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Introducing The Diplomatic Report

MJ (lk)
The World Affairs Council, led by Mr. Mitchell, often travels to West Palm to hear preeminent speakers discuss topics that range from international relations to cultural shifts around the world. Members of the WAC take turns filing reports on these events, and we are now branding these updates as The Diplomatic Report. Keep an eye out for different authors, who will provide a unique perspective on these important events. Today, George Sowles discusses last night's event:

The World Affairs Council of the Palm Beaches speaker series this week featured Dr. Mehmet Gurses, who is an Associate Professor and Chastain-Johnston Middle East Studies Distinguished Professor at FAU. He specializes in ethnic and religious conflict, post-civil war peace building, post-civil war democratization, Kurdish politics and the emergence and evolution of the Islamist parties in the Middle East. Dr. Gurses spoke about President Erdogan's move towards Islamic ideology and its danger to the efforts of peace in the Middle East. He talked about the deep divide within Turkey over the policies of President Erdogan. Moreover, Erdogan’s domestic agenda has included a hard line against any opposition.  It is hard to get first-hand information as to what is actually happening inside Turkey, because news is highly censored and many people who post on social media are carefully monitored. Dr. Gurses discussed the growing influence of the conservative elements of the religious community and the attendant use of larger amounts of state resources being used for purposes of religious education. Ultimately Dr. Gurses argued that the United States and Turkey are headed for rough waters, and the future is rather uncertain if Turkey continues on its present course. On December 18, students will return to Palm Beach to hear a presentation on the relations between the U.S, China and North Korea at Mar a Lago.  George Sowles, Class of '21   


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