The Politik Press, Vol. XIII, Issue 5

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Volume XIII, Issue V

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POLITIK PRESS

MARCH 4th, 2013

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Volume XIII, Issue V

the

POLITIK PRESS

the

MARCH 4th, 2013

POLITIK PRESS

A publication of

JHU POLITIK jhupolitik.org

EDITORS-IN-CHIEF Jeremy Orloff, Matt Varvaro MANAGING EDITOR Alex Clearfield ASSISTANT EDITORS Julia Allen Colette Andrei Ari Schaffer LAYOUT EDITOR Victoria Scordato WEBMASTER Sihao Lu

HEAD WRITER Rachel Cohen STAFF WRITERS Megan Augustine, Akshai Bhatnagar, Michael Bodner, Henry Chen, Virgil Doyle, Chris Dunnett, Cary Glynn, Archie Henry, Peter Lee, Daniel Roettger, Geordan Williams, Chris Winer EVENTS CHAIR/PUBLICITY Randy Bell

FACULTY ADVISOR Steven R. David The views expressed within this publication reflect the personal opinions of each article’s author and are not necessarily endorsed by JHU Politik or the Johns Hopkins University.

VOLUME XIII, ISSUE V MARCH 4th, 2013 Cover Image: La Drague Dieppe (A Dredger in Dieppe Harbor by Moonlight) by Henri-Charles Guerard, The National Gallery of Art. Correction: Last week’s cover image was A Packet Boat off Dover by Joseph Mallord William Turner. It is owned by The National Gallery of Art.

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INSIDE THIS ISSUE WEEK IN REVIEW

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Christine Server ’16

READING LIST .......................................................................

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Virgil Doyle ’14

FLOTUS IS MORE THAN A CHARMING WIFE AND MOTHER .....

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Rachel Cohen ’14

THE FIRST STEP TOWARDS PEACE:

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WHY I’M AGAINST AN ASSAULT WEAPONS BAN .....................

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ENDING THE GAZA BLOCKADE Geordan Edward Williams ’14

Akshai Bhatnagar ’15

SILICON WAR: THE CHINESE GOVERNMENT AND CYBER ATTACKS

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Christopher Dunnett ’13

INTERVIEW WITH EMRE YILMAZ ...........................................

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Leila Collins ’14

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WEEK IN REVIEW By Christine Server ’16, Contributing Writer American Drone Base in Niger Opens New Frontier Indicating a shift in American anti-terrorism efforts, about 100 U.S. troops have been deployed to the West African nation of Niger to establish a new drone base. Its purpose for now is strictly surveillance, with only unarmed drones being sent out to survey the region. But American officials have not yet ruled out the possibility of conducting drone strikes in an area that is increasingly becoming a new hub for terrorist activity. Concerned by conflict in neighboring Mali, the site of recent clashes between Islamic forces and a prevailing French-led coalition, Niger has signed an agreement with the U.S. providing legal protection to American troops, thus paving the way for a greater American military presence in the region.

Iranian Nuclear Talks Resume Nuclear talks this past week between Iran and six world powers concluded with a decision to meet yet again to negotiate a more concrete plan to limit Iran’s stockpile of highly enriched uranium. This will come in return for a moderate easing of sanctions. Chief Iranian negotiator Sareed Jalili appeared to be optimistic coming out of the meetings, saying that the new proposal adhered more closely to Iran’s nuclear agenda. But the Western powers, taking a perhaps more realistic view, are pessimistic, pointing out that nothing tangible has been achieved and that the real negotiations are yet to come. Juxtaposed against the talks was an announcement that Iran plans to install a new generation of centrifuges that will amplify Iran’s enrichment capabilities. This indicates that, renewed relations aside, actual progress will be more difficult to achieve.

