Turkey News - History

Turkey News - History

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Turkey News


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Turkey profile - Timeline

1453 - Sultan Mehmed II captures Constantinople, ending the Byzantine Empire and consolidating Ottoman Empire in Asia Minor and Balkans.

15th-16th centuries - Expansion into Asia and Africa.

1683 - Ottoman advance into Europe halted at Battle of Vienna. Long decline begins.

19th century - Efforts at political and economic modernisation of Empire largely founder.

1908 - Young Turk Revolution establishes constitutional rule, but degenerates into military dictatorship during First World War, where Ottoman Empire fights in alliance with Germany and Austria-Hungary.

1918-22 - Partition of defeated Ottoman Empire leads to eventual triumph of Turkish National Movement in war of independence against foreign occupation and rule of Sultan.

A Brief History of the Presidential Turkey Pardon

Two hundred years after George Washington issued the first presidential proclamation of a day of public thanksgiving, President George H.W. Bush stepped before reporters, 30 schoolchildren and one antsy 50-pound turkey in the White House Rose Garden on November 17, 1989. The public presentation of a plump gobbler to the chief executive in the lead-up to Thanksgiving had been a time-honored photo op since the 1940s, but Bush would add a new presidential tradition of his own. After noting that the turkey appeared “understandably nervous,” Bush added: “Let me assure you, and this fine tom turkey, that he will not end up on anyone’s dinner table, not this guy. He’s granted a presidential pardon as of right now.”

Decades later, the presidential turkey pardon remains an annual Thanksgiving ritual. However, while Bush formalized the fowl tradition, he may not have been the first president to issue a stay of execution to a turkey. A story is told that while Abraham Lincoln occupied the White House, his young son Tad grew so close to a turkey destined for Christmas dinner that he named him Jack and led him around on a leash like a pet. Listening to Tad’s pleas to spare the turkey from his culinary fate, the Great Emancipator granted a reprieve and freed the bird.

Harry Truman receiving a Thanksgiving turkey on November 16, 1949

A decade later during the administration of President Ulysses S. Grant, Rhode Island poultry dealer Horace Vose began to send plump turkeys to the White House for Thanksgiving dinners. Although a staunch Republican, Vose was non-partisan when it came to turkeys. He sent birds to presidents of both parties until his death in 1913. Beginning in 1946, a pair of poultry industry groups—the National Turkey Federation and the Poultry and Egg National Board𠅊ssumed the duties of presenting presidents with turkeys for the holidays. That year, the groups delivered a 42-pound Texas tom to President Harry Truman for Christmas.

While Truman began the ritual of appearing with the gift turkeys in staged photo ops, he is erroneously credited with starting the presidential pardon tradition. The misinformation is so prevalent that the Truman Library has issued a statement on its web site that its staff “has found no documents, speeches, newspaper clippings, photographs, or other contemporary records in our holdings which refer to Truman pardoning a turkey that he received as a gift in 1947, or at any other time during his Presidency.”

In fact, not only did the turkeys given to Truman and some of his successors fail to receive clemency, they suffered a much different fate by ending up on the presidential dinner table. In 1948 Truman told reporters that the turkeys given to him “would come in handy” for the 25 people expected for dinner at his Independence, Missouri, home that Christmas. Ten days before Thanksgiving in 1953, National Turkey Federation president Roscoe Hill presented a live 39-pound turkey to President Dwight Eisenhower, who hoped Hill would kill, freeze and return the gobbler to the White House “in plenty of time because I hope to spend Thanksgiving with my youngsters and I want to take him along.”

Turkey presentation to President Kennedy on November 19, 1963

A president finally took pity on a gifted bird in 1963 when John F. Kennedy spared the life of a mammoth 55-pound white turkey wearing a sign around its neck𠅌learly not of its own volition—that read “Good Eating, Mr. President!” “We’ll just let this one grow,” Kennedy said with a grin. “It’s our Thanksgiving present to him.” As the president left the Rose Garden on November 19, 1963, the turkey prepared for its return to a California farm while Kennedy finalized preparations for his fateful trip to Dallas three days later.

