Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
My answer to Matt's question: Turkey cannot deal with this because they have too often been enabled by the West in their denials. When an Armenian genocide resolution was about to pass congress in the 1990s, Clinton sent out the word to quash it. When I called up my wonderful Democratic congresswoman (who is sadly no longer mine because of redistricting) I received this response from her: "The resolution is all a part of a political ploy by a Republican congressman outside Los Angeles."

That's too bad I wrote, but it doesn't address the fact that the US does not recognize the fact that millions of Armenians were killed in a genocide.

Same thing happened in France in the late 1990s. Chirac went to bat to make sure it wasn't recognized. I'm sad to say that Israel's gov't as well, in their cozy relationship with Ankara, is keen to ignore this genocide, however ironic this may be.

It's just as shameful for California politicans to use this genocide to garner votes and for European politicans to now use it as an excuse to bar Turkey.

I realize this will be an incredibly painful admission for Turkey. The citizens simply do not believe it happened. So it's not a matter of simply coming to grips with the truth. This is about the nation's mass consciousness. I do not expect them to come to grips at all. It will stop Turkish accession in its tracks.

by Upstate NY on Fri Jun 17th, 2005 at 12:47:43 PM EST
The French Parliament has voted to officially recognise the Armenian genocide. This has created major strains with Turkey, but France has stood pretty firm on this.

I am generally favorable to Turkey's entry into the EU, but it should be on the EU's terms, and not on bilaterally negotiated more favorable terms, and it should certainly include a recognition of the genocide.

We'll see.

In the long run, we're all dead. John Maynard Keynes

by Jerome a Paris (etg@eurotrib.com) on Fri Jun 17th, 2005 at 03:31:00 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Yes, Jerome, I'm aware of the recently passed recognition. However, the first time around a few years ago, the French caved as well.
by Upstate NY on Fri Jun 17th, 2005 at 03:33:06 PM EST
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But make no mistake: Whatever noises of regret are made, the EU, including Schröder or his successor, will sigh in relief if Ankara absolves it of the need to turn over the membership carrot.
(from the diary)

Looks like the EU split is widening - constitution, budget, enlargement - lots of bad news the last few days.  As reported today by the Guardian:

Talks on Turkey's accession, a British priority for its presidency starting in three weeks' time, are due to start formally in October.
The French specifically said they were not seeking to stop those talks. But they are likely to find a ready ally in Germany.

"Poor" Turkey - not only do they have to come clean on the Armenian atrocities - that may not be enough, as they are but a little chip in the high-stakes game we are witnessing.
by ask on Fri Jun 17th, 2005 at 04:11:53 PM EST
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Strictly speaking, I would say it isn't enough. There are a lot of structural demands that need to be made in the meantime.

In a perfect world, negotiations with Ankara would continue on a steady timetable in which incremental progress is made. Ankara would begin seeding the possibility of a genocide recognition 15 years from now. That's how long it would take for the Turkish public to come to grips with the truth. If the Europeans force this down the Turks' throats now, it's tantamount to just excluding them entirely.

I am CONVINCED that the genocide is just a bargaining chip. For many years, the EU was protected by the Greeks and Cypriots who were expected the wield a veto against Turkey. But after "earthquake diplomacy," when the Greeks and Cypriots favored Turkey's inclusion into the EU, the EU suddenly found itself without a basis for excluding Turkey.

The Turks well know that there are a few things that absolutely must be done before they would enter the EU entirely, but that process can take 15 years.

by Upstate NY on Sat Jun 18th, 2005 at 07:18:15 AM EST
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