Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Federal Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier

Here are a few speeches that the Federal Foreign Minister gave about his support of Turkey joining the EU.

Monday, March 2, 2009

Interview with Ekin Deligöz

In 2006, DW-WORLD.DE, a European news website, interviewed Ekin Deligöz, a member of the green party in Germany about moving to Germany when she was younger and what it is like to live there now.
"It's ok to be Both Turkish and German"

Friday, February 27, 2009

People Decide

In October of 2005, TimesOnline ran an article that consisted of a collection of different opinions on whether Turkey should be allowed to join the EU or not. The collection was composed by different people all around the world, allowing all sides of the debate to be shown. Since these opinions were collected in 2005, it is possible that they have changed since then, since in this past year there were more talks about Turkey joining the EU.
See their opinions

Thursday, February 26, 2009

All About Turkey!!

A tour guide in Istanbul has kept a blog since April 2006 about all of the newest happenings in Turkey including its culture, traditions and top tourist sights:

Turkey Blog

Neighboring Troubles

Trust in those close to us is one of the few securities shared by people around the world. Usually, the idea of a neighbor is a comforting thought, in case one ever needs help or someone to talk to. Living in such close proximity generally leads to some sort of friendship, especially in smaller towns where people are more likely to see one another on a day- to –day basis. The idea of a neighbor, or a friend, turning on the other is terrifying, especially when it’s due to religious differences. This is the case as I see it in the Bosnian war; neighbors turning against neighbors through acts of fighting and rape.
In Safe Area Gorazde, Sacco talks to numerous people who have stories of their neighbors turning against them. One man was forced to watch his wife get raped right in front of him by his neighbor, a man they thought they could trust. Others only saw their neighbors fighting against one another in a war that seemed to turn the gentlest men into complete barbarians.
The sight of a neighbor and trusted friend advancing towards you in an act of war, however, is enough to terrify any one. Sacco put into his novel stories of people who were forced to hide from their own neighbors; ones who had been so helpful in times of need, which had spent time with each other’s children and had been previous confidants. However just because war broke out over religious differences, these people were willing to drop their personal pasts all together and murder those they had once called friends.
Even if these people were not directly living next door, the idea that they were in the same city is another reason for panic. In the article, “Bosnia: Questions About Rape,” women testified against men they had once seen in town, even if they did not know them personally. For the Serbs that were attacking, the idea of being neighbors and previous acquaintances seemed to help their cause of knowing exactly where to attack, and how to spread fear in every direction. This is not to say that every Serbian person was bad; on the contrary, there were a few who did not support the war and its cause for, “ethnic cleansing”.
Being neighbors wasn’t the only scary part. Many of the men-turned-animals were once highly respected people; lawyers, doctors etc. The opposite was also true, however. During the war, highly respected people lost everything they had, from their position titles to their families and lifestyles.
The hardest part of the war that I came to terms with is why no one seemed to know what was going on. Even the Serbian leader claimed he had only heard of 18 rape cases, when the real numbers, although difficult to get an exact count, were far greater.
For me, the simple task of reading about this war and the cases that went along with it was horrifying. No one around the world seemed to care while the murdering and raping was going on in this part of the world until it was too late. Seeing how quickly amicable relationships can turn against one another from a rise in nationalistic pride shows that when it comes to religious separation, anything can happen.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

"Germany's Turkish Obama" by Paul Hockenos

Cem Özdemir, the man considered to be the Obama of Germany, is the highest ranking German politician with immigrant parents. He was recently elected the co-chair of 'the greens'. He is one of 15 million "people with migration background," which is the newest politcally correct term that Germans use when describing immigrants. 19% of the population is composed of immigrants, while 40% of elementary students have immigrant backgrounds.


Wednesday, February 4, 2009


In 1906, Pentecostalism found its roots in the streets of Los Angeles and quickly became the fastest growing branch of Christianity, according to Frank L. Lechner and John Boli. The Pentecostalism churh became the largest single Christian category after the Roman Catholic church. Pentecostalism uses movements through dancing, singing and shaking to 'call forth the Spirit.' Pentecostals believe that, "Jesus is Lord and Savior, and the Bible the literal word of God for all of humanity" (Lechner and Boli 388). The best description that relates to its foundings, however, is the idea that this culture is created bottom-up style. Usually associated as being an American export, Pentecostalism spread from country to country that was predominantly Christian even before Pentecostalism was heard of. Lechner and Boli also explain that Pentecostalism is not new, since it derives from Christian beginnings and continues to change by each culture it encounters. This demonstrates globalization to a degree of a spread of religion; one that is being accepted in most places, even if it is being fought off by those who wish to keep their local forms of religion. Even though Pentecostalism works as an example of globalization, it also stresses on the individual, or, "Celebrates the individual" (Lechner and Boli 389).

Bin Laden and Other Thoroughly Modern Muslims

Tradition and modernity : contradictions yet the two can be personified by one example: Islamists. Charles Kurzman, author of "Bin Laden and Other Thoroughly Modern Muslims," explains that today Islamists have gone to modern schools, use modern technology and go by modern laws. They still hold their traditional values, however. Bin Laden, for example, had training in civil engineering. Under the heading of Modern Goals, Modern Methods, Kurzman explains the differences between the Taliban and Islamists. Taliban outlawed women from attending school, but Islamists actually raised the girls education level in Iran. Kurzman also talks more about techonlogy, and how radical Islamists use satellite phones etc., leading to use of the newest high-tech skills. Kurzman ends his article by describing Americas war on terrorism and how it might possibly help the Islamists by fueling the idea that the US is against Islam. He also describes the longer affects, however, saying that "the modernization of Muslim societies, promoted by the United States and its allies as a buffer against traditionalism, may wind up fueling Islamism" (Kurzman 357).

Global Fundamentalism

In "Global Fundamentalism", Frank J. Lechner proposes that fundamentalism is facing a future of problems. This is mainly due to the fact that globalization is now taking off. As Lechner states, "global culture, after all, is still (though not only) the culture of modernity," (Lechner 349). I completely agree, since globalization is something that has developed more and more over time, ecomposing newer technologies to trade among other societies. Lechner believes, however, that globalization works against fundamentalism, which is true, however he also says that it is 'contaminated' with globalization culture. Once again, I feel the theory of interdependence is at play, and is also needed to a certain degree for fundamentalism to grow. Lechner even acknowledges and states that the future of fundamentalism is bleak, and that the problems need to be confronted now instead of when it's too late.

Turkish Prime Minister Storms Off Stage at World Economic Forum - Davos