Brexit Reminiscent of WW2:
Germany and England are always quarreling with each other. The Brexit negotiations are only the latest round. The British should sock it to the Germans.
Maybe the British government reflects the populace — extremely divided. Maybe it wouldn’t be possible to get any kind of unified government right now no matter what party is in control.
Why would May go to Florence to make a speech about Brexit? Why not make it in London at No 10 Downing Street and have it broadcast? US Presidents don’t run off to foreign countries to make speeches about the US. They make speeches about the US relationship with a foreign country when visiting that country such as Trump’s speech in Poland this past summer. Otherwise they make speeches either in the Oval Office or in some special location in the US chosen for that purpose. Before 100 years ago when Wilson attended the Paris Peace Conference it used to be considered improper for US Presidents to leave the country at all during their term of office. Even now US Presidents don’t leave the country for a vacation.
What do you mean that Britain can’t “keep the lights on” or “the food shelves stocked” without remaining in the EU. That is just what the anti-Brexit faction wants you to believe. Somehow Britain managed to keep the lights on and the food shelves stocked during WW2 even when they were fighting the Continent.
This is what May should do: Just say that we are leaving the EU as of March, 2019. Either you accede to our demands that Britain doesn’t have to pay any extra money to the EU and doesn’t have to have the European Court of Human Rights supervising anything or on that day the North Sea Trade with Germany will cease. She should NOT back off from that statement and when the time comes let Merkel do all the fancy dancing around to keep the North Sea Trade with England going. Merkel would come up with something, believe me, even if only to say that it will continue another five years in its present state while “we” continue to work things out. In other words May should not concede anything yet, nothing at all.
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Infanta Christina and Edward Ware:
Apparently a Spanish patrol vessel, the Infanta Christina, has been accused of trespassing in Gibraltar’s waters. This was just one day after Madrid called on Britain to “calm down” about rising tensions concerning the future ownership of the Gibraltar territory. The Infanta Christina entered the territory’s waters at around lunch time Gibraltar time on Tuesday. Gibraltar’s government called the intrusion an “illegal incursion”. The Royal Navy’s HMS Scimitar challenged the vessel. The Infanta Christina finally left. This incident came only a day after Spain’s Foreign Minister was talking about negotiations about Gibraltar’s future with the British government. This all followed remarks from a former Conservative leader, Lord Howard, that England would be willing to go to war over Gibraltar to protect the Rock just like Margaret Thatcher did in the Falklands.
This all occurred after the EU documented said that Spain would be given a veto on post-Brexit agreements concerning the overseas territory called Gibraltar. Nigel Farage, the former UKIP leader, said the EU had made “an absolutely catastrophic error” and “Britain would not be bullied or intimidated”. He said on his nightly TV show on LBC: “We are not some little nation that is going to get bullied around by overpaid, unelected bureaucrats. We will simply not put up with it.” He was no doubt referring to the politicians in Brussels whose houses we saw two years ago on our trip to Waterloo.
A spokesman for the Gibraltar government said on Tuesday: “This is a timely demonstration of the way Spain routinely conducts itself in breach of the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea. It is almost as if Lord Howard has unnerved someone senior in the Spanish Navy.”
I don’t know if all this news about Gibraltar makes Britain look stupid across Europe as you say. I think it makes Spain look out of control and untrustworthy. It also reminds me that Britain is not really part of the Continent. Edward Ware, the hero of the Edward Ware Thrillers at War Series, would certainly approve of Brexit. If there was a war against Spain, he would certainly be fighting in it.
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Gibraltar Through The Ages:
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Gary says that there is a cartoon in the UK Telegraph today about the Gibraltar stand off. It has May dressed like like Elizabeth 1 in a pose that is positively regal. The title of the cartoon is The English Armada. You can see out through a window behind her the Straits of Gibraltar and the Rock of Gibraltar. But why would a British admiral be quoted as saying that the English could singe the beard of the King of Spain? Why is he allowed to talk like that?
Apparently the British got Gibraltar during the War of the Spanish Succession. The British captured Gibraltar in 1704, over three hundred years ago. If the British had gotten their candidate on the Spanish throne, then they probably would have given up Gibraltar to him. But they didn’t succeed, and in the Peace Treaty of Utrecht in 1713, Gibraltar was ceded to the British. They have been there ever since. At the time the British thought it was a strategic location and saw the advantages of it despite the three year siege of Gibraltar at the end of the eighteenth century between 1780 and 1783. The Spanish and the French were trying to get Gibraltar back. The British were way outnumbered, and they started hollowing out tunnels in the rocks. They were firing cannon down on the enemy. The Spanish and French were trying to starve them out, and there had to be relief expeditions sent by the British to keep the garrison well-supplied. The Spanish have been complaining about it ever since even during WW2. Franco right after the Fall of France was making noises about Gibraltar. Hitler even offered to give Franco Gibraltar if he would fight on his side. Once it became clear that the British were not going to be defeated, Franco called that off. And the British have held onto it ever since. There is no way they could give up now — except to the US. And the US is very reluctant to take on overseas territories. It is just too key a strategic position.
Gibraltar is a setting in the upcoming Edward Ware Thrillers at War title Hitler’s Agent. Even the apes of Gibraltar play a role. Dora and Edward find themselves docking there to refuel on their flight from Hitler and Mussolini in Italy back to Paris to meet Churchill at the Ritz and finally to Southampton.
This morning when I woke up I usually follow the QM2 to see where it is anchored that day. I knew it was on a world cruise and had just been in Korea. Where would it go next? I was surprised to find that the website said that QM2 was “not on a cruise”. In the past this has meant that the ship was doing something unexpected such as looking for somebody who jumped overboard such as in August of 2015, the month after we were on the ship or in July of 2015 when we were last on the ship on the 175th anniversary cruise coming back to New York and we ran into the mysterious skiff at sea episode. But when I mentioned it to Gary he had a different explanation this time. Quite different and surprising!
Gary found that the Queen Mary 2 which is currently on a world cruise is being used in Theresa May’s first foreign trade deal. it was announced by David Dingle, the Chairman of Maritime UK and the Chairman of Carnival UK, and John Hayes, the Shipping and Ports Minister and Member of Parliament, and the Trade Minister, Mark Garnier, that they are going to have a three day mission to Shanghai March 28-March 30. David Dingle is going to host a luncheon aboard the Queen Mary 2 which will be anchored there in Shanghai. He will host Chinese officials and government ministers. Where will they eat? We’ve been discussing it and have decided that it would probably be in the Queen’s Room on deck 3. I should send you pictures. It is usually a ballroom but it adjacent to the main dining room and eatery, the Britannia Dining Room.
This is supposed to help improve trade and investment relations between the two nations. “The maritime industry has a unique role to play in making Brexit a success,” Dingle says. “As Britain goes out into the world determined to increase exports and sign ambitious trade deals, Maritime UK has a unique responsibility to make Global Britain a reality,” Dingle says. He addes, “We are ready to do so.” It is all scheduled around the time that Theresa May is supposed to trigger the Brexit, Article 50, tomorrow, Wednesday, March 29.
Unique how Britain always uses cruise ships for political purposes such as Queen Mary 1 in World War 2 and now Queen Mary 2. Queen Mary 1, the original Queen Mary liner, is featured in Captive at the Berghof, one of the Edward Ware Thrillers at War Series.
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