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UK, an aside partner

Jacques Delors, former French minister and president of the European Commission

Jacques Delors, former French minister and president of the European Commission

Jacques Delors gave a surprising advice to UK.

In an interview for the German daily Handelsblatt, the former president of the European Commission simply suggested to United Kingdom to leave EU. According to Delors, “Brits are only interested in their economic interests, nothing more. It might be proposed another form of partnership to them” as it currently exists for some strategic States as India or China.

The ex-French socialist minister statement may be surprising insofar as he is known to be a great federalist, but it remains logic. Indeed, for the ex-European Commission’s boss, United Kingdom seems to be obvious obstacle in the way to federalism and to get around it, it is needed to think and question about the involvement of Great Britain in EU, with no taboo.

Some facts give certain legitimacy to the Delors’ position. Since a moment, British people seem to be less and less comfortable within a Union they are less and less controlling and less and less corresponding to their views and their objectives. For instance, the David Cameron’s refusal, to sign the Budgetary Pact at the end of 2011 is a clear case at the moment the Member-States must show clear signs of solidarity. Moreover, let’s notice the attitude of British citizens and some national MPs expressing stronger and stronger reluctances vis-à-vis the European integration and what it was a harebrained hypothesis before is becoming a more and more credible probability.

Nonetheless, if the Jacques Delors’s statement is quite relevant, it is counter-productive. The ex-minister clearly knows UK has been and still be an aside partner within the European Union as he clearly knows this country has no interest to quit the Union. In fact, Great Britain is looking for new guarantees in a Union which is taking a more federalist path and in which some Member-States will play major roles as Germany, France or Poland. United Kingdom, although attempted by the spilt-up, is not ready to take such a risk, especially if it still wants to be a trouble-maker inside the EU.

What is more, it is needed to insist on the fact the Great Britain’s attitude, denounced by Jacques Delors, looks like blackmail more than a real intention to quit the ship as Wolfgang Schäuble, German minister of Finances, notices. For a lot of political analysts, London does not fancy giving up EU but is looking for imposing its views to not be marginalized more.

cid_D7912391-4C0E-47B9-BF39-3025CE1D435FIn fact, the Delors’ words are more a warning sent to Great Britain and its government than a genuine suggestion, a way to give London a challenge, force it to take its responsibilities and go out the ambiguity UK is in since a moment. Vis-à-vis this blackmail, Jacques Delors and other EU political personalities want to stop the British threats. But it is quite unlikely David Cameron hears and follows the Jacques Delors’ suggestion.