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Turkey is good food

The Justice and Development Party has won the Turkish elections, kicking out the ruling coalition in a landslide. This seems likely to be more a reflection of discontent with the Turkish economy and a corrupt government than it is a return to Islamic fundamentalism, although the Justice and Development Party was formed from the remains of an Islamic fundamentalist party.

However, they ran on a pro-Western platform and have disavowed their Islamic roots. This isn’t the Taliban, and the victory does not represent a repudiation of Turkish assistance in the US war on Iraq. I expect some will claim it does, but this one isn’t Bush’s fault. It may not even be a crisis.

Either way, this does not change the status of the Kurds. The US still needs to arm Kurds in Iraq to fight a war there; Turkey still hates the idea, because it would encourage Kurd separatists in Turkey. Messy.

Also note that the Turkish army is perfectly willing to engage in a coup should the government become overly Islamic. They did it in 1997, and several times previously. It’s not really that democratic a country.

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