Sunday, October 31, 2004

The New Crusade

"After Rocco Buttiglione, the conservative Roman Catholic nominee for the Justice portfolio, pronounced homosexuality to be a "sin" and unwed mothers "bad," the outcry from parliamentarians forced its incoming president, José Manuel Durão Barroso, to withdraw his entire slate of commissioners."
"his supporters instantly framed it as a religious witch hunt. "
"the new European Constitution, which despite strenuous lobbying from Christians contains no mention of God or Christianity."
MSNBC - The New Crusade

Saturday, October 30, 2004

Turkey: Bridge or bridgehead?

"Whether Turkey’s accession to the EU would create a bridge of understanding between Western Europe and the Islamic world or would Turkey be a bridgehead from which large numbers of Muslims will "invade" western society?"

"The underlying problem for the west is not Islamic fundamentalism but whether a good part of the Islamic world believes Islam to be a different civilization whose people are convinced of the superiority of their culture and are obsessed with the inferiority of their power. "
Turkey: Bridge or bridgehead?

Friday, October 29, 2004

Anniversary of the Republic of Turkey

Today marks the eighty-first anniversary of the Republic of Turkey. This has brought freedom of religion and many other important freedoms that have allowed the Church here to grow. Pray that these freedoms would continue and expand in the future.

Kurdish Lessons For Kashmiris

"After receiving the Sakharov Prize, European Union (EU)’s top human rights award, Leyla Zana, former Turkish deputy of Kurdish origin told the European Assembly in Brussels on 14 October that "Violence has outlived its time. The language and method of solution of our age is dialogue, compromise and peace. It is not 'die and kill,' but 'live and let live'.” "Everything that is not given a name and not defined is without identity. It is only the Kurds who do not have a name," added Zana. She said that her aim was to underline the brotherhood of people's languages and cultures. "The Kurds are determined for a peaceful solution within the territorial integrity of Turkey." She! spoke partly in Kurdish and partly in Turkish."Kurdish Lessons For Kashmiris By K. Gajendra Singh

The Vanishing Act of the Church in Turkey - Christian History

"Turkey is home to many of Christianity's pivotal events. Present-day Turkey hosted the Christian church's foundational church councils, including Nicea, which laid the groundwork for orthodox theology. The seven churches of Revelation were there. And one of Paul's most important epistles, Ephesians, was addressed to believers in a city on Turkey's Mediterranean Sea coast.

So how did Turkey's Christians end up like the Macedonian in Paul's dream, begging for help from abroad?"
The Vanishing Act of the Church in Turkey - Christian History

Thursday, October 28, 2004

Political Power of Turkish Army Seems to Fade

"For the first time since the 1980 military coup, a civilian presided over Turkey's National Security Council on Wednesday, reflecting a quiet but major shift toward limiting the political power of the country's generals."
The New York Times > International > Europe > Political Power of Turkish Army Seems to Fade


"I have concluded that the good that has come out of the Muslim murder scheme is that Islam is being revealed truly as the killing religion that it is. Moderate Muslims are merely those who don’t see through the explicit demands of the Koran; but the absolutely aligned Muslim believers are being orthodox in their acts.

They are carrying out exactly what their so-called holy writ demands — killing off those who don’t agree with their Allah, their Koran, and their religion.

That’s the only good that continues to flow from the blood spilt. The only good." THE GOOD THAT COMES OUT OF MUSLIM MURDERS

Wednesday, October 27, 2004

The Bible in Turkish has a constant impact

Praise God that we have a Bible in modern Turkish that is easy to understand. Pray that God's Word would go out and penetrate the hearts and minds of those who are seeking the truth.

Bible in old 19th Century Turkish

Bible in modern Turkish

EU challenges Turkey to lose its religion

"I have to admit that when I was told that Turkey would not be admitted into the European Union unless it withdrew a law making adultery a criminal offense, my first response was to burst out laughing. We might all have enviously suspected that adultery was a "European value," but who ever expected to get official confirmation of it from the European Commission?"

