From here in Germany, Britain’s hand in the Brexit talks looks stronger than you think

From here in Germany, Britain’s hand in the Brexit talks looks stronger than you think

“We need a deal and we need to compromise time and again with the EU27 to get one”. This is the mantra we hear all the time as if the sword of Damocles is hanging above Britain’s head, held only by a thread of silk made in Brussels. The United Kingdom’s negotiating position is painted as weak by Remainers and the dead-on-arrival Chequers plan of the Prime Minister reflects this wrong perception.

In truth, Britain’s hand in these negotiations is much stronger than they want to make you believe.

The European Commission needs a deal – and desperately so – because a no-deal scenario would deprive them of several goodies which are completely indispensable for their personal survival.

First of all, they need the money. The £40 billion pledged by the UK – subject to confirmation in an overall deal – has all been allocated to budgets already spent in the heads of the bureaucrats. The sycophants and the lobbyists who’ve already returned favours for the expected warm rain of British money for their schemes must not be disappointed. That would violate the undocumented covenants of the corrupted Brussels ecosystem.

The likelihood of Germany stepping in and providing a cheque for around €40 billion is close to zero. It is true that Mrs. Merkel is spending German taxpayers’ money on lost and stupid causes without a second thought for the people who worked hard to earn it. It is also foreseeable, however, that she will not be able to do so when the time for an agreement is running out next year. Her fourth term as Chancellor is a series of crises and the pace of her loss of control in Germany is breathtaking.

It is highly likely that the Bavarian elections in October will be an utter disaster for the CSU, the sister party of Merkel’s CDU. That will plunge her unstable grand coalition government into another existential crisis. In Saxony, eastern Germany’s most populous state, the right-wing AfD (whose unofficial party motto is “Merkel must go”) has reached 25% in the latest polls as opposition to Merkel’s open border policy increases.

Merkel will be in survival mode in 2019. Saving the central committee in Brussels with another €40 billion or so would stretch her ability to cope to the limit. France and Italy are also not in a position to do so: they simply don’t have the money. On the contrary; in Italy another euro crisis is already brewing and this time it is not a little country like Greece that can be pushed around and into submission by the Eurocrats.

Secondly, they need an open border between Ireland and Northern Ireland. A no-deal scenario is an absolute nightmare outcome for Ireland, which might even propel Ireland into leaving the EU to make its own bilateral open trade deal with the UK. Leo Varadkar’s extraordinary comment about closing the airspace in a no-deal scenario demonstrates how raw nerves must be in Dublin.

The mandarins in Brussels are acutely aware of the friction lines which would open between Ireland and their bureaucratic super-state when Ireland’s exports to the UK, its second biggest trading partner after the United States, are under threat. They simply cannot afford to open another frontline in an EU which is already at war with itself: the open rebellion of the Visegrad states (Poland, the Czech Republic, Slovakia and Hungary) and Austria has been joined by Italy with its new populist left-right coalition. Adding Ireland to those woes might be the straw that broke the camel’s back.

Thirdly, the EU27 are in more desperate need of a trade deal than the UK. The explanation is easy: they have a €120 billion trade surplus with Britain which they do not want to put at risk. Germany alone has a €60 billion surplus and it has substantial industrial interests in the United Kingdom: Mini, Rolls Royce and other large car and supplier factories for German automotive giants are located there. The intricate industrial supply chains which could be – at least in the short term – disrupted pose a costly risk that German and European industry does not want to bear. Michel Barnier knows this but hides his worries under his charming smile when he talks to Britain’s representatives in the negotiations and the political talks.

Finally, the European Commission has promised to the Council and the nomenklatura that a favourable solution for the 3 million, security cooperation, the bureaucrats’ pensions and a whole long list of other issues, large and small, will be found to protect their various national and personal interests. No deal would not only mean they have to go back to them, cap in hand, but having to report that they failed to dupe your country back into the cage of the Eurocracy.

So, dear British political decision makers: your hand in these negotiations is strong. Recent developments in Germany make it even stronger. Don’t be afraid to play hardball. You will win, if you do!

With kind regards from a German viewing your struggle for liberty and independence with heartfelt sympathy…