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On Target Britain
to the People of Britain
the far island-valley of Avilion let him return
the dark power, the Sauron-shadow of the age,
in the summergreen, the dappled halls of oak
men of evil soul pass in the wood and plan
Once more unto the breach,
dear Britons, throng
on the field, among the heaving waves
Bunyan's Mr Greatheart stood his ground
as he stepped ahead to gain
a Mole, mild-mannered, humble, meek,
told that pompous pack of cards
This is an Alfred time.
He kept his
is our Alfred now
and Blake knew well
retained their tongue
voice of ancient stones
THE BRITISH AT BAY
Nigel Jackson looks at some of the implications of the European Union's Treaty of Lisbon, responses to it of various European governments and the reporting of these matters in the Australian press.
In the March 2008 issue of its monthly journal The New Times Survey the Australian League of Rights published an article 'Freedom's Own Isle to Hand Sovereignty to E.U.?' by Hilary White, dated 6th March. The gist of this piece was that a day earlier 'one thousand years of British history' may have been 'extinguished without a shot being fired,' as Melanie Phillips, author of Londonistan, put it in the British Daily Mail.
White reported that British MPs had voted in the House of Commons 311 to 248 'to deny the public a referendum on the Treaty of Lisbon, the European Union's substitute for the Constitution that failed in 2005 after being defeated by Dutch and French plebiscites.' This amounted to a vote to deny the British people the right to decide whether British sovereignty should be ended and Britain made a region or a province of a new superstate of Europe.
White exposed the deceit of the Parliamentary vote by, firstly, noting that in the 2005 British national election 'all three major parties promised a referendum on any attempt to revive the defeated Euro-Constitution' and, secondly, by recalling that 'when the Treaty surfaced as a political issue last year, Prime Minister Gordon Brown refused to allow a plebiscite, claiming that the Treaty is "substantially different" from the defeated EU Constitution.' That claim has been shown by many commentators to be the opposite of the truth. (For example, Emma Clancy wrote in the International News section of Green Left Weekly, issue No. 739, on 13th February 2008, that the Treaty contains 96% of the articles of the defeated EU Constitution.) Further evidence of the duplicity of the British Government is the result of ten local mini-polls held in February in Labour and Liberal Democrat constituencies that returned an 88% support for a referendum. This shows that the Government is acting in flagrant disregard of the popular will.
It seems that Melanie Phillips has argued 'that the only possible recourse now' (to preserve the political sovereignty of Britain) 'is to remove Britain entirely from the European Union .. There is not one good reason why it is in Britain's interests to continue to stay in. We should come out in order to save British democracy.' Hilary White's article deserves further amplification, such as now follows.
The Position in Ireland
Evidence of dishonesty in high places is provided at the beginning of the document in the form of three quotations: (1) 'France was just ahead of all the other countries in voting No. It would happen in all Member States if they have a referendum. There is a cleavage between people and governments There will be no Treaty if we had a referendum in France, which would again be followed by a referendum in the UK.' (French President Nicolas Sarkozy, at a meeting of MEP Group leaders, EUobserver, 14 November 2007); (2) 'Public opinion will be led to adopt, without knowing it, the proposals that we dare not present to them directly All the earlier proposals will be in the new text, but will be hidden and disguised in some way.' (Former French President V. Giscard D'Estaing, Le Monde, 14 June 2007); (3) 'The substance of the Constitution is preserved. That is a fact.' (German Chancellor Angela Merkel, speech to the European Parliament, 27 June 2007).
Some vital aspects of the proposed European superstate are analysed in the document. The Treaty 'would then make us all real citizens of this new Federal EU for the first time, owing to it the normal citizen's duty of obedience to its laws and loyalty to its authority .. It would make most of our laws and would decide what our basic rights are in all areas of EU law.' The new superstate would have the power to decide the human and civil rights of the Irish. 'The new Treaty gives the EU the final power to decide what our rights are in all areas of EU law, including Member States when implementing EU law. It would do this by making the rights set out in the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights legally binding for the first time (Article 6, TEU). This would make the 27 judges of the EU Court of Justice in Luxembourg the final decider of our rights in many areas, instead of the Irish Supreme Court or the Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg, which decides these rights at present. If Lisbon gives the EU Court of Justice the power to decide what our rights are in the large area of EU law, it is likely that the Commission will in time propose laws to ensure their uniform application across all EU States .. This raises the real possibility of clashes over rights standards in sensitive areas where there are significant national differences between the Member States at present: for example, the right to life, the right to marry and found a family, the right to strike, rules of evidence in court, the rights of children and the elderly, trial by jury, censorship law, the legalization of hard drugs and prostitution, rights attaching to State churches, conscientious objection to military service, succession, property, family law, labour law.'
