Wednesday, May 23, 2007

can patriotism heed economy?

the pkk is not a new phenomenon. neither is its viciousness, nor its evil habit of killing innocents.

i can remember too many tourism seasons wasted because of pkk bombs going off just before the charters start to take off in may or june, scaring the better tourists away, giving an occasion to "shark" operators to bargain prices down to chick peas. the pkk's bombs and bomb threats have been a factor in turning the country into the holiday paradise of international proleteriat.

i recall many-a statements from government officials as well as the bigshots of the tour industry, trying to be persuasive that the country is safe for foreigners to visit.

i have yet to hear a very highly placed state official, like gen. yaşar büyükanıt, turkey's chief of general staff, to come forth and say "the bomb attacks will continue," just as the season is beginning.

i have no doubts that gen. büyükanıt is a most passionate patriot who loves turkey to death and he is at least as vexed as i am, or any other of our compatriots is, because of the bloodlet that spells pkk. indeed the pkk has nosw become a threat not only to turkey's territorial integrity but to the citizens' corporal integrity as well. yet, the statement from the top security officer of turkey that the carnage will not stop may cause the tour industry to bust, which translates to a few billion dollars' loss in revenues; just as the stock exchange fluctuations during the (non-)election of the president cost a fortune to the economy.

No comments: