Non à une Constitution européenne

La semaine dernière, Tony Blair, Jacques Chirac, et Gerhard Schroeder se sont rencontrés à Berlin. Ils se sont quittés sur la promesse de relancer la croissance en Europe, promesse creuse souvent entendue.

En fait, l'Union Européenne a besoin d'une nouvelle direction. Je dis cela en tant que dirigeant d'un parti qui a été aux avant-postes de l'engagement européen de la Grande-Bretagne. C'est sous un gouvernement conservateur que la Grande-Bretagne a fait pour la première fois acte de candidature à la construction européenne au début des années 60. C'est encore sous la conduite d'un gouvernement conservateur que le Royaume-Uni à rejoint la communauté économique européenne en 1973. Margaret Thatcher a travaillé avec Jacques Delors à la construction du Marché unique en 1986.

Je suis donc convaincu que la Grande-Bretagne doit conserver un rôle influent au sein de l'Union. Mais la politique britannique à l'égard de l'UE a souvent contribué à semer la zizanie plutôt qu'à améliorer les relations entre les autres Etats membres. Confrontés à une nouvelle initiative européenne, nous avons l'habitude de nous y opposer, de voter contre, de perdre le vote et finalement de l'adopter à contrecœur tout en blâmant le reste du monde. Beaucoup d'Européens en ont assez des vétos britanniques, et moi aussi.

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