Turkey’s visa-free regime, VS Ukraine’s: truly unlimited possibilities for Erdogan

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Erdogan: I can solve your problems!
Six billion euros and the ‘Turkish Stream’!
Merkel: And we, what do we get?

In fact, he has concluded contracts for delivery of human flesh with prepayment, quotas, and guaranteed deliveries. 

Gueorgui Morozov
in Novorossia Today, May 5, 2016
Original title: Ukraine (or what’s left of it) should wish death for Turkey

Translated from French by Tom Winter

Judge for yourself. How is it that for two years now Ukraine has been following to the letter all the guidance from the EU and the IMF for obtaining visa-free status, bending over backwards for it, for nothing? The vain promises, the constant reports of the review of their case all for zero result in the end. I think Poroshenko, himself, must be tired of always being promised the same thing but getting a repetition of the same litany: “The visa-free regime is about to be granted, you just wait a little bit.”

In this context, Turkey seems like a sprinter in terms of getting what she wants in view of the time perspective (Turkey formalized its request for accession to the EEC, the EU’s predecessor already on 14 April 1987. This could give Ukraine the concept of the order of magnitude how eager Europe is to see problem countries integrate into its ranks). But as soon as he had in his possession the “migration crisis” for leverage, Recep Erdogan demanded visa-free EU travel in exchange for an agreement on migrants. And now the European Commission agrees to grant his citizens Schengen Zone access without a visa hardly a few months after this requirement was expressed.

The agreement provides for the following: in exchange for the return of each illegal migrant in Turkey, the EU agrees to host refugees already in EU territory.

Turkey is gaining a lot more than the EU from this agreement. Out of 6 billion euros that Ankara will receive for the reception of refugees, truly unlimited possibilities lie open before her. Refugee status will soon become commonplace and the extent of corruption that this will bring on is hard to imagine. 

In addition, this scheme does not guarantee that the flow of immigrants will be contained in any way. Instead, it is in Erdogan’s interest that there be maximal clandestine immigrants: A clandestine shows up in the EU, is caught and, under the agreements, will be returned to Turkey. In return Turkey sends to the EU a “legal” immigrant who had previously bribed an official to obtain refugee status. The officer is satisfied, Erdogan is too. As for the EU, a refugee will be there anyway. The Turks have no concern whether it is a real refugee, or a terrorist on a mission.

Most EU politicians do not have the time to reflect and entertain any doubts. A few more weeks and the water temperature in the sea will become warm enough for refugees to start the crossing on inflatable mattress, if the need is urgent enough. 

The wave of migrants last year did a lot to bring down Chancellor Merkel’s approval ratings, and she now is panicked that this year will bring the loss of the little voter approbation that remains. She needs successes, even temporary, even imaginary. The price that the EU in general and German citizens in particular will pay hardly matters at this time, the same as Ukraine, whose president has already saturated the whole world with his begging.

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Once again Europe closes its eyes to the fact that Turkey does not fully meet the so-called European values. Numerous politicians see Turkey as a country ruled by a sultan or a dictator, without even bothering to hide their opinion behind diplomatic words. 

Usually the EU requires that a country wishing a visa-free regime respect freedom of expression, independence of the courts, and changes in anti-terrorism legislation that would guarantee the rights of minorities. 

Well, do we see freedom of expression? 

Do we see independent courts? 

Do we see anti-terrorism legislation and the rights of minorities? 

Just consider the Kurds and remember the Armenian genocide in the Ottoman Empire. There remains the question of Cyprus, but I think we turn a blind eye there, too.

The European Union is incapable of considering the consequences of its own acts: they have created the problem themselves, by their own policy, and now the EU is forced to pay tribute. 

As for Turkey, the latter, having distorted the name of the Russian gas pipeline whose construction has been frozen, decides to become the leading supplier in human flesh instead of natural gas. Now Erdogan manages his internal political problems by means of refugees, while strengthening his regime in the country and showing the Turks his ability to get what none of his predecessors could obtain. In fact, he has concluded contracts for delivery of human flesh with prepayment, quotas, and guaranteed deliveries. 

Soon, the “gas blackmail” of Ukraine will seem child’s play to Europe compared to the dependence on the goodwill of the country through which the refugees are channeled, Turkey: where Europe fell. The stronger this dependence, the greater the important gain for Erdogan.

P.S. Donald Tusk, the President of the Council of Europe, has characterized Turkey as the “best example” in terms of the treatment of refugees. This video gives you an overview of this treatment …

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