Tuesday, June 11, 2013

CNN covers unrest in Turkey all day, suddenly

I’ve never been to Istanbul, although I very well could have been. 
Turkey is supposed to be the freest and most modern country in the Muslim world (maybe not counting Dubai), so the stories about the protests, run on CNN all day, are shocking. But the protests have gone on for some time.
Police have used tear gas in Taksim Square. 
A recent CNN story and video are here

The protest is reported to have started over the government’s desire to clear out a park area.  The Turkish prime minister is said to have inflamed the protestors by recklessly calling people “terrorists”.  It sounds like the way Nixon used to call Vietnam era protestors low-life.   In Turkey, having that label penned on someone can get them held in jail without charge for a year.

Demonstrations have occurred in several other cities besides Istanbul, especially Ankara.  They happen mostly at night, after the workday. 

Some observers say that the fact that there are protests means that Erdogan, for all his bullishness, has actually been effective in modernizing the country.
Wikipedia attribution link for topographical map of Turkey.

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