The Sequester Passes With bickering in full supply and a shortage of whole-hearted cooperation, $1.2 trillion in automatic spending cuts kicked in this past Friday. These cuts, spread out over the next decade, run the gamut from the military to drug enforcement and agriculture programs. The original point of the sequester—to force compromise in the face of severe, arbitrary cuts unpalatable to both parties—was lost amidst a clamor of finger-pointing and blame-laying. President Obama, in his weekly address, faulted the Republican Party for their willingness to place the onus of the cuts on the middle class while giving the wealthier a free pass. Some Republicans, in turn, shot back by saying that the president had promoted the sequester originally. The political fracas is a troubling sign for the year to come as negotiations for next year’s budget have yet to begin. PP

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READING LIST By Virgil Doyle ’14, Staff Writer “Bitter Pill: Why Medical Bills are Killing Us,” by Steven Brill Published on Time.com on February 20

“The Extraordinary Science of Addictive Junk Food,” by Michael Moss Published in the New York Times on February 20

The debate over health care reform in the United States has been a bitter and vociferous one that continues to this day. It has also, in the eyes of Steven Brill, been an overly narrow one. He starts his article by observing that, “When we debate health care policy, we seem to jump right to the issue of who should pay the bills, blowing past what should be the first question: why exactly are the bills so high?” It is precisely this question that Brill attempts to answer by closely examining a series of individual medical bills, for patients with maladies ranging from a fractured nose to terminal lung cancer, and seeing where exactly all that money goes.

Moss’ account of the food industry is an eye-opening view into the scientific and marketing processes behind America’s obesity epidemic. As he summarizes it, overconsumption of foods high in fat, sugar, and salt is not just a problem of uneducated consumers. Rather, there is a “conscious effort…to get people hooked on foods that are convenient and inexpensive.” From marketing campaigns aimed at impressionable children and overworked parents to the overriding of our brain’s ability to tell us to stop eating, this article illustrates the junk food industry’s wanton disregard for the health of their products in their competition to win American “stomach share.” Moss details how familiar products like Dr Pepper, Lunchables, and Lay’s Potato Chips have been chemically composed and aggressively marketed to encourage shoppers to consume more and more. These unhealthy eating habits are a major factor behind this sobering statistic: “today, one in three [American] adults is considered clinically obese, along with one in five kids.”

The result is a damning portrayal of the medical services industry, in which both doctors and patients are squeezed for every dollar they are worth by hospital administrators and unfair pricing systems. Brill details dozens of cases of hospitals charging exorbitant markups on routine services. A chest x-ray for which a patient was charged $333, while the same patient would have paid only $23.83 under Medicare for the same service, is a particularly salient example. All of this adds up to a perverse market failure: despite advances in medical technology, hospitals are able to charge often arbitrarily high rates to vulnerable, captive customers who often have nowhere else to turn for urgent treatment. The result is our broken system in which consumers are squeezed for every dime they are worth to receive care that is equivalent or even inferior to that provided in almost every other developed country on earth. Brill’s article provides a very personal and impactful view of our health system. As he observes, the United States spends about 20% of its GDP on health care, and gets remarkably little bang for its buck. This article is an enormously important read for anyone interested in American economic prosperity going forward. The devastating inefficiencies of our health system will continue to damage both individuals and our economy as a whole if we do not take measures to redirect the money now going to hospital profit margins towards more effective patient care.

What particularly struck me in this article was the amount of testing that goes into the chemical composition of our food. For instance, before Dr. Pepper launched a new drink, they tested 61 slightly different formulas in thousands of tastings across the country. Then tasters rated each formula with respect to criteria as varied as taste, color, and “mouth feel.” The results of these tests were then compiled into a report, and Dr. Pepper chose to produce the soda that consumers preferred most. This example illustrates the incredible amount of effort that companies put into overriding our collective self-control and even our biological ability to regulate our appetites in the name of higher market share. Moss’ article puts in stark terms the necessity of being an educated and healthconscious consumer of food products, and demonstrates the fundamental reality that food producers’ interests do not always align with those of their customers. PP

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FLOTUS IS MORE THAN A CHARMING WIFE AND MOTHER By Rachel Cohen ’14, Head Writer

