Leftwing activists want to replace Columbus Day with “Indigenous Peoples Day” but the President of Turkey might prefer “Islamic Explorers Day.” Recep Tayyip Erdogan told a delegation of Latin American Muslims that Islamic sailors discovered the New World in 1178, insisting that when Columbus arrived “the religion of Islam was already widespread.”
As evidence, he cited the great explorer’s diary in which Columbus sees a mosque while sailing near Cuba. In the passage in question, Columbus actually notes a mountain range that reminds him of Spain with “another little hill on its summit, like a graceful mosque.”
Of course, there’s not the slightest evidence, archaeological or otherwise, that a mosque ever existed in pre-Columbian Cuba, but Erdogan still offered to “rebuild” the sanctuary. His absolute power, Islamic fanaticism, anti-American extremism, and disconnection from reality make the Turkish president one of the world’s most dangerous rulers.