It further appears that pro-Treaty publicity is often misleading. The document points out that, while the Treaty 'provides for a right of petition to the Commission by one million European citizens asking it to propose a new EU law', which sounds good, 'there is no obligation on the Commission to do anything apart from "considering" such a request. It can ignore it or reject it.' (This document was posted by the Irish journal Wise Up.)
A Green Perspective
In the above-quoted article in Green Left Weekly Emma Clancy spells out further serious implications of the Treaty. For example, 'the EU's police force, whose officers are immune from prosecution, would be expanded.' Clancy also notes that inherent in the Treaty is 'the active promotion of neo-liberal economic policies that aim to deregulate and privatise Europe's public services, while seriously eroding workers' rights and the power of trade unions.' She explains that 'the big business lobby that played a key role in drafting the EU Constitution and Lisbon Treaty has the transport and postal services of Europe in its sights.'
Clancy also points out that the Treaty 'pushes the militarisation of the EU in the framework of the NATO alliance, and promotes the arms industry and the expansion of nuclear power. The Treaty would remove member states' ability to remain neutral in international conflict. Member states could choose whether or not to deploy troops to EU operations, but would be compelled to "actively and unreservedly" support EU foreign policy and security policy.'
She also stresses the vital role of Ireland. 'People across Europe are outraged that they do not have a say in the transformation of the EU. The stakes are high in the upcoming referendum in Ireland. The Irish Government and corporate media are campaigning for a "Yes" vote. Sinn Fein is the only significant political party actively campaigning against the Treaty. The Irish Labour Party is calling for a vote in favour and the Green Party is split on the question .. Sinn Fein has invited all Green activists opposed to the Treaty to join it in the "No" campaign. The Socialist Party and Socialist Workers Party are also campaigning against the Treaty.' Clancy expects the referendum to be held in May or June and states that opinion polls have repeatedly shown that a majority of people are still undecided as to how they will vote.
Some French Thoughts on the Treaty
In the French newspaper L'Humanité Sebastien Crepel wrote an article which was translated by Gene Zbikowski on 9th February 2008 under the headline 'Stealthy ratification of the Treaty of Lisbon'. Crepel provides insight into the dramatic circumstances under which the French Government organised a National Assembly debate at night so as to achieve endorsement of the Treaty without the people having been consulted in a referendum. 'Would a "legitimate" (according to himself) head of state convoke his parliamentary majority in the dead of night to ratify a treaty in haste, without consulting the people?' Crepel asked. 'And yet, that is what happened last night, with the deputies debating the treaty barely 48 hours after having amended the French Constitution in a Chateaû de Versailles wreathed with riot police.'
Crepel explained that the French Government is hoping to fool its people with a bribe. 'The Government will then be able to display its concern with making the French presidency of the EU in the second half of this year "a civic event" to "get the French people interested again, to get them to participate" (in the EU), a straight-faced Bernard Kouchner (the Minister for Foreign Affairs) said at a Government seminar dedicated to the French presidency of the EU.'
Crepel then reported on debate over whether or not the French people are going to take this coup d'étât lying down or not. One Didier Migaud said: 'Now that the page has been turned, let us work for a Europe that is more social.' On the other hand, Henri Emmanuelli, a partisan of a "No" vote, commented that 'the page cannot be turned so easily', because 'this forced passage (of the treaty) has left its trace. If they think that Europe can go on like this for long, without its citizens, they're wrong.' Crepel added that the Communist and Republican deputies would vote against the treaty, while deploring 'a black day in our history, for Europe, and for France.' In their name, Jean-Claude Sandrier was to denounce 'a grave choice in the building of the EU', because 'an EU built without the peoples, and even against the peoples, has no future.'
A Warning from Germany
Another important criticism of the Lisbon Treaty was made by Helga Zepp-LaRouche (wife of Lyndon LaRouche) in the February 22nd 2008 issue of Executive Intelligence Review under the title 'Constitution for Dictatorship in a Global Fascist System?' Zepp-LaRouche, speaking at a conference in Munich on February 13th, pointed out that the Dutch and French peoples rejected the 2005 EU Constitution 'because they already clearly understood the effects of the adoption of the euro on living standards, unemployment, and the rate of price increases.' She went on to provide yet more evidence of high-level fraud in the campaign to have the Treaty endorsed: 'This text has up to now not been printed in German - what an absurdity! - and it is completely unreadable and completely unclear. It exists, as stated, up to now only in the form of the old Constitution, which has been rejected, as well as in the Amending Law, which reads, for example: "In Article 15, section 5, subdivision 7", the following word is replaced by this and that. Then further, "in paragraph 35, section 5, subdivision" such and such, this and that is replaced by that and the other. That means: for the 400 regulations enunciated here, a journalist, citizen, or parliamentarian would practically have to sit down and place the European Constitutional Treaty and these formulations side by side, and then map them against each other, in order to understand this. And it is entirely, of course, in legal terminology, which most people do not understand. This is, in my view, the actual intention of the authors, who want this treaty forced through without debate and without commotion.'
