Sunday, June 20, 2010

Not to mention the duty free shop

The good news is that for the latest installment of New York Times pundit Tom Friedman from his visit to Turkey, he's not relying as so often in his past travels, on the taxi ride from the airport for material to enlighten us all.

The bad news? He's getting inspiration without even leaving the airport --

All you have to do is stand in the Istanbul airport and look at the departures board for Turkish Airlines, which flies to cities half of which I cannot even pronounce, to appreciate what a pulsating economic center this has become for Central Asia.

The worse news is that this airport-based journalism, and his actual meetings that did take place in Turkey, are leading him to think of Turkey as Dubai-on-the-Bosphurus, and not to question why this large democratically-run country has become alienated from the USA, other than, in his view, the deleterious effects of being denied EU membership. In particular, like pundits of many stripes contemplating this puzzle, there is no mention of the role of the war in Iraq.

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