Britain Finding a Balance Between Nationalism and Globalism

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Theresa May, Prime Minister of Great Britain, gave a speech yesterday at the congressional institute in Philadelphia, before meeting US president Donald Trump the next day. The speech detailed a myriad of British views on policies, both domestic and foreign. It also shed light on the current position of Britain, and of May’s plans for it.

Will Great Britain successfully break free from the European Union, to reaffirm itself as a proud and sovereign nation state on the world stage in the future?

May starts by referring to the special relationship that Great Britain and the United States have had over the last centuries. She says that this special relationship has “defined the modern world,” through US assistance to the UK and her allies in the First and Second World War.
They also stood together in the Cold War against Communism, and this is where Theresa May drops a remarkable line: that Communism was not only “defeated through military might, but also by winning the war of ideas.”

The war of ideas between Western freedom/capitalism and Soviet-style communism and Marxism has never stopped, and certainly hasn’t been won by the West. If you take one look at any university in the US, and to a lesser extent in Europe, you will see leftist/Marxist ideology everywhere. Finding a conservative or a nationalist in any educational position is rare these days. The next generations will then be influenced by these people towards a more leftist/Marxist worldview themselves.

Since the collapse of the Soviet Union, there has never since been a real Communist state in the West, so the ‘idea’ of Communism and Marxism has been defeated. This argumentation, of course, is a bit short-sighted when you take a look at said Marxist infiltration of Western institutions.
Ex-KGB agent Yuri Bezmenov explained how this subversion in the war of ideas is done in an interview.

May then touched on how NATO might be headed towards some tough times, because of the election of Trump. A rule that has been laid out for all NATO members is to spend at least 2% of GDP on Defense. Of the 28 states that are in NATO, only five countries manage to get that level of spending, the US and UK among them.
President Trump used this lack of compliance by more than 20 states as a talking point during his campaign. He attacked countries for not paying up and pointing to the US as a country that does comply with set international rules.
Since NATO is mostly used as a visible tool by Europe to protect itself from perceived threats by Russia, Trump wonders why it’s the European countries aren’t paying up. Most of these countries are affluent enough to afford spending a mere 2% on defense.

May addresses combatting Islamic extremism at home and abroad, in which she sees the new president Trump as a potent ally. Also she advises caution against dealings with Vladimir Putin and Russia, which she summarizes with the mantra “Engage but Beware.”

Though she classifies the nuclear deal between the US and Iran as “controversial,” May praises it nonetheless as a successful measure to prevent Iran from quickly amassing a big nuclear arsenal for the next decade. This is at odds with Trump’s vision, who has had big criticism on this deal, and sees it as an example of previous US administrations making bad deals.

She then addressed her wish to work with the US on a new US-UK trade deal, which would be a boom to the UK in the uncertain times coming due to Brexit. Trump has shown to be very interested in this deal himself, unlike ex-president Obama, who threatened to send Britain to the “back of the queue” in the case of Brexit. Since the US is one of the primary trade partners of Britain, this deal is very important to May, and she accentuates that very clearly in her speech.

The total image that May presents in this speech is a bit of a contradiction. On the one hand, she’s the leader of a country that has made a commitment to a future of nationalism through Brexit.
May describes it thus : “A future that sees us take back control of the things that matter to us – things like our national borders and immigration policy, and the way we decide and interpret our own laws – so that we are able to shape a better, more prosperous future for the working men and women of Britain.”

Yet, she also credits globalist organizations like the UN, NATO and EU, and wants them to succeed. She sees these organizations as essential, so long as they respect that the nation-state will remain the foundation of Britain. She sees Britain’s path as a combination of isolation and globalism, nationalism and internationalism. There are no Western examples of a country trying to walk this path, and there are a lot of obstacles still in the way towards a successful Brexit and a sovereign Britain.

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