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"Tradition?? The only good traditions are food traditions. The rest are repressive."

"There are two ways to think. The first is to trust to your ancestors, your religious leaders, or your charismatic professors. The second is to question, to challenge, to explore history for meanings, and to analyze issues. This latter is called Critical Thinking, and it is this that is the mission of my web site. "

Dr. Laina Farhat-Holzman  

October 2010

Is Turkey "Mildly Islmist?"

As much as I admire The Economist, I am continually annoyed by their insistance that Turkey's ruling party and president are "mildly Islamist." I have sent the following letter to them:


Why do you insist on promoting the notion that there is something "mildly Islamist" about Mr. Erdogan in Turkey?  Yes, his Islamic credentials are clear.  But even you note that his democratic ones are less clear. "He once called democracy a train from which to disembark on reaching one's destination." Indeed it is, and his destination (which you do not provide) is either a new Ottoman Empire and/or revival of the Caliphate. The latter position is what Islamism is.  Would you have said in the past that there were some German leaders who were "mildly Nazi?"

Dr. Laina Farhat-Holzman
Aptos, California