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ast week a video of Michelle Obama “mom dancing” on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon went viral on the Internet. She also made an appearance at the Academy Awards to present the award for Best Picture. These recent events reinforce what we know so well about her: Michelle is a classy, fit, and stylish woman. A devoted wife and a loving mother, she fills the First Lady position with grace. And yet, when I think about her role in the White House, I can’t help but feel, on some level, real disappointment. Michelle Obama attended Princeton University and Harvard Law School. She then worked in a Chicago law firm and on behalf of Chicago mayor, Richard M. Daley. Yet this side of Michelle—the impressive, ambitious intellectual—is too often concealed from the public. If it’s acknowledged at all, it’s merely to show that she appreciates first-hand the promise of the American Dream and how hard it can be for individuals to make ends meet. But really, that’s about the full extent. We could say everyone behaves like that—we live in an anti-intellectual society and everyone minimizes his or her scholarly side. And to some extent, we do. One needn’t look further than a few years back to recall President George W. Bush publicly criticizing his Ivy League pedigree in an attempt to gain a more populist appeal. However it’s undeniable that President Obama portrays himself as a thoughtful, smart and reserved leader. This is his public image. He’s known for being a constitutional law professor, a reader of Philip Roth and Herman Melville, and the President of the Harvard Law Review. Michelle, like her husband, is an eloquent speaker; we saw this with her moving remarks at the Democratic National Convention. But even that speech, like so many of her speeches, downplayed her professional achievements and emphasized her role as a wife and a mother. She concluded with, “You see, at the end of the day, my most important title is still mom-in-chief.” This is her public image. Perhaps this is all strategic: have Michelle be the endearing figure to provide her husband the space to work on

more difficult goals. But , even if this is so, it should not be accepted without scrutiny. When I think about inspirational First Ladies I think of Hillary Clinton and Eleanor Roosevelt. Hillary Clinton took on one of the most politically challenging obstacles of the day—health care reform. Eleanor Roosevelt fought for racial equality and labor standards. Both women were vociferously attacked, but I admire them for their bravery. They worked hard to bring light to uncomfortable topics. Michelle’s path has followed Laura Bush’s and Nancy Reagan’s. Laura Bush worked to promote literacy, while Nancy Reagan counseled children to “Just Say No” to drugs. Michelle is working to combat obesity and promote healthy nutrition. It’s not that these things are unimportant, but they aren’t particularly “brave” either. I’d like to see the smart and accomplished Michelle speak out on some of the tougher issues we face. Low-income housing? Parental leave policy? Education reform? The list could be very long, and there is certainly room (and need) for her to tackle something else alongside her nutrition campaign. Besides, sociological determinants such as quality housing, income-level, and education contribute to the choices people make in nutrition. By taking on the battles of deeper disparities, Michelle could not only meet the goals of her nutrition campaign, but also address inequities that permeate society. Michelle is darling, but I want her to be bold. She is arguably the most powerful woman in the country, and has a real opportunity to use her influence, intelligence, and popularity to bring some political attention to hard issues. She has the approval and good will of the public. She should use it. We know she loves her husband. We know she loves her children. But we also know there is a whole lot more to her than that and her chic demeanor. I hope in the future to read fewer headlines about her bangs, cool dresses, and shades of nail polish. Call me crazy, but I believe there is much more to Michelle Obama than we have been privileged to see. PP

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THE FIRST STEP TOWARDS PEACE: ENDING THE GAZA BLOCKADE By Geordan Edward Williams ’14, Staff Writer

