Soon in Istanbul: Free Entrance to Hagia Sophia

Hagia Sophia saint sophie istanbul chat

There you are, we were all awaiting with bated breath, the news came from the Reis himself: Hagia Sophia will recover its Ottoman religious identity if the AKP wins the municipal elections in Istanbul.


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All right, this story is like a serpent in the Bosphorus, but since the electoral match in Istanbul may prove uncertain, the Reis wants to offer garantees to the bigots , no matter the shape of their beards, and incite them to a massive vote. In brief, for those who may have doubts, given the price of tomatoes, Santa Sofia would be transformed again into a place of worship.

Tourists visit the Blue Mosque free of charge,” the Reis said… Why not Hagia Sophia, reconverted into a mosque, of course. So this would be part of a tourist promotion gambit…

We will certainly find a Mehmet somewhere to rechristen the building. And as for the neighborhood of Sur, destroyed in 2015, I would be much surprised if UNESCO fell ill over this. And while we’re at it, we could also equip with minarets the museums and the palace to the glory of Atatürk.

What does an electoral campaign rest upon, I ask you…

Erdoğan, presumably read in the racist rag published by the killer in New Zealand that he wished to “liberate Hagia Sophia of its minarets”and so decided to counter attack… This is the official explanation, since it appears the killings’ main target was none other than Turkey… The Kurds, the HDP, Gülen, racists of the theory of the Great Replacement, ISIS, Trump…The list of Turkey’s enemies keeps on growing. Voting for the AKP in Istanbul would appear then to be a must for any respectable Ottoman…

These elections are causing deep rifts on questions that have little to do with realities in Turkey. Every real problem becomes the motive for an electoral squabble meant to pull votes away from the opponent. But when it comes to the flag and all that, they all join forces to shoot down the same ones. And the trials continue, arrests occur daily, the common enemies of the interior and the exterior remain the same…

True, there’s less electoral pollution. Because of the crisis, the posters and banners are smaller. But big or small, ugly mugs remain ugly mugs.

And me who hasn’t been to Hagia Sophia in so long, I’ll have to hurry, before it becomes a free attraction!

saint sophie istanbul chat
Photo @Necati Ufuk Başkır

Translation by Renée Lucie Bourges
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Mamie Eyan
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Mamie Eyan

Chroniqueuse Mamie stanbouliote de 82 ans. Tendresses, coups de gueule et révolte ! Billets d’humeur…

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