Posted by: Dr Pano Kroko Churchill | June 16, 2014

Eurosceptics vs Europeans United

Eurosceptics United vs European Federalists …

Now that’s a World Cup match I’d like to see played out on the Darwinian playing field and count the score…
Or in pugilistic terms: A fragmented and Eurosceptic Britain would never again punch above its weight on the world stage and will follow the exit of Scotland if Scotland leaves, the Union.

Britain’s influence follows it’s ebb and flow of success on the world stage and the strength of the Empire – real or imagined.

An English academic asked a Scottish Academic what is an Englishman and the answer might surprise you:

“An Englishman is a man who lives on an island in the North Sea governed by Scotsmen”.

He then asked why the Scots want to give up this power over their historic foe?

To which He answered: I guess they will be voting “No” because of the D-Day anniversary. Now we all have been reading some of the contemporary writing of the leading American and British politicians and Generals, and the interesting thing to note is that the leading British soldiers such as Field Marshal Brooke, were from Northern Ireland, and many more from Scotland, and from the other members of the commonwealth, than old Blightey.

I think this goes to the issue that the strength of the UK has always rested on contributions made by each of its constituent nations. Another is the transition in the relationship between Britain and the US as the war wore on. At the start, the British had the expertise and set the agenda. This was to the chagrin of most senior members of the American military – who felt that the British looked down their nose at them. But Roosevelt appears to have appreciated that the US army was not ready to take on the Wehrmacht.

Only after George Marshall created, virtually from nothing, a huge army, and it went through a baptism of fire in North Africa, was it able to fight the German army more or less on an equal footing. Of course it can be argued from beginning to end the Germany army was superior to the other combatants and were it not for Hitler’s blundering both the Policy, and the Diplomacy, as well as his crazy death wish by sending whole Peoples to the gallows and the gas chambers — the outcome could easily have been different.  However, once the contribution of the US substantially exceeded that of Britain, not surprisingly the Americans started to call the shots. The timing of this transition was good because the British insisted in 1942 that a cross-channel invasion would be premature (and they were right) and thus they supported a second front in North Africa and Italy to relieve the pressure on the Soviets. 

Thus the credit for the war tilting should be in North African and then Italy and Greece. Still most US senior military leaders thought this was an excuse to keep the Suez Canal, the life-line of the British Empire, safe. And they were probably right. Churchill made no bones about it that he was not prepared to see the British Empire dismantled.

Yet by 1944, the British were unable to resist any longer the American and Soviet demands for a wholesale invasion of Europe from across the channel. By then the US was ready and its industrial capacity had been fully harnessed to the extent that it out-produced all the other countries involved in WWII combined. In his history of WWII, Churchill plays down US and British disagreements and suggests that both countries were bound and determined to liberate Europe as soon as possible. And that they did magnificently. Now that’s a footsie game worth following and this was the original World Cup. Ahem … excuse me: World War. Still History is worth studying because the lesson should not be lost with the generational change of the guard.

Remembering this as both a British/Scottish/Greek/European, and an American citizen, I fervently hope that Scotland does not vote to separate and abandon the fertile United Kingdom especially now acting hastily on sentimental reasons. From my own unique cultural experience, am here to tell you that both Scottish and Greek Peoples are alike and run hot or cold with anger and passion. They both have their national drink that overrides all passions and their national game and dress. Both Peoples are fiercely independent and brutal in their anger and myopic approach to logical processes when drunk on their local elixir or on their local version of nationalism gone wild. If you have played a close contact game of golf with a Scotsman juiced on the malted water of the river — you know too well what am talking about.

Still the abundant and overwhelmingly beautiful prose and poetry of these ancient and enlightened Peoples allows me a glimmer of hope that in this instance both of these sentimental Peoples will vote with their head and will not allow their fiery passions to throw the baby out with the bath water. Robert Burns said this: “My love is like a red, red rose that’s newly sprung in June: My love is like the melody that’s sweetly played in tune. … ”

When I last spoke in Edinburgh about the issue of Scottish Independence, I was clearly asking my Sottish brethren, who have a lot of Byzantine blood in them, to be patient. I simply said to the assembled clan-leaders and the Greats of Scotland that is best to await a few more years. Be patient, because in ten to fifteen years we will all be part of a Federal Europe of 87 regions and not of the old Common Market of the 28 nationalities. Swedish Foreign Minister Carl Bildt, who served as prime minister from 1999 to 2001, has said that “the Balkanization of the British Isles is something we are not looking forward to because Scotland will have to start from scratch.” But if Scotland stays put and enlarges it’s role; then Scotland in ten years’ time, will be not only on an equal footing with England, but on par with France, and Germany — and that is worth waiting for.

Mark my words. I said in Edinburgh: “The time is now to build your region and integrate further with the Unions. Now is the time for Scotland to become more militant in favour of a European federation. Let us see Scotland lead the United Kingdom, dragging old England by pulling from the hair, headfirst into the Age of European Federalism. Kicking and screaming, England will love it. That’s how it always happened and that’s how You give old Nigel a stroke and drive a stake through the heart of the UKIP Dracula.

That is the future my friends. That is a future worth fighting for. So Go Ahead. Fight for it. Don’t go to a distant and murky past. You can’t afford it in the first place. Your education will suffer and your deer hunts will not be enough for supper. Your fluorocarbons are not enough to built you an army. And as for renewables you cannot even buy you a solar heater — so go with the flow. Stand together with the rest of us, and everything will work out fine. In the end we’ll all be happy together. And in the long run we’ll all be dead anyway, so what the hell matters?

Please,

Make no mistake – be patient.

United we stand – Divided we fall.

