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But Macron has elections coming up and Frau Merkel is (almost) no more. The folk memories of the destruction wrought by competing nationalisms is beginning to fade.
The EU, too, has issues which it might wish to distract the populace from - Covid -19, climate change, Poland, Hungary, regional tensions, the rule of law and immigration. It might suit some to gin up a trade war with the UK as a common enemy.
What better way to deprive UK companies of their market shares within the EU? Of course EU companies would lose market share in the UK as well, but that is hardly a major focus for the vast majority of them.
Only the Irish economy remains heavily intertwined with the UK economy, but that is rapidly diminishing too, with UK/Ireland trade declining as a % of Ireland's total trade from about 70% in 1973, to about 10% now.
The UK traditionally had its largest trade surplus with any country in the World with Ireland. That surplus has vanished and has been replaced by a deficit in the past 9 months.
Index of Frank's Diaries
Dick Bolger was one of my grade school classmates. He lived at the end of the block. His father would not allow the words England or English to be uttered in his house.
I think I have a feel for it. I once expounded to my good friend and co-worker Doug Kennedy on the similarities of Ireland and Sicily. Both islands with internal squabbles. Both subjugated for centuries by foreign powers. Both with internal revolutionary/criminal secret societies. There was more but I don't have a Guiness in front of me to stimulate thought. (Ireland has prettier girls, though)
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