France angry with US over Turkey/EU comments

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by Sayhey, Jun 28, 2004.

  1. Sayhey macrumors 68000

    Sayhey

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    #1
    Guardian

    Now the question is was this purposeful in order to stir divisions between Turkey and some EU members or is this just a stupid blunder on Bush's part. My bet is on the former.
     
  2. zimv20 macrumors 601

    zimv20

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    #2
    well, what does the US gain from turkey joining the EU? is it important (to the US) to have a muslim country be part of the EU? maybe they reckon it would limit any military response turkey might have to some kind of kurdish uprising.

    it would also give the EU a border w/ iraq. hmmm....
     
  3. IJ Reilly macrumors P6

    IJ Reilly

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    #3
    Turkey has long wanted into the EU. This is all about the US attempting to curry favor with an erstwhile regional ally. It really isn't any of our business, but the Bush remark would have been shrugged off in better times. Those diplomatic chickens, they do come home to roost. (Or should I say, turkeys?)
     
  4. zimv20 macrumors 601

    zimv20

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    #4
    yeah, i got that. my musings were all based on how expediting the process would help the US. if we're lucky, paul krugman will be sorting out some better ideas soon.
     
  5. blackfox macrumors 65816

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    I find this interesting...I believe there is some interest for the US having Turkey in the EU camp, as its' alternative is in the Islamic one...

    Turkey has been petitioning for years for entrance to the EU, but Europe has largely balked at the integration of a large-populous Muslim Nation into an otherwise almost completely homogenous western, Christian club (except Bosnia, Greece, a few others)...I am not sure Turkey will ever be let in, France already struggles with the consequences of a large Muslim minority in their country, as do some others...so I am not sure they find it in their best interests...Either way, it is the EU's call, not the US's

    ...But back to Turkey...Turkey has, like many Muslim countries, become more Islamicized in recent years, with large gains by Islamic Parties in elections, and a slow shifting of mores away from Kemal-inspired secularism...The developments in Iraq to do with the Kurds, and the tendency for Turkey to align itself with fellow Muslims (who were once enemies) w/ relation to this problem, seems to imply that Turkey might turn it's back on the West, and become the De Facto leader of the Muslim World...This would, most likely, not be a good thing for the US, although I am not sure of the impact on Europe of such a change...

    Considering this, (and to be very cynical), perhaps Bush is setting up Europe for the blame if Turkey does join the ME camp...to distract from the instability and shifting of coalitions in the Region resulting from the break-up of occupied Iraq...

    Just a thought...
     
  6. IJ Reilly macrumors P6

    IJ Reilly

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    #6
    I don't see how Turkey belonging to the EU advances US interests, though maybe someone else can suggest a reason.

    In rereading my post above, I notice with some distress that I've managed to work "curry" and "turkey" into the same sentence. What a revolting concept. :(
     
  7. zimv20 macrumors 601

    zimv20

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    #7
    OT

    this curry ice cream is pretty darn good
     
  8. blackfox macrumors 65816

    blackfox

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    #8
    I thought I did...anyway, I am not sure if it is a question of Turkeys' joining the EU as advancing US interests, as it is of Turkey not joining being detrimental to US interests.

    As I said above, if Turkey was to turn it's back on the EU (and the West) and join (and to a degree, lead) the Muslim world, that would deprive the US of stategic influence in the Region (as related to Military bases, Financial aid [which may come from Islamic sources instead]) and seriously damage the hope of having the ME Democratic along Western lines...and so on...

    There is also the possibility that a Turkey included within the EU, would seriously (although perhaps not permanently) destabilize consensus and subsequently, the strength of the EU. This might allow the US to continue to do it's own thing w/o worry of a concerted opposition...although this seems a little too machaivellian to me...

    Just speculation....
     
