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The situation in Turkey is boiling.  At the funeral today of Justice Ozbilgin, crowds booed Foreign Minister Gul.  Prime Minister Erdogan was a no-show.  They applauded President Sezer and the Generals who attended.  The situation is tragic but the crisis has been a longtime coming.  At the Middle East Forum homepage, we’ve provided links to a series of articles—most originally published in NRO—which chart the evolution of the ruling party’s assault on secularism.  Erdogan may not have pulled the trigger, but he certainly greased the gun.  The tragedy in Turkey raises other questions, though, about US diplomacy.  With the exception of Eric Edelman, most recent U.S. ambassadors to Turkey have peddled the fiction that the ruling Justice and Development Party [AKP] was conducting business as usual.  Some recent ambassadors left their posts only to enter into business relationships with AKP enterprises, all the while saying there was nothing about which to worry.  One former U.S. ambassador told officials in Ankara that White House officials were not concerned about Islamism in Ankara, a point which is patently untrue.  Well, hopefully this tragedy will be a wake-up call not only for Ankara, but also for Washington.


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