Thursday, December 07, 2006

sabah, one of the country's major mainstream dailies reported(*) negotiations are underway between turkey/turks and the internationally recognized "official" government of cyprus for making at least one turkish seaport and an airport available to the access of south cypriot craft in return for aggreeing to open an airport in north cyprus and the seaport of famagusta to international traffic.

as a witness to the so called "peace operation"/intervention/invasion etc. in cyprus and having born every brunt of the cyprus crisis for 35 years, i am naturally disposed toward pessimism. however, if an accord of some sort is reached on the ports issue, it will be one of the greatest breakthroughs in turkey's octagenerian history.

under pain of being boring by belaboring the obvious, cyprus is and has been for half a century, the humpback on turkey's back. the country suffered not only serious economic retardation, alienation (even from the third) world and a military coup (**), it left an alarming portion of the population psychologically insecure about what being a turk means, so that every act to which some collective "sense" can be attached has come to be conceived as a test, a trial, a challenge - from football meets to e.u. negotiations or bedding a western tourist.

since such insecurity born of an essentially absurd reason only breeds more insecurity even with each precarious achievement, turkey's inevitable and progressive integration with the world has become a traumatic off-road track as ups were followed by more ups which went on down steep precipices. "conceding" something on any issue, but especially in cyprus has become synonymous with some sort of castration in this collective pathology.

if a deal can be reached on opening the ports, there is the chance that turks will see the most precious part of their anatomy still hangs there and on top, trade with cyprus, whose economic indices far outpass not only turkey but also greece, may bring not only political relief but also a large healthy breath for individuals' pockets...

and who knows, maybe new partners to bed, too...
(*) via reuters, which based its own story on a finnish tv newscast
(**) at least indirectly related to the events precipitated when policy festered into crises (note plural pls.)

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