  9. Sayhey thread starter macrumors 68000

    Sayhey

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    #9
    I don't think it is in the US interests as Bush defines them. It seems to me that what is going on here is pushing on the fault lines of the EU in order to isolate "old europe" from "new europe." A Turkey more dependent on the US is also more likely one of the goals of this maneuver. Remember the US is talking of moving more troops closer to the Middle East from old German bases. Expanding US bases in Turkey and moving troops to more compliant "new european" countries (Romania, Bulgaria) fits nicely into a new neocon vision of the world.
     
  10. skunk macrumors G4

    skunk

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    #10
    I believe the continued exclusion of Turkey has more to do with the question of Cyprus than the number of Muslims in the population. The EU generally looks askance at pre-emptive attacks....
     
  11. takao macrumors 68040

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    #11
    1. the greece vs. turkey question (not only about cyprus)...they are having these 'problems' with each other since centuries...

    2.economically turkey is not ready (like other countries)

    3.discrimination etc. against the kurdish minorites...(leading to terrorism,criminality)

    4. problem of excessive coruption in police/etc.

    5. and of course there is still the discussion if they are still part of europe...you know their culture is even with there secularism still very different...

    in the next 5 years there is no change of them joining.. perhaps in the longer time period of 10 years..but _not_ before they sort out problems
    there are still some countries which should join the EU first (in the balcan etc)
     
  12. skunk macrumors G4

    skunk

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    #12
    This could equally apply to UK/Eire and UK/Spain relationships, even UK/France. Hmmm. Why is it always the UK, I wonder?

    This could equally apply to several current EU members

    This could apply to Latvia with its Russian minority

    This could apply to almost any country

    This could apply to the UK!

    It just goes to show... ;)
     
  13. takao macrumors 68040

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    #13
    skunk well now if one country combines all these things then it is very unlikly.. you know italy has a german minority.. but they sorted the problems out like many others..austria signed that they will protect the slovenian/hungarian minorities.... the turkish government are not willing to sort the problems with the kurds out...
    on the other side torture from police still happens in the absolutly sub EU-standard prisons even against _tourists_ from the EU

    i know quite a few persons with turkish roots (most of the time their parents where born there and came up here in the past for work)... "beautifull country and nice people but the politic situation is horrible" most of them want turkey to join the EU (like me) but not now or in the next few years

    and yeah i seriously doubt that in latvia russian villages are destroyed and the people get deported into other parts of the country...

    it's not the problem that there is only _one_ thing...the problem is that there are _multiple_ things
     
  14. skunk macrumors G4

    skunk

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    #14
    I do agree with you on the whole. It's just rather ironic how the EU sets these standards. A similar irony to the US dictating human rights standards to the world while abusing them in Iraq.
     
  15. blackfox macrumors 65816

    blackfox

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    Why that may be true, Skunk, it may just be intricately related in the EU's mind...the point being is that Turkish Culture, not sharing in the common history of current EU members, does not have the same values as such, and are from the EU's perspective, more likely to commit such offenses and less likely to change, as their value system does not discern in the same manner...

    It is this incompatability of Cultural Values that I think makes the EU wary of Turkeys' entrance into their "club", as it would be that much harder to integrate the whole and work on consensus with such differences...If you look at the EU now, it is all Catholic/Protestant, with Greece and Cyprus the only Orthodox members (I believe)...Cyprus is brand-new, and Greece has been troublesome to the whole at times...looking at the prospective members, you have Turkey, Bulgaria and Romania...two Orthodox, one Muslim...I think you might see some Baltic states in before them...

    I guess I am saying never underestimate the importance of common-values in pragmatic governance...it makes thing much easier...and they are already plenty difficult now.
     
  16. IJ Reilly macrumors P6

    IJ Reilly

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    #16
    Perhaps, but it seems to me having Turkey in the EU only causes them to look more towards Europe (old or otherwise) and less towards the US. I don't want to read too much into the Bush statement. I personally believe it was simply another ham-handed diplomatic effort on the part of the Bush administration. Apparently he couldn't find something nice to say to people of country he was visiting without stepping on someone else's toes. That's pretty much par for the course where Bush is concerned.
     
