Turkey

Last Monday Turkish President Abdullah Gül stated through The Guardian:

Relations with the EU are a strategic choice. It goes beyond political parties.

It should be the same within the EU.

In 2004 Germany (Mr Gerard Schröder) and France (Mr Jacques Chirac) strongly supported Turkey and its EU path and signed for the opening of the EU-Turkey negotiations (in 2005).

But the current extremely questionable French and German leaders (who most probably will lose the next elections) deny the signatures of their predecessors and discredit the whole EU which they ought to lead with a global vision scanning the whole planet.

That is unbelievable. We’re in the 21st century.

France and Germany and the EU can’t be ruled that way. The EU and its citizens don’t deserve that.

Well have we to wait for the new goverments of France and Germany to recollect the signatures of the whole EEC/EU of 1963, 1999 and 2004?

1963: the Ankara Agreement that foresaw Turkey’s membership to the bloc,

1999: Turkey’s EU candidacy status at Helsinki,

2004: the key decision to open the EU-Turkey negotiations.

These kind of important and historic decisions are expected to go beyond political parties and governments.

True and dignified heads of state would protect these involvements.

In a friendly manner,

Cem

PS. Harriet Alexander from the Sunday Telegraph interviewed Mr Abdullah Gül last week in Turkey, one day before his departure for Britain. The Turkish president told her:

“We are between Asia and Europe – we are like a bridge. Some of us are in Asia, some in Europe. We are at the very centre of both sides.”

I quote the newspaper:

“Turkey is a natural part of Europe,” he told The Sunday Telegraph in the elegant, cream marble surroundings of his Ankara palace.

“Being a member of the Council of Europe and the European Court of Human Rights; being one of the oldest members of Nato, as well as being part of European culture and art – this is a natural path Turkey is flowing into.”

PPS. I didn’t know that Mr Gül studied in England:

I quote:

Mr Gül, 61, founded Turkey’s ruling AKP party before becoming prime minister and then foreign minister. He speaks with the calm, self-assured manner of a diplomat, talking in Turkish through a translator but then interrupting in English to finesse his points.

Several years spent at university in Exeter and London have given him a strong grounding in English, and he is already acquainted with the Queen, who visited Turkey at his invitation in 2008. His visit to London is the first by a Turkish president for 23 years.

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  1. Why should Turkey become a member of EU?
    By : Anonymous- Posted on : 21/11/2011reply

    Simple – it shouldn’t.
    By : Anonymous- Posted on : 22/11/2011reply

    Turkey’s EU membership is only a burden for Turkey which has a big potential regionally and globally.
    By : Anonymous- Posted on : 23/11/2011reply

    The blatant rejection by Anonymous (for he sounds like the same person in 1, 2 and 3) is presumably predicated on personal opinions rather than reality.

    If it is a question of historical significance that is the reasoning behind this issue hen on that basis none of the current member states in the EU can claim their rights as perfect members. And more recently the issues that were the results of the Balkan Wars should be a reminder for All of the acts of Genocide that have taken place since the 1980s.

    If it is the historical issues of Turkey and its near neighbours that also concerns some then just look at what the British did in its so-called Empire days that are only just coming to light. However there are more of these coming to light within the next ten tears as the 100 – year rule on disclosure is bypassed.

    If it is the issue that the Western Nations have collectively been so good at managing World Affairs (for their own benefit and generally for Oil Exploration and self-preservation of its luxurious and over-paid life-styles then hold on for a moment the two major “Western Powers” have destroyed country after country and their economies and their populations’ expectations consistently since oil was found in the Middle-Eastern area of Iraq, Iran (previously Persia, remember both Anglo-Persian Oil and the puppet regime of the Shah of Persia were ruthlessly supported by Britain during the early 20th Century!) So remember also that the current debacle of falsely saying that Iraq was nothing to do with Oil, and that Afghanistan was nothing to do with Oil/Natural Gas exploitation and the need to find an alternative route from the Stans to the Bay of Bengal. Also remember that the Western Nations stood by when Pol Pot ravaged Cambodia: when Rwanda and Burundi went to war and millions of people were hacked to death. Now when Oil is found in Cambodia and Rwanda-Burundi how different thins become!

    So look at the Wider Agenda my Dear Friend (Anonymous.)

    We need to have an ally – such as Turkey – working with the European Union (EU) and preferably part of it. Turkey has an immense significance to the EU and the USA (United States of America) and collectively our collegiate friends around the World. Remember also that Attaturk brought this Nation out of the (and I pardon the expression) back-waters of International Disdain and – some say – ridicule of the early 20th Century to a leading International State with a sound Government based upon Secular issues.

    Remember the old expression….

    Turn your back on Turkey and you Turn your back on the World.

    This is as true today as it was in 1916 or 1909 0r the 16 and 17th Century.

    Turkey is the key country in the MENA (Middle East and North Africa) grouping of Countries that sits between the more radical neighbours to the North, East and South. It is a bastion of good ethics and trust between Nations that has allowed us in NATO to have a base in it for decades. How would we have managed the current issues of Iraq and ?Afghanistan? without it?

