The hideous massacre of 76 young Norwegians seems to confirm the average Turk’s worst stereotypes about Europe. It is xenophobic, racist, steeped in a feeling of cultural superiority, prone to Christian fundamentalism, and prone to violence against Muslims and immigrants. The 237 references to the Ottoman Empire and republican Turkey in Anders Breivik’s 1,500-page “manifesto”, 2083: An European Declaration of Independence, do not help either.
According to Today’s Zaman (thanks to journalist and analyst Firdevs Robinson for alerting me!), the mass murderer was “obsessed with Turkey”, discussing at length its 19th and 20th century history, (not least the modernisation reforms of the Tanzimat period!). His ranting prose portrays Turks as genocidal invaders of the Old Continent that threatened to re-Islamise it once again, as they undo the doomed experiment in secularisation
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