February 4, 2015
My fellow editors asked me if I’d care to comment on Fethullah Gülen’s op-ed in The New York Times. I was uncertain whether I could do it without violating our Code of Conduct. I considered whether I might be able to get away with a few choice words in Turkish, but thought, “No, the Code of Conduct is sacred in every language.” I decided words like the ones I reckoned this inspired in Turkey really were too trashy.
Continue reading A Frolic with Fethullah Gülen
U.S. News & World Report
July 8, 2013
If you’re reading the American press, you might think that the protests in Turkey have died down. Nothing could be further from the truth. Stranger still, if you are reading the Turkish press, you might conclude that you are in Egypt, because that seems to be the only topic of conversation.
This is why: Conventional wisdom has it that the Egyptian coup was a “nightmare” for Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, putting an end to his ambitious foreign policy fantasies.
Continue reading How Turkey’s Leaders Are Exploiting Egypt’s Coup
Erdoğan and Gülen are both dangerous—but only one of them lives in the Poconos.
23 December 2014
Until recently, I lived in Turkey. It seemed to me then unfathomable that most Americans did not recognize the name Fethullah Gülen. Even those vaguely aware of him did not find it perplexing that a Turkish preacher, billionaire, and head of a multinational media and business empire—a man of immense power in Turkey and sinister repute—had set up shop in Pennsylvania and become a big player in the American charter school scene.
Continue reading Turkey’s Two Thugs
January 10, 2015
If you check the Drudge Report right now, you’ll see a screaming headline:
EVERY JEW I KNOW HAS LEFT PARIS
It links to an article in the Daily Mail. The claim was made by Stephen Pollard, editor of the Jewish Chronicle.
Mr. Pollard, it is perhaps true that every Jew you know has left Paris. But it is clearly true that you do not know every Jew in Paris.
I have not left. And I will not. And neither will my father. That is at least two of us. And I know many more.
Continue reading An Update From Paris: This Jew is Still Here, and She is Not Leaving
January 12, 2015
This post begins and ends with an apology for being guilty of what’s driving me nuts. The other day I wrote what turned out to be a very widely-circulated post in response to a headline I saw on the Drudge Report: “Every Jew I Know Has Left Paris,” which linked to a Daily Mail article attributing the quote to Stephen Pollard, editor of the Jewish Chronicle.
Continue reading Paris Update or, “Who Should I Believe? You or My Lying Eyes?”
January 12, 2015
This morning high mass was celebrated at Notre Dame, an obvious terrorist target. There was no visible security around the cathedral at all.
Today was one of those cold and beautiful winter days in Paris that calls to mind a 19th Century painting by Caillebotte. The police had promised “extreme security measures” for the rally: 150 plainclothes officers, 20 teams of snipers, 56 motorcycle teams, and 24 mobile units. When I read this, I didn’t know whether to be moved or horrified.
Continue reading Charlie Hebdo march proves Paris wouldn’t have the first clue how to become a proper police state
The American Interest
January 14, 2015
Is it right that Paris gets a mass rally while Boko Haram’s slaughter of thousands in Nigeria merits hardly a shrug? No. But it’s the response Paris and Nigeria both deserve. This is what civilization looks like.
I strolled into the greatest terrorist bloodbath in Paris since the Nazis ran the city. I quickly strung together a few sentences about it. I’ve been deluged with requests to do it again, which makes sense.
Continue reading Paris Is Worth a Mass
January 8, 2015
I’m a journalist but was only by chance in the vicinity of the massacre at the French satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo. I was en route to visit a friend. This took me past the paper’s office and thus put me at the heart of the bloodiest attack France has seen in the past 50 years.
Continue reading The Irreplaceable Staff of Charlie Hebdo
January 8, 2015
I had no intention of reporting on this from the scene of the Charlie Hebdo massacre. I was walking up Boulevard Richard Lenoir to meet a friend who lives in the neighborhood. But the moment I saw what I did, I knew for sure what had happened. A decade in Turkey teaches you that. That many ambulances, that many cops, that many journalists, and those kinds of faces can mean only one thing: a massive terrorist attack.
Continue reading First-Hand Account From The Terrorist Attack on Charlie Hebdo
America’s muted response is both confusing and disheartening.
28 June 2013
President Obama surely knows that the current unrest in Turkey, which has left at least four dead, 12 blind, and some 7,000 injured, many critically, does not remotely compare—as a humanitarian disaster or as a threat to American interests—to the unremitting carnage in Syria; to the urgency of evaluating the meaning of Iran’s elections and what they portend for its nuclear program; to the rapidly deteriorating security situation in Iraq; to our imminent defeat in Afghanistan; or to at least half a dozen other foreign policy crises of greater moment, not least in the Pacific.
Continue reading Notes on the Turkish Troubles