Turkey’s Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan during the Global Alcohol Policy Symposium.
A couple months ago, Philip Howard, a professor at the University of Washington and the Central European University, was walking past Gezi Park with a Turkish friend at dusk. He had just joined Philip from prayers and asked him what he thought about the brewing debate over the park’s future. Like most Turkish voters, he is a fan of the country’s prime minister, Erdogan. Like most of the country’s voters, his friend easily integrates his faith with his daily routines. But he said simply “Istanbul doesn’t need another Mosque.” He started pointing off in different directions. “There’s one there, there and there. And there and there and there. Istanbul needs a park.”