Sixty Joyless De-Britished Uncrowned Commonpoor Years (1949-2009)

Elizabeth II Vice-Regal Saint: Remembering Paul Comtois (1895–1966), Lt.-Governor of Québec
Britannic Inheritance: Britain's proud legacy. What legacy will America leave?
English Debate: Daniel Hannan revels in making mince meat of Gordon Brown
Crazy Canucks: British MP banned from Canada on national security grounds
Happy St. Patrick's: Will Ireland ever return to the Commonwealth?
Voyage Through the Commonwealth: World cruise around the faded bits of pink.
No Queen for the Green: The Green Party of Canada votes to dispense with monarchy.
"Sir Edward Kennedy": The Queen has awarded the senator an honorary Knighthood.
President Obama: Hates Britain, but is keen to meet the Queen?
The Princess Royal: Princess Anne "outstanding" in Australia.
H.M.S. Victory: In 1744, 1000 sailors went down with a cargo of gold.
Queen's Commonwealth: Britain is letting the Commonwealth die.
Justice Kirby: His support for monarchy almost lost him appointment to High Court
Royal Military Academy: Sandhurst abolishes the Apostles' Creed.
Air Marshal Alec Maisner, R.I.P. Half Polish, half German and 100% British.
Cherie Blair: Not a vain, self regarding, shallow thinking viper after all.
Harry Potter: Celebrated rich kid thinks the Royals should not be celebrated
The Royal Jelly: A new king has been coronated, and his subjects are in a merry mood
Victoria Cross: Australian TROOPER MARK DONALDSON awarded the VC
Godless Buses: Royal Navy veteran, Ron Heather, refuses to drive his bus
Labour's Class War: To expunge those with the slightest pretensions to gentility
100 Top English Novels of All Time: The Essential Fictional Library
BIG BEN: Celebrating 150 Years of the Clock Tower

Wednesday, 1 August 2007

Three Anglospherists and an Atlanticist

One could be forgiven for thinking that Gordon Brown is an Anglospherist after reading his Churchillian address to America. It is a matter of public record, however, that when Lord Black was pushing NAFTA and the concept of an Anglosphere in his Telegraph papers as an alternative to the unaccountable EU, the now Prime Minister of Great Britain came out firmly against it, because it ran contrary to his political views of Britain's interests in Europe.

The British prime minister, like his predecessor, is rather an avowed "Atlanticist", which (always) has a peculiar ring to both North American and European ears, notwithstanding our shared membership in the North Atlantic Treaty Organization. When Tony Blair declared himself an Atlanticist in a speech to the Canadian Parliament a few years back, I remember it was greeted with polite applause, but it's not a reference any other Atlantic power would use to describe their own geopolitical perspective. From Britain's perspective it is perhaps natural to think one foot in Europe and the other in America, but it's probably more fantacist than Atlanticist to believe that it can act as an impartial bridge or an "honest broker" between the two. Each nation will bridge the Atlantic according to its own interests.

For those who would ridicule the notion of an informal Anglosphere, the fact remains that there exists a core group of English-speaking countries who work cooperatively - not competitively - on global security issues, and whose collective sacrifice since the pre-1914 world is chiefly responsible for the current world order, such as it is. That sacrifice continues to this day, which the leaders of the four major Anglo nations - Bush, Brown, Harper and Howard - continually acknowledge, even if none evokes the A-word for fear of excluding our nominal allies. But make no mistake that three of those leaders believe in it, while the other talks a good game. With a Labour politician saying such things and apparently meaning it (posturing for the home crowd on statesmanship and outflanking the Tories on the "special relationship" is of course politically convenient), you really do have to appreciate that the Anglosphere may have a long future indeed.

3 comments:

Matt Bondy said...

I could not agree more.

I could be mistaken but it appears that a groundswell of anglospherism is emerging, particularly in conservative circles.

One hopes it won't be long before our political leaders call the US-UK centred alliance what it is: the Anglosphere.

M

Aeneas the Younger said...

The danger of your model is that you want the US inside the ropes. They should be held outside the ropes and brought-in only when necessary. Otherwise, they will control the game AND the ropes.

Americans are NOT tories. They ARE liberal hegemons.

Younghusband said...

John Boltin in today's Financial Times has stated that "The difference from many other EU countries is that Britain’s interests and values have not in recent years been parochially European, but global, like America’s. If the EU becomes the centrepiece of Britain’s world, the Little Englanders will have won....For Britain to confine its role to being a ”moderating influence” is ultimately to leave it with only a position of process, not of substance. Inevitably, therefore, that means a reduced role for Britain, which I find hard to believe that the UK would actually want...Britain in particular, with its unique constitutional system and place in the world, there is far more to lose than to gain by surrendering decision-making authority to EU courts and bureaucracies"
In fact, the punchline is when he compares the US comparison between the UK and France: "My experience in diplomatic dealings with France over many years is that France unfailingly pursues what Paris sees as its core national interests. While such an approach has often put France at odds with the United States, it is at least straightforward and intellectually honest. I respect it.

By contrast, too often in recent years, and frequently in the United Nations, the UK position, as defined by the FCO, has been ideological rather than national, pursuing what the international High Minded set calls ”global governance.”

Given the choice, vive la France!"