Yet another posthumous Darwin Award winner…

An Italian woman artist who was hitch-hiking to the Middle East dressed as a bride to promote world peace has been found murdered in Turkey.

OK, right. So a single woman dresses up as a bride, decides to take a bit of an amble on the streets of an Islamic country, and winds up dead. Now, call me callous if you want but I see this as a simple case of walking into trouble. A simple and clear case of taking what was a pretty obvious risk – a risk somebody even with the most rudimentary knowledge of the region would have been aware of.

People have been quick to describe Turkey as being a country popular with Western tourists, but fail to realise that beyond the confines of the friendly holiday resort lies a country – and a native population – that is infinitely more unpredictable. Despite its status as a popular holiday destination, Turkey is one of those countries were a simple wrong turn can transport you almost into another dimension. One moment you can be in the grounds of the very secular Istanbul university, and the next you could be in the back garden of someone who is still waiting for Richard the Lionheart’s infidel hordes to storm in horseback, with scimitar unsheathed.

OK I am exaggerating with the scimitar bit, but you get my drift.

Nobody asks to be murdered. But it was foolish all the same. One could walk into central Riyadh in one’s underwear championing world peace, but that’s not going to stop a bunch of mediaeval hotheads wanting to throw stones.

According to the woman’s sister, “Her travels were for an artistic performance and to give a message of peace and of trust, but not everyone deserves trust.”

Well no shit, Sherlock.

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