Politics, religion, and culture where East meets West

Posts Tagged ‘Crescent and Star

The “Turkish model” and a cold shoulder

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And by now I owe an explanation for an unsupported claim in a previous post. My claim was that the prevailing Western attitude toward the Republic of Turkey, as embodied by an excerpt from Stephen Kinzer’s Crescent and Star, is one that pushes Turkey—a country predisposed to Western ideals—away from the West. I do not think that it is the intention of Kinzer or those who share his attitude (of whom there are many) to do this, but it is happening all the same.

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Here’s an excerpt from Stephen Kinzer’s Crescent and Star. It seems to nicely sum up the prevailing Western attitude toward Turkey:

As a result of geography and because of their Ottoman past, Turks occupy a singular position in the Islamic consciousness.  If any country is going to prove that Islam can coexist with modernity and democracy, it will almost certainly be Turkey.  That achievement would make Turkey an invaluable countervailing force against religious fundamentalism everywhere.  As a real democracy, Turkey would be a shining beacon not only for Muslims in nearby countries but for the entire Islamic world…

An attitude, I think, that has been—and will continue—pushing Turkey further away from the West.

More on that later.

Written by M. James

June 19, 2011 at 11:33 pm