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Jay Currie

One Damn Thing After Another

1/11/2004

Bridges or Ditches

Third, and most revealing, was the statement made by the father of one of the Turkish suicide bombers who hit the synagogues.

"We are a respectful family who love our nation, flag and the Koran," the grieving father, Sefik Elaltuntas, told the Zaman newspaper. "But we cannot understand why this child had done the thing he had done . . . First, let us meet with the chief rabbi of our Jewish brothers. Let me hug him. Let me kiss his hands and flowing robe. Let me apologize in the name of my son and offer my condolences for the deaths. . . . We will be damned if we do not reconcile with them."
Thomas Friedman, nyt
Part 2 of Friedman's series on how best to wage the war of ideas with Islam. This time looking at Turkey as a Muslim state which works. Of course Turkey is constitutionally secular and that makes a huge difference. So does being a democracy and having a capitalist economy. Turkey does offer a possible route for other Muslim states and Friedman is absolutely right in saying that its admission to the EU is a vital part of the overall program of winning the Islamic world for the 21st century.