Fall into our own sword as this case might be…

So let’s be smart and avoid this horrid auto-goal. A selfie of that kind is not befitting an ancient people and a wise enlightened nation. Let’s not disembowel ourselves and instead let’s go the other direction. Let’s become more. More intertwined. More abundant. More resilient and more robust. Let’s become more United. More united in the big Europe of ours> Let us guide Scotland to become better through a better Europe and a stronger Union. Let’s forget about ancient animosities and let’s not start walking the wrong way and bring an earthquake that will devour all of our efforts and alienate us from all those around us…

I know that’s not what You are thinking but as the Law of Unintended consequences takes effect you shall be powerless to repair the dam. Your plans are not to breach the dam but still. Catastrophes ensue out of “what the hell” attitudes. Or even out of well thought out plans. Same as Robert, the national poet says: “The best laid schemes o’ mice an’ men gang aft agley.”

So I beseech you: Let’s think this thing through carefully because if we don’t the naysayers, the negativists and all of our enemies will rejoice. Furthermore, I don’t think the “yes” supporters have really thought out the consequences. Scotland today is still the Enlightened Leader and it has double representation both in the UK parliament and in its own parliament with jurisdiction over local matters. I cannot help but ask what more do you want?

You know that if Scotland votes for independence — you lose your EU membership, and Britain would soon leave the EU as well. That is because should Scotland vote for independence, and/or Eurosceptics win the day in any eventual EU plebiscite, this would not only deal a body blow to the international influence of the United Kingdom, but could even place the continued union between England, Northern Ireland and Wales in jeopardy. And the two issues could feed into each other. This is because Scots, in general, are more favourable toward continued membership of the EU than the English, who account for a majority of Britain’s population. Thus, if Scotland votes for independence, and doesn’t take part in a subsequent EU plebiscite, it becomes more likely that – in a close vote – Britain would leave the EU.

But I have to say this again. We can do well in this country together. I know and you know that a little love goes a long way. So give me some loving here and lay still for a while longer. But you have to agree to love or else this Union will not work. So pray tell — what more is it that you want? If it is more Europe that you want — then wait a decade and a separate seat in the EU is likely to be granted to you, as an independent region. But you separate now it will be twenty years before you can get readmitted into the European Union and that’s for starters. Look at the Balkans and Ukraine where they are today. Instead Scotland should focus on playing it’s strengths. Become a best run European region. Adopt and promote the Gaelic language and all the glory that makes Scotland great. Because Scotland is great as a European region far more than a region of the UK and the Commonwealth. But it was the UK that brought you into the Union and thus your position is assured. Scotland is a darling in a Europe of many languages. We spend 800 million euros in translation services alone, we can surely afford to fit Gaelic into the pot.

So leaving the United Kingdom and by extension the European Union now would be stupid. It’s tantamount to a suicide. A pact with the Devil, and a regressive political move. That’s all I’ve got to say… Barack Obama also said this. He expressed his support for a “strong, robust and united” Britain. He is clear on his preference for a “no” vote in the Scottish independence referendum in September. He gave us comfort as he spoke that the “United Kingdom has been an extraordinary partner to us.”

But am not holding my breath that you will act reasonably, serenely and rationally because as I well know from long experience with both  Peoples I hang with — Greeks & Scots, the enlightened mind goes for a holiday when the angry mind goes to vote fortified with the sweet single malt or the anise flavoured water of life. You sing the national anthem and throw caution to the wind while going commando jumping over the parapet to stitch the enemy.

Whoever that enemy might be…

Problem is, sometimes there is no enemy but yourself.

And stitching yourself is not only painful — it’s suicide.

Yours,

Pano

PS:

Scottish brothers and Sisters — please listen to the better Angels of your heart.

And then do what you want.

As for the Old England …
Am not too worried.
The English are resourceful beyond compare. They’ll come up with creative solutions to plug the hole that Scotland will leave behind. Surely they will miss the fun and games but employment will be boosted having to rebuilt the old Hadrian wall. And that national game “Golf” you are not getting it back. As for the Scotch whiskey — you might as well forget it. It’s all what the English drink these days and it might as well be called “English whiskey” in a couple of generations because they are better marketeers.

One alternative to the UK after the Scottish devolution, could be a more advanced federalization of the United Kingdom, or what’s left of it.. with the other European sceptic countries. The piglets, the periphery, the south, or even the Ukraine and all other ones from the Maghreb to the Middle east and Turkey. A veritable hodgepodge of festering resentment and dissatisfaction not unlike the average Ukip voter and Nigel with the German dominatrix Haus-Frau to boot. 

Or maybe England should focus on the Atlantic role of the UK, in-between the US and the EU. This with an advanced European Federalization, might be an alternative to UK’s full membership to the Federal European Union — although scarily acrobatic.

Or maybe a better role for England and the remaining United kingdom is a renewed Commonwealth with it’s attendant drive for a fuller integration of the Bric economies if not a distant nations federalization.

Yet whatever Great Britain does, as the UK or as England and Allies, or as the Commonwealth, it’s going to be a cataclysmic shift economically — but it is essential to both the EU and the US to maintain England as a go between. That’s what the special relationship is all about.

And maybe this is the sweet spot where England should thrive. As it could be for the Long Now, because alone might have a hard time to remain credible in this transitional position.

But make no mistake England will come back to Europe… and the world stage swimmingly.

As for all those other countries, conquered and adopted when England was heading the British Empire — they can find a renewed role within a larger framework of an ascendant European Federation of which England and Scotland could come to be the prodigal sons.


Responses

  1. Reblogged this on Bleeding Edge Blog and commented:

    With all the movement of hurt Nationalists and Tribalists running for the EXIT this post is More relevant than ever…
    Let’s not be parochial but evolved.
    United we stand … Divided we fall.


Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Categories

%d bloggers like this: