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Jun 25, 2010

Turkish coffee gets He-brewed

Piers Kelly writes:...Antony Loewenstein has drawn my attention to this excellent little piece in New York’s Forward. Apparently, in the aftermath of the Gaza flotilla crisis there is a small movement in Israel to rename Turkish coffee.

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Piers Kelly writes:

Antony Loewenstein has drawn my attention to this excellent little piece in New York’s Forward. Apparently, in the aftermath of the Gaza flotilla crisis there is a small movement in Israel to rename Turkish coffee, just as elements in the US once tried to change French fries to ‘freedom fries’.

Bad enough, the movement’s proponents say, to be insulted by the Turkish government, denounced by its prime minister and have one’s flag burned by Turkish demonstrators without also having to drink the Turks’ coffee – especially since they never invented it in the first place.

So far, no new names have been proposed, and a boycott appeal has fallen flat – ‘Turkish’ applies to the method of preparation, not the provenance of the product (which the article explains in detail). Likewise, the French ambassador to Washington pointed out back in 2003 that French fries are in fact from Belgium. I remember being surprised to learn that both Greek and Turkish coffee are identical, but in Melbourne’s supermarkets the product is sold under both labels in order to appeal to different markets. In fact ‘Greek coffee’ is itself a kind of freedom fries-style label that came into circulation after the Turkish invasion of Cyprus. Later, Cypriots re-christened Turkish Delight as Cyprus Delight.

There’s a whole swag of similar examples and you can read about them at the bottom of this entry in Wikipedia. Perhaps the most amusing is the campaign during World War I to rename ‘German measles’ as ‘liberty measles’. I would be so disappointed if this turned out not to be true. Can anyone back this up?

Update: jensfiederer (comments, below) has discovered this:

libertymeasles

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6 thoughts on “Turkish coffee gets He-brewed

  1. Liberty measles | Kerilaborntera

    […] Turkish coffee gets He-brewed | Fully (sic)Jun 25, 2010 … Perhaps the most amusing is the campaign during World War I to rename ‘ German measles’ as ‘liberty measles’. I would be so disappointed if … […]

  2. Holden Back

    Invasion of Cyprus? Surely ‘Greek coffee’ has been the name in the English-speaking world since Lord Byron’s time. We could just start calling turkish delight loukoumi. ‘Greek delight’ ? – hmm, not touching that one.

    If you want a good stoush, try convincing a Greek that much modern Greek culture is Turkish in origin.

  3. Tweets that mention Turkish coffee gets He-brewed – Fully (sic) -- Topsy.com

    […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Nancy Friedman, Regator [Technology]. Regator [Technology] said: Turkish coffee gets He-brewed (Fully (sic)) http://bit.ly/cn15RC […]

  4. Christopher Wade

    In Turkey there is a weird one where a type of salad is called Russian salad in some places, such as Ankara, and American salad in others, such as Istanbul. It was originally
    Russian salad and according to the Turkish version of wikipedia at some time in the 1950s during the Cold War some started to use the new term. There are no citations on the rus salatasi page though.

  5. williamsteed

    They don’t seem to be very effective campaigns – I still confuse myself when people talk about Alsatians. It takes me a moment to translate it as German Shepherd. I suspect (but cannot prove) that people will only change what they call something when they want to.

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