Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Royal Pain in the Arse

From the U.K. Telegraph Online, we see that Segolene Royal, the French Socialist Candidate for President has made a clarion call to Britain to break her ties with the United States and join a French-led European integration:

Ségolène Royal, the Socialist candidate for the French presidency, wants Britain to choose between being a "vassal" of the United States, and embracing a French-led drive for European integration, her adviser on Europe has revealed.

Throughout Miss Royal's spectacularly successful campaign to sew up the Socialist nomination, she kept the details of her EU policy under wraps for fear of reopening deep splits within her party.
However, in the hours after her victory on Thursday, Gilles Savary, a French MEP and her spokesman and foreign affairs adviser, spoke exclusively to The Daily Telegraph, revealing her EU policies in detail.

He set out a vision of an ambitious new EU treaty, replacing the EU constitution which has been in limbo since French and Dutch voters voted against it last summer.

Britain would be asked to sign up to the new treaty, but if it rejected calls for increased protectionism, an EU foreign minister, convergence on tax rates and moves to create a European army, then France and her allies would agree a treaty among themselves, he said.

A European army, you say! Let me guess, which country's forces will be the "core" of said army? Thinking about the um, track record of the French military in the past hundred years compared to the UK's, I'm willing to bet that it's the British who will be the primary ones who shed blood and treasure in any Euro military venture should they decide to join. It'd be another case of lions led by donkeys, for sure.

Tony Blair's successor as prime minister, whether Gordon Brown or David Cameron, now faces an inevitable crisis over Europe after France chooses its next leader in April.

Miss Royal, who has no foreign policy experience and has only ever held junior ministerial posts, will seek the immediate support of Angela Merkel, the German chancellor, for her plans, and believes Spain and Italy can also be signed up.

From what statements I've read by the German Chancellor, I'm inclined to see her as no fool. However, considering the fact that the Germans have no army to speak of, it's to Germany's advantage to have Britain's military at their disposal.

Although Miss Royal "does not want a two-speed Europe," Mr Savary said, he admitted her plans could lead to a "quartet" of nations leading the way, with others scrambling to catch up. He complained that Britain currently led an "ultra-Atlanticist" bloc within the EU.

"Great Britain is absolutely indispensable to the European Union. It is great nation, a global power. But the question the English have to answer is – do the English consider the English Channel to be wider than the Atlantic? We on the continent have the right to deplore the fact that Great Britain appears to consider the Channel is wider," he said.

Funny, how they interchange "British" with "English". I guess the French Socialist Party is unaware of Scotland and Wales and Northern Ireland. That'll make the disenfranchised Britons mighty inclined to join with them.

Miss Royal was confident that "Europe can be relaunched with Germany, Italy and Spain. It is perfectly possible to have treaties within the treaty, among four nations," he said. "If other nations want to sign up, that's good. But we cannot have a Europe where one part goes to war in Iraq, another part does not, and we all end up paying the bill."

Unlike the "bill" that the British pay to subsidize crappy French farmers? Hear that giant sucking sound? And it ain't a French bidet.