A year after Brexit, what did Britain gain from leaving the European Union?
London – The first anniversary of the United Kingdom’s official exit from the European Union, at the end of this December, is taking place in a tense atmosphere between the two parties, especially between Paris and London, and difficult negotiations over the future of the Irish island, with both its republican and part of the British Crown.
Despite the passage of a year, the British are still searching for the fruits of the slogans raised by the Brexiteers years ago, perhaps the most famous of which is “Global Britain”, which was set up by the government of Boris Johnson, as an indication of the desire to return strongly to the international arena and influence the global decision.
In these following points, we try to compare the situation of Britain’s foreign relations before and after Brexit, have they really improved or vice versa?
There are many criticisms directed at the Brexiteers, because what drives them is nostalgia for the imperial past of the United Kingdom. They still raise the slogan “Britain rules the waves”, meaning that their country is the master of the seas in the past and must return to its previous status.
Perhaps this slogan justifies that the defense budget – which was approved by the government in the amount of $ 18 billion – will go to the naval forces in order to return forcefully to the seas, in conjunction with moving the naval military units towards the Black Sea, in an operation that is the first of its kind since the tripartite aggression against Egypt. More than half a century ago.
“The job of any British prime minister is to maintain excellent relations with the United States,” British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said during his first meeting with US President Joe Biden at the White House.
However, Brexit did not bring the two strategic allies closer, as much as it turned into a stumbling block between them, and this is due to 3 factors:
The first: Joe Biden’s keenness on good relations with the European Union, and giving priority to the European bloc.
The second: Joe Biden’s tough stance on any harm that might affect the “Good Friday Agreement” that established peace on the Irish island under American auspices.
The third factor is related to the unjustified delay in signing the free trade agreement between the two countries, which will be the largest in history. The agreement was about to be signed under the era of former US President Donald Trump, before Biden came and put it on the waiting shelf.
Battles with France
Brexit contributed to worsening relations with the European Union in general, and this is not evidenced by what happened between the two parties in what was known as the Vaccine War, and the Union’s attempt to prevent vaccines from reaching Britain.
But the clearest picture remains of the deterioration of relations between the Union and the Kingdom through endless crises with France, which are almost turning into a war, due to disputes over marine fishing, migrants and the struggle to attract foreign investment and withdraw the Australian submarine deal from France in favor of Britain and America.
The crisis between the two parties reached Paris’ refusal to receive British Home Secretary Priti Patel to discuss the migrant crisis.
In the strategic document announced by the British government after the withdrawal from the European Union, in which it provides details of its new foreign policy, London considers Moscow one of the greatest dangers that the Kingdom has to face.
The statements of the military and security leaders in Britain reflect the high state of alertness towards Russia, despite the exclusion of direct military confrontation; The security estimates that a war in the unconventional sense is imminent between the two parties.
Anxiety from China
Britain extends its hand to Chinese investments, but with caution, and with the other hand is waving the human rights card, especially in the file of Uyghur Muslims.
Britain has sent many messages that it is opening its doors to Chinese investments, but away from strategic sectors, for fear of provoking American anger.
On the other hand, Britain is considered one of the most critical Western countries of the conditions of the Uyghur Muslims, as well as an arena for many legal moves to redress this minority.
The Turkish-British relations benefited from the post-Brexit phase, first by signing the free trade agreement, and also by strengthening bilateral relations, which is evident in the meetings and correspondences between Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and British Prime Minister Boris Johnson.
At a time when European-Turkish relations are still in a state of cold, relations with Britain are at their best, as London is absent from any European statement criticizing Turkey.
Britain attaches utmost importance to the countries of the Gulf Cooperation Council, which is why it was the first visit by former Prime Minister Theresa May abroad after Brexit to the Gulf countries, in the interest of Gulf investments in her country, which is her first destination in Europe.
Britain is currently working on signing strategic cooperation agreements with the GCC countries, which are expected to be announced soon.
Britain is racing against time, while watching the French competition to attract investments to Paris, after the visit of French President Emmanuel Macron to the Gulf countries, and he returned from them with important deals.
No more help
International aid provided by rich countries is considered one of the global influence papers that countries seek to strengthen, but what Britain did after Brexit is the exact opposite, by reducing humanitarian aid to more than 4 billion dollars, and abolishing the Department for International Development and attaching it to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
The Arab countries, which know many human tragedies, were the most affected by this decision, especially Syria and Yemen, and the refugee camps in Lebanon.