TURKEY: Democracy at Work

In Turkey's 64 il (provinces) this week, some 10 million voters flocked to the polls to elect a new Parliament. Among the millions were work-scarred women in rusty black, proudly casting their votes. Among them also were many illiterates who identified themselves on the polling-place registers with thumbprints. In Turkey's confident democracy, illiteracy (which has dropped from about 90% to 60% in three decades) is no bar to the ballot.

This was only the third free election in Turkey's history, and only the second that was conceded by all hands to be honest. The contest was between the incumbent Democrats...

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