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Ongoing wars and conflict resolution, international agreements or lack thereof. Nationhood, secessionist movements, national 'home' government versus internationalist trends and globalisation.

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#14085484
Firstly, the EU is in a mess. Spain and Greece are suffering from economic crises and the other EU members are paying the price for it. Turkish economy is rising by approximately 10% in the past few years and joining the EU would mean that Turkey would have to bail out the failining European countries. Why work your a** off for other people?

Secondly, France and Germany are only in charge of making decisions for Europe. If Turkey joins then she would have to pay daily to be part of the EU. She would have to pay wages to the European burocats and have no say at all.

Thirdly, Turkey won't be able to make their own laws and will be dicatated by the European Court of Human Rights. Well, this has already happened since Erdoğan gave the European Court of Human Rights supremacy over Turkish courts.

Fourthly, EU is asking too much from Turkey in order to become its member. Turkey would have to give up its national interstes. For what? Joing a Christian club which is sinking right before our eyes?

Fifthly, Turkey would have to start using Euro and the people don't want to lose Atatürk's currency.

Sixthly, due to unavailibility of jobs, EU citizens travel from one country to another. We have seen Polish and Romanians moving to Britain, France, Germany, etc to look for jobs and the locals aren't very happy about about. Why would you want a foreigner taking your job? Due to rapid increase in Turkey's economy , the number of jobs are increasing. Greeks have started moving to Turkey to look for jobs (according to the European Journal). If Turkey joins the EU, then other EU citizens can move to Turkey and take away jobs from the local people. Even the Turks working abroad like in Belguim are coming back home because they have lost jobs there due to economic crises.

Seventhly, since the EU is in a mess, it is undependable. It is Turkey's largest trading partner and it could affect Turkey as well. Therefore, Turkey needs to look for other trading partners.
#14086249
Reason why Turkey shouldn't join EU:

Turkey is devoid of real democracy as its the current populist government respects neither human rights, freedom of speech, nor the rule of law. As long as Turkish people reject the path envisioned by Ataturk, Turkey is destined to mediocrity.
#14086357
Many of those reasons are simply wrong. Nobody is forced to join the Euro. In fact, a number of EU countries have expressly stated that they will not. For the millions of Turks living in Germany membership would make things a lot easier. How is it that you oppose foreigners in your country if you don't mind Turks living in foreign countries? The EU is an important trading partner of Turkey. As an EU member Turkey would have a say in how trade and industry are regulated. Germany and France are already in a minority today. With Turkey joining, their influence would decrease even further. The EU can have a positive influence on the rule of law, human rights and democracy in Turkey. Obviously, both sides have to be ready for it.
#14086417
Zenno wrote:Many of those reasons are simply wrong. Nobody is forced to join the Euro. In fact, a number of EU countries have expressly stated that they will not. For the millions of Turks living in Germany membership would make things a lot easier. How is it that you oppose foreigners in your country if you don't mind Turks living in foreign countries? The EU is an important trading partner of Turkey. As an EU member Turkey would have a say in how trade and industry are regulated. Germany and France are already in a minority today. With Turkey joining, their influence would decrease even further. The EU can have a positive influence on the rule of law, human rights and democracy in Turkey. Obviously, both sides have to be ready for it.


These reasons are meant for the Turkish government. Not the EU. Of course nobody is forced to join the EU. In fact, nobody really wants to be part of the EU. Britons. Germans, Belgians. But their government do.

Same is the case with Turkey. People are against it but the government favors it. Why can't I oppose foreigners in my country? Would you want foreigners taking your job in your country? You wouldn't have choice if your part of the EU.

Doomhammer wrote:Reason why Turkey shouldn't join EU:

Turkey is devoid of real democracy as its the current populist government respects neither human rights, freedom of speech, nor the rule of law. As long as Turkish people reject the path envisioned by Ataturk, Turkey is destined to mediocrity.


Who says Turkish people reject the path envisioned by Atatürk? I am the supporter of the CHP. The party founded by Atatürk. Many people don't support the current government. Its too Islamist.
Last edited by Siberian Fox on 21 Oct 2012 11:53, edited 1 time in total. Reason: Back-to-back posts merged.
#14086426
Fasces wrote:Reasons why Turkey shouldn't join the EU: They are not a European peoples. They are invaders from central Asia whose history and identity are based on conflict with European civilization.


