Wednesday, May 14, 2003

St Scarlett returns....................

Mother Surperior, you asked me to comment on the tv documentary on the EU's expansion and the hidden agendas of Fischer and the like. It strikes me, that Fischer may not be the only one in Germany voicing the opinion that Turkey should be kept out of the European Union. In fact, there is a huge question mark over the whole prospect of Turkey joining and the EU keeps throwing things in the path of Turkey (economic and political demands). Yes, the economy is unstable and yes Turkey has problems with human rights violations, but frankly, I think it boils down to a serious doubt whether Turkey is 'Europe' or not. Neither Spain nor Greece had an unblemished human rights record or a stable economy when they joined, but there was no question as to their 'Europeanness'. There is a distinct unwillingness from the part of the EU to make any clear policy on Turkey. Basicly, it seems that dealing with the question of Turkey's membership is avoided time and time again, because no one wants to admit that they, like Fischer, are not entirely sure whether they want them to join at all. And it plays no small part that Turkey is a Muslim country, though few are willing to admit it. Thus, the policy towards Turkey is full of vacillations and hidden agendas. The problem is, that membership of the EU has not only economic advantages, but also acts as a legitimizing force and is connected to a sense of belonging to a western, civilised world ( this is connection is made very strongly in Eastern Europe). An outright denial of membership to Turkey would cause all sorts of problems....

And it is important to note that Germany has very many Turkish immigrants, in fact they probably form the largest immigrant group in the country. Therefore Fischers comments leave all of us feeling that there lie some rather unpleasant sentiments behind them..........

Happy blogging girls, see you...St Scarlett

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