French AND Turkish exaggerations

French  AND  Turkish exaggerations

Take first the Turkish exaggeration.  “Irreparable damage”. That sounds too dramatic. Is it so irreparable if the French parliament make  denial of the Armenian genocide punishable with a year prison and euro 45 000 fine?

Allow me to give the Turkish Minister of foreign affairs in private a little bit of counsel under two headings:

  • Nothing is “irreparable” in legislation or bilateral relations. Laws can be undone. Missteps may be forgiven and relations improved If the Turkish authorities took a lighter tone and would say that the proposal is “rather silly”, and a unfortunate typical  french exaggeration of legislative policy , that would be much closer to the situation and in fact close to the heart of the french people. The French  have had over the last twenty years already more than enough of criminalizing opinion-related laws. That makes political discussion in France now hazardous and therefor poor as under dictatorial regimes. It is an unfortunate  exaggeration of our times. Perhaps – let us hope- the French will at some time kick that bad habit. …….. That is the kind of reasoning most french would fully understand and sympathise with. Why did you not take that line?
  • Raising the word “irreparable damage” is however also an exaggeration on your, the Turkish  side. In the present context it is also rather an unfortunate word. Ask people what they think if they hear the word “irreparable”.  The answer which you are likely get is “DEATH”;  and then the connection with what happened to the Armenians will unavoidably, one could say irreparably,  come to mind.

Chin up, dear Turkish Minister !  Relax, don’t throw big words around which come back to you.



About dutasia

Former Ambassador of the Netherlands, presently National Commissioner for Thailand and for Indonesia in the ICC, the International Chamber of Commerce, the World Business Organization. Chairman of China Carbon Forum in Beijing, China.
This entry was posted in diplomacy, Europe's relations with other continents, France, Turkey, Turkey's campaign for EU accession. Bookmark the permalink.

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