Europeans have been fighting each other too. If your stuck in the past then you won't progress. Turkey is Eurasian. Anyways, yeah Turkish people don't like the EU. Don't worry about it.

Fasces wrote:Do not double post. Edit your previous posts if you have something to add.


That was an accident. I know the rules. Thank you.
Last edited by Siberian Fox on 21 Oct 2012 11:52, edited 1 time in total. Reason: Back-to-back posts merged.
#14086494
Who says Turkish people reject the path envisioned by Atatürk? I am the supporter of the CHP. The party founded by Atatürk. Many people don't support the current government. Its too Islamist.

Well, then allow me to impress upon you a very simple fact: Atatürk wanted Turkey to become a properly western country - rise to level of contemporary civilization, which would entail an adoption of Western values and integration with Europe. This is something which many secular Turks reject. CHP has no clear view of the matter either. Sometimes some CHP supporters advocate EU membership, other times some of their members speak out against the West and argue for an "independent" Turkey - "independent" in this case is equal to "isolated." You are a CHP supporter who is clearly in the latter camp.


Firstly, the EU is in a mess.

Not really a valid argument because we don't have to pay for anything. If Turkey joined EU, then Greece would significantly reduce its defense spending and their economy would improve, thereby mitigating the crisis in Europe. In any case, I believe that Turkey is headed towards a real estate bubble* - so don't think too highly of the Turkish economy.

* Not surprising given that the construction sectors has been very active over the years and that the government has built so many social housing - which they sell for ridiculous prices that could only be afforded by the wealthy - under the guise of TOKI.

Secondly, France and Germany are only in charge of making decisions for Europe. If Turkey joins then she would have to pay daily to be part of the EU. She would have to pay wages to the European burocats and have no say at all.

And there are those that say that Turkey, because of its population, will become the second largest and therefore second most represented country in the EU and could thus serve as a counterpoise to the Franco-Teutonic bloc. In fact, some even argue that this is one of the reasons why Germany and France do not want Turkey to become a member.

Thirdly, Turkey won't be able to make their own laws and will be dicatated by the European Court of Human Rights.

The European Court of Human Rights is not an EU institution, it is connected to the Council of Europe. Turkey has been a member of the ECHR since the 1950s; has ratified the European Convention on Human Rights; and Turkish citizens have been bringing cases to the Court since the early 1990s. It is precisely for this reason that we hear in the news about politicians and oppressed minorities applying to the ECHR when domestic remedies are exhausted. We are "dictated" by the ECHR insofar as we have previously consented to it.

Fourthly, EU is asking too much from Turkey in order to become its member.

Europe has jerked Turkey around too long and has let in useless and destitute Eastern European countries. Furthermore, Turkey's membership process, its inability to fulfill the chapters of the acquis communitaire is due to the political obstructions of several EU members. It is very aggravating. On the other hand, the membership process would have improved Turkey's democracy and its domestic system - I say "would" because we have basically turned into a dictatorship. The level of oppression today is much worse than the so-called oppressive period when the military was active in politics.

Turkey would have to give up its national interstes.

What are Turkey's national interests? And who defines them?

For what? Joing a Christian club which is sinking right before our eyes?

If you are fine with this caricaturized clash of civilizations nonsense, then I have nothing to say.

Fifthly, Turkey would have to start using Euro and the people don't want to lose Atatürk's currency.

The UK is a member of the EU. Don't they use the Pound-Sterling?

Sixthly, due to unavailibility of jobs, EU citizens travel from one country to another. We have seen Polish and Romanians moving to Britain, France, Germany, etc to look for jobs and the locals aren't very happy about about. Why would you want a foreigner taking your job? Due to rapid increase in Turkey's economy , the number of jobs are increasing. Greeks have started moving to Turkey to look for jobs (according to the European Journal). If Turkey joins the EU, then other EU citizens can move to Turkey and take away jobs from the local people. Even the Turks working abroad like in Belguim are coming back home because they have lost jobs there due to economic crises.

