Tony Blair promised to place Britain at the heart of Europe, and failed. Gordon Brown resisted the adoption of the Euro currency and he has been a grumpy European all along, although he misleadingly calls it staying in the mainstream of Europe. David Cameron wants to put European integration in reverse.
With only pockets of resistance among elites, the media and the public, the United Kingdom is on a trajectory towards the fringes of European politics, possibly outside.
Consternation mingled with sadness is the main feeling of Europeans, who watch Britain losing friends and influence. A constructive UK would be a major asset for the European Union, but it does not seem to be on the cards.
In the end, democratic societies end up with the leaders and the outcomes they deserve. What we don’t know is if this is the beginning of the end, or the end of the beginning, for the United Kingdom in the European Union.
British and expat voters in Britain can support a better future by casting their votes for the Liberal Democrats, the Green Party or the Labour Party in the European elections 4 June 2009.