Arab Today, arab today brexit and the spirit of dunkirk
Last Updated : GMT 21:48:32
Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today

Brexit and the spirit of Dunkirk

Arab Today, arab today

Arab Today, arab today brexit and the spirit of dunkirk

Amir Taheri

For the past two weeks, “Dunkirk” has topped the box office in cinemas throughout the UK. The film is a fictional rendition of the British evacuation from the French port of Dunkirk in May 1940, as Hitler’s invading divisions blitzed their way toward Paris. The evacuation involved more than 400,000 soldiers, including many Frenchmen and troops recruited in British Empire units such as Canada and Australia.
The greatest retreat in the history of warfare prevented the Germans from annihilating the bulk of the British military, giving London the chance to prepare to fight another day. At first glance, there was little heroism in such a vast force fleeing without fighting; armies usually retreat after they have fought and lost a battle.
Yet what came to be known as “the spirit of Dunkirk” was truly heroic as thousands of ordinary Brits, defying Hitler’s vast war machine, made their way to the French port — often aboard small fishing boats, dinghies and even a few floating bathtubs — to help bring the stranded soldiers back to England. Over the following decades, “the spirit of Dunkirk” came to indicate a key characteristic of the British: Fighting when their backs are to the wall.
So unsurprisingly, those who campaigned for Brexit last year have seized on the excitement created by the new film to inject some heroism in their narrative. “Yes,” they say, “Britain is heading for tough times outside the EU, but helped by the spirit of Dunkirk, it shall overcome all hurdles.” One leading Brexit campaigner has even demanded that the film be shown in schools to boost the morale of the young whose lives will be most affected by leaving the EU.
But it is hard to draw a parallel between Brexit and Dunkirk, if only because the EU cannot be equated with Nazi Germany. Nor was the UK at war with the EU, an alliance of democratic nations whose latest version Britain played a leading role in creating. For Brits in Dunkirk, it was a matter of life and death. But regarding the EU, Britain enjoyed membership in the world’s biggest economic bloc alongside most of its NATO allies.
Brexit advocates cite four reasons for the UK to leave. The first is “regaining lost national sovereignty.” But in its White Paper published earlier this year, the government declared that Britain never lost sovereignty. EU membership meant sharing, not losing sovereignty.
Britain already shares sovereignty in many international and regional organizations, including NATO, the UN, the Commonwealth, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank. If sharing sovereignty is equated with its loss, the UK should withdraw from more than 120 organizations, something even North Korea has not done.
In any case, EU membership involves sharing sovereignty on a limited number of issues linked to commerce, industrial standards, agriculture and working conditions. It does not extend to taxation and interest rates, let alone national security, defense and foreign policy. The fact that Britain can leave the EU or any other international organ of which it is a member shows that shared sovereignty does not mean loss of sovereignty.
The second reason cited by Brexiteers, “control of borders,” is equally bogus. Anyone entering the UK knows they must show a passport or identity card and be formally admitted into the country. EU citizens have the right to enter the territory of any member state without a visa to visit, look for a job, study or simply reside.
But under the 2007 Treaty of Lisbon, they cannot stay beyond three months unless they can prove they have a job, are in fulltime education or have independent means of support. Member states can, and in many cases do, expel EU citizens who do not fulfil the stated conditions.
The third bogus claim is about “rule by unelected officials in Brussels.” The Council of Ministers is the EU’s main decision-making and legislative body, and is composed of ministers from member states, all of whom are democratically elected. It forms the union’s legislative body together with the European Parliament, which is also directly elected by voters in all member states.
When it comes to the so-called “Brussels bureaucracy,” it is necessary to remember that it is composed of individuals appointed by elected governments of member states, in the same way civil servants are appointed in each country with clear patterns of accountability. There is nothing that the “Brussels bureaucracy” can do without the approval of the governments of member states and their parliaments.
The final reason cited by Brexiteers is the claim that the UK, outside the EU, would be better able to make trade deals with the rest of the world. But the UK is already trading with more than 190 countries, many of which have full or partial trade deals with the EU that the UK has played a key role in shaping.
It is not because of EU membership that the UK is exporting to the US half as much as Germany does. The reason is that Germans produce goods that Americans want to buy and the Brits do not, because the UK has specialized in service industries at the expense of manufacturing. Being in or out of the EU need not alter that fact.
There are no objective reasons to necessitate Brexit, whereas the Dunkirk retreat was an inescapable necessity. But regarding Brexit, it would be foolish to ignore the subjective, emotional factors. Many Brits feel there are too many foreigners in their country, and blame EU citizens for declining standards in their National Health Service, shortage of affordable housing, pressure on schools and even traffic jams.
Dunkirk was about running away only to return. Will Brexit repeat that?

 

Name *

E-mail *

Comment Title*

Comment *

: Characters Left

Mandatory *

Terms of use

Publishing Terms: Not to offend the author, or to persons or sanctities or attacking religions or divine self. And stay away from sectarian and racial incitement and insults.

