The Corner

Forty Years On

Britain joined what was to become the EU on January 1, 1973.

Over at the Daily Mail, Christopher Booker, uh, celebrates:

The real problem the British people have had with the ‘European project’, as its insiders call it, is that they have never really begun to understand its real nature, and what was always intended to be its ultimate goal.

The chief reason for this is that our politicians have never properly explained it to us. What makes this so much worse is that those who were most enthused by it…knew full well what ‘the project’ was really about — the plan to weld all Europe together under an unprecedented form of super-government. They deliberately decided to conceal it from us, for fear that our anxieties about our loss of sovereignty might prevent them from being allowed to join…

Instead most of Britain’s political class argued (and many of them even believed it) that the ‘Common Market’ (as it was misleadingly known in Britain) was just about free trade.

It never was, and it never has been. Mr. Booker then takes his readers through a brief history of how this union has evolved (it’s well worth your time, as is The Great Deception, the book he co-wrote with EU Referendum’s Richard North), and concludes with some advice for David Cameron.  

Trying to navigate between the Scylla of “ever closer union” and the Charybdis of heavy electoral damage at the hands of the euroskeptics of UKIP, the British prime minister is, apparently, about to make a big speech on “Europe.”

Booker notes:

As David Cameron prepares to give that ‘very important speech on Europe’ he has promised us very soon, he could not do better than to meditate on the shrewdest words ever uttered by a Prime Minister about Britain and Europe. In 1973, as a junior member of Heath’s Cabinet, Margaret Thatcher made all the approved noises about how wonderful it was for Britain to join this club.

Once in office, however, she went on a painful learning curve, as she saw from the inside just what the real game was and how ruthlessly it was played. She was brought down in 1990 by an alliance of Europhiles in her party and their Brussels allies, because she was the last real obstacle to their Maastricht Treaty [the treaty that was to lead to the euro, among other horrors].

What really riled them was that she had seen through their true agenda and the disastrous course on which they were set. With even Jacques Delors, the chief architect of Maastricht, suggesting it might be best for Britain to leave the EU, Mr Cameron should dwell on a passage from her last book, Statecraft.

‘That such an unnecessary and irrational project as building a European super-state was ever embarked on,’ wrote Lady Thatcher, ‘will seem in future years to be perhaps the greatest folly of the modern era. And that Britain . . . should ever have become part of it will appear a political error of the first magnitude.’

If Mr Cameron truly wishes to speak for the British people and our country’s future, he should bear those prophetic thoughts in mind.



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