sexta-feira, 2 de fevereiro de 2007

AJP Taylor, o Eurocéptico

Um conjunto de textos de AJP Taylor com a melhor argumentação eurocéptica do ponto de vista inglês. Compreende-se bem que os circulos de Thatcher tenham sido sensíveis a ela e a tenham usado anos mais tarde. Um conjunto de maravilhosa prosa. Daquela que não se encontra. Que se encontra extinta. Como seria bom que os ingleses saíssem da Europa e nós com eles, com uma aliança de interesses (as melhores), de comércio internacional e de neutralidade armada.

Professor A.J.P. Taylor on Europe: The Historian Who Predicted the Future

Ficam aqui os 3 últimos escritos ente 1969 e 1971.


The White Paper tells us that China is also on the way to becoming a Super Power. Considering the size of her population and territory, that is not surprising. But the coming of yet another Super Power is announced. Japan, we are told "is well on the way to Super Power status." That single sentence destroys the entire political case for the Common Market.

Japan does not possess vast territories and enormous natural resources. She has no Commonwealth behind her and none of the capital reserves we have accumulated. She is not associated in any Common Market. She tried that once when she went to war in order to establish The Far Eastern Co-Prosperity Sphere. The attempt brought her to utter disaster and economic ruin. Now only 26 years after catastrophic defeat, the little island of Japan, with a population denser than ours, is well on the way to becoming a Super Power. Her rate of economic growth is the highest in the world, far higher, for instance, than any country in the Common Market.

This great advance has not been achieved at the expense of the Japanese people. Their wages are high. Their social services are considerable. Their standard of life is enviable. The Japanese way of success is no secret. It is simple: Hard Work. And not only hard work in the factories. Hard work also by the leaders of industry and commerce. Inspired leadership has raised Japan high. We could do all the Japanese have done if we were freed from the handicap of leaders without faith.

Caution has been our watchword instead of enterprise. The City of London has bowed down before the stability of sterling when it ought to have been thinking about the expansion of industry. The Japanese are prosperous. Are they also secure? The answer must be: they are as secure as any country can be in the modern world. The two real Super Powers maintain a balance of nuclear terror. Neither Soviet Russia nor the United States dares start a world war. And in my opinion neither of them remotely wishes to do so.

Will merging into Europe make us more secure against either Soviet Russia or the United States? Not a whit. On the contrary, it may drag us into European conflicts that need not affect us at all. Running through the White paper is the idea that merging into Europe will increase our security. I find this extraordinary sentence: "Our security has been bound up with that of our European neighbours for over 1,000 years."


This sentence flies in the face of all our history. We have been most secure when we kept out of Europe. Meddling with European affairs has brought us nothing but toil and suffering. The greatest age of British economic achievement was in the nineteenth century. Then we were truly the workshop of the world. The sole principle of our foreign policy was Splendid Isolation. This was the basis for our prosperity.

Of course we do not want to see new wars in Europe. But if we enter into European alliances or European associations we make war more likely. Already German statesmen are saying that the new European Super Power will be able to challenge Soviet Russia. Is this what British people desire?

During the twentieth-century we were twice involved in great European wars. We were told that this was necessary for our security. On each occasion we came out less secure than when we went in. We were told we could not allow one country to dominate the Continent. And what happened? In 1940 one country did dominate the Continent. Yet we survived thanks solely to our own strength. And we should have been far stronger in the summer of 1940 if we had not previously sent an expeditionary force to France and lost all its equipment at Dunkirk.

The Battle of Britain was the most glorious event in our recent history. We won it without European allies. We won it because we had detached ourselves from Europe. It was the victory of Splendid Isolation. Long ago in the days of sailing ships, there was perhaps a case for saying that we could not allow Antwerp to pass into enemy hands. Even in the days of short-range aircraft and rockets there was a case for saying that we were concerned for the independence of Belgium and Northern France. Now nuclear weapons, if they are ever used, will come from thousands of miles away. The security of western Europe has no special significance for us. In weapons, as in other things, the world has become one.


Our security is bound up with world security. We shall not increase that security by merging into Europe. We shall instead be following old paths which have led us to ruin in the past. The craze to become a Super Power is merely the latest form in which that foul idol, The Balance of Power, is worshipped. We should not bow down before that Moloch. We are not a Super Power. We never were in our finest days. We are a small island and a small people of great achievements.

We have in the Commonwealth our own kith and kin. Association with them has always brought us peace and security. Yet we are deliberately turning away from our own people. We are being asked to plunge with our eyes open into new European entanglements such as have always injured us in the past. The lesson of history is clear: outside Europe we can be more secure and more prosperous than inside.

Let the Europeans mind their business. And we will mind ours. That is the right course towards future greatne"

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