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iting security reasons, the states of Israel and Egypt imposed an economic blockade on the Gaza Strip in 2007. The Israeli security apparatus hopes the blockade will end rocket and mortar attacks from various militia groups within the Gaza Strip and possibly pressure Hamas, which was elected in 2006, into relinquishing power. At first, Egypt fully cooperated with Israel; recently however, Egypt has partially lifted the blockade at its own border crossing of Rafah. It still enforces the blockade by destroying smuggling tunnels and limiting the transit of goods to and from Gaza as a safeguard against terror in the Sinai. Yet, by creating a poor, hostile environment, what these two states hope to achieve with the blockade is actually being exacerbated by it. In reality, the only way to achieve peace and moderation in the Gaza Strip is to lift the blockade and rebuild the economy. The Gaza Strip itself is a 40 kilometer by 10 kilometer area that is home to over 1.7 million Palestinians. The unemployment rate ranges from 28% to 45% with over half of the youth unemployed. As a result, over 70% of Gazan Palestinians need to rely on humanitarian aid in order to survive with basic items such as electricity, a luxury for most. As of June 2012, 85% of schools in Gaza run on double shifts because they lack building material for new ones. In short, the Gaza Strip lives on the precarious edge, which is in no small part due to the blockade. The Gaza blockade that was put into place in 2007 was only an augmentation of pre-existing restrictions. Travel between the Gaza Strip, Israel, and the West Bank has been restricted since the first intifada in 1987 with further trade restrictions following the second intifada in 2000. The new blockade has dropped exports to only 2% of what they were in early 2007 and imports were limited to only basic necessities with items such as shoes, paper, and coffee banned. A general ban on imports was lifted after international attention focused on the blockade during the infamous Mavi Marmara incident in 2010. Furthermore, a general ban on construction materials was lifted as part of a ceasefire agreement between Hamas and Israel this past November.

Despite these advances, the Gaza Strip’s economy remains on the edge of collapse with access to sardine shoals and agricultural land severely limited by security barriers. Exports are still restricted and the Gaza strip cut off from its main trading partners: Israel and the West Bank. The blockade was meant to stop rocket attacks, but instead it has strangled the Gazan economy, creating a hostile environment with a large populace that is left with no opportunity for advancement by peaceful means. Is it any surprise, then, that they have turned away from peace? Rocket fire has continued in spite of the blockade, indicating that blockade is ineffective. Moreover, by denying a large number of Palestinians of the means to support themselves, they are left vulnerable to extreme demagogues who see violence as the only answer. Finally, by purposefully weakening Hamas, Israel has created a weak government incapable of restraining its own populace. If Israel wants Gaza to moderate, they need to give Gazan Palestinians the opportunity to become moderate. They need the opportunity to work, support themselves, and to build a future for their children, so they have a stake in maintaining the status quo and feel progress is being made. The blockade ensures that this will not happen, and, as a result, the population of the Gaza Strip will remain hostile. This is not a solution that benefits the people of Israel or Palestine because without peace there is no true security. If rocket attacks are to stop, then the motivation for firing those rockets must be removed. We cannot simply deny Gazan Palestinians work and education, and then complain about their inhumanity. If the rockets are to end, then the blockade must be lifted and the Gazan economy revitalized. Schools and homes should be built, businesses should be provided with investment, manufacturing and agriculture should be modernized. If the U.S. will continue to provide funds for Israeli security, then it should provide funds for rebuilding the Gaza Strip as an integral part of Israeli security. After all, economic growth is the breeding ground for moderation, and ultimately, peace. PP

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WHY I’M AGAINST AN ASSAULT WEAPONS BAN By Akshai Bhatnagar ’15, Staff Writer

