In the 1970s, political Islam started to gain strength in Turkey as well as the rest of the Muslim world. Evolution became a minor culture war item, as a way for Islamists to demonstrate opposition to secular life without taking the risk of naming official secularism as a target. But creationism came into its own only in the mid 1980s, when in the aftermath of a short period of military dictatorship, religious conservatives gained control of the Turkish Ministry of Education. These conservative Muslims thought evolutionary ideas were morally corrosive, yet they found themselves in an environment where science commanded significant cognitive authority. So they needed a way to suggest that evolution was a fraudulent, scientifically dubious idea. They found the resources they needed in American “scientific creationism,” and invoked Christian creationists in a curious mirror image of the way Turkish secularists regularly relied on Western scientific authorities. While the Muslims downplayed some features of popular American creationism such as a young earth and flood geology, they adopted the bulk of the anti-evolutionary debating points developed by their Christian counterparts. Indeed, the Ministry of Education had many instances of creation-science literature officially translated and made available to high school teachers and libraries. Since this mid-80s breakthrough, Turkish textbooks have often contained anti-Darwinian or explicitly creationist material. The creationist paragraphs have disappeared in the infrequent occasions when secularist parties have shared power and reappeared when Islamists returned to government. At present a moderate Islamist party sympathetic to creationist views holds power. This party won another overwhelming electoral victory in 2007, and so it looks like conservative Muslim concerns will continue to influence Turkish science and education policy for the foreseeable future.**shudder** A nightmare. A dystopic horror unleashed in reality.
And its what they want for us.
But dont despair! I gots a good Behe Bash in the works ;)