Diplomacy is like honour

Brexit talks are unlikely to move ahead as planned in October because the British government is seen as weak, divided and unwilling to accept the full consequences of the decision to leave the EU, according to European ambassadors.

“It was the plan to advance to a new phase of negotiations in October,” Nikolaus Meyer-Landrut, Germany’s ambassador to France and previously chief European affairs adviser to the chancellor, Angela Merkel, told an audience in Paris on Tuesday.

“Honestly, from what we see of the UK’s positions today we will not be moving to the next phase in October. To be clear: the crisis in these talks is not behind us but ahead of us. I don’t know when it will come, or what its outcome will be.”

Speaking at France’s annual ambassadors’ week, Meyer-Landrut said London appeared to be having “real difficulty in positioning itself collectively, as a government and a parliament, with regard to the substance of certain questions”.

A third round of Brexit talks began in Brussels this week with the UK eager to move quickly on to discussing its future relationship with the bloc but the EU27 are insisting sufficient progress must first be made on three key divorce issues.

Pierre Sellal, France’s ambassador to the EU, said that seen from Brussels, the picture the UK gave was one of “confusion and hesitation”, while the remaining member states showed “clarity, unity … a certain degree of serenity”.

As with talking of honour and counting the spoons. Translated into vernacular this means that the Brits are reasonably united and the rest are fighting like cats in a sack.

We should remember that a diplomat is someone sent abroad to lie for his country.

16 thoughts on “Diplomacy is like honour”

  1. A good lie has to be believable, at least in a critical time-frame, (e.g., Blair’s WMD scam.) M Sellal fails utterly on that score alone.

  2. These “ambassadors” need to be dismissed from the UK at once.

    The arrogant scum also need to be told that , from now on, every time Drunker or any other turd-on-legs– opens his mouth for any purpose than to order more drink–for which the EU pays for every drop–an extra anti-EU demand will go on Britain’s negotiating position.

    In addition , ANY public statement about the negotiations by ANY of their pukes –even “Ze ‘all–she iz too hort” –will lead to an automatic three day suspension of talks..

    Let the cunts see we are serious.

    The 36 billion the Fish-Faced Cow is already talking her cowardly shite about boils my piss.

  3. “I am waiting for the big free-trade deals that a small island can conclude to its benefit with the rest of the world,” he said.

    yeah that seems to be the situation.

  4. I would have thought that just about every country on the planet would want the trade deal we have with the EU.

  5. OK Digger,

    would you like to itemise the costs and benefits of this wonderful deal we have with the EU?

    Do remember to list the sovereignty it costs us

  6. “@Hallowed Be

    “I am waiting for the big free-trade deals that a small island can conclude to its benefit with the rest of the world,” he said.
    yeah that seems to be the situation.”

    I was in Singapore a month or two ago- the fucking poverty was phenomenal. It was so bad, it reminded me of Hong Kong, and all those other small territories that are incredibly impoverished by being titchy. Monaco is another one.

    If only they had more room they could create some real wealth, growing high value crops, like turnips and swedes.

  7. @john square. I know what you mean. Am typing from Singapore and can see how poor people are as they can only dream of merging with Malaysia again and giving up their sovereignty and ability to decide their own destiny.

    Why can a nation half the size of London have national pride but the UK has a significant number in influential positions who think the UK shouldn’t exist anymore? Madness.

  8. Let’s get the order of words right, then it’ll be the punning joke that Sir Henry Wotton intended, instead of populist flatulence. ‘A diplomat is an honest man sent to lie abroad for his country.’ (There are other versions, and he said ‘ambassador,’ but the point stands.)

  9. @Chris – misquoting does lose the pun, but I am not clear how it is “populist flatulence”.

    In fact I am not sure what populist flatulence is; farts that smell of roses?

  10. At a conference on March I did ask one of our negotiators if the EU was congenitally able to negotiate a settlement with us; he squirmed a little and spoke about how it was as much kn their interests as ours.

    The truth is, as he told me afterwards, is they are fanatics and a deal may not be possible. Proof of this is seennin our very detailed postion paper on Irlenad; the EU has produced nothing, our very detailed postion paper on the rights of EU AND UK citizens; the EU has produced nothing and our refusal to provideo a.position paper on the ‘divorce bill’; the EU’s is a full 4 pages of A4.

    Let us be clear, no deal is a very bad deal indeed. It is, however, better than rhe deal they think they are going to impose on us. It is also probably the best deal the EU is going to be able to sort itself out to deliver. We have no choice but to reach March 2019 with no deal and to tough it out for a couple of years whilst the recriminations in France and Germany start. We have no choice but to be very light on our feet and be ready to sign a deal with Ireland in a matter of weeks when the grim reality of its position dawns on our neighbour.

    None of what is coming is ideal, but we are British aren’t we? We aren’t going to capitulate to statist, bureaucratic fascists are we?

  11. The negotiations won’t begin until the German election is settled. Once that’s done, it’s going to be adults only.

    We’re going to hear a lot from Barnier and Juncker in the meantime, but we should wait until we hear from German industrialists and French farmers before getting concerned.

  12. For myself, I am unconcerned about the present situation and unsurprised. It is right that Britain continues to negotiate with the EU in good faith (as we have always attempted to do with our continental allies, even when they belittle us beforehand and stab us in the back afterwards).

    This is why we are Great Britain (says the Manx/Irish guy currently residing in Scotland)

    The EU’s current position is that of demanding money with menaces and just because they have provided a façade of substance justifying their demands doesn’t make it any more right.

    Coughing up anything more that we’ve already legally committed to would be a capitulation, indeed it would make matters worse not only for the UK, but any future EU member wishing to exit as BRExit will be used as a precedent if it gives the EU advantage.

    As for the Ireland situation, neither the UK nor the Irish want a hard border, only the EU does and it is only insisting on this as part of an attempt to leverage the negotiations.

    I have no doubt that the British and Irish government officials have already met and agreed that whatever happens, neither side will do anything to reverse the current position. If any additional bilateral treaty is required to clarify and enforce this then it will be negotiated and ready to sign at the stroke of 12:01 on 1st April 2019.

    I never thought it likely that any BRExit deal would be negotiated because the EU is not thinking of Britain (doesn’t actually give a flying fuck about Britain), it is solely thinking of how it protects itself from financial collapse and preventing further attempts at secession by EU Member states.

    Even if the Remoaner traitors in the Tory party were to give the EU some or all of what was demanded it would never be enough and would never be ratified by the remaining EU 27.

    Day dreaming about German auto-manufacturers or other trade groups stepping in to force a deal are unlikely to materialise, because they don’t want to be tainted by any such deal and more importantly they don’t want to be stuck with the bill as part of “concessions” for the EU giving the UK a “better deal than they deserve”.

    Far better to let the EU fuck it all up on their own and then come in after 2019 and say “WTO Rules with the UK are costing us a fortune, especially since Japan and USA now has a bilateral free trade deal with the UK”.

    Don’t forget that EU regulation is hitting the German auto-industry as well. They would much prefer a Europe wide free trade zone without the EU and if a temporary dip in exports to the UK is helpful then they will let it happen.

    The current BRexit deal negotiations are little more than theatre, a pantomime necessary to show that the UK attempted to negotiate in good faith and the EU frustrated that.

    Regardless of the actors the roles cannot be played differently.

  13. @Ironman, August 31, 2017 at 12:11 pm

    “…None of what is coming is ideal, but we are British aren’t we? We aren’t going to capitulate to statist, bureaucratic fascists are we?”

    Good post. Agree – as May said no deal is better..

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