There you have it, good people. Yesterday it was laid cold, hard and bare. Any pretence that the EU’s envisaged backstop for Northern Ireland was anything other than a shameful land-grab of UK sovereign territory disappeared like a straw in the wind. Germany annexed Austria to its territory in March 1938 under the Anschluss operation. It now seeks to do similar with a part of the United Kingdom where pro-British passions run most deep. Nigel Farage told me yesterday there was no direct comparison. He’s right, there isn’t. But the principle is exactly the same. And Angela Merkel’s stunning ignorance of the UK’s constitutional order has brought any prospect of an agreed Brexit to almost 0%

Let’s be candid and say Germany isn’t a country known for treading lightly in delicate international territorial matters. Having unilaterally recognised in the independence of Croatia in 1991 (against advice from significant quarters in global politics), it precipitated the bloody Balkan conflict which engulfed the peninsula for the better part of a decade. The EU as a whole suffered massive reputational damage during that conflict by engaging with blood-soaked warlords. Here it is again, attempting to wrench Northern Ireland away from the UK – a move guaranteed to cause massive instability should any British government be stupid enough to contemplate it.

For what? The EU has bought into Dublin’s false assertion that there is something sacrosanct about the ‘all-island economy’. There isn’t. And why? Because its largely a myth, that’s why. Yes, trade does take place across the border just as it takes place across hundreds of borders between adjoining jurisdictions. However, Northern Ireland buys six times more goods from Great Britain than it buys from the Republic. It sells four times more to the mainland than it sells south to the Irish state. Whether it be in terms of public expenditure, economic underpinning or trade dependency, the province is utterly reliant on the rest of the Kingdom and no amount of Sinn Fein-funded studies, reports by sympathetic academics or clickbait enunciations by Fianna Fail senatorial nobodies can alter that fact.

The current backstop permanently entraps a part of the UK within the EU’s legal order. It denies the voters of Northern Ireland a say on any rules it would have to apply, and makes the entrapment permanent. All this nonsense about its temporary nature and alternative arrangements provided a comfort blanket to those naive of the Union’s real intentions. The European Union and its Dublin attack hounds seek a constitutional arrangement no democratic country with a serious attitude to national sovereignty could endorse. Barnier, Varadkar et al tell us their aim is the ‘presevation of peace on the island of Ireland’. What, by pretending Unionists don’t exist?! Let me tell them that, should their mendacious scheme come to fruition (which it won’t), they’re likely to preside over the biggest outpouring of Unionist civil unrest since the signing of the Anglo-Irish Agreement.

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