Brexit fury: EU tactics exposed as bloc ‘threatened and feared people’ felt UK | New
Lisa Nandy talks Union Jack and patriotism
This week, the EU again refused to set a date to ratify its Brexit trade deal, fearing the UK would implement it properly. While party group leaders were expected to announce the deal would be ratified at a meeting in late April, they instead said they would wait to receive assurances from Prime Minister Boris Johnson. This is just one example of a chain of mistrust between the two camps.
There have been a number of political skirmishes between the EU and the UK since the 2016 vote, and even more since the UK officially left the bloc in January 2020.
Many have cited conflicts, such as with the latest coronavirus vaccine crisis, as reasons why they no longer want to be part of the European project.
An often overlooked example, however, is the role of national identity.
In their new book, ‘English: The political force that transforms Britain, ”political scientists Richard Wyn Jones and Ailsa Henderson chronicle the rise of England’s national identity, which until now has been closely linked to Britain and Britain. Britishness.
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In their in-depth study, the authors found that while English has remained relatively calm and beneath the surface, it is, and is rapidly becoming, a force to be reckoned with.
Professor Wyn Jones said Brexit was a symptom of this awakening.
When asked if people fear their English national identity will be threatened by the EU, Professor Wyn Jones replied: “The short answer is yes.
“It’s a slightly nuanced point, but it is at the heart of the book’s argument.
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“We tend to think of English nationalism through the prism of Scottish, Welsh or Irish nationalism, which is a rejection of Britishness – but this is wrong.
“English nationalism is both a feeling that England is important and is unfairly treated in England, but also a kind of keen and deep sense of loyalty to a particular sense of British history, and the feeling that the Great -Brittany should play a leading role in the world.
“The EU threatened the latter, or came to be seen as threatening it by 2016.
“There was a feeling that the EU rather than magnifying British influence – which people like Ted Heath and David Cameron thought it would do – actually undermined Britain’s legitimate role in the world. . “
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Interestingly, Professor Wyn Jones added that their study found that people who felt England was being treated unfairly by the EU felt the same about the UK.
He added: “There is a feeling that England, as a result of decentralization and the Barnett formula, is being treated unfairly in the UK.
“For the EU to go hand in hand – it is the people who felt and still are Eurosceptic who tend to think that England is being treated unfairly within the national union.”
Since leaving the EU, British political parties have stepped up their efforts to present themselves as exclusively appealing to the British and the British.
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This has been particularly evident in Mr Johnson’s government which in recent months has come under fire for flooding Union Jack’s public broadcasts.
Last month, he announced that all government buildings should fly the flag every day, rather than just on special occasions.
The Labor Party has also found itself caught up in a saga of pushing the Union Jack into what many have linked to Britain’s wider culture wars.
Sir Keir Starmer, on becoming leader last year, pledged to make the Labor Party the “patriotic party”.
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It was after the party suffered an identity crisis – which continues to rage – under former leader Jeremy Corbyn, who avoided mentioning national and patriotic pride.
Paul Embery, a leading trade unionist and Labor member, said that while Sir Keir’s efforts may be obvious, they are a step in the right direction to win back the old working-class heart of the party in the Midlands and the northern England.
He told Express.co.uk: “I think he’s smart enough to know that the Labor Party has been seen by millions of working class voters as an unpatriotic party that despises its own country.
“He knows if there is a chance to win back those voters, one of the first things he needs to do is convince them that the Labor Party is a proudly British party, is a patriotic party and that he understands why these communities feel the sense of patriotism they feel. “