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Teach Quran to Your Embryo

Teach Quran to Your Embryo

Turkish (and other) Islamists never cease to amaze.

We were perhaps too naïve when we jokingly suggested that the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) should launch religious education at the kindergarten – that was at the time when the country was debating an AKP draft bill that would introduce religion as a must course for primary school pupils. When it comes to religious teaching not even sky is the limit – for the Islamists.

“Religious educations should start during pregnancy” was the headline of an otherwise funny news in Yeni Akit, the daily read for the militant Islamist Turk.

The story, sounding more like a campaign launch, argued:

“Pregnancy is the basis of a child’s education.

“In this period (pregnancy) the mother’s areas of interest are transferred to the child.

“It has been determined that (like quoting the findings of a scientific study) a child would too quickly comprehend the Quran and speak it (its language) if the mother constantly read the Quran (during her pregnancy).

“Therefore (during pregnancy) we should read verses from the Quran to the child and create awareness (of the Quran) … Therefore the child will more quickly learn (the verses) when he has grown up.

“Just like a European mother listening constantly to Beethoven’s music with the hope that her child should become a great composer we should read the Quran and its verses all the time during pregnancy.”

Easy. You want a child who should become a future president? Listen to every speech of President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan during pregnancy. You want an Einstein? Study science during pregnancy. This columnist is not sure, though, what should a future mother read or do if she wants a child who would become super rich in his adulthood. Read biographies of the super rich? Count big bundles of banknotes everyday?

What about the atheist children born into devout families? Could it be that their mothers secretly read Sam Harris’ books during their pregnancies? Or corrupt politicians … Did their mothers, often poor villagers, secretly swindle public money when they were pregnant?

Yeni Akit chaps are fun unless they swear or threaten. Sadly they are not aware that they are Turkey’s real “The Onion.” The problem is, although they sound like they are, they are not joking.

About The Author

Burak Bekdil

Burak Bekdil is an Ankara-based Turkish political columnist who wrote for Hurriyet Daily News [formerly Turkish Daily News] for 29 years. He has covered Turkey for the U.S. weekly Defense News since 1997. Previously, Bekdil worked as Ankara Bureau Chief for Dow Jones Newswires and CNBC-e television. He contributes to annual national defense sector reviews for anti-corruption institutions like Transparency International and Global Integrity. Bekdil is a fellow at the Middle East Forum and regularly writes for the Gatestone Institute and Middle East Quarterly. He also contributes to Perspectives, a journal of the Begin-Sadat Center for Strategic Studies, Bar-Ilan University, Tel Aviv. James Cuno, art historian and President of the J. Paul Getty Trust, describes Bekdil as "a frequent critic of Prime Minister [now president] Recep Tayyip Erdogan." In 2001, a Heavy Crimes Court in Ankara sentenced Bekdil to a suspended, 20-month prison sentence for his column in which he satirized corruption in the judiciary. Bekdil's comments, quotes and articles have been published in international media outlets including the Wall Street Journal, The Economist, BBC, The Guardian, Reuters, Associated Press, Bloomberg, Los Angeles Times, The Commentator, New York Times, Kathimerini, National Review Online, Algemeiner, NPR, Washington Times, Die Presse, Haaretz, The Jerusalem Post, Toronto Star, Financial Times, Al-Monitor, Le Figaro, ABC, El Pais, Stern, Al-Arabiya, Helsingin Sanomat, Racjonalista, Defence Greece, Moyen-Orient, Courier International, ISN Security Watch and Coloquio (of Congreso Judio Latinoamerico) and the Jewish Chronicle (London). (Born: Ankara, 1966; Undergraduate: Department of Economics, Middle East Technical University, Ankara; Post-graduate: Department of Economics, University of Surrey, United Kingdom)

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