Tuesday, July 29, 2008

All pictures from today are here.


A few more notes.

- A friend whose parents live five minutes away from the street where the blasts occurred was in Sultanahmet last night and learned about what happened from a British girl whose mother called her from London, worried sick because some media were allegedly reporting that the tragedy took place in Sultanahmet. The friend asked his mother later if she had heard the blasts - she said she hadn't. Carpetblogger has more on "when to panic" about the fate of expats and tourists in Istanbul.

- It doesn't take a Turkish politics expert to decipher the energy of today's rally in Güngören. A diverse crowd, absolutely not aggressive, yet very determined, passionate. Lots of interaction along the way with those who were watching from balconies and sidewalks: a genuine neighborhood action, more like our Maidan in 2004 than anything I've ever seen in Moscow. In Russia, though, they bring flowers to the site of the tragedy, while here there were only a few carnations attached to flags.

- There was something like a minute of silence (with the recorded sound of ambulance sirens) at the end of the rally, but a group of young guys standing half a block away from where most people were obviously did not realize what was going on and continued chanting (judging by the sound, it was something rather aggressive). First, one man turned around and raised his hand in their direction, to get them to shut up, then many more people did the same, but when the guys finally figured it all out, it was too late. So, basically, the minute of silence didn't really work.

- An elderly man was sitting on a wooden stool in the middle of the pedestrian street, a hundred or so meters away from the site of the blast. There was a small wooden table in front of him - he was selling lottery tickets, despite it all. An elderly headscarved woman bought a few tickets from him. He took her money and looked the bills over, very carefully, to make sure they weren't fake. Business as usual, even in Güngören.


A few pictures:

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