Ambasador Budd o polityce brytyjskiej

Sir Colin Budd, b. ambasador brytyjski, pisze 9 stycznia br. na <www.britishinfluence.org>  - the cross-party body working to keep the UK in the EU:


By getting so inebriated by the froth of inward-looking debate about immigration and benefits, many British politicians risk losing sight of some important realities of great importance for British interests.

Poland, to name but one, is not some marginal country on the fringes of Europe.   For reasons of history, economic significance and power politics, it needs to be taken very seriously.

History – not least because it was Poland which caused us to go to war in 1939, and because 147 Polish pilots (the largest non-UK contingent) fought in the Battle of Britain, in addition to major Polish contributions on many other World War II battlefronts, from North Africa to Monte Cassino, from Normandy to Arnhem, and on into Germany.

Economic significance – Poland has the sixth largest economy, and one of the fastest growing, in the UK’s home market, the European Union … while the Poles resident in the UK are on any analysis making a substantial contribution here too.

Power politics – because Poland has the sixth largest population in the EU, the same voting weight as Spain, and a real strategic significance for both Germany and France.   In its campaign to achieve change and reform in the EU, the UK will need all the allies it can get.   It cannot afford to forget the value of Polish support.

We therefore need to find solutions to our current frustrations which are crafted with understanding of the strongly held views of the Polish government, and the reasons for them, and not simply fuelled by unthinking prejudice which does no justice to the real merits of the case.

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© Ryszard Stemplowski