A think tank report gives the Islamist leaning country too much credit.
5:19 PM, Jun 11, 2010 • By ULF GARTZKE
The report also makes a mistake by dismissing outright the concept of a “privileged partnership.” While Turkey and the EU are continuing their accession talks, it is obviously far too early to tell what the endgame will be and whether Turkey will ever be ready – or still be willing – to join the EU in the future. It is therefore only prudent and honest to start defining the parameters of a “privileged partnership” (or whatever you want to call it) with countries such as Turkey as a viable, potential alternative to full EU membership. The concept could also be used to structure relations with other strategically important countries (Ukraine, Algeria, Morocco, etc.) that, for a variety of reasons, are either unable or unwilling to join the EU.
The executive summary of the Turkey report concludes with the following words: “As the policy recommendations … make clear, the report does not propose an uncritical appraisal of Turkish actions but one which recognizes that contributions to American and European goals may come in a new, and perhaps unfamiliar, guise.”
Reading these words, I do not know whether to laugh or cry.