Posted by David J. James
Original YT playout date: 4 May 2008
The 21st and final part of Huliganov’s Turkish experience – final that is until I go back there in 2014, This rounds off the current series, and some folks from Turkey who watched all 21 episodes concluded that I came away with a better understanding of Turkey than most visitors they know about, which I took as a great compliment. I think Turkey’s a fantastic place. Much better than I thought it would be.
Before my first visit I did not want Turkey to join the EU because they might spoil it by introducing Islam. Now I’m more worried that the EU could actually ruin their successes, built originally by the massive statesman Ataturk. They have a secular society, which means that although Islam is the majority religion, most people in the big cities are fairly disinterested and the clerics and zealots don’t get to push everyone else around. They know how to deal with Islam in their society, we don’t. We give the Islamic pushers more room to manoeuvre than they get in Turkey, and the EU would probably end up telling Turkey to give more freedom to the religious conservatives, allowing them to wear their scarfs in Parliament, etc, as well as forcing them to stop preparing certain local delicacies which we think are not healthy, like sheeps’ intestines.
In the end one way or another, we may be destined never to be in the same Union, but we should be close friends with Turkey, and allow them the best trade and mobility relations with our countries.”
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