The tug-of-war between the fundamentalists and secularists continues.
This article reveals much of what the anti-Islamization movement has been saying all along. Islamization is a real phenomenon, and the speed in which it metastasizes, depends solely upon the characteristic of the society in question.
Even in Turkey, that supposedly had already decided upon a secular modern society, has embarked upon a path towards a fundamentalist Islamic state with the rise of the AKP party. Rational minded Turks fear Islamization as much as we in the West fear it, they see it all around themselves, and reject it. We should be learning from them.
We have to face facts, Islam is not moderate, hardline, radical or extremist, it’s just Islam (or as I call it, basic islam 101), and the sooner people begin to realize that truth, the better we will be able to formulate a proper response to it.
The scenes of chanting men and women draped in Turkish flags and carrying banners portraying the country’s founding father Mustafa Kemal Ataturk highlight a longstanding division in Turkish society between staunch secularists on the one hand and more conservative religious Turks on the other.
Although Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan won a third term in power last year with 50 percent of the vote, many secular Turks fear his socially conservative AK Party has Islamist tendencies that threaten the secular republic founded by Ataturk.
“They are trying to turn us into another Iran or some kind of neo-Ottoman Empire. We are against this,” said retired 64-year-old Erdem Sevinc.
“We are here today to send a message to those who are trying to destroy the principles of this republic,” he said.
The local government in Ankara, also controlled by Erdogan’s AK Party, banned the rally citing “intelligence” it would be used for “provocation”, a move protesters said was designed to silence government opponents.
“Why have they banned this march? Because they are scared. They are scared of course,” said 68-year-old Metin Alkan, sporting a black tie emblazoned with Ataturk’s face.
“Look at us, do we look like a danger?” he said, laughing.