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Yes, it's true that Turkish IP addresses can no longer access You Tube, as I discovered this morning. While I do find Article 301 to be very restrictive, taken in the context of this country's history, it is really not so irrelevant. Our republic has only been in existence for about 80+ years, already with three bloodless military coups to keep religious conservatives at bay. One of the primary purposes of Article 301 is to prevent the destruction of Ataturk's secular ideals via propaganda by religious leaders. Freedom of speech is limited everywhere, in different ways and means, not just in Turkiye. What I find even more appalling is the number of governments who object to Turkiye's admission to the EU based on "human rights violations," when those countries have had just as many, if not more, violations themselves and more recently to boot. Honestly I think it comes down to a matter of religion and the age of Turkiye's population, not Article 301 or HR violations.

For what it's worth, the vast majority of Turkish citizens are not interested in EU membership, with a less than 30% approval rating in the latest polls. The EU has never been interested in granting Turkiye full membership, they will never allow unrestricted travel for Turkish passports or allow for unrestricted work permits. I honestly believe that membership in the EU can only harm Turkiye's future and remove much of what makes Turkiye a great place to live.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by kama'aina mama View Post
Can you say more about that?
We have had a population explosion here (to which I am apparently contributing any day) over the last 20 years. I don't have the exact figure off the top of my head, but the majority of Turkiye's population is under 40 (something like 60 or 70% maybe?). While Europe's population is aging, Turkiye's population is getting younger and younger and leading to fewer employment opportunities. This is forcing many young Turks to look into emigrating to other countries to find work and has been one of the points that the EU has brought up in the past to reject Turkiye's candidacy--the fear of Europeans losing jobs to a mass influx of Turks. (Much along the same thread as if the US were to open the Mexican border.)

ETA: I looked for stats and it's hard to find anything that's really to the point, but most seem to point to at least half of the population being under 25 (according to the UN).
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by kama'aina mama View Post
Didn't know that. Thanks. I remember thinking when I was there that Turkey is really caught between two worlds. Not "Muslim enough" for some of their neighbors and not "European enough" for others.
Or to look at it another way, too Muslim for the Europeans and too European for the Muslims.


At the same time that we have the folks with the EU hollering for a more secular government, we have our neighbors calling for a more Islamic government. Talk about a sandwich!
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by Turkish Kate View Post
ETA: I looked for stats and it's hard to find anything that's really to the point, but most seem to point to at least half of the population being under 25 (according to the UN).
"Turkey is the 17th most densely populated country in the World. The majority of the population consists of young people, about 40% of whom are under the age of fifteen. 72% are below the age of 35"
http://www.turkishodyssey.com/turkey/pop/pop.htm
 

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Reminding that EU is quite large and for us here up in north - the bigger 'danger' (employment)if you want to put it that way, is eastern Europe. We do not even have time to think Turkey while facing eastern Europian issues.

And recent polls 'up here' showed that at least we would like more immigrants/foreigners living here.

It is not only this 'youtube' or Article 301 kind of issues that makes many in EU not want Turkey.

The tension between Turkey&Greece

Genocide issues;

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/6424025.stm
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/6386625.stm

Turkish law allows distribution of political literature only in Turkish.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/6425043.stm

Also, while secular country, Turkey still prefers islam - for example Turkey has been criticized by Greece, the European Union and several human rights NGOs for its refusal to recognize the Ecumenical title of the Greek Orthodox Patriarch in Istanbul and the closing of the Greek Orthodox theological school in Heybeliada (Halki), Istanbul.

Gay rights do not exist(though gays are not killed or jailed and I dare to say that situation for gays is much better in Turkey than for example in Russia - or EU country Poland).

Then there is the whole issue of kurdish people.

And while Turkey has been very progressive and on the top with gender equality, honour killings, forced marriages etc still live strong in parts of Turkey.

Ofcourse I cannot speak for whole EU but at least we 'up here' know Turkey quite well(heck, is a big vacation resort). At least here it is the human rights issues that make people be reserved.

