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The EU has been awesome in its Brexit negotiating strategy
On the way to one of those early Brexit summits, back when people thought "Brexit means Brexit" was a strategy, I chatted idly (at the baggage reclaim in Brussels airport, I seem to recall) to an Irish official, someone familiar with the workings of the EU and close to the decision-making processes of the Irish Government.

I wondered how the negotiations would proceed. He corrected me. "This isn't a negotiation. It's a declaration of terms."

Two other officials, both with long experience of how the European Union works, subsequently agreed with the assessment. All three said it with some resignation; all felt there was no upside for Ireland in what they could see then was the inevitable humiliation of the UK.

That humiliation has reached spectacular depths in recent weeks. As Fintan O'Toole has observed, if this farce was taking place in a former colony a few decades ago, chaps would feel justified in tut-tutting and I-told-you-so-ing to the effect that, well there you are, these foreign johnnies aren't fit to govern themselves.

The EU has been ruthless and ruthlessly effective. It's debatable - and history will decide - whether such a comprehensive steamrolling of the UK was wise; the verdict probably depends on how the process turns out.

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by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Sat Apr 6th, 2019 at 02:36:08 PM EST

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