I’m (foolishly) going to call this now. By the end of the Tory conference, the relationship with EU27 will have been irrevocably soured. UKGov won’t come with a new backstop text. Talks will continue through October, with no progress, just more bluster & blame from UKGov 1/
UKGov will reject a new EU27 text ‘dedramatising’ by allowing checks away from ports, and continue to falsely paint it as an attempt to break up the UK. The ‘emergency summit’ in November will be cancelled (or not announced). This will also be used to point blame at EU27. 2/
No Deal then looms, with the stab-in-the-back myth taking hold as a tame press parrots UKGov lines and whips up hatred. All companies that have them implement contingency plans. 3/
What happens then is up to Parliament. Let’s hope it has more moral fibre and common decency than most of it has shown so far. 4/
As far as I know, @J_amesp was the first to argue seriously that there’d be a deliberate no deal 5/
I was pretty convinced by this at the time, and also thought there was a serious chance of a UKGov walk-out 6/ https://www.newstatesman.com/politics/staggers/2017/06/former-eu-negotiator-uks-chance-good-brexit-deal-looks-slim …
What we failed to spot though (although I think James P did suggest it a few months ago) is that the one who walks out always looks like the unreasonable one, and avoiding blame seems to be the primary objective. 7/
Much easier to just let the milestones pass with no agreement until, out of the need to kickstart preparations, EU27 are forced to declare that there’ll be no deal. Then it can be spun as something being done to UK, not something that UKGov’s actions have inevitably led to. 8/
The coordinated attacks on EU27 by the PM, Raab, Fox, and now, disgustingly, Hunt, are clearly the result of a decision, and a decision to do this is not the decision of a Govt looking to get an agreement, but to lay down a marker. And we’re only on day 1 of the conference. 9/
I hope I’m wrong. I really do. If you were looking to kill chances of a deal though, UKGov’s actions from Salzburg to now would be how you would go about it. And I bet there’s more to come. 10/10
P.S. just out in the last few mins. Tell me this isn’t a coordinated push.
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