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Next Trip? Need advice, help, and suggestions! =-)

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Howdy Folks,
Here's my "problem". I REALLY want to go to Istanbul, but I'm gun shy (sorry) because of the current climate in that area. If I don't go there, here's what else is on this American's list: Scotland, somewhere in Italy with A LOT of history but lack of annoying tourists, Moscow (same concerns as Istanbul (?), and...well...where else?
I'm a HISTORY GEEK!! I find and go to museums that NO ONE else goes to, and I LOVE them.!
Time frame: Either this summer or a week (8 days in Oct)

1) how safe is Istanbul (and the area) now?
2) great places in Italy w/o "ugly American tourists"?
2B) Can I do Rome w/o being annoyed by the tourists?
3) Moscow? Yea, nay, or other?
4) Other?

Thanks all! I appreciate any advice to point me on my next trip!

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