"Insofar as there is fundamental hostility to Islam in the West, it comes not from Christians but from post-Christians. Most European institutions are in the grip of secular fundamentalists who have no qualms about imposing upon society moral principles that clash with Christianity as much as they do with Islam. Their bedrock principle is that religion has no place in political debate which must be decided on exclusively secular grounds."
EU challenges Turkey to lose its religion

Tuesday, October 26, 2004

No surrender to terrorism

"We do have fundamentalist Islam, as Christianity or any other religion has fundamentalists who are wreaking havoc in the name of religion. There can be no religion, color or ethnicity of terrorism. Why avoid describing the culprits of the Istanbul bombings as "Islamist terrorists?" No one is saying that all Muslim people are terrorists."
No surrender to terrorism

Monday, October 25, 2004

Bombed British envoy 'will not hide'

"The British Consulate in Istanbul will reopen today after a terror attack last year killed 16 people
HIS consulate has been bombed by terrorists and 16 people were killed in the attack, but Sir Peter Westmacott remains convinced that it is not possible to run a diplomatic mission cocooned inside a remote, high-security compound."
Times Online - World

Sunday, October 24, 2004

The Virgin Mary Project

""Tolerance and dialogue, which accept everyone according to his/her status, the idea of being respectful, and transferring these on to real life, are not things, in Islamic history, that emanated from us."

Saturday, October 23, 2004

Prime Ministry Published Human Rights Report

"Liberty of religion and conscience: the constitution itself constrains the liberty of religion. Meeting some intentions of and taking the bans above the right to live clarifies that a balance between liberty of religion and secularism was not established."

Friday, October 22, 2004

Glimpsing the world through God's eyes

"M" used to beat his wife and curse Christianity -- not to mention handling dirty work for the Turkish Mafia.

Then he met Jesus personally. His life changed so radically that his nephew, "U," recently approached another Christian believer in Turkey and asked, "Can you explain to me what happened to my uncle? He's a totally different man!"
WORLDVIEW: Glimpsing the world through God's eyes - (BP)

Prayer for mugla

Pray that God will help the indigenous people in Mugla province to see the difference between nominal and dedicated Christians. Tourists who are believers in Jesus Christ can easily leave a powerful testimony in this region.

Pray that the indigenous Christians will grow in numbers and maturity (church elders are needed).

Pray that the people of the provincial capital and other towns will discover the gospel. Pray that many students will be reached.

Pray for the few Christian workers doing church-planting. Pray that they may receive long-term prayer support; also pray for wisdom for their work. Pray for more labourers, especially in Fethiye. "
Prayer for mugla - 30-Days Muslim World Prayer Guide - Day 08

Thursday, October 21, 2004

30-Days Muslim World Prayer Guide

Here is good prayer guide for the Muslim World during Ramadan. Tomorrow a Turkish Province is featured.
eBooklet 6 - 30-Days Muslim World Prayer Guide

The "Islamic Reformation" Revisited

"We English-speakers are heirs to a society in which Protestantism triumphed by force, and to colonies in most of which Protestant churches represented a state faith. "

"there seems to be a clear desire on the part of Muslim "reformers" to gain favor with Westerners by reassuring the latter of a purported correctness in Christian criticisms of the situation in Islam, and to convince them that the "reformers" represent a positive way forward for the faith of Muhammad."
TCS: Tech Central Station - The "Islamic Reformation" Revisited

Wednesday, October 20, 2004


A Pakastani Christian's critical evaluation of the Muslim concept of Jihad. Everything you wanted to know about it . . . and far more.

"Muhammad's fighters and donors hoped to receive not only blessings from Allah, but also a concrete payment as earnings for their efforts and sacrifices. Islam is a religion of works righteousness and not a religion of grace. Muslims think that the size of their record of good deeds in heaven is what decides about their future!"

"Christians should recognize and accept the challenge of the hour, the mission field has come to their home country. It has never been as easy to offer the gospel to Muslims without breaking the law. But who is obeying the command of the risen Christ to evangelize all Muslims? Should only a small percentage of Christians, the fundamentalists, practice religious obedience while the majority only thinks of itself in a middle-class, syncretistic or apathetic manner? The existence of Muslims in our area places us into Jesus Christ's presence, who will one day say to us: "What you have done to the least of these, my brothers, you have done to me" (Matthew 25:40)."
Pakistan Christian Post

Does US really want Turkish membership in the EU?

"the EU's attitude towards Turkey would soon spark heated reactions, and this is likely to give the US the opportunity to win back the Turkish public which is more anti - American today than ever before"

Tuesday, October 19, 2004

Turkish Charity Counters Proselytizing in N.Iraq

"With the advent of Ramadan, a Turkish relief organization has launched charity projects in the Turkoman-populated areas in northern Iraq to counter rising missionary work there."

