Firstly, My hearty congratulations to Gerard Batten, who is now our interim leader. I hope he will then run as leader proper in the subsequent election. He is off to an excellent start with his interview on Sky, where he said, when questioned, “Yes, I confirm that Islam is a death cult, for those who take a literalist interpretation of the Koran.” UKIP can now expect to engage with the issue of militant Islam, which both Bolton and Farage seem allergic to, and yet which is of concern to millions in Britain, and of course ignored by all the LibLabCon parties. As Anne-Marie Waters had perceived, it is an open goal, millions of votes can be had by adopting a sensible policy on this.
And this is very heartening! Let us hope that these Veterans against Terrorism are now also joined by Veterans for Britain, who include some top brass officers, and are staunchly pro-Brexit. It is incredible that Cap’n Bolton, with all his “military background”, never engaged with them. Nigel did, but only when prompted by me, to scotch the idea of the UK joining the EU army.
I just hope now that someone picks up the dreadful speech made by Theresa May in Munich on Sunday. She said:
“Our security co-operation is not just vital because our people face the same threats, but also because we share a deep, historic belief in the same values – the values of peace, democracy, human rights and the rule of law”.
Unfortunately, we share only partly the same values with other Europeans. We ought to be allied with them, as we have been in Nato, against a common enemy such as militant Islam. But on no account must we accept their authority over us, even if this is presented as “shared authority”. We have a different conception of human rights and the rule of law from the conceptions prevalent on the continent. These differences come to a head over issues like the European Arrest Warrant; they reflect deeper, historical and philosophical differences, going back centuries.
In effect, this is not the first Brexit, not the first time that Britannia separated her destiny from that of Europe:
In 43 AD our island was invaded by Rome, and united to the rest of Europe, being absorbed into the Roman Empire as a province. There was staunch resistance, as by Boadicea Queen of the Iceni, who is celebrated in a statue opposite Big Ben, but it was overcome. The subordination of Britain to Rome lasted for around three and a half centuries. Actually the EU today is, in the minds of many of its proponents, an attempt to recreate “the glory that was Rome”, when Rome ruled almost the entire known world. That is why the founding Treaty was signed in Rome, and in Rome’s town hall, the Capitol, on the site from which Rome governed its empire. Barroso said the EU was an “Empire”.
The first Brexit was in 410 AD when the Roman legions left, and that was the last time, up until 1973, that the country was governed from a location beyond our shores – Rome. For one and a half thousand years ever since then, this country was always governed from a location within the country itself. Even William the Conqueror left Rouen, his capital in Normandy, and established his seat of government in England.
In the Middle Ages, England was a Catholic country, under the spiritual supremacy of the Church of Rome. But in the early thirteenth century, the Pope was setting up a fearsome machinery of tyranny, the Holy Inquisition, in order to stamp out opposition – heresy, witchcraft and science. So in 1215, we had the second Brexit, when England defied the Pope’s wrath and forced the King to accept Magna Carta. This limited his powers to punish his subjects at will. The rest of Europe, however, was made to accept the Inquisition. The paths of development of our system of criminal justice and that of the Europeans diverged then and have never come together again since. We must not forget that criminal justice is the “sword” of State power, which allows the State to use violence, legally, against people. To this day in England this power is limited by Magna Carta’s provisions for Habeas Corpus (art. 38), Trial by Jury (art. 39) and others. These safeguards are still unknown in Europe, to this day.
Henry VIII effected the third Brexit in 1534. He had broken with the Church of Rome, established the independent Church of England with himself as its head, and he passed the Act of Supremacy, under which:
“no foreign prince, person, prelate, state, or potentate hath, or ought to have, any jurisdiction, power, superiority, pre-eminence, or authority, … within the realm”
There was an attempt to restore the authority of Rome by his Catholic daughter “bloody” Mary. This was rejected by her sister Queen Elizabeth I, who in 1558 reaffirmed the Act of Supremacy and in 1588 fought off the attempt by the Spanish Armada to bring the country back into subjection to a foreign authority. And it was under the first Elisabeth that the country turned its attention away from Europe to the wide open seas, founding colonies in the New World, with Sir Walter Raleigh in Virginia, and Sir Francis Drake circumnavigating the globe.
I would consider 1649 to mark the fourth Brexit, when our form of government became notably different from that of the rest of Europe. Nearly all European countries were governed by autocratic monarchs – we remember Louis XIV of France who said, “I am the State”. In Britain, in marked contrast, Parliament arose and asserted its authority over the king, with a civil war which ended by cutting off the King’s head; but then 12 years later Parliament itself restored the monarchy with a settled constitution with checks and balances. The claim to absolute authority by Charles I was not repeated by Charles II, although his brother James II tried to re-establish Papal supremacy, and had to leave.
The provisions of the Act of Supremacy and of Magna Carta were reaffirmed in 1688-9 with the Bill of Rights. Much of Europe, however, continued to have absolute monarchs, and later on dictatorships, until well into the 20th century.
At the end of the eighteenth century, Europe was thrown into turmoil by the French Revolution, which overthrew the absolute monarchy of France, cutting off their king’s head and thousands of others in the process. However the helm of their ship of State was swiftly seized by Napoleon Bonaparte, who imposed, not a reasonable, balanced form of government as had developed in England, but his own autocracy, and whose armies spread it to many other countries in Europe. He aimed to include Britain in his empire too, but was defeated, first at Trafalgar by Nelson, and then definitively by Wellington at Waterloo in 1815. So 1815 marked our fifth Brexit, or break with a plan to unite all Europe under one rule.
Britannia became now the chief industrial power in the world, and Britannia’s navy ruled the waves, and thus grew up the British Empire in five continents. Freedom and fairness were still the guiding values of the British people, and so in the fullness of time, Britain voluntarily granted independence to its former colonies, avoiding the bloody wars of independence fought by France and Portugal and Spain and others in attempting to hold on to their own colonies.
The last struggle between Britain and Europe, where a continental power tried to conquer and subjugate the people of Britain, was the Second World War. Here again, we fought them off victoriously, and so 1945 marks our sixth Brexit.
And now we come to our own lifetimes. In 1973, under Heath’s government, instead of conquest by force of arms, it was, in Shakespeare’s prophetic words:
” With inky blots and rotten parchment bonds:
That England, that was wont to conquer others,
Hath made a shameful conquest of itself. “
And the people were deceived and tricked by their own governments into accepting subjugation to a foreign yoke. Yet once again, on 23rd June 2016 we affected our seventh Brexit. This time, it cost some toil, sweat and tears but luckily – so far! – it has been without bloodshed.
Of course, the fight is not yet over, we are still “lions being led by donkeys”. On Saturday 17th February 2018, 80 years after the appeasement of Hitler in Munich, a British Prime Minister went again to Munich to offer her “unconditional commitment” to sign a “Security Treaty” with the EU which keeps us under the EAW and as members of Europol, ie under the sinews of the nascent United State of Europe.
So we may yet see lethally-armed European Gendarmes marching down our High Streets, ramming alien laws down our throats. At that point, blood will doubtless be shed.
To avoid that, we must surely raise the alarm over this, now, and stop Theresa May’s Security Treaty from going forward.