An Unlikely Harry Potter Draws Tourists to Israel

We all know how the story ends: Wizard wunderkind Harry Potter, all grown up, slays his arch-nemesis Lord Voldemort, marries his best friend’s sister and “all was well.” Another Harry Potter, a British soldier, met a notably different, more tragic fate.

But with the first in a two-part movie version of “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows,” the series’ final installment, opening Friday, the latter Potter is generated his own buzz — in Israel, of all places.

Tourists are flocking to the Commonwealth War Graves Cemetery in Ramle, the central Israeli town where the soldier is buried. While officials don’t track tourist numbers, the tombstone, they say, has become a popular attraction.

“There is no connection with the Harry Potter we know from literature” — thanks for the clarification — “but the name sells, the name is marketable,” local tour guide Ron Peled told the Associated Press.

The town municipality first marketed the grave, one of the cemetery’s 4,500, on its website in early 2010.

“It’s a type of pilgrimage for some man whose name stands out,” one visitor said. The real Harry Potter died as a teenager while fighting in British Mandate Palestine in 1939.

Your Comments

The Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Forward requires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not and will be deleted. Egregious commenters will be banned from commenting. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and the Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.

Recommend this article

An Unlikely Harry Potter Draws Tourists to Israel

Thank you!

This article has been sent!