Landslide for Religion in Turkey

According to all reports, the Justice and Development Party (AKP) or Islamic party in Turkey took the election by a landslide managing almost 50 percent of the vote.

According to what I have read up until now, I suspect there were two different campagns. The first, which took place on the Bosphoris, highlighted econmic progress and increased relations with the European Union. The second was carried out using more openly religous terms and would have been found in less “industrialised” parts of Turkey.

At least I can outright say that there is no reason to believe the previous and current Prime Minister, Recep Tayyip Erdogan. From a recent interview he gave with Der Speigel:

SPIEGEL: Mr. Prime Minister, the world is alarmed by Iran’s nuclear ambitions, especially after the announcement that it is now capable of enriching uranium on an industrial level. Do you share Western fears about the possibility of Tehran developing a nuclear bomb?

Erdogan: We are against nuclear weapons, regardless of whether they are in the hands of Iran or Israel or any Western country. But obviously some states are allowed to have weapons of mass destruction while others are not. If nuclear energy is used for the sake of humanity, then we say yes. But if it is used destructively, then no. The knife in the hand of a murderer kills, but if you give it to a doctor he will heal with it.

SPIEGEL: Do you believe that Iran is exclusively pursuing civilian use of nuclear energy?

Erdogan: Right now I can only take the answers that I am given. I personally spoke several times with Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad about this — also at the request of France, theUnited Kingdom and German Chancellor Angela Merkel. And he is always saying: We will use it only for the benefit of our people. For now I have to accept it like this, without implying something else.

Read the answers carefully. He doesn’t answer the questions but deftly avoids them.

Let’s be clear, the US scare mongering of the Iranian uranium enrichment program is just that, scare mongering. But that doesn’t mean that Iran isn’t trying to get nuclear weapons. They just won’t get there next year, it will probably take 5 years. But they are trying. To take Ahmadinejad at face value when he says that Iran only wants peaceful use of nuclear power – well then let’s just take him at face value on the issue of the elimination of Israel and anti-Semitism.

All of Erdogan’s answers about a deeper islamification of the Turkish society are equally as obtuse. Actually all of his answers come across as being either obtuse, nationalistic or simply misinformed.

While I do disagree with the use of the word Islamist in connection with the AK – I don’t think they are that extreme – I am concerned about a country that has chosen to remove evolution from it’s textbooks because it doesn’t conform to the Koran. I am concerned about a country where laws are enforced imprisoning people for writing and dramatising history. I am concerned about about a country still more or less at war with an EU country over Cypris.

I’m also more that a little concerned that all the images I am seeing from this election, the cute women in reveling clothing, were taken in Istanbul. I am not seeing any file photos from the less industrialized part of the country, Erzurum, Gaziantep or Adana. I wonder why?

I think this vote was religious where religion is important and economic where economics are important. But I think the Washington Post brought the money quote.

Dya Alawa, 37, was among the [AK] party’s backers waiting outside one busy site.

Economic gains meant her husband no longer had to worry about impromptu layoffs at his textile factory, Alawa said, while she could count on buying most staples at the same prices as five years ago.

“For me, my kitchen is what’s important, and my issue is cooking oil, and that’s why I’m voting AKP,” she said, using the Justice and Development Party’s Turkish initials.

Her issue is cooking oil, enough to eat and a stable economy. No government need offer anything more. Freedom of speech be damned!

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4 comments so far

  1. Teresa on

    “Religion where religion was important, and economics where economics are important.

    Hmmm… sounds VERY familiar to a certain OTHER party dominated by religions extremists, which has taken the leadership of another country.

    Though they have not yet acheived the removal of evolution from the textbooks.

  2. blc303 on

    Don’t worry. They’re working on it. Give them time. After all Rome wasn’t destroyed in a day. It took about three centuries.

    Look at Vance. He’s with the program, educated in science but he “knows” evoution is wrong.

  3. Teresa on

    Don’t I know it.

    Say, speaking of which you’ve got room in your apartment for four extra people when our family has to flee the pogroms against political liberals…right?

  4. blc303 on

    I’m sure something could be worked out. But there would probably be a lot of refugees.

    Do you really think the Government would let you escape? Don’t you understand the deeper meaning behind the wall on the Southern US border. Remember. The wall between East and West Germany was built to keep the Capitalists out. At least according to the East Germans.


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