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Welcome to the Dutch presidency, the guys who gave us soft drugs, hard guilders and the Maastricht treaty. The next six months will show what else they are peddling to the rest of Europe.

Sir John Kerr, much missed as HMG’s man in Brussels, liked to define a Dutchman as someone who sees a wall and accelerates. He was thinking about the last time the Dutch were in the EU driving seat, a traumatic experience for us all.

In 1991, the Eurofederasts in The Hague tried to steer the Brits and the French into supporting a blueprint for political union…

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