So the greatest deal ever turned out to be a disaster but the same people who proclaimed triumphant negotiating success seem curiously unwilling to now look again at whether those who claimed success might in some way be responsible.
Meanwhile those of us who twice said that's not a triumph that's a retreat are once again seen to be some sort of enemy within while the people who applauded great triumph and have now changed their minds are the true patriots.
Amnesia and bizarre logical twists in which those responsible were not responsible appear to be side effects of Brexit. It is useful to understand the latest painful logic, not much in understanding what has to happen next.
Such devotion to the cause and the individual that you can write both these pieces 18 months apart with no sense of shame that the "radically better deal" you claimed turned out to be "a classic case of an "unequal treaty""
Oh sheez, apparently the NI protocol row shows how bad the EU is at politics and understanding Northern Ireland, and only the UK government has the true wisdom. The cult of Johnson has quite a hold on some folk who think they have independent faculties.

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More from @DavidHenigUK

11 Jun
This isn't quite right from the New Statesman Morning Call. It would have been uniquely the US trade deal that might have caused the UK to change agricultural standards - no other. The US have now removed that excuse for not aligning regulations with the EU. Image
It then comes down to a stubborn refusal of the UK to consider any form of alignment with the EU because we don't like the EU, and because a handful of sympathetic think-tankers have wildly different views on product regulation to the rest of the world.
Northern Ireland isn't just stuck in a game of conflicting identities, but also in the UK government's attempts to deny global regulatory reality. You don't have to align on everything, but to refuse to align on anything at whatever cost is simply dumb.
Read 5 tweets
11 Jun
A showman hosts a summit. Expect a good show.

But the messages have been given. The EU and US intend to resolve some differences to take on China. If the UK keeps its current approach to Northern Ireland it will be not be welcomed by its allies.
This is a very different US administration to that we've seen in many years, prepared to resolve Boeing / Airbus subsidies and other long standing issues with the EU to focus on China. Prepared to consider a trade deal with the UK without food to help resolve Northern Ireland.
If the UK government snubs Biden by now refusing to make its own compromises with the EU over Northern Ireland then it is writing itself out of the US international picture. A problem not a solution. No trade deal, no warm visits. Over to you PM. What comes after the show?
Read 6 tweets
10 Jun
Obviously Johnson was going to be flippant over the Northern Ireland protocol, and it is considered diplomatic to allow summit hosts their moment. The question remains whether Johnson is yet taking the situation seriously. Can't tell right now.
In normal diplomatic terms the US have made their position clear on Northern Ireland. They expect the UK government to be more constructive, and believe we are in the wrong. But Johnson with his poor grasp of diplomacy may ignore it.
The UK government will eventually have to fold on the Northern Ireland protocol. The power politics sees to that. But how, when, and with what damage done are all to be decided.
Read 5 tweets
10 Jun
There is a difference between 'regulations' and 'totally arbitrary decisions' but not in the mind of too many of the Brexit crowd in the UK. You might also want to understand the huge detail that goes into a veterinary agreement. Image
The broader point - again - is that too much of UK and EU political discourse assumes that unionists suddenly learn to love the protocol if there's a veterinary agreement accompanying it. Like we shouldn't take their demands for abolition seriously.…
Just to roll out the tweet again, no veterinary agreement reducing checks solves the political problem of a community thinking checks are unacceptable. Unless you change the second, the discussions on the first seem rather inadequate.
Read 5 tweets
10 Jun
Two things -

One - this is not normal. The US is having to go further that it would like because the UK government is not listening

Two - the timing of the story is presumably not coincidental after yesterday's poor UK-EU meeting
Pig headed "it doesn't matter that the world is against us" reactions, which we see in the media, some MPs, and indeed in Number 10, are incredibly dangerous. The western world believes we are wrong over Northern Ireland.
A slight humblebrag that I think this article in the Irish Times about Johnson's desire for a US trade deal explaining the UK government's approach to the protocol may have travelled to Washington.…
Read 14 tweets
9 Jun
As we look forward to the G7 summit this weekend it seems to scarcely have been noted that the Trade and Finance Minister meeting outcomes were dominated by US objectives.

The Corporation Tax deal last weekend the case in point. A Biden proposal to benefit the US economy.
The Trade Minister summit was even more startling. One third of the text is devoted to what are essentially China issues (market distortions, transparency, forced labour), far more than that devoted to WTO reform and agreements.…
All of which is the subject of my @BorderlexEditor Perspectives column this week - the US has returned to the international fray, but with a very specific agenda focused on delivering its domestic priorities. For now other G7 members are acquiescing.…
Read 4 tweets

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