Monday 27 February 2017

Bruce Arnold: EU hasn't wasted any time getting its claws into foreign policy

54 European embassies will initially be set up around the world

The speed with which the European Union has moved forward, after the final passage of the Lisbon Treaty into law on December 1, 2009, has the lash of vengeance in its tail against those in this country who said 'No' to it, twice, and those who wanted to elsewhere. It has the rank smell and dexterity detected by Hamlet, as he surveyed his uncle's replacement of his father in the "incestuous sheets", which he knew from his father's ghost to have been founded on a criminal act. "That it should come to this, but two months dead!" was how he put it.

The EU was faster than that. It was "within a month, ere yet the salt of most unrighteous tears had left the flushing in our galled eyes", that the European Commission imposed the first sanction on national sovereignty, when Swedish foreign minister Carl Bildt declared that, under Lisbon, foreign ministers of EU countries would no longer attend EU summits.

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