Boris Johnson is tough
Boris Johnson's Brexit volte : Whoever breaks contracts has played out
Another round of Brexit negotiations ends with no results, the eighth. It is no wonder after the monstrous events of this week. With an understanding wink about a gambler and provocateur who playfully tests the limits, the scandal cannot be overcome. Prime Minister Boris Johnson, as one member of the government and then himself in the British Parliament confess, intends to break the current agreement with the EU on the exit of the Kingdom "in a specific and limited way".
How outrageous this statement is, one could see in the reactions from the ruling party: from the eye roll of established Tories like Bob Neill to the explicit protest of the previous head of government Theresa May.
The “Rule of Law”, the binding force of laws and contracts, is one of the central historical achievements that the British once enforced - and gave to the world. It is a basic principle of the EU, both internally and externally, for example in disputes with authoritarian regimes.
"Rule of law" - Johnson breaks a principle of western states
Beijing is breaking the treaty on the autonomy of Hong Kong, the British accuse China - Johnson is doing that too. But now he is breaking the treaty himself in the Brexit negotiations. He is running out of time. With the showdown approaching, it becomes a revelation that Johnson has promised voters more than he can deliver.
The EU must adjust to the fact that Boris Johnson would rather risk a hard Brexit than give up the pose of the staunch defender of unavoidable British interests. Hard Brexit would lead to economic upheaval, but Johnson has an excuse for them: These are consequences of the corona crisis.
Europe can succeed without a free trade agreement. London doesn't
An unregulated Brexit would also be tough for mainland Europe. Not as tough as it would have been in 2018 or 2019, of course. Back then, the interim treaty that Johnson is now trying to break prevented the hard landing. Companies and administrations have used the time since then to prepare for the divorce.
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Of course, a contract would be better, but if it doesn't come about, there is no more disaster in the meantime. At least not for the EU. For Great Britain it does. Because Johnson's future model is based on free trade agreements with the EU and the USA. But after this experience, why should the Europeans still strive to conclude a free trade agreement with London when Johnson obviously does not consider contracts to be binding at all?
The same echo comes from the USA. A trade agreement with President Trump, which Johnson relies on as a substitute, has "absolutely no chance" of being ratified in the US Congress if Johnson breaks treaties. This is emphasized by the majority leader in the House of Representatives, Democrat Nancy Pelosi.
And how does Britain intend to succeed without a free trade agreement with its most important partners, the EU and the USA? Even if Johnson, the player, still gives in, the loss of confidence remains.
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