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Pay Attention to Turkey!

I'm guessing most of us only pay attention to foreign countries when there's a crisis. Well, today there is. Turkey faces a political standoff over the role of religion in public life... the secularists versus the Islamists. And, while it's not page one news here at home, Turkey's importance to the United States makes this a story worth watching. They're a NATO ally that wants to be part of the European Union, a secular democracy in the Muslim middle east, and border Iraq, Iran, and Syria, among others. There's also that issue of U.S. energy policy, and Turkey's strategic location as a bridge between the middle east and Europe.