“They are playing on the country’s social and economic woes and people’s hunger to convert as much as they can by distributing gospels, fliers, books, CDs and jackets imprinted with crucifixes.”
Islam Online- News Section

Bridging The Chasm: A Reconciliation of Civilizations

"A Bridge To The
Future: Why Turkish Accession Is
Beneficial To The World

Turkey's accession to the EU would be ground-breaking in several obvious and not-so-obvious ways."
Bridging The Chasm: A Reconciliation of Civilizations - Harbus - News

Monday, October 18, 2004

Islam: A Totalitarian Ideology?

A defense of some Muslim ideals. The most interesting part of the read is under Why I am a Muslim towards the bottom of the page.

"To Islam alone has been granted the truth -- there is no possibility of salvation outside it. It is the sacred duty -- an incumbent religious duty established in the Koran and the Traditions -- of all Muslims to bring it to all humanity. Jihad is a divine institution, enjoined specially for the purpose of advancing Islam. Muslims must strive, fight and kill in the name of God."
FrontPage :: Islam: A Totalitarian Ideology? by FrontPage Magazine

Questions raised about press freedom in Turkey

"The undeniable legislative progress achieved in Turkey must not to mask the fact that it is still very difficult for the most critical journalists to function,"
Reporters sans fronti�res - Turkey

What Price Freedom?

"So, what to do about Turkey now? Certainly stop pushing it towards further democratization. Even though the Europeans will not formally welcome Turkey to their club, they should let Turkish companies enjoy the benefits of the common market, since it is economic freedom and prosperity that can beat Islamic fundamentalism and eventually build democracy from the bottom up. In the meantime, maintaining controlled democracy seems to be the only reasonable option: one tolerant of genuine civil society and not of fundamentalism disguised as civil society; one that can help a beautiful flower grow and keep all the weeds out."

TCS: Tech Central Station - What Price Freedom?

Sunday, October 17, 2004

A journey back to the time of Noah

"Our quest was to visit the site where Noah's Ark is said to rest.
From Istanbul, the four of us, along with a Turkish guide and six other travelers, flew to Van, near the Iranian border in Turkey's Eastern Anatolia region."

A journey back to the time of Noah

Poverty drives truckers from Turkey into Iraq

"The line of trucks at the Turkish border crossing into Iraq stretches for five miles, a sign that despite kidnappings and beheadings, thousands of Turks are still willing to risk their lives to haul cargo to Iraq. "
KurdishMedia News - Daily Kurdish news updates

Saturday, October 16, 2004

Thump! Thump! THUMP!

My wife was awakened Friday morning and I was awakened today by the sound of our neighborhood drummer. It was approximately 3:30. Every day for the next month, this is how everyone in Turkey will start their day. They get up early to have breakfast before their time of fasting during the daylight hours begins. I'm reminded during this inconvenience to pray. Join with us in praying for our friends and neighbors here who do not know the truth.

Friday, October 15, 2004

The Vanishing Act of the Church in Turkey

"Turkey is home to many of Christianity's pivotal events. Present-day Turkey hosted the Christian church's foundational church councils, including Nicea, which laid the groundwork for orthodox theology. The seven churches of Revelation were there. And one of Paul's most important epistles, Ephesians, was addressed to believers in a city on Turkey's Mediterranean Sea coast.

So how did Turkey's Christians end up like the Macedonian in Paul's dream, begging for help from abroad?"
The Vanishing Act of the Church in Turkey - Christianity Today Magazine

Review of Books: The Truth About Muslims

"The tortuous and complex relationship of Western Christendom and the world of Islam has provoked a wide variety of responses from historians."
The New York Review of Books: The Truth About Muslims

Thursday, October 14, 2004

Clash or Dialogue: Reality and Perception

"There are many examples of Muslim preachers who teach that there can be no reconciling between the ‘world of Islam’ and the ‘world of unbelief.’ Muslim extremists do indeed take verses of the Quran and sayings of Muhammad to justify atrocities against non-Muslims.

There are also less well-known preachers of hate. For example, the United States has its share of ‘holy men’ who claim that Muslims are evil and that morality has no place in a war against an evil enemy. "
Palestine Chronicle

Ramazan (Ramadan) in Turkey

Tomorrow marks the beginning of the month of Ramazan. Please remember to pray for the Turks as their minds turn towards spiritual things during the next month. Pray for them to see the emptiness in their current path and to reach out to find the truth.

