Western unity is more important than frozen sausage
Brexit aims to restore British sovereignty. However, there is no more obvious example of loss of sovereignty than being unable to trade within one’s own country without filling out a statement. Customs declaration.
This is what the UK agreed to during negotiations with the Boris Johnson administration Northern Ireland Agreement As part of the Brexit agreement. The irony is that imposing internal borders within the United Kingdom is a violation of sovereignty, which is far more serious than anything the United Kingdom had to accept when it was actually a member of the European Union.
Johnson’s predecessor Theresa May said that no British prime minister would agree to establish a border in the Irish Sea. But Johnson made concessions in order to “complete Brexit”, force a general election, avoid the establishment of a border between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland, and a customs union that would allow Britain to leave the European Union.
This Inevitable tension The threat posed by the agreement may now create a new crisis between the United Kingdom and the European Union-a crisis that may soon lead to a trade war and tariffs. This prospect also created tensions between Washington and London, and the acting US ambassador to London issued a statement. Firm message Go to the UK to reduce your rhetoric and respect the agreement.
The intervention of the United States shows the threat of a broader crisis within the Western alliance. A very realistic prospect is that the G7 summit, which aims to show the unity of the West, may soon erupt a trade war within the Western bloc.
Avoiding this regrettable outcome requires action by London and Brussels—and possibly Washington’s mediation.
If tensions are to be eased, the British must abandon the idea that their real intention is to completely abandon the agreement.This is what Johnson means Recent statement The people of Northern Ireland should enjoy “free and uninterrupted access to goods and services from the entire United Kingdom”. This is indeed very desirable. But according to the terms of the agreement he negotiated, this was impossible. Currently the only legal and achievable goal is to apply the protocol with maximum flexibility.
As for Europeans, if they sincerely insist on the central importance of peace in Northern Ireland, they should recognize the danger of further inciting union opinions. They need to find ways to respect the agreement and protect the EU’s internal market, while minimizing symbolic flashpoints.
The danger is that the EU will succumb to the temptation to use it to prove (again) the stupidity of Brexit, Johnson’s lies, and the superior strength of the EU. But we already know all this. Nonetheless, Brexit has already occurred, and Johnson is firmly in place with the support of a strong electoral mandate.
No matter how annoyed the Johnson administration is, the EU has strong geopolitical, economic and human interests in establishing a decent relationship with the UK.
Before triggering a trade war, Brussels should be able to point out the actual rather than theoretical harm to its internal market. Take the great British sausage, which is currently (and ridiculously) at the center of controversy. From July, this iconic item can only be exported from the UK to Northern Ireland in frozen form. According to the EU, if these rules are not implemented from now on, the European single market will be endangered. But we have just witnessed unfrozen sausage crossing the Irish Sea for six months without causing any obvious damage to the European Union.
The EU can point to the danger of setting precedents and regulatory differences over time. But these issues can be resolved, and both parties have good intentions.
Unfortunately, goodwill is in short supply—whether in Brussels or London. Therefore, the United States may have a role to play. To this end, Americans need to dispel London’s fears that they will only act as law enforcers in Brussels and Dublin.Any U.S. envoy to Northern Ireland should follow suit George Mitchell In the peace process of the 1990s. He also attaches importance to the concerns of all parties.
The Biden administration certainly has the ability to play this role. Although the United States has repeatedly emphasized the need to avoid the border between Ireland and Northern Ireland, US officials have also privately stated that they do not intend to choose a side station between Brussels and London on the implementation of the agreement. They are most concerned about the dispute should be resolved, not the terms of the settlement.
The hope must be that the current war of words between Brussels and London is a gesture that usually precedes the deal. The worrying thing is that both sides may see the benefits of confrontation. The Johnson administration may think that it is good to blame the despicable Europeans for the loss of sovereignty actually stipulated in the agreement.Emmanuel Macron Hardliner European leaders face difficult French presidential elections, and taking a hard line on Britain will only help.
However, although these positions may have domestic political significance, they are international nonsense. The unity of the Western Union is more valuable than frozen sausage.