dirka dirka interj. a mimicry of spoken Arabic; also attributive, connoting things Muslim, Arabic, or Middle Eastern, or those related to terrorists or terrorism. Editorial Note: This expression is often, but not always, derogatory. Etymological Note: As noted in the comments, this was first used by a caricature of Osama bin Laden in the animated television show South Park, episode 509, “Osama bin Laden Has Farty Pants,” which originally aired Nov. 7, 2001. It was popularized by the satirical 2004 movie Team America World Police. Among other uses in the film, foreign terrorists are said to live in “Dirkadirkastan.” Both the movie and television program were created by Matt Stone and Trey Parker. (source: Double-Tongued Dictionary)

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11 Responses

  1. seandiggity says:

    The “dirka dirka” phrase and use of “allah”, “jihad” etc. to parody Arabs actually originated in South Park episode 509 “Osama bin Laden Has Farty Pants”.  This would more accurately explain references like “Well like Osama always says ‘Allah dirka dirka dirka jihad.’”

    Obviously, Matt Stone and Trey Parker continued this in Team America but I wouldn’t be surprised if it turned up in South Park again.

    Aside: I don’t think taking a stab at Arab language is just mocking terrorists.  Saying “Muhammad, jihad, allah, Dirka-dirka, burka-burka” (which Matt Stone says is only meant to mock terrorists) serves the purpose of making all Arabic speech sound idiotic and homogenous, if not just giving people an avenue to mock Arabs they don’t like.  Certainly, not all terrorists (by international and U.S.-accepted definition) are Arabs; it’s likely that most of them are not.

    Now, South Park mocks practically everything in the public limelight, and I don’t think censorship should be applied.  However, Matt Stone and Trey Parker (and whoever else is involved in decisions about the show’s content) must accept the ramifications of portraying Arabs as silly and ridiculous in a country with little knowledge of Arabs (and large anti-Arab sentiment) like the United States. 

    Certainly, the examples in this section display how others can use phrases like “dirka dirka” in derogatory ways to sidestep important issues and condescend to Arabs.  This example is enough: “There is no opposition candidate, there are no opposition districts. The Mullahs choose the candidates. You have your choice of Dirka Dirka Islamic Jihad or Dirka Dirka Muslim Jihad.”  An important issue sidestepped as if Iranians are uncapable of democracy, have “funny words” in their names and, besides that, are overly religious (using “Islam” and “Muslim” all the time like fanatics).

    One can assume the differences between denominations of Islam would be lost on the author of such words, as would the contrast between Persian and Muslim culture.

  2. I agree with your analysis, but is interesting to see that in the case of the Boing Boing cite, “dirka dirka” is being used to mock those who are clearly trying to portray terrorists as a Muslim-Arabic amorphous evil.

    Thanks for the South Park reference, too. I’ll see if I can nail it down and make a cite out of it. (Which means I’ll have to watch it to verify it, since I tend not to trust fan transcripts.)

  3. I think dirka dirka is the funniest phase EVER! I say it for no apparent reason every now and then and it usually makes people laugh or at least look at me like I’m the stupidest human being alive. BUT!! Ask me if I care what I look like. My anwser would be … ‘I like making people laugh so if I make one person laugh out of 10 people and the other 9 look at me like I’m retarded then I ok because that one laugh will make up for the other 9.’

  4. nicknick says:

    Dirka dirka mohammed jihad
    sherpa sherpa balagan

    Apparently the united states marine corp doesn’t think it’s funny. Personally I think it’s a wonderful expression of the lonliness and fear the naive american soldiers in iraq must feel each day being faced with the utter desperate hatred of the muslim militant groups they are there to kill.

    http://southparkpundit.com/

  5. Steve says:

    Screw political correctness. “I’ve got five terrorists going south on Backa Lacka Daka street!” Maybe Arabs (esp. Muslims) need to show some of the “tolerance” they expect from others. ITS A JOKE! If you dont think its funny, tough s**t!

  6. Yes, Jason, it already says that in the editorial note.

  7. The words also appear in the puppet movie: “Team America – World Police”

  8. n8 says:

    I’m pretty sure it’s in Team America – World Police to mock americans mocking terrorists as much as it is to mock terrorists.

  9. Sam says:

    But can it actually be translated to anything??? if so then it’s just another stereotype like when we mock asians for having trouble pronouncing L’s and R’s…both are funny as hell and if you don’t like it you have the choice to ignore it…nobody forces Arabs to watch “Team America: World Police” so if you don’t wanna hear it don’t listen to it, personally i think it’s the funniest damn thing i’ve heard and would happily use it in my regualr vocabulary

  10. Andrew says:

    All you who are commenting on this gibberish as being derogatory to Arabs, get a life. It’s a joke! Look at the way the british rip themselves off. If you can’t take it light heartedly, then I feel sorry for you.

  11. merna says:

    hiii im a terorist muahahahha

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