Follow this link to learn more about this practice in general and the practice of it in Turkey.
Ramazan (Ramadan) in Turkey

Wednesday, October 13, 2004

BCC Events a Big Success!

Thank you for praying for the BCC event this past Sunday. 220 seeking Turks attended our worship meetings! A clear gospel presentation was given, several "real" life testimonies we given, small group discussion time took place and detailed surveys were taken.

Although we sent out 3000 letters, and made over 1500 phone calls the hard work is just now beginning. Today (Wednesday) we will be looking over the surveys and dividing follow-up responsibility between the others that joined us in this event.

Pray with us that from this first gathering at lease 4 new churches will develop and that the 4 partnering Turkish churches will be strengthened. Posted by Hello

Tuesday, October 12, 2004

Knock on the door

"There is a division, however, between the Turkey that the State Department knows and the country that borders Iran. It is not only predominantly Muslim, but Islam is far more actively enshrined in national life than Turkey's official "secular" posture would suggest. Orthodox Christians, concentrated mostly in Istanbul, are under siege and dwindling in numbers. Less than a century ago the Turks were liquidating Christian Armenians by the hundreds of thousands, and ethnically cleansing Greeks who had inhabited the eastern Mediterranean for millennia." | The Modesto Bee

10 Turkish Hostages Freed in Iraq

"The chairman of a Turkish construction company whose employees were released by kidnappers said Tuesday his firm will not withdraw from Iraq because it was unclear whether the abductions were politically motivated."

Yahoo! News - 10 Turkish Hostages Freed in Iraq

What the Crusades Were Really Like

Q: How are the Crusades different from Islam's jihad, or other wars of religion?
Q: Are there any similarities between the Crusades and the war against terror today?
Q: How did Christendom rationalize its defeat in the Crusades? Were the Crusaders defeated?

Zenit News Agency - The World Seen From Rome

Monday, October 11, 2004

Columbus Day Dreams

Did Muslims sail with Columbus?

"America was a melting pot from the beginning, and a Muslim presence in our history may well be established. But to do so respectably requires recourse to the established methods of the historian, not politically correct theories conjured from thin air."

TCS: Tech Central Station - Columbus Day Dreams

The many layers of 'Snow'

Here's an interesting novel, by the most popular Turkish novelist of today. Check out "Snow" by Orhan Pamuk.

"Snow," set in a remote, mountainous region of Turkey, is a multi-leafed novel of politics, love and literature. Written by Turkish novel Orhan Pamuk ("My Name is Red," "The White Castle"), it's a captivating story of what the human heart will endure for love, and arguably one of the best novels since Ian McEwan's "Atonement."
The many layers of 'Snow' -

Sunday, October 10, 2004

Turkey's continental drift

"a critical point — that Turkish membership "would give clear evidence to the Muslim world that their religious beliefs are compatible with EU values including democracy, the rule of law and the respect of fundamental rights." While some of Europe's concerns about Turkish membership in the EU are pragmatic, others are based on prejudice. It would be a shame for such bigotry to prevail."

Turkey's continental drift - The Washington Times: Editorials/OP-ED - October 10, 2004

Our founding ideology and Islam

A look at the ideals set down by Ataturk versus some of the myths about him.

"They said, "Ataturk surrendered the nation to Christians," whereas, he deported Christian missionaries from the country. They said, "Ataturk wanted to keep Islamic truths from the people," whereas, he led a parliamentary decision to translate the Koran into Turkish so his people could for the first time read and understand it and funded the task from his own pocket."

Turks.US - Our founding ideology and Islam

Friday, October 08, 2004

Pray for Many New Believers and Churches This Sunday

Remember to pray for the events this Sunday, October 10th. Invitations have been sent out to almost 4000 Christians who are a part of the Bible Correspondance Course. Many of them will be coming to two different events where they will hear a clear gospel presentation and testimonies from Turkish believers. Pray that many will believe and many new groups of believers will be formed around the city. Posted by Hello

Turkey Advances in Its Bid to Join European Union

"Europe, he said, "is no longer a Europe of white Christians." He called those who would exclude Turkey on the basis of religion "irresponsible and loathsome." The Voice of Southeastern North Carolina

Thursday, October 07, 2004

Turkish P.M. Says People Of Different Religions Can Worship Freely In Turkey

"Erdogan said that all Christians and Jews could perform their religious ceremonies in Orthodox and Catholic churches, and synagogues, and noted that nobody could claim that religious ceremonies were obstructed in Turkey."

