Turkey lies on the frontier between traditionally Christian Europe, and the Middle East with its Islamic Realm. Since the EU formed, Turkey has been considering whether to be politically closer to Europe or politically closer to the Middle East.
Turkey has been a candidate to join the European Union (EU), with active dialogue since 2005. The dialogue is known as “accession” talks. This is the dialogue between the EU and any nation that wants to join the EU.
Turkey started the talks with the EU when Turkey was still ruled by a secular government. At that time it seemed Turkey wanted to associate more with Europe. However, the Third Signpost would likely require Turkey to become more politically involved with the Middle East.
With the Third Signpost looming, and the government under Erdoğan drifting ever more Islamist, it’s no wonder that Turkey’s cozying up with Europe would likely not work out.
Certain hot button issues have slowed down the process by which Turkey could join the EU. Among them have been human rights, the Armenian genocide, and now the handling of Turkey’s July “coup” particularly in bringing capital punishment back.
This story just broke how the EU parliament voted to freeze talks with Turkey. Austria is leading the motion to cause the EU to stop accession talks. It seems Austria might still be upset at the Turks assaulting their beloved Vienna twice – in 1529 and 1683.
The stopping of the process to bring Turkey into the EU shouldn’t be surprising, but almost expected, if you know the Signposts. This is, therefore, a rather significant event in Turkey’s march to the Third Signpost.