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o, I’m not a Republican. Nor am I pro-life, against gay marriage, or even particularly religious. I am actually the treasurer of the JHU College Democrats, and I used to intern at the Democratic Party headquarters in Washington, D.C. I spent countless (unpaid) hours working to get Barack Obama reelected, and couldn’t have been happier at last November’s results. But I am against an assault weapons ban, although perhaps not for the reasons you might expect. Since it expired in 2004, the assault weapons ban has been a top priority for many in the Democratic Party. In the recent upsurge of political support for gun control after the Sandy Hook massacre, many of these Democrats have renewed their efforts to pass a new assault weapons ban. Although I am a Democrat—and do believe that the deadliest weapons belong only in military or law enforcement hands—pressing for an assault weapons ban is a bad idea. First and foremost, progressives need to remember the emotional sensitivity of gun control. As Aaron Sorkin once wrote, it’s not that Democrats don’t like guns, it’s that they don’t like the people who own them. Whether this statement is true or not is largely irrelevant in a political context. The fact that it is perceived to be true is enough to turn many law-abiding gun owners against the Democratic Party. However, I cannot help but feel that there must be some element of truth to that line from The West Wing. Too often, gun owners serve as a convenient stand-in for everything progressives dislike about rural America. Yet, demonizing the 54% of Americans who approve of the National Rifle Association is as unfair as demonizing the 47% of Americans who don’t pay income tax, and as politically perilous. I don’t own a gun and probably never will. But I know thoughtful, reasonable people who do, and they have legitimate complaints against an assault weapons ban. “Assault weapon” is a term defined by Congress, and in the past the gun industry has shown remarkably capable of skirting the ban, producing and selling militarygrade weapons after a few cosmetic changes. The assault weapons ban did not prevent the massacre at Columbine High School in 1999, and no less a gun control advocate

than President Obama himself has stated that the majority of gun murderers are “not using AK-47s, they’re using cheap handguns.” These arguments of gun control skeptics may or may not be valid, but they are certainly worthy of consideration and debate. At the very least, they merit more than the weary eye-roll they typically elicit from the left. Democrats and progressives should also pause before interpreting the recent electoral victory as a full-throated endorsement of the stereotypical liberal agenda. The president may have won reelection, yet House Republicans held on to 234 out of 242 seats. Gerrymandered districts or not, this was a formidable accomplishment for the GOP. House Republicans have their own mandate and primary voters to answer to; asking them to vote for an assault weapons ban would be an exercise in futility. The political prospects of passing the ban are even more complicated in the Senate, where numerous red-state Democrats will be up for reelection in 2014. Even if an assault weapons ban were to pass the Democratically-controlled Senate, it would still die in the House, while costing several Democratic senators their seats next fall. Running such high risks in the Senate for something that could never pass the House is not a smart move. Gun violence is a serious problem in the United States, and it merits a serious solution. That solution may or may not include an assault weapons ban, yet the current political landscape makes a ban an unrealistic near-term objective. In any case, those who favor gun restrictions would do well to remember that those who disagree with them are not the simple caricatures they are frequently made out to be. Rather than alienate gun owners over a legislative provision that will not pass, and perhaps might not be that effective even if it did, gun control advocates should limit their ambitions to smaller, more popular measures, such as limiting magazine sizes, enhancing background checks, and cracking down on straw purchases. Pushing for these provisions could actually result in gun control legislation that actually saves lives, without alienating Republicans who might otherwise back immigration or budget reform efforts. As much as some of us may loathe gun violence, now is simply not the time to renew an assault weapons ban. PP

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SILICON WAR: THE CHINESE GOVERNMENT AND CYBER ATTACKS By Christopher Dunnett ’13, Staff Writer

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evelations of the Chinese government’s role in hacking attacks on American companies this past week were a particularly interesting foreign policy development. In the past American multinational companies have blamed the Chinese for security breaches and anti-competitive intellectual property theft. A report released last week by the private security company, Mandiant, has confirmed these suspicions, blaming elements within the Chinese military for a plethora of criminal cyber attacks on American businesses and for stealing countless data over the past decade. Mandiant’s report convincingly demonstrates the complicity of the Chinese government in the attacks, pinpointing responsibility on a specific unit of the Chinese military based in the outskirts of Shanghai, Unit 61398.

evidence is far too overwhelming and clear cut. Leading members of Congress have strongly censured Chinese government involvement in Unit 61398’s actions, and overt American criticism is likely to continue. It’s entirely conceivable that last week’s revelations could damage Sino-American relations. The contemporary furor over Chinese hacking allegations underscores the importance of cyber security for national and economic interests. Despite the relatively unsophisticated nature of Unit 61398’s activities, incidents of stolen data have become increasingly important over the past years. More advanced government-sponsored hacking incidents not only threaten U.S. businesses, but also American national security. The U.S. government is increasingly under threat of security breaches. The potentially catastrophic effects of cyber attacks have received scant attention in the news media and national security dialogue. In fact, the United States and other nations also utilize hacking as important aspects of national defense. However, government officials stress the differences between hacking for national security reasons and the intellectual property theft that China is involved in.

