Britain scrambles as the debt crisis worsens in Europe. Britain is one of ten countries that does not use the Euro for monetary currency exchange, but the demise of the Euro would have insurmountable impacts on Britain and the Island Kingdom. Britain’s fortunes are not easily decoupled from mainland Europe. History has seen aggressors of rival powers being the insurmountable threat, but this modern-day threat is economic as the collapse of the Euro would bring a harsh backlash to Britain. A debt contagion crisis to cripple government finances, 40% of British trade is with the Eurozone region, Foreign offices being overran by British citizens with no money and involved in civil disturbances, and a domestic banking system exposure in lieu of a European collapse.
The unthinkable has become the thinkable in a potential total collapse of the Euro with global ramifications unimaginable as bank failures and civil unrest will be unprecedented in the history of humanity. Britain has stepped to the forefront of planning a contingency plan to avoid such a cataclysmic collapse. The most practical solution being offered by the continental powers are forging a closer union by forfeiting national sovereignty with Germany being the central hub of power calling the shots for the rest of Europe. The thought of Germany being the dominant power does not bode well for fellow Euro members especially Great Britain.
Many in Britain’s government believe that any negotiation of the Euro treaty should come with an exchange of sovereign rights back to the member states to ensure that a forfeit of national sovereignty will not occur in lieu of the current crisis in the Eurozone. In addition, the ability of every member state being in consensus to facilitate a workable plan is a long-term process for passage by the entire 27 member state group. The Eurozone crisis is approaching a breaking point with France AAA credit rating on the line for a possible downgrade, and the recent credit downgrade of Belgium’s rating from AA+ to AA is bringing the debt contagion to the core foundation of the European Union. The debt crisis requires a shorter term practical solution, and Germany’s inflexible stance on permitting intervention by the European Central Bank has catapulted Whitehall into action to offer alternatives to avoid a European meltdown.
An example of Britain’s contingency planning, Italy requires financing of the country’s debt for the 18 months to offer the new government ample time to implement austerity measures to manage their current debt obligations. The current marketplace will make refinancing the maturing debt either too expensive or not possible to refinance leading to an Italian default. Britain is working with the International Monetary Fund to offer 600 billion euro dollars in assistance to Italy to allow the new government the 18 months needed to allow for austerity cuts and fiscal policies to work. Italy is not the sole country at a crisis point, but being the third largest country in the Euro and eighth largest in the world places an importance on resolving Italy’s solvency. The consequence of a default by Italy would cause the nightmare scenario that Britain is fighting to avoid.
As the leaders of France and Germany work on a Eurozone solution, Britain stands alone in being the last obstacle to a total collapse of Europe. Britain has stood alone before during war to be the last obstacle for Europe, but this is not a conventional war. This is a war of economics, and the enemy is debt contagion spreading through the member states of the European Union. Eurozone failure will leave Britain as the last obstacle to avoid a total collapse. Britain knows the consequence of failure as the level of default and civil unrest will be unlike any precedent in the history of humanity.
As World War 2 was a test to a weakened Great Britain, Britain did stand alone in 1940 against insurmountable odds to deny Germany total victory over Europe. The price of losing to Germany would have ushered an even more horrific and prolonged period of human suffering as Britain’s 1940 victory did play a future role in the defeat of Germany in 1945. The destiny of tomorrow may ask the same valor and courage from Britain of a different kind. However, the consequences of failure will result in a different catastrophe as the economic collapse from default will usher a suffering and despair unlike any similar experience in the history of humanity. Will this be Britain’s finest hour in avoiding economic calamity? Only time will tell.
- Britain Isolated From Europe (markamerica.com)
- All Britain is isolated from is a looming eurozone disaster (telegraph.co.uk)
- Euro crisis simmers with banks under stress (seattletimes.nwsource.com)
- EU treaty: Don’t blame Britain’s veto for the eurozone’s crisis (telegraph.co.uk)
- Euro crisis simmers with banks under stress (sfgate.com)
- Friendless Britain? Difficult times lie ahead (emileczka.wordpress.com)
- Europe’s hopeless last stand in defence of the single currency | Simon Jenkins (guardian.co.uk)
- Europe’s prevailing uncertainty, and new realities (thehill.com)