This is mostly for me rather than anybody else who views this journal, because I'm sure none of you have an interest in Turkish politics.
I have an uneasy feeling about the future, even though the best possible outcome resulted. I'm sad that the super-nationalist party got in, because they're probably just gonna cause a lot of trouble by pushing for the invasion of Iraq, saying no to the EU, and doing other stupid things. I'm somewhat happy that CHP (Ataturk's secular party) got in, because they can provide an effective (even though it won't be "legitimate") counterweight to AKP. Finally, I'm happy that AKP got such a huge percentage of votes, and that they retained their power in government, because they truly have done wonderfully for Turkey. They've kept inflation under control, kept the economy growing at an incredibly fast pace, enacted modernizing reforms, and gotten Turkey much closer to joining the EU more than any other party previously in power.
Unfortunately, they're the party that I'm most worried about in the long term, because their leaders are religious, and they draw their power from conservative, rural and religious constituents. I'm worried that they'll become less and less tolerant of a secular, modern, & European lifestyle that a significant portion of Turks (including my relatives and almost all of our family friends) lead and that slowly, if they manage to stay in power for a prolonged amount of time, that they'll erode our rights and try to impose their own religious morals upon us. I'm hoping that they have the good sense not to to anything that might even seem suspiciously close to the Islamizing of the strictly secular government, because an absolute mess will be created.
I also think that even though they won the election with 47% of votes, that many people in Turkey, especially the military (4 coups in the last 40 years, includes toppling a couple of pro-Islamic governments) will be watching to see if the AKP slips up in any way, and then move in for the kill.
So I guess if the AKP uses common sense in governing, sticks to modernizing Turkish laws, increasing human rights, managing the economy properly, and works on getting Turkey into the EU that everything will be alright. With all of those in mind, I would hardly think that they'd do anything to provoke the military, or secular Turks. They're being scrutinized very closely, and they know this.
It's also my personal belief that they won't be in power consecutively to allow the religious Turks to settle into the state bureaucracy and harm the secular lifestyle, even though I've heard and read of really subtle, seemingly inconsequential things here and there that are signs as to this is happening, and picking up speed.
On a different note, one of my co-workers smells REALLY BAD. I'm pretty sure he doesn't use deodorant, even though it's completely clear that he needs to. I haven't said anything because I'm too nice and he's been working for only two weeks, but my tolerance of really bad body odor is quickly running out. I might accidentally mouth off to him on my last day or something...
Well, that's it for now.
I'm feeling somewhat French, with that song and all. So here's a picture of the Chateau de Chambord that I took for you to enjoy.