What is the unemployment rate in Turkey?

Seventhly, since the EU is in a mess, it is undependable.

But they just got a Nobel Peace Prize?! Surely they must be doing something right. Haha! I jest.

It is Turkey's largest trading partner and it could affect Turkey as well. Therefore, Turkey needs to look for other trading partners.

Turkey's main trading partner in Europe is Germany. In fact, Germany is Turkey's most important trading partner, period. This is of course the same Germany that happens to be the engine driving the European economy - the Germany with a strong economy. The trade volume between these two countries is only natural given the 2-3 million Turks living in Germany. You can look to other markets all you want but as long as Germany is inhabited by millions of Turks, Germany will remain the major trading partner of Turkey. And you speak of alternatives? Fine. Let's look around. Russia? Sure. Turkey already depends on Russia for much of its natural gas - the companies in charge of building Turkey's nuclear power plants are also Russian. Sure, why not become more dependent on Russia. It's not like Turkey ever had antagonistic relations with Russia. The Middle East? Thanks to Turkey's "zero problems with neighbors policy" (zero neighbors without problems) Turkey has no reliable allies in the region. The only country Turkey seems to be enjoying good trading relations is -surprise surprise - Israel! Africa? The Arabs are undergoing political turmoil while Sub-Saharan Africa is too poor any meaningfully large-scale trading to take place. China? There is a time to cut cards with the devil - not today though. Latin America? too far. USA? We have decent trade relations anyway. Instead of looking for alternatives, Turkey ought to penetrate Europe (and all other possible countries - i.e. countries it hasn't pissed off) even more.

Reasons why Turkey shouldn't join the EU: They are not a European peoples. They are invaders from central Asia whose history and identity are based on conflict with European civilization.

I see. The Franks, the Vandals and Goths are not invaders from the East? How does one debate the mentality that argues that Europe ends where ends the last Gothic cathedral?
#14086498
I see. The Franks, the Vandals and Goths are not invaders from the East? How does one debate the mentality that argues that Europe ends where ends the last Gothic cathedral?


Because the modern conception of European is itself a reference to these peoples, in the same way "Turkish" applies to a great deal of disparate groups that were not here. Europe, as an identity, was formed after the arrival of these groups, and before the arrival of Turks - so unfortunately, Turks are not European by definition.
#14086508
Because the modern conception of European is itself a reference to these peoples, in the same way "Turkish" applies to a great deal of disparate groups that were not here. Europe, as an identity, was formed after the arrival of these groups, and before the arrival of Turks - so unfortunately, Turks are not European by definition.

And of course the European identity formed partly as a response to the barbarian Turk battering on the church doors of Christendom. Fair enough. Of course we can dispense with global developments and practicality and shape policy on tribal sensibilities. No big deal. I don't really care about Turkey's non-European-ness. What I do find annoying is that once people invent such arbitrary categories and thereby alienate, or make "others" out of, nations it is a very slippery slope. The European Union was founded to further promote economic and political integration between former belligerents and promote peace and prosperity. Is this not correct? Multitudes of scholars and politicians, and lesser minds like I, argue that Turkish membership to the EU would be a mutually beneficial arrangement that would enhance the power of the European Union - many, many others argue the opposite; which is something I respect. One can cite economic problems, institutional constraints or political incompatibilities. Fine. But "Turkey is not European" or "X is not European" is a counterproductive argument that completely negates any geopolitical opportunities that could have been had.
#14086510
The treaties associated with the European Union make explicit that their purpose is to foster the unity of "the peoples of Europe", to use their term. While the economic and political dimensions are certainly important tools to this end [fostering that unity], it seems to me to be a cultural institution first and foremost.
#14086529
Meh. Alright. But deep down we all know that the EU was for preventing the Germans and the French from fighting another war.

I hope Europe still feels like Europe without Constantinople.
#14086607
Doomhammer wrote:The European Union was founded to further promote economic and political integration between former belligerents and promote peace and prosperity. Is this not correct? Multitudes of scholars and politicians, and lesser minds like I, argue that Turkish membership to the EU would be a mutually beneficial arrangement that would enhance the power of the European Union - many, many others argue the opposite; which is something I respect. One can cite economic problems, institutional constraints or political incompatibilities. Fine. But "Turkey is not European" or "X is not European" is a counterproductive argument that completely negates any geopolitical opportunities that could have been had.