Given the Chinese party-state’s centralized, top-down command structure and strict oversight over the military, it’s likely that leading figures in the Chinese government authorized the group’s actions. Unit 61398 is under the direct supervision of the country’s military command. Mandiant’s report is damning and undeniable proof of alarming suspicions, proving the upper echelons of the Chinese government’s complicity in criminal anti-competitive hacking behavior. The potentially devastating nature of cyber attacks underscores the changing security environment in a rapidly In the past, the U.S. government and American businesses globalizing world. As the globe becomes more integrated, have muted their criticism of the Chinese leadership for the nature of national security and economic interests their involvement in hacking activity. American multina- are apt to change and even become blurred. Despite the tionals don’t want to lose out on the Chinese market and feigned shock that accompanied last week’s report, cyber criticism of information stealing might unfairly disadvan- security has long played an important role in overall natage firms with operations in China. The U.S. government tional security. There’s enhanced understanding among has remained similarly silent about Chinese cyber hack- policy makers that national economic interests are harding over the past decade, as Washington is wary to un- ly differentiable from homeland security. Hopefully, the dermine constructive relations with an important trading Mandiant report will only augment awareness of this partner over mere allegations. American criticism of Chi- trend among government officials and the American nese economic practices has usually remained focused on public. More needs to be done on the international stage the value of the Chinese Renminbi or inadequate intellec- to discourage anti-competitive data theft and crack down tual property rights protection in the Chinese mainland. on government-sponsored and private computer hacking. The American public, government, and international However, with the release of the Mandiant report, the organizations must be increasingly aware of the necessiU.S. government is likely to become increasingly criti- ties of cyber security in a rapidly globalizing world. The cal of the Chinese leadership’s involvement in illegal cy- need for a more holistic view of national security, one ber attacks against American companies. Despite Chi- that takes into account economic threats and computer nese denials of their complicity in hacking behavior, the threats, is evident. PP

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Interview with Emre Yilmaz By Leila Collins ‘14, Contributing Writer

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elow we continue a series begun in the first Politik Press of this Semester. In the fall of 2012, Leila Collins studied abroad in Istanbul, Turkey. While there she conducted interviews relating to religion, religious freedom, and secularism in Turkey. She spoke to professors and her peers to capture sentiments voiced in academia and coffee shops. Some of the statements in these interviews can seem bigoted or inflammatory. JHU Politik is committed to publishing these interviews because they represent a unique opportunity to gain the perspective of people half a world away. One of the individuals she interviewed was Emre Yilmaz*, a 22-year-old college student studying political science in Istanbul, his home for the last five years. Emre is originally from Denizli, a city to the south of Istanbul. *Emre’s name has been changed at his request. Can you tell me a bit about your religious and family background? My family is not really religious; it’s like Turkish religious. In Turkey, you don’t have to practice Islam so much, to the point like that Arabs do. You have to be somewhere in between. Too much religion is like, you know, people hate it. An extremely religious person is not allowed. So when you see a girl at Bogazici wearing a headscarf, do you look down upon her? I used to hate head-scarved women, because my mother does not wear one. And usually in my hometown, with my friends, we would insult them by calling them spider-headed. You know her brain is not used so there are spiders everywhere. It’s a rhetoric[al device]. When you say spider-headed you are standing at the positivist side of the paradigm. Why don’t you hate these women any more? The perception of these women has changed. Is it good or bad? I don’t know. It is good for democracy, but it is bad for me because I don’t want to see head-scarved women all around.

