In view of the current situation in Turkey, the EU has issued a statement in which some of the actions taken by the Turkish government are described as unacceptable. This is effectively an ultimatum and therefore has all the problems inherit in ultimata.

Ultimata only works if you have the power to actually carry them through. If the EU feels that the treatment of the education system, judiciary and media is unacceptable, what shall we do? Cut ties to Turkey? Force a reversal?

Is it unacceptable if we end accepting it? Is it unacceptable if the only way we can reverse it is paying off the Turkish government, effectively making it extortion?

Ultimata without the power to carry them through always end up falling apart and revealing just how weak your hand really is, how impotent you are. Threats are meaningless as, as long as they are not carried out, they are just posturing.

Unless, of course, the statement was only for internal reasons and High Representative/Vice-President Federica Mogherini and Commissioner Johannes Hahn only made it to appease the EU citizens.

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