I completely agree with this. Too often European questions ignore realities ("What would Turkish membership concretely mean?" "What would the euro entail?") in favor of meaningless poetry ("Turkey is not 'European'." "The euro is peace!") Asking whether Turkey is European, in an abstract sense, is a theological question. It's like asking how many angels can dance on the head of a pin..

It's all a matter of pros and cons. Turkey brings a lot, but it would also mean a fundamental change to the Union's structure (as big as the 2004 enlargement), which would mean a huge amount of EU funds going to Turkey and Turks making up the most members of Parliament. It's not a decision to be taken lightly. For those who want a genuinely federal Europe, it often appears that Turkey is too different, or is considered too different, for this to work. French and Germans might have solidarity with one another (maybe!), but there is certainly not much solidarity between French and Turks.

This said, the EU is in flux, and its structure is going to be fundamentally different in the coming years. The eurozone will federate or die and the UK will semi-withdraw (?). Perhaps then there will be a form of membership particularly appropriate for Turkey or even Russia. (Giscard d'Estaing, of all people, has said recently that Turkey could become a non-eurozone member of the EU.)

As to arguments against Turkish membership of the EU from a Turkish perspective, it seems to me the most compelling argument is that obvious contempt in which Europeans hold the Turks..
#14086898
Fasces wrote:Reasons why Turkey shouldn't join the EU: They are not a European peoples. They are invaders from central Asia whose history and identity are based on conflict with European civilization.


So what are Americans, Canadians and Australians? Indigenous peoples? :lol:

Think before you speak man. Not that I'd want to see Turkey join the unstable and declining EU.
#14087691
I've been looking round Romania and Hungary this week.

I notice that they are all booming from the EU grants. Hungary in particular is benefitting immensely from joining the EU.

So it makes sense for some countries to join in my opinion, depending on what is being offered to them in exchange for what.


I don't think it makes any particular sense for the UK to be a member but I think you should be looking at the deal on offer as well as making concessions for national pride and so forth.
Not everyone does badly out of it by any means.
#14087736
So what are Americans, Canadians and Australians? Indigenous peoples?


No. I made it clear that I recognized the European groups were migrants as well. However, they came and established themselves prior to the concept "European". All words and terms have meanings. European can be read, if you would like as: The population group represented by the mixing of Vandals, Huns, Goths, Franks, etc and the previous inhabitants of the continents (Basques, Latins, Celts, etc) that oriented themselves around Roman and post-Roman political institutions (excluding Moors, Berbers, and Turks.)

When one talks of a native "European" they are referring to those people which are primarily descended from the above mix.
#14087792
This one means "people who live on the continent of Europe, when he says "European".
I might be willing to refine that down to recognised citisens in the eyes of the states ruling the countries of Europe.

Ancestry seems a bit of a random way to define it.
Who here has any idea iof their ancestry? I met all my grandparents. That's as far as it goes.
#14087793
So, if I say "that individual is of European descent", you honestly cannot give me a guess on certain traits that individual may hold?

If on the one hand I have a man who speaks French (natively), has white skin, practices Christianity, and on the other a man who speaks Turkish (natively), has brown skin, and practices Islam: both are equally likely to be "of European descent", given no other information? If I offered you a hundred pounds for guessing correctly, with no cost for an incorrect guess (except loss of a hundred pounds), you would guess the second man equally as often as the first?
#14087892
Well, let's hope this isn't one of those 'a fool and his money are soon parted' situations. ;)

On a more serious note, do you consider Albanians and Bosniaks to be of European Descent? What about Russians and Turkic tribes (Circassians, for example) in Southern and Western Russia?
#14087927
:) Yes and no. The term 'Europe' is a lot of fun to discuss for this reason.

I reject the geographical definition, because it is self-evidently attempting to legitimize a cultural conception. Thus, I believe the borders of Europe are "fluid", and not something that can be defined in terms of mountains or seas - though there is a consensus that European colonies are not Europe. I would say that the geographic term of Europe is a limiting constraint - not all entities within these geographic borders are necessarily European, but all beyond it certainly are not.