Although newspapers in 1963 reported that “Merciful President Pardons Turkey,” the first president to actually use the word “pardon” at the National Thanksgiving Turkey Presentation may have been Ronald Reagan, albeit as a quip. During the throes of the Iran-Contra scandal in 1987, Reagan sidestepped reporters’ questions about whether he planned to pardon any of his aides accused of wrongdoing. When then asked about the fate of the 55-pound turkey he was just given, Reagan joked, “I’ll pardon him.”

President Reagan&aposs turkey ceremony

Although the National Thanksgiving Turkey and its alternate (sent in case the primary turkey can’t fulfill its duties—mainly, staying alive to make it to the presentation ceremony) now receive stays of execution, their remaining days do not last too long. The skeletons and organs of turkeys bred for consumption are incapable of supporting extreme weights, and most of the reprieved turkeys die prematurely within the following year.

Get the history behind the holiday. Access hundreds of hours of commercial-free series and specials with HISTORY Vault.

Turkey News - History

Thousands of Russian tourists began arriving in Turkey on Tuesday, boosting hopes for its tourism sector after a two-month suspension in flights imposed by Moscow due to concerns about a surge in COVID-19 cases in April.

Turkey to further ease coronavirus restrictions from July

Turkey will further relax restrictions imposed to curb the spread of COVID-19 from next month, President Tayyip Erdogan said on Monday after the number of daily coronavirus cases in the country fell to around 5,000.

Turkish court accepts indictment seeking ban of pro-Kurdish party

ISTANBUL (Reuters) -Turkey's Constitutional Court on Monday accepted an indictment filed by a top prosecutor seeking a ban on the pro-Kurdish Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP) for alleged ties to militants, state media said, opening the way for a case to close parliament's third-largest party.

U.S. says Biden, Erdogan agreed on Afghanistan but S-400 issue is unresolved

WASHINGTON (Reuters) -President Joe Biden and Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan agreed in a meeting this week that Turkey would take a lead role in securing Kabul airport as the United States withdraws troops from Afghanistan, U.S. National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan said on Thursday.

Man storms Pro-Kurdish party office in Turkey, kills woman

A man stormed a local office of Turkey's main Pro-Kurdish party and shot dead a 20-year-old woman in the western city of Izmir on Thursday, prompting the party to blame a public government crackdown on it which has intensified this year.

Erdogan says he told Biden Turkey is not shifting on S-400s - state media

ANKARA (Reuters) -President Tayyip Erdogan said he had told U.S. President Joe Biden at their first meeting that Turkey would not change its stance on its Russian S-400 missile defences over which Washington sanctioned Ankara, state media reported on Thursday.

Factbox-Rifts that divide NATO allies Turkey and United States

Joe Biden holds his first meeting as U.S. president with Tayyip Erdogan on Monday, ending a five-month wait for the Turkish leader which underlines the cooler relations between Ankara and Washington since Biden took office in January.

Syrian hospital hit in artillery attacks on Afrin, at least 13 killed

IDLIB, Syria (Reuters) -At least 13 people were killed and several wounded in two separate artillery attacks on the northern Syrian town of Afrin on Saturday, local medical sources and Turkey's government said.

Factbox: Rifts that divide NATO allies Turkey and United States

Joe Biden holds his first meeting as U.S. president with Tayyip Erdogan on Monday, ending a five-month wait for the Turkish leader which underlines the cooler relations between Ankara and Washington since Biden took office in January.

Turkey hits second senior PKK official in Iraq camp strike: Anadolu

Turkey struck a senior Kurdistan Workers Party official at a refugee camp in northern Iraq, state-owned Anadolu news agency said on Friday, in the second such attack in less than a week.

Politics Video

Voting rights 'a fight' of Biden's presidency -WH

White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said there is more to be done on voting rights in the United States even if a contentious federal voting rights bill passes the Senate.


The discord on how to handle Byzantine heritage inside Turkey has cracked open an old schism between the two countries.

The worries deepened after Turkey last month reconverted Istanbul's Byzantine-era Hagia Sophia into a mosque, stripping its museum status -- which had been in place since the 1930s as the new Turkish republic sought a more secular course.

Greece lashed out at Ankara's move to reopen the UNESCO World Heritage site for Muslim worship, with Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis calling it a demonstration of Turkey's "weakness".