Not only EU but also Human Rights Watch & Amnesty and many other organisations have problems with human rights situation in Turkey.

I totally agree that EU is no way perfect and there are some countries that should have not get into EU based on their human rights situation.

I personally dislike the whole EU anyway so IMO Turkish people are wise if they don't want to get into this crazyness.
 

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I've been debating on whether or not to respond to this post, as it seems that you and I are on pretty much the same anti-EU team, but I wanted to point out a few things for those who may be lurking or not familiar with the history.

The Greek and Turkiye thing has been going on for centuries. Remember Troy? LOL This is not a new situation by any stretch of the imagination and I think it stems partly from two very culturally similar yet religiously different countries being so very close to one another. I've been to Greece, the food is the same, the countryside is the same, the people are pleasant and friendly just like Turks, but the language and religion are very different. Both sides will have to make concessions to end the antagonism. But why should this tension be a cause for Turkiye to be excluded from an international collective bargaining unit? Because the Greeks are members, Turkiye is faulted in the conflicts.

The "genocide issue" is far from settled. There has never been any proof of an intended genocide against Armenians. There were mass casualties on both sides and no one was killed simply because of their ethnic background. The ethnic Armenians were incited by Russia to rise up against the newly declared Republic of Turkiye and promised a land of their own in return. The plan was to carve the remains of the Ottoman Empire into slices for the winners of the war, when along came Gazi Mustafa Kemal Ataturk to throw a monkey wrench into the plans. The war with the Armenians was to defend the newly declared sovereign nation against its attackers, not an attempt to exterminate an ethnic identity.

I'm not sure about that claim by the BBC that political information can only be presented in Turkish. I have personally seen political info in both English and French, although it is always accompanied by a Turkish translation (or they are English and French translations of Turkish). Perhaps they meant to say that it must always be presented in Turkish, as well as whatever other language?

I am not as familiar with the situation with the Greek Orthodox church, not my religion, so it hasn't actually been on my radar. Keep in mind, though, that Ataturk also destroyed the Muslim caliphate shortly after the revolution (1925?). While Islam is the majority religion, other religions are neither persecuted nor prevented. Proselytizing is illegal, however. (But ask me how many missionaries that I know of personally who are here in Istanbul.)

Let's talk about the Kurds. Remember when Saddam used the Kurdish Iraqis as cannon fodder, promising them a homeland in exchange for fighting his war? What happened to those Iraqis when he changed his mind and decided to exterminate them? They came to Turkiye. No other country would grant them refuge or asylum, but Turkiye did. There's more than one "group" of Kurds and they don't necessarily all see eye-to-eye on their situation in the world. They are the most displaced persons (next to the Hmong, I think) in the world in that they have no homeland and have been persecuted no matter where they go. They are very tribal, with loyalty to the tribe over all else, which makes them ideal mercenary-type warriors, which is how they have traditionally been used by other governments. By the way, those honor killings and forced marriages that you read about--those occur primarily in the southeast among the Kurdish population, not the ethnic seljuk/Ottoman Turkish population.

Turkiye's history and current internal conflicts are more complicated than can be covered in a 30 second sound bite on CNN, or by a blurb in the newpapers. These issues go very deep and may never be wholly solved. What galls me, however, is that founding nations of the EU have the nerve to cry shouts of genocide, without making any reparations for the genocides that they have committed themselves. Or they lambast the lack of free speech in Turkiye, while passing laws governing what a politician can say regarding events that happened in another country. None of us has truly free speech or a free press anywhere in the world--there is spin on everything.

I have yet to figure out what Turkiye will gain by joining the EU or what her reasons are for trying--other than just to be a member of the club. Kinda like the lone Jewish/Black/NA member of the WASPy country club.

Here's a couple of items from today's Turkish Daily News, just for the heck of it:
EU Made up of Christian Values

Swiss Court Convicts

By the way, the injunction was lifted yesterday and You Tube is back on! :)
 
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