Typically when somebody talks about European interests, there is an implicit [Western] involved, at least in my experience. I generally define "Europe", in the cultural sense, as roughly the territory in which Roman Catholicism, and later Protestantism, thrived, versus Eastern Europe, which would include the Byzantine regions and Russia. This is consistent with how the French and others used the term in the Middle Ages, to my knowledge, and how the Byzantines themselves used it (as they defined Europe in the same way the Greeks did, where Europe referred to northern Greece and lands beyond, but not Greece itself).

Here we can declare, at least, the unambiguous "core" of "Europe" - Poland & Scandinavia, being the latest additions, form the border of the "core", though this would expand along the Baltic northwards into Lithuania during the Teutonic crusades. Spain, or at least the areas under Christian control, could be called Europe - there was a French expression that said "Africa began at the Pyrenees" that support this cultural definition. Hungary would be the final "core" territory, bordering the Orthodox regions, but I would suggest this is open to debate.

The difficulty, as always, comes in defining the periphery states of Europe. Lithuania and the Baltics, up to Finland could be called periphery European states, as could Albania and Bosnia, for the same reasons. These areas were, at least initially, a mix of influences. The two most interesting cases to me are Hungary and Finland - they fit the religious definition, but there is an ambigious cultural overlap. I'd call them more "core" than "periphery" but less "core" than say, France or Italy.

The term European would then expand when the Turks and Mongols arrived. The Byzantines had a vested interest in claiming cultural ties with the "core" European states. The Russians did as well, but unlike the Byzantines, had less success in being viewed as European by "core" regions, at least initially. This is an expansion of the term European, but it still relies on religious identity - this time following Christ, though not necessarily the Roman Catholic Church. During this era, I think Albania and Bosnia establish themselves as unquestionably European.

The difficulty comes from Ottoman occupation, and conversion to Islam. Since the earlier definition of "periphery" was established to indicate a religiously mixed population, I think it can be re appropriated here. If we accept Europe as roughly synonymous with the term "Christendom", then we have a new periphery of states - Albania, Bosnia, and Russia [to a lesser degree today], due to their religious ambiguity, while formerly non-"European" states like Greece or Ukraine, which are unquestionably viewed as European today, maintain their status (though with an asterix of "Balkan" or "Eastern European" which pays homage to the initial definition based around the schism). There is also the issue of Georgia, and Cyprus. I would assign them qualities similar to Hungary or Finland above - more European than peripheral, but closer to the periphery than, say, Austria.

Armenia is a special case. I might call it peripheral, but this is due only to its geographic proximity to Georgia, as the new Christian definition certainly does not include the Oriental Orthodox communities, as evidenced by the unanimous agreement that Coptic Egyptians or Ethiopians are not Europeans. I think the case could be made, rather easily, that Armenia is not even a peripheral European state, for that reason, and simply a Christian Middle Eastern state.

Returning to Albania and Bosnia - I would call them peripheral European states, and consider their populations to be of peripheral European descent - those ambiguous regions where civilizations meet. But European itself is such a vague and changing term depending on where you are that I would hardly call my definition comprehensive or conclusive. I welcome debate.

What I do reject, however, is the idea that ambiguity surrounding a few cases nullifies the concept. Identity is not a concrete concept, certainly, but that does not mean it cannot be identified at all. In addition, while I do acknowledge the religious origins of the concept, I do not think it needs to maintain a religious aspect. European identity was formed at a time when religion was far more important that it was today. While I think Europeans can be secular, however, I do not think this can be inclusive of the faiths of other civilizations. Islam is not European, to give an example, though it has occupied "European territory". A secular Turkish society is still a society descended from a non-European identity, just as a secular French-society is still a society descended from a European one. The term "European" implies certain historical and cultural characteristics, and not just contemporary geographic or religious ones.

I also wouldn't claim European civilization is superior to others - it is merely different, and fear of racist intonations cannot leave us unable to define a concrete and observable historical identity.

It is a bit long, but what do you think? :)

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