Erdogan has been placing an ever greater emphasis on lavish celebrations marking the defeat of the Christian Byzantines by the Muslim Ottoman Turks.

This month, he ordered another ancient Orthodox site that became a mosque and later a museum to be turned back into a place of Muslim worship.

Preservation Work to Continue in the Coming Months

During the remainder of 2021, the archaeologists who unearthed the Mastaura amphitheater will begin conservation and preservation work on its most vulnerable sections.

“There are cracks in the walls of the building and some masonry stones are falling off,” Akkurnaz explained. “In April, we will first conserve the walls of the building, protecting the building against decay and deterioration.”

After that process is complete, Akkurnaz and his team will launch a series of geophysical surveys at the site, to gain more information about what the structure looks like underground.

In addition to the support they’re receiving from the local government of the nearby town of Nazilli, the archaeologists are also cooperating closely with Turkey’s Ministry of Culture and Tourism on this important excavation project.

Top image: An aerial photograph of the recently discovered Roman Colosseum replica in Western Turkey Source: Hurriyet Daily News

Adjunct History Instructor

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Job Title Adjunct History Instructor

Working Title History Adjuncts

Department Department of History

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Lake Superior State University is seeking to establish a list of qualified adjunct instructors to teach on-campus introductory and mid-level courses in the Department of History.

The minimum educational requirement is a Master’s degree in history from a regionally-accredited institution.

Minimum qualifications plus strong teaching skills.

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Settlement patterns

About three-fourths of the population lives in towns and cities. Prior to the mid-20th century, however, the population was predominantly rural, and its distribution was strongly influenced by the agricultural potential of the land. Thus, there are pronounced regional variations in population density, the main contrast being between the interior and the periphery. The regional coastlands of the Black Sea, the Sea of Marmara, and the Aegean Sea are the most densely settled regions accounting for less than two-fifths of the country’s land area, the regions together represent more than half its population. The Mediterranean coastal region is more thinly settled, though there are pockets of high population density in the Antalya and Adana basins. The remainder of the country is relatively lightly populated: the Anatolian interior and southeast, occupying more than half the country’s territory, contain less than two-fifths of Turkey’s population. At the beginning of the 21st century, however, the southeast was the country’s fastest-growing region.

Historically, much of Anatolia—especially the east—was populated by nomads and transhumants, who migrated seasonally between upland and plain. Some of their descendants, herders of sheep and goats, move from plain to mountain, living in tents, while others possess houses in two or even three villages at different altitudes.

Over much of the country, the bulk of the population lives in villages, which are estimated to number at least 50,000. The average village population tends to vary, and many villages comprise two or three separate rural settlements some distance apart.

The typical Turkish village house is a rectangular flat-roofed building, the colour of the local unbaked brick or stone from which it is made, one or two stories high. The poorest contain a single room to house family, livestock, and possessions the better village houses encompass joint households of perhaps 20 people living in large compounds, off which lead many living rooms, stores, stables, and barns. The vast majority of homes fall between these extremes, and there is great local variation. Commonly, the head of the household and his wife live and sleep in the main room of the house, which contains the bedding (stacked away in the daytime), the cooking stove (in some areas a beehive-shaped oven built into the floor), shelves with cooking pots and implements, a gaily painted chest containing the woman’s trousseau and personal possessions, and a chest for flour and grain. People sit on rugs or mats spread on the floor. Many homes also have at least one room fitted as a guest room, normally for the use of men only. The guest room has built-in divans running along the walls and very often a stone or wooden floor. The most marked contrast occurs in the forests of the northern mountain ranges, where the village homes are made of timber and have red roofs. Brick, cement, and cinder block are now also becoming common wherever people can afford them.

Cities in Turkey are for the most part of moderate size, though many have grown rapidly since the 1970s. The largest is Istanbul though no longer the capital city, it remains the chief port and commercial centre, attracting migrants from the entire country. With its suburbs along the Bosporus, Istanbul forms a sprawling agglomeration with nearly 15 million inhabitants. The second largest city, Ankara, is of much more recent origin. Prior to the establishment of the republic, it was one of many small provincial towns in the interior, but its choice as the capital city has resulted in a long period of rapid growth. The third largest city, İzmir, is the port and commercial centre for the prosperous Aegean coastal zone.

