Turkey : A threat to European Democracy or a threat to European Right-Wing Populism?

Article published on Dec. 4, 2007
community published
Article published on Dec. 4, 2007
This is an artcile made by user Daskalos over Turkey's accesion in the EU Many of us have attended a number of discussions over one of the most controversial topics in European thought and politics, especially when we consider issues such as democracy, human rights, the enlargement of the European Union and perhaps even Islam. 'Should Turkey join the European Union'?
'Isn't Europe a Christian club'? 'Isn't Turkey a backward, Muslim nation bordering the Middle East'? 'Turkey does not respect fundamental human rights!' These are some of the statements often made by politicians, academics, journalists, philosophers, religious authorities and ordinary people all over Europe, from Ireland to Poland and from Portugal to Greece.

On the 3rd of December 2007, German Chancellor Angela Merkel stated that her Christian Democratic Union Party opposes Turkey's bid to join the European Union as a full member. This was the first time she officially opposed Turkish EU accession: "We are, have been and will remain in favour of a privileged partnership with Turkey, but we're against full membership in the European Union," said Merkel in a speech to the Christian Democrats' annual convention in Hanover.

Does this statement reflect well-thought of democratic principles, or is this statement an outright expression of bias? Why is Turkey not worth a European Union membership - have they done something wrong? If Turkey have done something wrong, should they not be given a second chance (after all, wasn't Germany given one)?