Behold the future of Brexit Britain — a handkerchief in Washington’s pocket
One of the most famous and emphatic statements of Papal infallibility was made by St Augustine (Augustine of Hippo) when, in the context of the Pelegian heresy that engulfed the Catholic Church in the first decade of the 5th century, he proclaimed, ‘Roma locuta est, causa finita est’ (‘Rome has spoken, the case is closed’).
Today we are grappling with our own secular simulacrum of the Pelegian heresy. It involves the challenge to the infallibility of Washington by Iran, and the submission of Washington’s European allies (clients) when it comes to the shredding of the Iran Nuclear Deal, officially known as the JCPOA.
Only in an upside world could Iran be seriously accused of violating its obligations under the JCPOA, after Trump’s unilateral withdrawal followed by the imposition of brutal sanctions, which said European governments have failed utterly to resist.
Yet this is precisely what these E3 states have done, triggering the dispute mechanism within the agreement, which brings with it the ugly prospect of UN sanctions being imposed on Iran to go along with the already grievous US sanctions that currently have the country’s economy in a choke-hold.
Here, especial ignominy attaches to London, where newly-elected Prime Minister Boris Johnson has had the temerity to suggest that the JCPOA should be replaced by a new deal, one negotiated by the Trump administration — a Trump Deal, if you will. Unsurprisingly, it’s a suggestion that has met with the approval of Caesar himself in Washington.
Regardless of Boris Johnson’s supine proposal and Trump’s approval, this is international diplomacy reduced to a risible exercise in might is right.
Iran, to its credit, is a country that does not bow at the feet of the Empire, no matter the inordinate pressure being arrayed against it. As to the the crimes that have and are being committed against the Islamic Republic by a rogue US administration of anti-Iranian racists — Trump, Pompeo, Pence et al. — they are breathtaking even by Washington’s standards. Compounding those crimes is the craven abandonment of any scintilla of dignity and independence by those aforementioned European allies — namely Germany, France and the UK — in their appeasement of Trump’s determination to turn the screw against Tehran.
Of the three, it is Britain that has plumbed new depths of ignominy in its fawning acquiescence to the Trump administration’s anti-Iran agenda. The so-called special relationship, long celebrated in London as the sine qua non of international stability and security in an ever-shifting geopolitical landscape, has always, in truth, been the means by which a third rate power, the UK, has been able to pose as a first rate power under the umbrella of US hegemony.
Now, in this new Brexit future of supposed unbounded opportunity for a country that has never addressed, much less redressed, its ignoble colonial and imperial history, Washington is well aware that when it comes to the UK, it holds every card in the pack. It’s a chilling reality that was recently outlined by former White House national security adviser Richard Goldberg in an interview on the BBC Radio Four’s flagship morning show, ‘Today’.
Mr Goldberg made no bones about the necessity for London to align its foreign policy with Washington with a view to achieving a free trade deal. Thus we have it confirmed. Where Britain was once commonly regarded as a poodle at Washington’s feet, Brexit Britain is well on the way to being a handkerchief in its pocket.
Freedom from the shackles of Europe never tasted to good.
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