You can see why Theresa May said in Florence that the British wished the European Union well in its plans for greater integration, while choosing a different path ourselves. There is no point in causing antagonism over what we cannot prevent. But in fact greater European integration will do great harm to all Europeans, including us. The rise of AfD in the German elections was caused almost entirely by Mrs Merkel’s extraordinary decision to admit a million Middle Eastern migrants in a year. The spread of the Schengen area — proposed by Jean-Claude Juncker — combined with recrudescent migrant pressure can only confirm freedom of movement as the impossible issue of our time. The attempt to support the euro with banking union and pan-eurozone economic government will continue to penalise the poorer members, while ultimately enraging German voters who have to take on everyone else’s debts. Yes, we have an interest in EU stability. But no, it will not be achieved by the Merkel/Macron/Juncker visions.
This is an extract from Charles Moore’s Notes, which appears in this week’s Spectator