Wednesday, 14 January 2009

Not really in the club

A nicely tongue-in-cheek piece of art has been unveiled outside the European Council building in Brussels. In the sculpture (which can be seen here on the BBC website), each EU country is represented from a stereotyped perspective. For example, the large lump that represents France simply has a banner draped over it with the word "Grève", meaning "strike". Germany is represented by a series of large motorways that looks alarmingly like a swastika.

However, the most insulting/apt/incisive representation (depending on your political leanings) is that of Britain, which is simply represented by its absence. I know the phrase is usually "a picture speaks a thousand words", but in this case the lack of a picture speaks even louder.

If Britain needed any further evidence of how it's participation in the EU (or lack thereof) is viewed by its neighbours it need look no further. Since Thatcher's reign, Britain's commitment-phobic approach to the EU angered, aggravated, delayed and annoyed many in the EU. Sooner or later Britain is going to have to make an actual decision on this - is she in or is she out?

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