not change or take its Star Wars product line that is loved by young and old alike off the market.

(Translator note: There is a special wikipedia for Star Wars in German called Jedipedia. For those who can read German, you can find it here if you would like to check it out.)

– Above image clockwise from upper left corner:
– Istanbul Hagia Sophia
– 1:1 same roof as the mosque
– Der Muezzin… = The muezzin as a criminal type with axe and
machine gun
– Einspruch = objection
– Was empfiehlt… = What does LEGO recommend for parents as a Christmas for their children?
– LEGO Star Wars Game for Children 9-14 years
– Maschinengewehre… = Machine guns in the minaret?

Guest article on PI / Translation: Anders Denken

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