Limits of the European Integration – The Case of Turkish Republic
Pavel Senderák (Palacky University, Olomouc, Czech Republic) [BIO]
The European integration is an open-ended process. We could see a gradual and complex transformation of the initially economic community into a novel entity that has evolved beyond the economic union and acquired much broader territorial and policy scope. The present European Union (EU) possesses some of the modern nation-state features, but it is still literally constituted by its Member States and its viability, progress and development are conditioned by the support of them and their citizens. Each new member altered its character to a certain degree and influenced its future development. The EU may appear as an ever-changing structure, but, in spite of the rather broad definition of eligibility for membership, it appears that there are implicit criteria constituting limits of the European integration.
We attempt to uncloak them by examining Community’s relations with Turkey, because of the unprecedented length of the mutual rapprochement and negotiation process and its high political sensitivity. We argue that the process is being prolonged by unclear intentions, insufficient reliability and lack of commitment, caused by the lack of identity and clarity that would otherwise reveal whether Turkey is compatible with the EU membership or not. Before the possible accession, both parties need to find their own identity, at least the part related to it, and consider its desirability. The accession would probably not offer definite answers to what the EU is or will become, but it would indicate what the EU is not and will not be.