Turkish P.M. Says People Of Different Religions Can Worship Freely In Turkey

Turkey's Christians Hope EU Entry Provides New Freedoms

"For the few evangelicals in Turkey, the country's efforts to clean up its human-rights record have made an appreciable difference. " The political atmosphere in Turkey has improved enough, he added, to allow Christians to meet openly, to have summer camps attracting several hundred people and to have public baptisms in the Mediterranean Sea," writes the Washington Times.

"We are relatively free and we are tolerated now," said Jerry Mattix, an American who pastors a 40-member church in the eastern part of the country. "What attracted me to Turkey is that here's a Muslim country that's relatively open to evangelism. We [evangelical Christians] ought to be all over this."

Weblog: Turkey's Christians Hope EU Entry Provides New Freedoms - Christianity Today Magazine

Youthful Istanbul most 'European' part of Turkey

"Istanbul has always been a cosmopolitan oasis in a struggling country, but since 1950, its population has grown more than tenfold to 14 million, as part of a movement of Turkey's country-dwellers to the cities. Although many of the new migrants are transplanted Anatolians who have reconstituted their rural milieus in outlying shantytowns, central Istanbul has retained a Western feel - a thriving area of restaurants, malls and nightclubs."

KRT Wire | 10/05/2004 | Youthful Istanbul most 'European' part of Turkey

Wednesday, October 06, 2004

Turkey's leading man

"Miracles, the chance to change.

I wonder what Tayyip Erdogan would have made of that.

Back in 1999 Turkey's most ambitious politician, a devout Muslim, was sent to prison for inciting religious hatred. "

BBC NEWS | Programmes | From Our Own Correspondent | Turkey's leading man

Christian church may hold key for Turkey

"When a mentally deranged Turk showed up at Diyarbakir Evangelical Church one hot July day quoting verses from the Koran and waving a butcher knife, it took police a half-hour to get there.
By that time, Medet Arslan, 27, had broken several windows, threatened the Christians who were inside the church, and burned New Testaments and other Christian literature, curtains, bookshelves, tapes, compact discs and whatever furniture he could find in the reception hall. Had church members not locked him inside the room, he might have gone to the sanctuary on the second floor to do more damage. "

Christian church may hold key

Tuesday, October 05, 2004

We cannot write off religion, cultures

"Besides, is it fair to judge Turkey by Afghanistan? Every Muslim country - just like every Christian country - has a unique culture, and thus they cannot be lumped into one entity that doesn't work."

The Reporter - Letters

Turkey will strengthen Europe

"Turkey's acceptance into Europe will be the ultimate proof that democracy is possible in a Muslim country. It will be proof that even a country where believers pray in mosques - and not in churches or synagogues - can be part of the developed world. This is an important lesson for Arab countries. Turkey's entry into Europe is therefore good for democracy and peace and good for the Israel that believes in democracy and peace."

Haaretz - Israel News - Turkey will strengthen Europe

New Church Has It's First Meeting

Maybe it was a week late, but Umut Kilisesi had it's first meeting. The first week was disrupted by a protest by a local political party that is against Christians, but the second try was a charm. 12 new contacts came and joined the leadership for a time of worship and Bible study. Continue to pray for this young body of believers as they grow and learn together.

FAMILY: A welcome outpouring of kindness

You can make a difference in an international's life. This story is just one example. Refugees, students and people just working in your community are just waiting for someone to reach out to them.

"One of the best ways to help," Coats said, "is just to be their friend." | FAMILY: A welcome outpouring of kindness

Monday, October 04, 2004

When you forget why you hanged yourself

"Europe will become part of the Arab West, the Maghreb; immigration and demographic point in this direction." I do not know if this will happen, but if he turns out to be correct, the relief of Vienna [from the Turkish besiegers] will have been in vain ...The USA remains young and dynamic ... the USA will remain the only superpower. China will become an economic giant. Europe will be Islamicized."

Asia Times - Asia's most trusted news source

EU a fragile hope for Istanbul's Christians

"Andrea is a "Rum," Tarin is Armenian, Giovanni a Levantine. For centuries, their communities served as bridges between Europe and the Ottoman Empire whose successor, Turkey, is now seeking full European Union membership.

All three are Christian and favor the mainly Muslim country's entry into the EU and see in it a fragile hope for their disappearing cultures."

