The Strategist

13 former secretaries of state and US defense ministers urged Britain not to weaken Europe

05/10/2016 - 15:55

In an open letter published in The Times, 13 former secretaries of state and US defense ministers called on Britons to support preservation of the country's membership in the EU. According to them, ‘Brexit’ would reduce the "country's influence and weaken Europe."
"Keep in mind that even very close relationship between our two countries will not be able to compensate loss of power and loss of membership in the European Union, composed of 28 states, which territory is home to about 500 million people," - says the letter published in the British edition of The Times. Among the signatories are 13 former heads of the US foreign policy and defense departments, including former secretaries of state Madeleine Albright and George Schultz, as well as former CIA chief Leon Panetta.

Earlier, US President Barack Obama addressed the Britons with an appeal to think about preservation of the country's membership in the EU. "The US wants to see the United Kingdom as a strong partner. I do not think that the EU holds British influence in the world back, quite the opposite, it increases it. The single market brings exceptional benefit to the UK, this means that it is also good for the USA ", - he said in the end of April during his visit to London. In response, the euroskeptics accused the US president of interfering in the EU’s internal affairs.

Former Mayor of London Boris Johnson said that US President Barack Obama adhered completely hypocritical position, when he recommended inhabitants of the United Kingdom to vote against ‘Brexit’.

"Obama's position is inconsistent, illogical, and, yes, it is absolutely hypocritical, - said Johnson. -The Americans have never made anything like the EU - neither the state itself nor its neighbors in this hemisphere. So why do they think it is right for us? "

Johnson also called Obama's position "a manifestation of arrogance" to the official London, with which the current US leader’s ancestors could have had a bone to pick. "Some believe that this is a consequence of historical animosity of the president with Kenyan roots to the British Empire, which Churchill defended so zealously" - said the mayor.

In turn, the UK finance minister George Osborne said that "tens of thousands of jobs" in London would be destroyed in case of the country’s exit from the European Union.

According to Osborne’s information, based on a new analysis of the Treasury, the situation would affect primarily the financial sector, as 285 thousand jobs in this area are directly related to the business in Europe.

"It will be a disaster for business, investment, employment and income. Some people think that the destruction of our economy is a price worth paying, but I absolutely do not agree, "- said Minister of Finance.

According to various surveys, between 40% and 46% of the UK citizens are supporting ‘Brexit’. According to a recent survey, presented by the British Chamber of Commerce, the number of ‘Brexit’ supporters is rising in the business environment, too. Support among the Chamber’s members increased from 30% at the beginning of the year to 37%. 


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