  17. takao macrumors 68040

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    #17
    well i hope that's the answer ... perhaps hsi statement was misinterpreted as "backing turkey" instead "hoping the best for turkey"
     
  18. Sayhey thread starter macrumors 68000

    Sayhey

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    #18
    You are probably right, IJ, that I'm reading too much into this blunder. I'm being very cynical in my view. I don't think Bush ever really wanted to advance Turkey's EU membership. Rather I'm looking at this as a way for the US to stir up a hornet's nest of resentment in Turkey, knowing full well that France and others don't support early entry. This enables the US to sit back while this fight rages and whisper in Turkey's ear "see, we were with you all along, but those arrogant Frenchies..." Anyway, Chirac is right - this is none of our business.

    Your reading of it is much more straight forward and likely. I can't help but see darker interests involved.
     
  19. Sayhey thread starter macrumors 68000

    Sayhey

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    #19
    Update

    Bush's remarks may have been a stupid blunder, but he is sticking by them.

    BBC
     
  20. skunk macrumors G4

    skunk

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    #20
    What he should realize is that, with an EU Muslim population of 15 million (http://www.brookings.edu/views/op-ed/fellows/taspinar20030301.htm) European Muslims are already taking a significant part in European politics.
     
  21. takao macrumors 68040

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    #21
    well i live in a town where there is a local "turkish party"...(they only gained a few percent 3-5% but they are still there) and about 10-15% are bilinguar with german and turkish in elementary schools ...(actually there are even schools where it goes beyond 30%)
    the austrian army has a _muslim only_ military unit for 'strong believers' where they get the special food/their time for prayers etc.
    during my service there where about ~10% as well... and half of them got seperate food..

    edit: found some stats: in austria 4,2 % are muslims (according to the counting 2001) and fast increasing...
     
  22. IJ Reilly macrumors P6

    IJ Reilly

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    #22
    Which only raises the question, can a blunder ever be smart? :)
     
  23. Ugg macrumors 68000

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    #23
    His statement was inappropriate as the EU is encouraging Turkey to join. However, Turkey's treatments of its dissidents, its corruption and weak economic planning leave a lot to be desired. I think gw is telling the EU that it should ignore the worst of Turkey's problems (like the US does with its client states) and let it join anyway. That would be a serious mistake given the weak condition of the EU. Had he done this in private it would not have been an issue yet he chose to make it public. I think there is something dark and sinister behind his statement, what it is I don't know.

    On the other hand, the EU does need to deal with its Muslim population better than it has. I don't know how headscarves have played out in Austria, takao, but in Germany, the UK, and France it hasn't gone well at all. Germany's treatment of Turks mainly, due to its guest worker program of the 50s and 60s is not good.

    gw should keep his complaints private and the EU should do more to integrate Muslims into society, hopefully without the backlash of fundamentalism.
     
  24. skunk macrumors G4

    skunk

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    #24
    Are you implying that Shrub is only PRETENDING to be a complete ass? I've heard this theory before, but I discounted it early on: nobody is that good an actor.
     
  25. Sayhey thread starter macrumors 68000

    Sayhey

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    #25
    Actually, skunk, I think IJ is only pointing out how I was being redundant in my wording. A good natured correction from a friend. It won't be the last blunder (stupid or otherwise) I will make. ;)

    On the surface, there is a lot of truth to Bush's remarks. Turkey's inclusion in the EU would be a wonderful accomplishment. Of course it doesn't deal with any of the questions of the reality of Turkish society that Ugg raises and the effect of those problems being included in the EU in the form of the Union's most populous state.

    When I look at this statement by Bush and combine it with the attempts earlier this year to scuttle the Constitution around an independent EU military force, I can only conclude that the Bush administration has as one of its goals the splitting of the Europe along new lines. I think the rhetoric of "Old Europe" and "New Europe" has deeper meanings for neoconservative strategists. Again, this maybe the paranoia of someone who views neocon thinking as very dangerous for the world, but I think I will have to do some closer readings of their opinion pieces on the future of the EU.
     

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