Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
I think the FT (of all people) put it best: Blair is the wrong man for EU job
But alongside the debris piled up by the Iraq catastrophe, Mr Blair blew a historic opportunity to embed Britain in Europe and change the British conversation about Europe. At a time when Britons of his generation have never felt more familiar with and at ease with their European neighbours, and when so many EU arguments were going the British way, Mr Blair all but abandoned any attempt to win domestic opinion to even the pragmatic case for pooling a small portion of British sovereignty, instead capitulating to the Eurosceptic and jingoist media. On leaving office he blamed the press for forcing Britain's leaders into a false dilemma of being for or against Europe: "it's either isolation or treason". But after his landslide 10 years earlier he could have crossed the English Channel on foot. Leaders are supposed to lead.
It's not that he was an anti-EU Brit. It's that being a Brit he proved he was anti-EU by failing to make the case for the EU to his fellow citizens when he enjoyed an immense amount of political capital.

En un viejo país ineficiente, algo así como España entre dos guerras civiles, poseer una casa y poca hacienda y memoria ninguna. -- Gil de Biedma
by Carrie (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Fri Nov 20th, 2009 at 06:17:35 AM EST
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