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View Poll Results: Should Turkey enter the EU?
Yes 11 47.83%
No 10 43.48%
I don't really care 2 8.70%
Voters: 23. You may not vote on this poll

 
 
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Old 12-21-2004, 10:17 AM   #31
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yes


for a stonger and deversified eu
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Old 12-21-2004, 10:46 AM   #32
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first of all let me state that, as a 19 year old turkish national, i would like to see turkey in EU as well. i feel it is an important connection for my country, since we are not on very good terms with most of our neighbours in the area (iran, iraq, syria, armenia) Turkey needs good friends. imo, an alliance with any of those countries is out of the question, because of our past with them and the incompatibility of our understandings of freedom and democracy.

to me, our quest to join EU is the quest to achieve those values and ideas that were put forth in copenhagen criteria. and god knows, we will reach that point. still, i dont believe the decision to let turkey in depends on these criteria. as it is now, it is simply a political decision.

turkey is being treated differently from the other candidates (all the permanent derogations about restrictions on movement of labor), it does have a big problem like southern cyprus (they are simply against us, and that's that), it is a large country (turkey will be the biggest country in terms of population in the EU by the time it enters the union) which also means a very substantial number of seats in the Euro parliament.

now when i weigh all those and add the dislike of the french, austrian and greek cypriots to that, i dont think we willbe getting in. in that case, turkey will definitely refuse an offer of 'special partnership' and i believe we should get out of the customs union and from that point on, we should let the union worry about missing the boat .
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Old 12-21-2004, 11:16 AM   #33
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So you don't think Turkey will be let into the EU as a full member, all_i_want? That's unfortunate. I would like to see Turkey get full membership in the EU.
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Old 12-21-2004, 11:21 AM   #34
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Neither Turkey nor the EU can really afford to screw this up. I'm exceptionally disappointed in the EU for changing the rules in the middle of the game.
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Old 12-21-2004, 11:23 AM   #35
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nope. i think EU is going to keep us going through 10 years of negotiations, then refuse to give full membership, theyll offer a special status, we will refuse and that'll be it.

i seriously think turkey should strenghten ties with russia and other asian countries ( middle asia, far east, india etc.) as well the US, which shouldnt be too hard because despite all its clumsiness in foreign affairs, even the current administration realizes why turkey is important for the US.
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Old 12-21-2004, 11:33 AM   #36
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I am really impressed with the number of excellent points raised, and I find myself actually rethinking my position - but I remain unconvinced.

The best point I have seen raised here, which I can relate to very intensely, is the one concerning 'European Identity' and what we, as Europeans, deem 'French' or 'British', 'German' or 'Italian' - and how these concepts hinder the movement of the European Union.

The truth is, the EU is a myth when you talk about it as a social concept; the British culture doesn't feel any more unified to say, the French culture because it is part of the Union - not one bit. I do believe that identity is an issue that still is vital and one the politicians have never addressed, and that is because nations and cultures are, to some extent, disappointed with the way the Union has continued to grow. Many British people hate the way France seems to dominate everything, and how it always seems to be them that benefit from policies such as the Common Agricultural Policy. Spain too has beef with France. Germany resents the former communist bloc and their advancement. Italy is never happy in being sidelined next to Germany and France - nationalism is still to strong, and how can it not be when you do have some very strong cultures in the mix, rightfully proud of their culture, unwilling to even compromise over a great many differences. United economically we maybe, but socially we have a long way to go.

And that is why I do not support Turkey's joining the EU. Why should it? It seems to me that the main argument that shows how it helps Europe to take Turkey on is that its a way to show integration with a predominantly Muslim culture - and that is very pertinent.

However, consider the enourmous differences already within the EU, countries that are directly and immediately linked to one another in terms of culture, geography and society and yet are STILL inherently divided; how would a country like Turkey, clearly the odd one out for many reasons (starting with its geography and its culture) take to it? I think that its quite clear that there are many Turks who like Europe, the question is, does Europe like Turkey enough? Does it need to? A difficult question to answer, when you consider that 'Europeans' can't even agree on when to join a war, on what share of a subsidy the farmers of each country should take, on what standards are 'the' standards in terms of quality for various foods that so many Euopeans identify with culturally and will have to give up because of such a standard?

The EU as a society was built on noble politics and clearly good intentions, but integration is not achieved that easily.

