Thursday, June 07, 2007


Last year the New Church Amsterdam organized an exhibition The Sultan and the City. The exhibition was opened by Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands and many art pieces were shown until April the 5th of 2007. Topkapi palace gave a helping hand.

The two main sponsors KPMG and Fortis held a symposium, for relations of the 2 firms, just days after the opening. Mainly Turkish banks and business leaders. I was there as well.
After the interesting speeches a cocktail, and by leaving, you got a present: a book about Istanbul, with an introduction by Mr. KoƧ, Minister of Tourism. But there was a problem: the Turkish government didn't allow that in the book the name of Constantinople was mentioned, and that Armenians lived in the area. After a lot of threats by the the Turkish government, KPMG removed the names 'Constantinople' and 'Armenians'. But as revenge, they put a map of Constantinople anno 1410 inside the cover.
That the Turkish government censors in its own land, a la, but that it wants to dictate its views on countries like the Netherlands is offensive.

Our own Dutch Turkish State Secretary of Justice

This is Nebahat Albayrak, Turkish born, but she grew up and is educated in the Netherlands. And holds dual citizenship: Turkish and Dutch. At the age of 29 she was elected in the Dutch parliament. And since this year, she is Secretary of State (Junior Minister) of Justice at the age of 39. Her task is Immigration. And today she made a tough stance against asylum seekers, while her party, the Dutch labor party, was more mild.
I don't see her in a cat fight with another politician, like what we saw last week in Ankara...
She became the first Muslim ever in a Dutch government.
Regarding the Armenian issue, she declared that things happened, but urged for an independent investigation.

The saints are coming

Turkey ranks 105, out of 115 countries, regarding gender-equality. When the parties presented their candidates, there will be not more than 40 women elected in the next parliament.
Which is less than 10%. Compare this with most European countries, Turkey doesn't take the female population that seriously.
Or can we call this culture relativism?
At least I expected more of the CHP.
Also, a lot of candidates run for parliament, avoiding prosecution...
Please explain the logic behind this. So, when elected you can commit all kind of crimes.. Yes, the good old boys club of Turkey are...Saints...maybe for their mothers.
The saints are coming: how long now?