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Turkey warms to Clinton's candor

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"This is good for American public diplomacy. Whoever planned this did it well," he says. "She is reducing the damage to the American image here in Turkey. I think Turks are ready to take a different look at America."

A departure from the past

The past few years have been dismal for America's image in Turkey. Turks were strongly opposed to the war in Iraq, while many also felt that the US was not doing enough to deal with the presence of Kurdish guerillas who were using their bases in Northern Iraq to attack Turkey.

Meanwhile, public appearances by American officials over the past few years were limited. Former president George W. Bush's one visit to Istanbul, for a NATO summit, saw him confined to a large security zone that turned a large part of downtown Istanbul into a ghost town.

Clinton discusses Bill, fashion, life

Although security was tight during Clinton's visit, perhaps more noticeable were her efforts to connect with everyday Turks, including the much-watched Saturday evening interview.

Hosted by four women, the program, called "Haydi Gel Bizimle Ol" (Come and Join Us), is the Turkish version of the popular American talk show "The View."

For an hour, Clinton smiled pleasantly while the hosts and members of the audience lobbed mostly softballs in her direction. Clinton made a similar appearance during her recent trip to Indonesia, visiting the set of a youth-oriented television show.

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