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Erdogan takes on the Internet

Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s attempt to control the media and the Internet could be likened to the battles of Don Quixote.
People use computers at an internet cafe in Ankara February 6, 2014. Turkey's parliament, where Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan's AK Party has a majority, has approved internet controls enabling web pages to be blocked within hours in what the opposition decried as part of a government bid to stifle a corruption scandal with methods more suitable to "times of coups". Under a bill passed late on Wednesday, telecommunications authorities can block access to material within four hours without a prior court order

If the great Spanish novelist and poet Miguel de Cervantes [1547-1616] had lived 400 years later, his path might have crossed with the Turks again. He would probably have written his monumental work, Don Quixote, not on Spain’s La Mancha plains but in Turkey.

Cervantes first crossed paths with the Turks when he was 24 years old, long before he wrote his novel. Cervantes participated in the fateful Battle of Lepanto in the Gulf of Patras, which saw the defeat of the Ottoman fleet. It is in the annals of history that he fought bravely on board a vessel against the Turks and received three gunshot wounds. One rendered his left arm useless. 

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