Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
There are practical questions about Turkey's membership that seem very difficult to me. Forget about racist theories and concentrate on the practical issues:

  • Turkey has long borders with Syria, Iraq, and Iran. Can immigration from these countries into Europe be controlled?

  • How is the interest rate of the Euro to be managed in a country where the charging of interest is prohibited by the state religion?http://www.findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m0OGT/is_1_1/ai_113563592/pg_2

  • What is the plan for controlling the heroin supply from Turkey? With an open border to Europe, you won't have to smuggle it in any more: "Inspectors at the Kapitan Andreevo border checkpoint intercepted 22.8 kg of heroin, the press office of the regional customs directorate in nearby Plovdiv said on June 20. The drugs were found in an Audi car with Bulgarian licence plates being driven by a Bulgarian national, who was travelling with his wife from Turkey. The heroin was packed in 44 packages hidden in a special compartment in the car's fuel tank. The driver was issued a statement of customs violation. This is the sixth time inspectors have intercepted heroin at Kapitan Andreevo since the beginning of the year. They have found a total of 135 kg at the checkpoint." http://www.sofiaecho.com/article/news-roundup/id_11647/catid_5

  • What about the CAP? 40% of the Turkish population works in agriculture (compared to 25% in Poland and 4% in France). If the EU wants to continue to support agriculture as it has in the past, won't the bulk of the EU budget go directly to Turkey as CAP funds?

  • What languages will be used in the European Parliament? Sure, in theory there are 21 or more languages in use, but in reality the working languages are English and French, but that's gradually changing towards English and German. With the entry of Turkey, perhaps the practical EU languages will be German and Turkish, with English retained since "everybody speaks English."

Maybe there are already plans on how to approach these problems...or perhaps I just don't "get" how the integration of Turkey into the EU is supposed to happen.
by asdf on Tue Jul 5th, 2005 at 09:59:20 AM EST
  1. That problem already exists and won't change if Turkey joins. It would change (Bulgarian and Greek borders fall away as part of the second barrier) if Turkey were to join Schengen (the open-borders treaty). Given how long Britain opted out of Schengen and still doesn't plan to join, this is not a close prospect. As for the long term, I don't see why it could be impossible to increase border security.

  2. (a) that provision will be dropped, (2) Turkey stay out of the Euro like Britain, Sweden and Denmark.

  3. Same as 1). BTW, the heroin coming from Turkey is not coming from Turkey - it is coming from Afghanistan (where the US fails to put in place any meaningful plan to curb production, letting allied warlords finance themselves with it).

  4. Yes, the CAP would change. But Turkey's joining is way beyond even 2013, when the current new EU members - old members balance will set in, so working out the details is not an issue for today (i.e. the economies of all countries you list will transform significantly in the meantime).

  5. There are 21 languages in use. Interpreters aren't paid to sit around. As for working languages in informal meetings, I don't think German will replace French, and even less that Turkish will come along. This is not a function of how many citizens a country has, but how many other countries speak the language. French is official language in three EU members plus Switzerland, German is official language in four members and Switzerland, plus perhaps the most spoken second language here in Central-Eastern Europe (English may take over, but mostly in the younger generation). Turkish is only official in two future EU members, plus spoken by large minorities (that may enough for a few representatives in the EU) in maybe three others. But, either way: I don't see how this language issue is a "problem". (Except you are trying to troll some Frenchmen here.)

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.
by DoDo on Tue Jul 5th, 2005 at 10:38:23 AM EST
[ Parent ]
  1. languages. Never been a problem, won't be a problem in the future, we're used to juggling between languages. One more won't make that big of a difference.

  2. islamic banks. I'm pretty sure that won't be a problem too. We have a few islamic banks here in Belgium and the other EU countries probably have them too considering the fact that Europe already has a significant muslim population.
by Zarah on Tue Jul 5th, 2005 at 10:40:07 AM EST
[ Parent ]
2. By being a secular state whose central bank is perfectly happy to deal with interest rates? Like it is now?
by Colman (colman at eurotrib.com) on Tue Jul 5th, 2005 at 11:04:59 AM EST
[ Parent ]
"the state religion"

Just to repeat that Turkey, though a Muslim country, doesn't have a state religion.

by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Tue Jul 5th, 2005 at 11:18:34 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Are you the same asdf who wrote this...?

Europeans maybe don't get it... (none / 0)

Turkey should apologize and get this over with, no question. But what interests me is the attitude towards Turkey's potential joining of the EU: The diarist seems to not welcome Turkey into the union.

From an American viewpoint, I can on the one hand understand the problems that Turkey would bring to the EU. But on the other hand, in our case we would generally WELCOME the addition of a new state because of the many benefits that come with an expanded union.

For example, suppose that Mexico decided to join the United States. Industry would love this, because a whole new population of low wage workers would become available. Mexicans would love it, because they would be able to freely move between Mexico and California, offering much better job opportunities. Americans would like the new low cost goods and the increased ability to travel to and retire to a warm climate while retaining the advantages of American residency. About the only people who wouldn't like it are Mexican politicians who would lose prestige and money.

Why isn't it this way with Turkey and the EU? If France, Germany, and Poland (mortal enemies for centuries) can get together, why can't Turkey join too?
by asdf on Fri

Jun 17th, 2005 at 10:16:26 AM PDT

The world's northernmost desert wind.
by Sirocco (sirocco2005ATgmail.com) on Tue Jul 5th, 2005 at 12:31:54 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Yep, same one. User names are unique and persistent around here.

I don't have a horse in this race, or an axe to grind, or an ox about to be gored. I'm just curious about what the thinking is...

by asdf on Tue Jul 5th, 2005 at 06:28:07 PM EST
[ Parent ]


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