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  • Editorial:Greek-style Brexit compromise

    With his supposedly unconventional and populist style he pushed negotiations to the limit and now he must convince his party and others not to blow the agreement out of the water.

    The well-known compromise that Boris Johnson reached with the EU reminds us of the Greek case.

    That includes a proud negotiation, the degradation of Parliament, national divisions, the targeting of those opposed to his plans, and then a final compromise.

    Faced with political personal gains and the chaos of a disorderly Brexit, Johnson set aside his bravado and agreed to a compromise that has drawn the ire of his MPs and political allies.

    As we in Greece saw in 2015, he is depicting the agreement as a necessary compromise, the best he could have achieved, though it is a far cry from his rhetoric.

    It has few differences from Theresa May’s deal but there is a major retreat on Northern Ireland which has caused a backlash.

    With his supposedly unconventional and populist style he pushed negotiations to the limit and now he must convince his party and others not to blow the agreement out of the water.

    He benefits from the ambivalent stance of the Labour Party which rejects the deal but he has no alternative plan and seeks approval for his plan from a second referendum.

    With public opinion in the UK divided and tired by an interminable and contradictory negotiation it is possible for Johnson to achieve what his predecessors did not.

    The consequences and costs of this choice will soon be apparent and so Johnson may achieve his dual aim – to ram the agreement through Parliament and to win the next elections.

    He will though have the time to reach further necessary compromises to reach a new trade deal with Europe that will shape the framework of bilateral relations.

    EU leaders expressed regret over the departure of the EU but essentially they are glad that they did not have to shoulder the burden and repercussions of a shipwreck.

    That is why they agreed to to a new postponement if the British Parliament does not approve the agreement.

    Obviously the repercussions of this choice will become apparent after the EU-UK divorce.

    Then we and British citizens will discover whether what various opportunists and populists can lead us to better days or whether they will pay dearly for their choices

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