Why is it good for democracy? Because the religious people had been marginalized. And it is actually good because religious men are no longer able to oppress women as much. Now religious women have more status in society. Is this because of Erdogan? Erdogan is a charismatic leader, yes. However, I would like to see it from a structuralist perspective. He was just riding the change. Headscarves are even controversial for some schools of Islam. It is a part of cultural, not a religion, which, I say, doesn`t belong to Anatolia. Is our generation more religious than the older generation? Well yes, I see that as homogenization. People were more polarized before. Now people are getting [more religious], because you know there used to be two kinds of people, leftists and conservatives, there have never been social liberals in Turkey. There is a general shift towards the middle.

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INTERVIEW WITH EMRE YILMAZ CONTINUED What do you see yourself as? Well, my father is a high school philosophy teacher and he was a Kemalist and a socialist. Well there is no rational way of merging Kemalism with socialism, but you know it is an ideology and you don’t need to be rational. Actually Kemalism is very ambiguous. Kemalism is a combination of secularism and progressivism. Our nationalism has been imposed on us. The point that hurts [the] Turkish people is that the West perceives Turkey as being backwards. People count Turks as something like Arabs, something like that. And I really want to stomp those people in the face when they do that. Yes, but the West is concerned about Turkey’s human rights record. Yea, but you have to understand that it is a different situation. In some respect, Turkey does not have the worst record even in [European Union]. Also, the EU took Greece in very early because there were really strong leftists movements. You think that that was why? Not the Armenian genocide or religious differences? The Armenian issue? What does that have to do with EU integration? No, I know what I am talking about. They took Greece into the EU because there were leftist movements.

Yes, I’ve been treated very well as an American in Turkey. Can you tell me a bit more about Erdogan and the current political situation of Turkey? Democracy hasn’t become a part of the culture of Turkish politics. But now, with Erdogan there is a more politically stable background. So now the economy is booming, political stability was everything that Turkey needed. And Erdogan was the charismatic figure that we needed for that political stability. Did he also bring democracy? Well, in a sense he did because he civilized the bureaucracy. Erdogan has made it clear that a military coup cannot happen. Why is this all happening now? The economy was ridiculously lagging behind of education. With the political stability, education movements gained momentum. Also, climbing to middle income levels is relatively easy these days. Why was this investment in education made? Well, we have nothing else to invest in other than our own intellect. There is a saying in Turkey: everything that we have is over the soil. That means that we have no natural resources so we must use our minds to succeed and prosper. PP

How do Turkish people view Americans? All Turkish people hate Americans because they think that the Americans have backed the coups. Leftists hate America because of capitalism, and rightist hate America because of Israel. Everyone hates America. On the other hand, everyone loves Americans because the vast majority of them have nothing to with so called “covert affairs”

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WRITE FOR thePOLITIK PRESS

Photo Courtesy: United States Library of Congress’s Prints and Photographs Division

The Politik Press, originally founded in 2008 as JHU Politik, is a weekly publication of political opinion pieces. We believe that progress comes from conversation and that every voice deserves to be heard. Our staff is made up of students with majors that range from political science to biomolecular engineering. We seek out the best political writers on campus and regularly interview professors and graduate students. In many ways, the Homewood campus is a microcosm of the American political landscape. We find ourselves at a crossroads defined by students from across the country, professors with disparate political theories, and a city constantly confronting racial violence, political corruption and systemic economic problems. While we publish the Politik Press weekly, we work simultaneously on our special issues. These magazines confront a single topic from multiple angles. In 2011, with the Arab Spring fully underway, we interviewed five Hopkins professors whose expertise ranged from Archeology to US-Israeli relations, in order to provide some clarity on an immensely complex and constantly shifting situation. In 2012 we focused on the political issues of Baltimore, conducting interviews with professors and local politicians in order to shed light on the complexities of our school’s relationship to our city. Our latest Special Issue was on the politics of research.

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