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TURKISH ELECTION EXCITEMENT

We dıd not get to see the celebrations but........

-17 °C

IMG_1468_edited.jpgPhoto by Christine W.

The great election is over and we had a very interestıng view of it. Unfortunately most of the rallies and celebrations were ın Ankara and Istanbul which we could watch on TV. We sat with our tourguide Carlos and watched returns in Turkish which he translated. He was quite unhappy with the outcome sınce he is ın the secularist party.
He said now it ıs either lıke Iran or the military will takeover. I think he ıs upset and therefore making it worse than it ıs. The government obviously is quite popular since they ıncreased their share of the vote from 34 to 47 percent.
The personal highlight for us was that we were able to go into a pollıng place and the people were very anxıous to show us how it worked. They allowed us to take photos (ıncludıng a sample ballot) and they put the voter stamp on two of our group's fıngers. They were extremely gracıous. Thıs was quıte an experience for educators to take back to the classsroom.
We are now ın Anatolya havıng seen the Roman theater yesterday enroute and a caravanersı where the traders along the Silk Road dıd busıness. Today we enjoy vıews of the Mediterranian.
Joe Selfrıdge WAC correspondent

Posted by wacphila 22:16

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Thanks for the comments-an insider's view of the election. The trip sounds wonderful - the usual Anadolu Tours fine work. Keep the reports coming. I am about to share your comments at our staff meeting.

Hi to all,

Margaret

by wacphila

Margaret,
This has been an anamazing combination of business and pleasure and the group is really enjoying each other to the max. Everything you said would happen, has.. Best, Joe

by wacphila

Now that I am home and can sit back and reflect on our journey - I have to say that the Turkish election was an amazing event. As a government teacher it was an opportunity to see democracy in action. As we pulled up to the school outside of Konya, there was a steady flow of people. I will never forget the image of an old man we saw voting. He must have been in his late eighties and he needed three people to carry him up the stairs to vote - but their was no stopping him. After he had voted, the feeling of pride and nationalism was written all over his face. The sense of pride and purpose was evident in the room. As a teacher, many of my students already seem defeated about the democratic process. It was wonderful to see people voting- both young and old. It appears Ataturk's secularist democratic dream is still thriving in Turkey. Hopefully, it will continue to serve as a model for other nations struggling with the boundaries of the relationship between church and state.

-Christine Waychunas

by wacphila

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