The democratically elected government of Turkey has imprisoned more reporters than any other country in the world. This is the face of moderate Islam. Click thru and appreciate the tragic details.
In its 2012 report, the watchdog group Reporters Without Borders, which is based in France, confirms what press freedom activists and international observers have been shouting from the rooftops for years now. The secular, constitutional, democratic, Republic of Turkey, a candidate for EU membership and the only Muslim member of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) has been waging a campaign of terror against freedom of the press, jailing more journalists for their professional activities than any other country in the world.
With 72 journalists currently in prison pending trial, at least 46 of which RSF has determined are being incarcerated for their journalistic work, Turkey has more than twice as many reporters in prison as China (30), followed by Eritrea (28), Iran (26) and Syria (21).
The Turkish military used to restrain the repressive tendencies of Islam by blocking the full flowering of democracy in Turkey. Naturally the US State Department opposes military interventions in democracy as, well, anti-democratic. The liberal elite conventional wisdom is that liberal democracy is synonymous with democracy, copious evidence to the contrary notwithstanding. US foreign policy is morally justified as speeding the realization of Global Liberal Manifest Destiny. When a Middle Eastern Muslim population with (relatively speaking) moderate views on Islam elects a government that locks up lots of people (not just journalists) to silence opposition my reaction is that there's no such thing as moderate Islam.
According to the Journalists Union of Turkey, ninety-four reporters are currently imprisoned for doing their jobs. More than half are members of the Kurdish minority, which has been seeking greater freedoms since the Turkish republic was founded, in 1923. Many counts of arrested journalists go higher; the Friends of Ahmet Sik and Nedim Sener, a group of reporters named for two imprisoned colleagues, has compiled a detailed list of a hundred and four journalists currently in prison there.
The arrests have created an extraordinary climate of fear among journalists in Turkey, or, for that matter, for anyone contemplating criticizing Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoganís government. During my recent visit there, many Turkish reporters told me that their editors have told them not to criticize Erdogan.
Turkey's population is moderate on Islam in government as compared to Egypt's, where 84% favor the death penalty for apostasy from Islam. So it is not surprising that democracy in Egypt means a very Islamic government with repression of Christians, women, and secularists.
Exercise for the reader: Implications for immigration policy in Western nations?
|Share |||By Randall Parker at 2012 December 30 12:49 PM|