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Secularism is Point of Debate for Pope, Islamic Leaders

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Secularism is Point of Debate for Pope, Islamic Leaders

Analysis

Secularism is Point of Debate for Pope, Islamic Leaders

Secularism is Point of Debate for Pope, Islamic Leaders

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  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/6550595/6550596" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Islamists in Turkey and Pope Benedict have been grappling with the role of secularism in the modern state. Secularism is a founding principle of modern Turkey, but Islamists have been railing against the concept.

Similarly, the pope has been a vocal critic of secularism in Europe, the effects of which he seems to hope to roll back in the West.

For two points of view on secularism, Robert Siegel talks with Soner Cagaptay, director of the Washington Institute's Turkish research program, and Damon Linker, who has written about Pope Benedict in The New Republic. Linker is the author of The Theocons: Secular America Under Siege.