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Old 12-21-2004, 11:52 AM   #37
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the simple answer that i've heard being batted around in DC is that common, popular European resentment towards a hyper-power like the US might prove to be enough to get Europeans to see more what specific values they have in common and settle on a unified vision. this, combined with the inevitable ascention to superpower status of India and China, and Europeans are going to need a united, focused EU in order to be able to compete on the world stage.

it's hard, though. even in the US, where we are one country and everyone watches "Friends" and the McDonald's hamburgers taste the same in Anchorage and Honolulu, there are *huge* regional differences. i've met australians with whom i have more in common with than many Texans i've met, and it seems odd to think that your average Californian is from the same planet as your average Mississippian. what makes the US work, i think, is that we have agreed upon a common set of symbols which represent ideas and ideals, combined with our common narrative as "a nation of immigrants" with no myth of origin. the reason Americans fly their flag and sing along loudly to their national anthem is because we *need* these overt displays of unity, whereas it's a working assumption in Denmark or Sweden.

what Europe can do, i think, is through the realization of her common ideals, create a set of symbols that all Europeans treasure. to us, the flag represents "life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness." such an ideal knows no race, creed, gender, ethnicity or orientation. (though, right now, i could argue that the flag currently represents a reprehensible administration, but i've already decided what the flag means to *me* and therefore when the country fucks up, i view it as a fall from an ideal). maybe it could be through cultural achievements -- Europe remains the birthplace of Western culture though it's a symbol of Paris, can't all Poles marvel at the Eiffel Tower? the Alps? Freud? Beethoven? the Beatles? U2? could a Scot take pride in Istanbul, and could a Turk find inspiration in the library of Trinity College Dublin? i guess what i'm saying is that all Americans feel ownership on the accomplishment of other Americans, can Europeans find pride in European accomplishments? is Beethoven less a German and more a European?

i hope that's not too rambling. and i apologize if i come across as too "USA vs. EU" -- but i do think it's a useful model.
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Old 12-21-2004, 11:52 AM   #38
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I don't know enough about this to comment, but my first impression hearing about Turkey's potential membership is ....since when has anyone ever thought Turkey is IN Europe? At least I never have. Although I suppose the point is that the boundaries of "Europe" have never been defined.
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Old 12-21-2004, 12:50 PM   #39
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That's right, Europe doesn't have clearly delineated borders. The official Istanbul site used to say "let's meet where the continents meet", a reference to Europe and Asia. This makes me confused as to what Europe really is. Is a continent? It can't be *a* culture, it could be described as a "group" of "cultures". Any thoughts about this?
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Old 12-21-2004, 12:51 PM   #40
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my understaning is that Europe extends, basically, from Portugal in the West to the Ural Mountains of Russia in the East, and it's southern border is the Mediterranian Sea.
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Old 12-21-2004, 01:00 PM   #41
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It is Turkey's destiny to join the EU.
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Old 12-21-2004, 01:07 PM   #42
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I love your paragraph on what European countries could do to 'unite', for lack of a better word, Irvine.

However, I do feel that the main problem is, despite the great differences between the states found in the US, the one true historical milestone that unites all Americans was the Revolution. The unification process, I believe, really began when America decided to get rid of the British, and so a unification of some sort was made possible.

Again, history is a problem for Europe. If we look at European history, all we see is great divisions, war, feuds, grudges and cultural differences. Yes, the British still bear a grudge against Germany (and I am talking in rash general cultural summaries, not academic detail), but Germany is still living in a perpetual state of guilt. Too many people are still upset at France and the way it has used the EU to its own, arguably selfish advantage, while many still find the process of forgetting history and moving on altogether impossible. This much is true, if we are to coexist as a Union, we must stop looking at each other as the competition - and there is nothing forcing us to do so. The Americans had the British to break free from, whereas we have a few disgruntled Europeans who want to challenge America as a superpower, and that is not a goal that unifies.

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Old 12-21-2004, 01:11 PM   #43
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Quote:
Originally posted by Anthony
The unification process, I believe, really began when America decided to get rid of the British, and so a unification of some sort was made possible.
Are you suggesting we should decide to get rid of the British too?
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Old 12-21-2004, 01:23 PM   #44
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Hahaha. I think everyone has a love/hate relationship when it comes to Britain and Europe, on both sides. However, who would you have to keep the evil French in check if we left? Germany? You must be joking.

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Old 12-21-2004, 03:17 PM   #45
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Quote:
orginally posted by lauren430
I don't know enough about this to comment, but my first impression hearing about Turkey's potential membership is ....since when has anyone ever thought Turkey is IN Europe? At least I never have. Although I suppose the point is that the boundaries of "Europe" have never been defined.
That's what I've always thought. Only a small part of Turkey - half of Istanbul - is in Europe, while 90% of it is in the Middle East, or Asia. I don't think someone living in the most eastern part of Turkey would see themselves as European compared to someone in Istanbul.
But then again, do the people living in Georgia, Armenia and Azerbaijan see themselves as Europeans? I guess what it means to be European does need a definition.

I'm concerned about Turkey's human rights record. I am also concerned about the current tensions between Europeans and Muslims, and I wonder if bringing Turkey into the EU would be a good idea. Is it possible tensions would ease or get worse? Polls and surveys (I know they aren't too reliable) show most Europeans don't want Turkey in the EU. So, it's hard to say if this would be good for Europe or not.
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