    But regardless of these issues Turkey will bring to any group of trading nations an extremely valuable market that in itself has the buying power of twice that of Spain and immense opportunities for EU and its Member States – including the UK. ((On the other hand should the stupid British withdraw from the EU it will lose out an additional potential market as well as the 458+million people it trades with in that area.))

    Turkey is already proposing to develop the Canal Istanbul (a combined €billion development including a major international airport, a high speed railway link to Vienna and two major ports (one in the Black Sea and one in Marmara) together with a six-runway mayor new airport.

    This will bring immense opportunities to the Northern and Eastern Mediterranean for providing a real – earthquake-free link from the Black Sea to the Sea of Marmara for freight and oil. This development – poo pooed by the British Press and the Institutions of Engineers in the UK – will now not involve them in its development, for that will almost certainly be carried out in-Country and potentially with Korean/Japanese/Chinese/German help. Good for them as by working with Turkey the returns on being able to share joint investment in the new Istanbul Free-Trade Area and the adjoining hinterlands will promote around €300 Billion of new investment opportunities in the area by 2023 which the UK will justly miss out on.

    So it is argued why is Turkey important to the EU and why membership — even if it is a second-tier one initially – well simply put it is there and Turkey needs as much an opportunity to expand itself and bring its economy up to European par as much as it will also be an opportunity for the EU.

    So let’s hear again that the UK is supporting the move and that the rest of the EU supports it also.
    By : Paul Hu- Posted on : 24/11/2011reply

  2. Anonymous thank you for the link. I posted the comment below (but I have read your second comment after having posted it. Your comment is very good):

    To Anonymous and Paul Hu: I agree with both of you.

    As an EU member Turkey will take advantage of the EU funds (however as far as I remember the EU agricultural subsidies will be called into question by 2014), but since Turkey will become a very rich country it will have to contribute greatly to the EU budget. Hence Anonymous is right.

    As for Paul Hu, firstly he wrote that the EU and the world need an EU member Turkey (a full EU member), he too is right. With Turkey inside the EU will be an incredible and reliable peace compass which is the shortest solution for our planetary issues.

    Then he wrote that Turkey is a huge and promising market.

    In fact the young Turkish nation is developing at a very fast pace.

    EU companies such as Vodafone, Aria (now Avea in Turkey), Telia Sonera, Fiat, Renault, Bosh, Siemens,…. invest a lot in Turkey because of that. There is loads of money on the Turkish ship!

    Well most of the FDI in Turkey come from the EU, which also represents an extremely important and sensitive trading partner for Turkey.

    Though Turkey is not an EU member.

    So economically the EU is very important for Turkey, but not the EU membership.

    The EU needs Turkey more than Turkey needs the EU (I deal with that subject in the above-mentionned article “Anatolia inside”).

    (A reminder: Saudi Arabia plans to invest $600 billon in Turkey:

    http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/n.php?n=saudi-arabia-foresees-600-bln-of-investment-in-turkey-2011-04-27 )

    The EU membership is very important for political and cultural reasons only: with an EU member Turkey, the EU will become a strong actor for the peace in the world.

    But the problem that the EU and the Turkish state will have to face with is the opinion of the Turkish citizens about Turkey’s EU membership.

    Last year I wrote this article (I think the best one I’ve written):

    http://turkey.blogactiv.eu/2010/10/25/a-message-to-the-eu-you-do-not-deserve-turkey-but-the-world-does-need-an-eu-member-turkey/

    I quote:

    And believing that the Turks will beg to the EU for being members is quite pretentious, and synonymous with a superiority complex.

    First, the population of Turkey is young whereas the population of the EU is ageing. Secondly, the Turkish economy develops quickly and has a huge potential. Thirdly, according to the boss of the TPAO, Turkey possesses oil and gas in the Black sea (40 billion barrels of oil and 4 trillion cubic metre of gas), in the Mediterranean as well as in the east of its territory. Besides, Turkey possesses 90% of the boron world reserves. Boron is the source of energy of the future (for instance, boron will feed the spaceships of the future). Lastly, Turkey is a military superpower (second army of NATO).

    I quote:

    Turkey is also becoming at last an economic and political world power. So why the Turkish citizens would want to be EU members? The Turkish citizens could vote “No” through a referendum at the end of the EU-Turkey negotiations. Why? For two reasons: in the first place because they will be rich, so if they joined the EU they would have to contribute greatly to the EU budget (to the EU budget of that ageing EU that will need 100 million workers until 2030). Then, because they will remember how so numerous EU politicians, governments and media humiliated so much Turkey.

    Yours sincerely,

    Cem

    PS. I support Turkey’s EU membership, but owing to the disgusting racism, double standards and blatant treacherousness of the EU, if it is possible I want Turkey not to receive the EU funds but at the same time not to contribute to the EU budget. That is my wish as a Turkish citizen whose heart is broken.

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