Brexit Britain fromn Abroad: Antisemitism Allegations Stain Brexiters
Wild Allegations in the Brexit Debate
George Soros is being talked about again. This time not in Hungary, where the Hungarian-American investor has long been made by the ruling Fidesz party to a dominant campaign theme - but in the UK. The conservative British daily The Telegraph on Thursday reported that the billionaire is supporting an anti-Brexit campaign. The initiative "Best for Britain", which is calling for an exit from the Brexit and a new referendum, have therefore received in recent months, a sum of 400,000 pounds (about 450,000 euros) on Soros' foundation "Open Society Foundation".
With funding from Soros and many other donors, "Best for Britain" plans to launch a publicity campaign in the coming weeks to mobilise the public against Brexit and convince British parliamentarians against the finalized Brexit treaty to vote. According to Telegraph, Soros recently met the spokesmen for the campaign at his home in London's Chelsea district. The outcome of the meeting was a "strategic document", according to which the planned campaign had to alert the country "that Brexit was not a done deal" and could still be stopped.
Antisemitism Spreads to Brexit Debate
There is no reason to accuse the authors of the piece or the editors of the Daily Telegraph of having anything against Jews themselves, save for the fact that they just echoed in a blaring headline at the top of their front page the very essence of anti-Semitism: That powerful global forces are conspiring behind the scenes to undermine the national will of sovereign nations, and those directing these forces are almost always members of a specific tribe.
This is not about Soros. He is just the current hate-figure. It's not about the Daily Telegraph, which is only the latest once proud institution to be infected by the latest strain of the virus. It's not even about Brexit, though the resentment which motivated 52 percent of the British electorate to carry out a national act of self-harm and the furies it is still unleashing, are important. But yesterday's headline is a worrying indication of just how far the epidemic is spreading.
UK To Leave Customs Union
“We will be leaving the EU and the customs union, and it is not government policy to be members of the customs union or a customs union,” Mrs. May’s spokesman James Slack said. He said the U.K.’s aim is to establish bilateral free-trade deals with countries outside the bloc, like the U.S.
The statement goes further than the government has in the past. Six months ago, Prime Minister Theresa May said the U.K. would leave “the” EU customs union.
Monday’s statement appears to rule out replicating any arrangement with the bloc similar to that of Turkey. Non-EU Turkey has a longstanding customs-union arrangement with the EU that makes it subject to most of the bloc’s trade policies.
Leaving the EU’s customs union could impose significant new costs on British businesses. Even if a free-trade deal between the EU and the U.K. eliminated tariffs, companies would still be subject to added paperwork and other administrative burdens to ensure their products met EU standards, including over the Irish border.
Neither London nor Dublin want any border checks or posts to disrupt the flow of people and goods that currently flow unrestricted between Ireland and Northern Ireland, which is part of the U.K., but it isn’t clear how this would be possible with Britain outside the customs union. EU and Irish officials have been skeptical about U.K. proposals to use technology to smooth border procedures.
Business leaders have lobbied for Mrs. May to keep Britain as close to the EU as possible after Brexit, arguing that the value of frictionless trade with the bloc responsible for nearly half British trade outweighs the value of potential trade deals between the U.K. and non-EU countries.
Remainers Pin Hopes on Second Referendum
The British political climate is so deleterious and the future of the Brexit process so unpredictable that everything seems possible to some, including a second referendum. Assimilating the exit of the European Union to "an act of self-mutilation that must be stopped," Andrew Adonis, Lord and former Labor Minister, appeared Friday, February 2, as the champion of this cause.
The campaign entitled "Our future, our choice", which he has just launched, is aimed at getting a popular vote on the agreement that Theresa May is to negotiate from March with the EU. "Brexit is not a folded business ," said Lord Adonis during a meeting with several European newspapers, including Le Monde. We are in a situation of parliamentary crisis because the Prime Minister does not have a parliamentary majority for her conception of Brexit. The only way out is a referendum. "
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