Divided Kingdoms

by Émilie Saucier on October 6, 2017 - 7:59am

As of right now, Britain is part of the European Union, but it is expected to leave it soon. This would have consequences in Northern Ireland which is part of the united kingdom. A separation would mean for them that they would need a real border separating Northern Ireland from Ireland. Which would mean that they couldn't rely as much anymore on them on aspects such as economical and agricultural. Also imposing a border would be very difficult and costly since about 300 roads are crossing the border. Northern  Ireland is not the only one to disagree with the united kingdom separation, Scotland also strongly disagree with it. What might just happen of all of this is for Britain to not only get out of the European Union but also to break the united kingdom altogether. This is seen as a social problem because whichever the outcome, it concerns the entire population of the united kingdom excluding Britain.

Seeing this, one might wonder if they do really are a united kingdom, then why do they have such different opinion on whether to get out of the European Union or not and why the decision of the British is not contested in itself instead of trying to work around it.

 

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/02/28/opinion/northern-ireland-and-the-disunited-kingdom.html

Comments

Excellent work and interesting choice of topic! I choose this topic because of the historical interest I have towards it and it's importance. Let me provide a constructive comment on this subject. Undoubtedly, the removal of Britain from the European Union list will have a lot of consequences. Yet, It all comes down to the democracy and the power of the people. They are the ones who vote for their own will, supported by their daily lives.

Great Britain is isolated off-shore, resulting in no direct land route with other European Union affiliates. They also have their own currency and their social status is different from other countries. Britannic stocks supportive in the EU block are slowly dropping down (Paige). However, It may be favorable to get out of the European Union in the long-term scenario, where they would run their political and economic spheres as they please.

As for Ireland and Scotland, both voted to stay in the European Union. If the Brexit happens and the Article 50 gets triggered, there are big chances that Ireland and Scotland will request an attempt to quit the Union of Britain created in the 18th century.

In conclusion, people define acts and deal with their consequences. If the Brexit plan passes through, they are big chances that the kingdom will be divided indeed. It is simply the truth. After which, the three Britannic states will discuss any inner economical agreements. Time will shape out the relationships.

Paige, T., & Mia, J. (n.d.). The Brexit Breakup: How the U.K. Will Separate from the European Union. Retrieved October 16, 2017, from http://graphics.wsj.com/brexit-breakup/

Sincerely, Artem.

I find the “Brexit” issue interesting because of how foolish it seems. I know very little about international politics, but to me, if you have spent years creating various policies between the EU and the UK, why would you decide to let it all go to waste?

According to Anand Menon, British people who voted in favor of Brexit did so because they were tired of various issues that the UK was facing, such as wages “fall[ing] by over ten percent from 2007 to 2015” (Menon 4). Therefore, some people saw Brexit as a solution to some social problems.

So, what is going to happen for Britain? Some people think that the result of the referendum will be overturned, but “it is hard to see how that could happen” (Menon 5). As of right now, the state of Brexit is in an “ambiguous position” (Menon 5).

As part of the consequences of Brexit, the British currency has devalued, and “[e]conomists estimate that a hard Brexit would lead to a 40 percent reduction in trade with the EU” (Menon 5). This would create a lot of issues for the UK, thus it is very hard to justify Brexit.

Menon, A. (2017). Why the British Chose Brexit. Foreign Affairs, 96(6), 122-126.

I chose your summary to comment because United Kingdom’s situation these days is really fragile. I absolutely like your title, Divided Kingdom instead of United Kingdom! Due to their long history and cultures differences, the population in the United Kingdom is indeed very divided.

For the specific case with Northern Ireland and Ireland, the separation will indeed create complication for borders since neither the UK nor Ireland are part of the Schengen Area, therefore European Union members are not affected. However, these two countries have their own border custom laws, being the “common travel area, which has facilitated travel and work arrangements between the two islands for almost a century.” Theresa May plans to keep these travel laws in order to “[preserve the] Irish-British trade” and relations.

In my opinion, this is a really difficult situation since the separation will not really solve problems, it will only further divide the nation. As a matter of fact, if the UK really exits the EU, this will partially isolate the British since they would not be able to travel the same way as they would do, as being part of the EU. Nevertheless, they won’t be required to have a VISA, but it might be less easier. At the end, I think that it is a bad idea for the British to drop-out from the EU for selfish reasons, such as lowering their economy. Being part of one of the richest and most powerful nations in the world, should not they help other countries rather than satisfying themselves? They are already enjoying many exemptions (opt-outs) from the EU such as the common currency, the borders control and common laws.

Boland, V. (2017). Locals fear Brexit means new barriers along the UK-Irish border. FT.Com, Retrieved from https://proquest-crc.proxy.ccsr.qc.ca/docview/1873118682?accountid=44391

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