The Daily Star - Politics - EU a fragile hope for Istanbul's Christians


"The recent bombings of Christian Churches in Iraq prompts us to ask, is there a Christian religion or even a Christian minority in Iraq and even in the Middle East? The following study is an overview of these Christian religions in this troubled area following a trip to this area along with members of the National Council of Churches several years ago."

Hellenic News of America

Sunday, October 03, 2004

Many in Europe turning up their noses at Turkey

"Turkish membership could help revitalize the EU with its economic potential and growing population, the British official said. He warned, however, that it also would bankrupt the bloc's current budget and spell an end to its common agricultural policy, the system of lucrative farm subsidies that has long been the union's strongest binding force."

"Yet the debate has taken on racist and xenophobic undertones in Austria, where local slang is peppered with disparaging expressions: If something's been "Turked," it's been faked or swindled, and "Turkish luggage" is a crumpled grocery sack." - Many in Europe turning up their noses at Turkey

As Istanbul Awakens

"Take an early morning tour . . . of a city that has been continuously lived in for 2,500 years."

The Star Online: Lifestyle

Turkish spread a celebration of home

" Staunchly secular Turkey's insistence on separating state and mosque - and hence its opposition to the idea of an Islamic state - incenses some Muslims all the way from the Middle East to South-east Asia. But Mr Yuksel defends the right of his country to follow its model of Islam.

An Islamic movement has gained ground in Turkey, leading to a government with Islamic leanings. But the state, under the watchful eyes of the military, remains secular."

Turkish spread a celebration of home - OCT 3, 2004

Saturday, October 02, 2004

Security Watch: Why you should switch to Firefox now - CNET reviews

Not Turkey related, but if you are viewing this webpage via Internet Explorer, why haven't you switched to Firefox or Opera or one of the other many alternative browsers? This article will tell you one of the reasons why.

Security Watch: Why you should switch to Firefox now - CNET reviews

September 11th and Usama Bin Ladin's Victory

"Clearly, the events in Iraq had repercussions for Turkey and the rest of the world. The fact that many Islamic militants perceive American troops as occupying a Muslim nation has proved to be a magnet for them to go to Iraq to carry out their struggle against the US. Thus, their jihad has been brought to a nation on Turkey's borders. It has to be remembered that when the Al-Qa'ida division claimed responsibility for the attacks in Istanbul it demanded that Turkey "stop providing America with soldiers for Iraq." The fact that Turkey was later not asked to provide soldiers to Iraq was not issue for them. Al-Qa'ida had already accused Turkey of collaborating with the "American occupation" of Iraq."


News of the week

Things continue to happen in the Marmara Region of Turkey. Just this last week we baptized our first believer in the area that was affected by the earthquake in 1999 and had our first new believer in the city of Edirne. Praise God and pray for these new believers and the groups they are a part of! Posted by Hello

A bald move for scarf

"A Muslim schoolgirl has bowed to France’s ban on Islamic headscarves in state schools by returning to class and removing her veil to reveal a head shaved bald in protest. "

Times of Oman

Friday, October 01, 2004

Istanbul is only the beginning

A Turkey travelogue:

"Turkey has left a very strong impression on us. Most of all it is of the friendliness and openness of its people. The people you meet all seek to engage you, whether it's a simple "where are you from?" or the friendly smile of a policeman I met during one of our first days in Istanbul. The smile in his eyes met mine and spread to the rest of his face as he saw this Canadian family walking down the street."

CBC News - Viewpoint: Terry Cormier

Elections and the Muslim World

"When ordinary Muslims in Turkey vote for a religious alternative in politics, they do so because they have lived with militarist secularism too long, and have seen all its promises of prosperity and enlightenment betrayed by graft and repression. Turkish citizens vote for Islamic politicians for exactly the same reason that Mexicans vote for the "Catholic" party of Vicente Fox, and, for that matter, Japanese vote for the Buddhist Komeito; as an alternative to entrenched interests, to demands for bribes, to public theft and malfunction. Turkish voters do not want to be whipped into mosques, in the Saudi style, any more than Mexicans want to be forced to attend mass; but after decades of secularism turned sour, they look toward political representatives they feel are motivated to civic service by their spiritual values. Certainly, a country like ours, which has seen the rise of Christian conservative politics, should have little basis to reproach Muslims for making similar choices."

TCS: Tech Central Station - Elections and the Muslim World