Apart from these three main centres, an important cluster of cities is located in the Adana Plain, where Adana, Mersin (İçel), and a number of smaller centres are situated. Elsewhere the chief cities are widely separated regional and provincial capitals, of which the largest are Bursa, in the Marmara lowlands Samsun, on the Black Sea Antalya, on the Mediterranean Konya, Kayseri, Eskişehir, Malatya, Erzurum, and Sivas, in the interior and Diyarbakır, Gaziantep, and Şanlıurfa, in the southeast.

Traditional Anatolian town houses, still the most common residence in many smaller cities, were built in stone or wood, usually of two stories, with wooden floors and, sometimes, beautifully carved ceilings. The upper story often protrudes, cantilever fashion, into the street. With whitewashed walls and red-tiled roofs, these small towns sometimes present a more modern appearance than most villages, though just as often the distinction between large villages and small towns is barely visible. In the larger cities, while traditional building types are still visible in the older areas, large recently developed sections are dominated by simpler styles in brick and concrete. Downtown areas have an increasingly European appearance.

Turkish mafia boss dishes dirt, becomes YouTube phenomenon

In a faraway corner of the world, in a land Armenians call Artsakh and which you may know as Karabakh (“black ­garden”), a church was bombed last week — and then bombed again. It was Azeri forces that ­attacked the Holy Savior Cathedral in the city of Shushi, amid a spiraling armed conflict between the two sides.

And not just between those two sides. Scattered among these ancient mountains are the debris of Syrian mercenaries, Israeli drones, Turkish helicopters and Russian bombs, all exploding out into an unpredictable regional war.

Yet for us Armenians, an attack like the one on the Holy Savior Cathedral isn’t just a matter of urgent current affairs. No, the swirling dust kicked up by violence against a Christian house of worship can take back even the most modern-minded Armenian more than a century — to the year 1915.

That was the year that the Ottoman Turkish government began the systematic deportation, attempted conversion and ultimate killing of a million and a half Christian Armenians.

“Christians in Peril in Turkey,” screamed headlines from The New York Times that year. It turned out to be quite the global event: the spectacular killing of the world’s first Christian people, the first genocide of modern history unfolding in the shadows of Ararat, the biblical mountains where Noah’s Ark had landed.

And then another kind of headline: “Turkish Official Denies Atrocities.”

As Armenians were sent to slaughter like lambs, the Turkish government was gaslighting America and the world, unveiling a policy of systematically denying the Armenian Genocide that continues to this day. The policy also involved systematically destroying all evidence that Armenians had ever lived in the region — including hundreds of churches.

Miraculously, a small sliver of Armenia did survive the genocide, first as an independent republic and then — history never being too generous — as Soviet Armenia. A few years later, Armenia was cut up even further. It was Joseph Stalin’s idea to award the Armenian territory of Nagorno Karabakh to Soviet Azerbaijan. It remained semi-autonomous within its bound, and Armenians remained a majority there, although pogroms and massacres were rampant.

As the Soviet Union was falling, the people of Artsakh naturally voted — just like Armenia and Azerbaijan — to regain sovereignty. Azerbaijan, having enjoyed possession of the place for the better part of a century, was not inclined to give it up. That is how the war started.

Coup attempt

2016 July - The authorities detain thousands of soldiers and judges on suspicion of involvement in a coup attempt that President Erdogan says was inspired by his exiled opponent Fethullah Gulen.

The government also shuts down dozens of media outlets - including 16 TV channels - during a continuing crackdown in the wake of the failed coup attempt.

2017 January - Uzbek gunman kills 39 people celebrating New Year at the Reina nightclub in Istanbul. Islamic State group says it was behind the attack.

2017 April - President Erdogan narrowly wins referendum to extend his powers. Opposition launches appeal against result.

2018 January - The Turkish military launches its ''Olive Branch'' land and air operation in north-western Syria, seizing large areas from Kurdish control, including the town of Afrin.

2019 June - President Erdogan suffers setback as opposition CHP party wins the mayoral election in his home city of Istanbul by a comfortable margin. He had insisted on a re-run of the poll when the CHP won narrowly in March.

2019 October - US withdraws troops from northern Syria, prompting Turkey to attack US Kurdish allies in the area.


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