Stephen Kinzer, der lange in Istanbul lebte, beschreibt* in der NYRB eloquent die Vorzüge eines Beitritts:
If Turkey wins a favorable vote in December, it will need about a decade to complete the complex process of preparing for actual EU membership. During that decade, the EU will probably be pressed to extend its reach even further. The countries of the western Balkans—Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Macedonia, and Serbia—will all have legitimate claims for membership if they can reach Turkey’s level of political and economic democracy. Later Belarus and Moldova might undertake the reforms that would enable them to apply. Armenia, Georgia, Azerbaijan, and possibly Russia could eventually become candidates. In the distant future, so might Israel, a Palestinian state, or even Morocco.
Admitting Turkey would set the EU on an ambitious new path. It could greatly strengthen Europe’s strategic position, giving it added weight in competition with the United States and other powers that might emerge later in the century. With Turkey and the combat-ready Turkish army in its ranks, the EU would be able to speak with a combination of moral authority and military credibility that it has never before been able to claim.
* Der Artikel ist mittlerweile Teil des kostenpflichtigen NYRB-Archivs.