Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Erdogan and the Turkish police attacked protesters again. The whole world is watching!

I want to be as objective as possible in presenting stories on this blog, but, at this point, I am disgusted by the Prime Minister of Turkey and the Turkish police.  Too many people are being harmed for no good reason.  I sincerely hope the protesters overthrow the Turkish government and arrest Erdogan for crimes against his own people.

As you can see from this article, the Turkish police have attacked protesters in Taksim Square again. 

The article:


Vocabulary to help you understand the article:

to be objective - not to form an opinion, not to show your own opinion but just to present the facts.  The opposite of 'objective' is 'subjective.'  My introduction was very subjective in that I expressed my emotions and opinion in regard to Erdogan.

to feel disgusted - this is when something makes you feel sick because it is so wrong.

to storm some place - to attack a place VIOLENTLY

a square - a public, outdoor space

a clash - a conflict, a fight

a riot - when a protest gets out of control, it is called a riot.  A protest is when people gather together to express their disapproval of some government action.

tear gas and rubber bullets - tear gas burns a person's eyes for awhile and rubber bullets are shot from guns and can kill people, even though they are not metal bullets.

to hurl - to throw. Apparently the protesters were throwing fireworks for some reason.  Fireworks are often used in celebrations to create beautiful patterns in the night's sky.

to pour into - to flood into, to enter in a large number, if a group pours into an area, there is a large number of people and they rush in quickly.

epicenter - center

demos - demonstrations; protests

bulldozers - vehicles that are used to move heavy objects away. Bulldozers are like giant trucks with pushing devices in front of them that push things away or crush things.

makeshift barriers - the protesters set up barriers quickly.  If something is makeshift, it is set up quickly.  A barrier is meant to stop something.  In this case the protesters wanted to stop the police and bulldozers.

to erect - to create or set up.

armored cars - cars protected by armor - strong steel.

to raise the stakes - a gambling term.  If a gambler raises the stakes, he adds more money to be won or lost.  Here, in this article, raising the stakes means Erdogan is taking a greater risk by attacking innocent people.

unrest - the opposite of peace.

to pose a challenge - to establish a challenge. A challenge is a type of problem that is difficult to solve.

a fierce challenge - a strong, aggressive challenge.

to douse protesters - to cover protesters.

a Molotov cocktail - this is a type of makeshift weapon.  It was created by General Molotov of Russia.  Basically you fill a wine bottle with alcohol, tie a rag around the bottle, light the rag on fire and throw the bottle at the enemy or an armored car.  When the bottle hits, it explodes and starts the thing on fire.

intervention - in this case it means 'attack.' Normally to intervene means to enter a situation and try to stop two parties from fighting or to stop something wrong from happening.

a concession - if you make a concession, you compromise or you do something the other side wants in order to make them happy.

to vow - to promise.

a clampdown - like a crackdown.  It is a use of extreme force to stop something.

to be sparked - to be started.

barracks - a place where soldiers live.  An Ottoman barracks - Erdogan wanted to destroy the park to create a type of Ottoman museum (The Ottoman Empire used to control the land where Turkey now is - it was very Islamic and often militarily aggressive).

authoritarian - when one person rules a country and does not care about democracy or what the people want.

to impose a conservative lifestyle on people - to force people to live a very religious and conservative (a conservative is usually not considered very open-minded) lifestyle.

secular - non-religious.

to escalate tensions - increase nervousness, increase a sense of unrest or fear.

to dismiss - in this case: to disregard or to consider something not important.

fringe extremists - the fringe is the very outside of something.  An extremist is someone who does not hold a 'normal' attitude - someone with very unusual beliefs or attitudes.

to topple his government - to destroy or overthrow his government.

scores - lots.

democratic credentials - to have democratic credentials is to have the basis or foundation of a democratic government.  Although Erdogan was elected democratically, he is acting like a dictator.


Question for discussion/writing:

Do you think that the United States and other NATO countries are being too silent in regard to what is happening in Turkey?

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