Brexit – ‘ Dad’s Army’ or an EU army?

 

Sir, – On Tuesday, the daily anti-Brexit polemic in your newspaper was supplied by Robert Shrimsley – a contributor to the pro-Remain Financial Times (“Brexit is teaching Britain its true place in the world”, Opinion & Analysis, November 6th).

This predictable piece is full of the same worn-out tropes about poor old post-colonial, out-of-touch England obstinately refusing to see the uniformly wonderful benefits of EU membership.

The usual mentions are made of the second World War and Britain’s “Dad’s Army condescension”. The army that Shrimsley does not mention, of course, is the putative EU army that French president Emmanuel Macron told us this week is essential for European security.

The miserably unpopular Mr Macron declared that we need an EU army to protect us from China, Russia and, bizarrely, the US – Europe’s most reliable ally through the last 100 years and a county which has twice answered the call to liberate his own nation.

The idea of an EU army (which we have always been assured was a paranoid fantasy) was seized upon enthusiastically (not the first time) by Guy Verhofstadt via his exuberant Twitter account.

Perhaps we can finally acknowledge the actual direction of the European Union, now that its trajectory is being so regularly and unashamedly articulated by two of its greatest champions? The EU is an expansionist exercise, the ultimate aim of which – as expressed regularly by many of its key architects – is ever closer union, a federal United States of Europe, increased centralisation, less domestic democracy, the erosion of national sovereignty, increased legislative administration from Brussels and – yes – a European army.

These are just some of the reasons that Britain has very sensibly decided to step away from the EU project and no amount of tiresome, cliché-ridden articles from the likes of Robert Shrimsley or Fintan O’Toole or any of the rotating cast of EU cheerleaders employed by The Irish Times can continue to mask this plainly evident truth. – Yours, etc,

SIMON O’NEILL,

Dublin 3.