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The British are part of the family

The myth that the British are not Europeans, is wrong. The history proves the opposite. In the future, the UK should belong to Europe. comment by Joachim Käpp

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The British are part of the family

The myth that the British are not Europeans, is wrong. The history proves the opposite. In the future, the UK should belong to Europe.

comment by Joachim Käppner Joachim Käppner

Born in 1961. After training at the Deutsche journalistenschule in Munich, a PhD in history and editor of the German General Sundays sheet. Since 1999, SZ-editor, with a focus on security, 2002 Deputy head of domestic policy, from 2006 to 2010 the head of the local editorial office. Theodor-Wolff-Preis In 1998, Herwig Weber Prize 2010; Quandt Media Prize 2011. With Robert Probst, editor of several historical books in the sz edition ("1945 - The last 50 days"; "the Liberated, occupied, divided"; "The Second world war - The last eye-witnesses"), with Wolfgang Görl and Christian Mayer, editor of "850 years of Munich. The history of the city". Secret Passion: The Streak Of Light.


The Roman Emperor Hadrian from 122 ad, a Wall from the Irish sea to the North sea drag, roughly along the line between England and Scotland. In the middle of the still-impressive wall that rises on the rocks of the Crags. There, the civilized world of Europe ended. If Rome's legionaries looking down in the North, they saw the fire of the barbarians burn. Should the UK leave the EU and, quite possible, the Europe-friendly Scotland then the UK, then Europe would be here again. Only this time, the British countries would not belong South of the Wall, and to the political terra incognita fall.

To the myths, the care in the UK and "the continent", not counting the statement, the British on their island should really belong to Europe; a different mentality, history, culture. That is, in Populist turn, the leitmotif of the Brexiteers; so also the French President, Charles de Gaulle, the sabotaging once the accession of London of the European community thought on the other side, but; Think about this post in the States of Europe, where it is considered stunned until in disgust the Brexit-the Chaos in London. But this Thinking is wrong.

England saved Europe more than once in front of yourself

England, and later Britain, has always been a part of Europe. In the middle ages, considerable areas of this Europe belonged to his territory, it was not until 1558 items in France coincided with Calais, the last the outside. "So, like Europe, Britain, created, created Britain Europe," writes the British historian Brendan Simms. The Poet Lord Byron coined the romance and the awakening of freedom spirit of Europe. The industrial Revolution began in great Britain. The parliamentary democracy there, the result of a slow but steady Evolution, after 1848, many of the princes of the defeated Democrats from all over Europe Longing, many of them found in the London asylum.

but Above all, the UK, Europe has more than once saved from themselves. The sea, and a powerful fleet to protect the island, as in 1588, the Spanish Armada, in 1805, Napoleon's armies, and in 1940, the Wehrmacht had to know. Nevertheless, the Survival of Britain depended as trade and overseas Empire and later as the democracy always depend on that other side of the canal is not an Imperial Power, the other peoples subjugated, and then the British. In 1807, the British foreign Minister, Lord canning said: "We follow the principle that any Nation of Europe, to the resistance against the common enemy of all Nations, decided, immediately, to our close allies." Portuguese, Spaniards, Russians, Prussians took this help is very fond of, to Napoleon's dream of the world in 1815, the power in Waterloo sank. The German Empire it was in 1918, not better.

Brexiteers rely on Churchill - a Paradox

the UK was in 1940, the besieged Bastion of the last hope, when the country stood alone, and the unyielding war Prime Minister Winston Churchill of Hitler's Germany was flinging: We shall never surrender, we will never surrender. Even more, he predicted Europe's oppressed Nations, the dark age of Nazi tyranny will not last long - and all Europe may be free.

Churchill was also the defendant of the Iron curtain, Stalin, Europe was divided, and in Zurich in 1946 with his vision of the future of the "United States of Europe", proclaimed, under the sponsorship of his country. These United States there are now - and if British populists like Boris Johnson for the insanity that is you fault, invoke the glory days Churchill, sullying the memory of their national hero; what a Paradox.

The closer the UK and the EU remain connected, the better

so, How to deal with the estranged friend? Certainly not so, as Manfred Weber of the CSU is doing, the candidate for the office of President of the European Commission. If it were up to him, not more likely to the UK to participate if it may not already belong to it, even in the European elections in may. However, this kind of insulted ignorance is widening the gap. Europe should be enough for the British to continue the Hand. You are a part of us, part of the European family. A person who abandons you, only helps the populists left, right and centre, to the detriment of those of the EU, which guarantees so much freedom, peace and prosperity.

And who knows what happens. Maybe it will not be a Brexit, the cut, the gang at least. Maybe the Europe will affect choice, such as the clever English journalist, Timothy Garton Ash hopes, "like a second Referendum", of the headless nationalism. Maybe even a real second Referendum will come and with it the Chance that the mother country of reason and democracy to find those values again, which has preserved it for Europe. The closer the UK economically, security remains a politically, culturally to the EU bound, the better.

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