The Islamic roots of *Star Wars*

This is even better than having a Muslim President:

…the Arabic word for "great," akbar, has been adapted into George Lucas's Star Wars franchise, in the form of Admiral Ackbar, a heroic character and military commander whose success in space helps Luck Skywalker and the Rebel Alliance repel Darth Vader's Galactic Empire.  Featured in Return of the Jedi, Ackbar is just one of many characters and settings in the Star Wars universe that have an Arabic background.  Luke Skywalker's home planet, Tatooine, takes its name from the Tunisian city of Tataouine (al-Tataouine in Arabic).  Darth Vader's home planet is Mustafar, a slight variation of Mustafa, an Arabic name that means "the chosen one" (and is one of 99 names for the Muslim prophet Muhammad).  Attack of the Clones showcases Queen Jamilla, whose name is a slight variation of jamilla, an Arabic word for "beautiful."  And Revenge of the Sith features Senator Meena Tills, whose first name means "heaven" in Arabic.

That is from Jonathan Curiel's often interesting Al' America: Travels Through America's Arab and Islamic Roots.  The book also has an intriguing discussion of Islamic influences on the architecture of the World Trade Center.


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