In an odd yet bold twist of fate; Dr. Yousif Amer, Vice President of Al-Azhar University, claims that Turkish and Indian soap operas pose a significant threat to the Egyptian society at large, saying that their true aim is to destabilise the country by slowly chipping away at the Arabic language. Which is rather funny, considering we’ve been through a good number of foreign occupations over the past few centuries and can barely speak any of their languages.

The shocking claims came up in Amer’s speech during a seminar that took place on Tuesday titled ‘The role of Al-Azhar Centre for Translation in the dissemination of Islamic culture’ (catchy), as part of the host of activities of the 14th session of the Alexandria International Book Fair. His concern was that these devilish foreign programmes are a real and present danger against Arab identity, language and religion. Strangely enough, he didn’t touch upon Korean soap operas, those are the real danger.

It’s understandable that Turkish soap operas get a sizeable share of unwarranted heat; given how recent political tensions between Turkey and the Arab world have been turning particularly sour, after Turkey’s open support of the Nasr City-sized Gulf nation that is Qatar spurred a wave of backlash from Arab countries, mainly Saudi Arabia, over allegations of Qatar’s support of terrorist entities. A fact further solidified by the MBC network’s ban on all Turkish television dramas without any prior notice whatsoever, probably causing our collective aunts to go into a deep, depression-fueled mania.

Why the Indians though? What did Bollywood ever do to you, Azhar? Amitabh Bachchan isn’t a threat to the Arab world now, is he?