I agree with the Terms of Use

Security Code*

Arab Today, arab today brexit and the spirit of dunkirk Arab Today, arab today brexit and the spirit of dunkirk

 



Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today Fashion designer reveals her new collection

GMT 11:37 2017 Saturday ,12 August

Fashion designer reveals her new collection
Arab Today, arab today Turkey agrees extra holidays

GMT 20:42 2017 Wednesday ,16 August

Turkey agrees extra holidays
Arab Today, arab today Nanis reveals simple ideas for home renovation

GMT 10:46 2017 Saturday ,05 August

Nanis reveals simple ideas for home renovation
Arab Today, arab today 'Lot of time' needed to rebuild trust in Gulf

GMT 12:40 2017 Wednesday ,16 August

'Lot of time' needed to rebuild trust in Gulf
Arab Today, arab today For 'embarrassing' selfies with Mogherini

GMT 15:37 2017 Thursday ,10 August

For 'embarrassing' selfies with Mogherini
Arab Today, arab today Shrouk Ibrahim highlights attractiveness of women

GMT 15:34 2017 Friday ,11 August

Shrouk Ibrahim highlights attractiveness of women
Arab Today, arab today Ryanair calls for curbs to alcohol sales

GMT 18:49 2017 Tuesday ,15 August

Ryanair calls for curbs to alcohol sales
Arab Today, arab today Al-Jeddawi presents décor ideas for Ramadan

GMT 14:44 2017 Monday ,29 May

Al-Jeddawi presents décor ideas for Ramadan
Arab Today, arab today Saudi Arabia to launch joint trade council

GMT 16:26 2017 Tuesday ,15 August

Saudi Arabia to launch joint trade council
Arab Today, arab today Suhair Jaradat expresses her anger

GMT 03:25 2017 Wednesday ,09 August

Suhair Jaradat expresses her anger
Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today Expert blames measures against the Gaza Strip

GMT 16:48 2017 Saturday ,12 August

Expert blames measures against the Gaza Strip
Arab Today, arab today Enas Al Deghidy promoted gender equality

GMT 03:43 2017 Wednesday ,16 August

Enas Al Deghidy promoted gender equality
Arab Today, arab today Kuwait reports second oil spill

GMT 12:33 2017 Wednesday ,16 August

Kuwait reports second oil spill
Arab Today, arab today Al-Shawaifi reveals secrets of total solar eclipse

GMT 17:12 2017 Monday ,07 August

Al-Shawaifi reveals secrets of total solar eclipse
Arab Today, arab today Shares of Fiat Chrysler surge

GMT 20:20 2017 Tuesday ,15 August

Shares of Fiat Chrysler surge
Arab Today, arab today Merkel rival slams car bosses

GMT 16:53 2017 Monday ,14 August

Merkel rival slams car bosses
Arab Today, arab today Ghada happy for success of “Forced Escape

GMT 09:07 2017 Monday ,14 August

Ghada happy for success of “Forced Escape
Arab Today, arab today Pesticide threatens colony

GMT 19:16 2017 Tuesday ,15 August

Pesticide threatens colony

GMT 08:22 2017 Saturday ,12 August

Eman Al Assy started filming a new movie

GMT 11:39 2017 Friday ,11 August

Samozein prepares for a new singing album

GMT 17:35 2017 Monday ,14 August

Tunisia pushes for achieving gender equality

GMT 16:08 2017 Monday ,07 August

Dutch win a fine topping

GMT 16:20 2017 Friday ,04 August

Rawda Al Mehy invents a new idea to design

GMT 16:17 2017 Sunday ,30 July

Engy explains secrets of Kafr Delhab

GMT 19:46 2017 Friday ,11 August

Portugal fires rage as scorching temperatures

GMT 17:41 2017 Thursday ,10 August

S. Africa at cannabis crossroads

GMT 15:53 2017 Saturday ,27 May

How to do your own Ramadan corner?

GMT 11:47 2017 Monday ,14 August

7 unorthodox tips to hydrate

GMT 17:14 2017 Sunday ,13 August

Sixty deaths at hospital without oxygen

GMT 08:58 2017 Monday ,14 August

Adventurous couple explores Egypt

GMT 15:15 2017 Saturday ,12 August

International travel to US drops

GMT 13:38 2017 Monday ,06 March

Prepares to give stargazers an eyeful

GMT 06:31 2015 Thursday ,04 June

Pluto's unruly moons

GMT 18:18 2017 Saturday ,22 July

Honor 9 smartphone coming soon to Kingdom

GMT 11:40 2017 Saturday ,29 July

Designer Mennatallah reveals her new collection
Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today
 
 Arab Today Facebook,arab today facebook  Arab Today Twitter,arab today twitter Arab Today Rss,arab today rss  Arab Today Youtube,arab today youtube  Arab Today Youtube,arab today youtube
arabstoday arabstoday arabstoday arabstoday
arabstoday arabstoday arabstoday
arabstoday
بناية النخيل - رأس النبع _ خلف السفارة الفرنسية _بيروت - لبنان
arabstoday, Arabstoday, Arabstoday