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Happy ending

The opening of accession talks with Turkey and the new EU budget settlement add up to a resoundingly successful British EU presidency

By Robert Jackson   January 2006

The response of most of the media to Tony Blair’s EU budget deal has been strikingly hostile. The headlines of the week before the EU summit predicted failure – “Blair isolated!”; “British presidency a failure!”. In the week after, they condemned success -“Blair’s climbdown”; “Blair’s Waterloo!”

The premise behind this negative commentary – and also of the criticisms offered by the Conservatives – is the old Europhobic notion that Europe is a faraway country of which we know nothing. This depressing parochialism displays no sense of the significance for us of the new conjuncture in Europe – the accession…

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