Thursday, August 02, 2007

Bolton sees the point

John Bolton, former US ambassador to the UN, is at it again – this time on the "special relationship" and the EU.

Writing for The Financial Times, he notes that successive British governments have taken Britain deeper and deeper into the European Union, all the while proclaiming that nothing fundamental about Britain's status was changing.

Now, he observes, the re-emergence of a European "constitution" – under whatever name – has brought Britain to a clear decision point. The long, slow slide into the European porridge has had few clear transition points. In the aggregate, however, the magnitude of changes in the status of the EU's formerly Westphalian nation-state members can no longer be blinked away.

He is not wrong.

His point is picked up by today’s Daily Mail, saying that Bolton has latched on to a truth that seems to have escaped our government: if we sign up to the revived EU constitution, Britain will cease to be an independent nation. The paper continues:

As far as the outside world is concerned, Europe will be a single superstate - and our special relationship with the US, like every distinctively British foreign policy, will become a meaningless irrelevance.

But can't we easily avoid that fate? At the last election, Labour solemnly promised to call a referendum on the EU constitution. As the entire world can see, the 'Reform Treaty' now being finalised in Brussels is identical to that document in every essential.

Keep your promise, Mr Brown - and let the people save our independence.
It will be interesting to see how much of this sort of thing Brown can withstand before he buckles – if at all. One thing is for sure though, the "colleagues" are not getting it all their own way.


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