Protest for Secularism in Turkey

More reason for optimism in the Middle East (although the “powerful generals” part might be a little concerning):

The possibility of an observant Muslim president is pitting Turkey’s deeply secular military and civilian establishment against its religiously oriented ruling party in a fundamental struggle over national identity.

At least 700,000 people marched against Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul’s candidacy in Istanbul Sunday, waving the red national flag and invoking Turkey’s long secular tradition. Powerful generals hinted they may step in to resolve the deadlock over Gul in parliament, which elects the president. And many Turks are calling for early elections in the hope of replacing the parliament, which is dominated by Gul’s pro-Islamic party.

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