Should Turkey Join the European Union?

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Whether or not Turkey should be admitted into the European Union has been a topic of debate for over half a century now, with Turkey formally putting up the request in 1987.  Even today, there is no clear answer as to which direction this debate will favor.  Jason Groves and Geoffrey Wheatcroft are two writers who share their points of view on the issue.  In his article, “Turkey must join EU, says Cameron: ‘Those who are against are playing on fears of Islam,’” Groves points out three main reasons for why this decision should be made. 

Firstly, he states that Turkey’s admission into the EU is imperative in order to improve the EU’s relationship with the rest of the Muslim world.  This is because by accepting Turkey, the EU will be showing its support to at least understand the moderate Islamic nation and the religion itself.  Secondly, Groves believes that the EU members are skeptic of this decision because they misunderstand the Islamic faith and frankly, do not want a majority Islamic country to be considered part of the EU.  The main opponents for this reason are France and Germany.  Thirdly, the EU views Turkey as an economic threat.  Currently, the nation has a population of 72 million and after becoming part of the EU, its economy will only gain strength.  However, Groves argues that because of this, Turkey will become a great asset to the EU and should be admitted.  The United States and Britain are in favor of Turkey joining. 

On the contrasting end, writer Geoffrey Wheatcroft’s article is entitled: “Turkey is not going to join the EU.”  Wheatcroft argues that Turkey’s population is increasing and because of this, it will not strengthen the EU economy, but weaken it considerably.  In fact, it would simply gain popularity by winning the title of being the most populated country in the EU.  Furthermore, according to Wheatcroft, Britain’s Prime Minister, David Cameron, is merely supporting Turkey through his words and does not intend to actually let it into the EU- this is because of pressure from the United States.  Mainly, Wheatcroft is against Turkey’s admission because he claims that joining Turkey with the intention of learning more about moderate Islam is an unconvincing excuse.  The reality is that the country will only become more politically Islamic and will threaten European customs and culture, such as banning alcohol, which Turkey has done in the past.  

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