Zepp-LaRouche summed up the situation as follows: 'This is thus, in reality, a constitution for dictatorship, which no longer maintains the pretence of a democratic process, and where a bureaucracy, which does not have to be held accountable democratically, makes the decisions.' She quoted expert opinion unfavourable to the Treaty, including that of Professor Hans Klecatsky, one of the fathers of the Austrian Constitution and former justice minister of Austria, and former German federal president Roman Herzog. She added that the EU 'would be turned completely into an imperial entity.' She quoted Robert Cooper, former colleague of EU Foreign Policy Representative Javier Solana, as saying that 'the EU would be the greatest imperial extension in history and should take action against rogue states.' Zepp-LaRouche concluded: 'I can thus only underscore that a real mobilization should occur in the population against this attempted change.' She supported this very serious advice by quoting paragraph 4 of Article 20 of the current Basic Law of Germany, which states 'that if someone should attempt to change this character of Germany, then the population has the right of resistance.'
It is worth noting, first of all, that the mini-polls in selected marginal constituencies in Britain referred to above (which showed that 88% of those voting wanted a UK referendum) were carried out for the 'I want a referendum' campaign by Electoral Reform Services, 'a leading firm of independent election scrutineers recognized by the United Nations, the British Government and used by all the three main parties for their internal elections.' (EUnow.eu) Saxon Books have published on their own website lists of arguments for and against a referendum on the Treaty. Those against are revealing of the attempted smokescreens erected by powerful interests to frustrate expression of the popular will. Here they are: -
(1) Ordinary citizens have not read the Treaty so how can they judge it? (2) Ordinary citizens can't understand it, so how can they judge it? (3) Sovereignty (the right to decide what should be done in a country) rests with Parliament, so it's no business of ordinary people. (4) Treaties are always decided by governments, not the people. (5) Referendums are a waste of time and money, because the important thing is to get the agreement settled so that the EU can get on with governing and deciding what to do about such things as energy and climate change. (6) There is an urgent need for this treaty. Already six years have been wasted. No time should be wasted holding a referendum.
If Saxon Books have reported this side of the debate in the UK fairly, then the case against a referendum seems flimsy indeed. Here are the twelve points adduced in favour of a referendum: -
(1) A full, coherent, intelligible, stand alone text that can be read by MPs and ordinary citizens has not been published, so it is doubtful if any MP has read it (the Treaty). It is doubtful if any have taken the necessary months of study to properly evaluate it and so be in a position to judge its suitability for the UK. (2) MPs will be told how to vote by the party bosses. There will not be a free vote. (3) If there were a free vote, they would still be advised how to vote and not vote out of knowledge and conviction in most cases. (4) It is true that ordinary citizens have not read or understood the Treaty. They would rationally vote against it on the basis that you should not agree to something you haven't read or cannot understand. (5) The general opinion of the public is known. It would be wrong for MPs to agree to something so important against the will of the people. (6) Sovereignty (the right to decide what should be done in a country) rests with the people. They alone should give any of this power away to a superior state. This treaty cannot be compared to other treaties. (7) The people should be given the chance to reject a forfeiture of sovereignty that is unnecessary. The EU has functioned normally without it for 50 years, so there can be no pressing need for it. (8) There are real reforms needed in the EU - like ending corruption, making the EU open and understandable, making it democratic so that people can vote for alternative policies at the EU level. This Treaty does not deal with real needs. People do understand this and should have the opportunity to reject an inappropriate treaty. (9) European countries should indeed be meeting to discuss such important matters as energy and climate change. They should and will do this regardless of this Treaty or referendums. To bring in the matter of topics like these is irrelevant to the referendum debate. (10) The Treaty was written without public involvement or knowledge. People should have an opportunity to reject this approach to the making of major agreements that concern the sovereignty of a country. (11) The fact that the Treaty is incomplete (i.e., it needs to be integrated into two other treaties before there is a coherent text) is a reason for both people and MPs to reject it. As we cannot rely on MPs to have a free vote or exercise informed judgement in this matter a referendum is essential to allow the people to decide. (12) In the UK the present Government promised to hold a referendum on the European Constitution. Whilst there have been some changes to the Constitution by re-organising the contents into the Treaty, the substance of the Constitution remains intact. Therefore, the promise should be kept and the UK should have a referendum.
It seems that the case for a UK referendum is intellectually overwhelming.
What does this mean for Australia?
Australia is essentially a nation brought into being by British people. Its language and political institutions are British. Britain is the foundational culture resource for our community, no matter that, largely as a result of changed immigration policies since the Menzies era, many Australian citizens do not have blood ties with Britain. The relatively free way of life all Australians enjoy is a heritage of the Constitution we adopted in 1901 and which is itself a product of our British tradition of constitutional monarchy within the Christian sacred tradition.
This means that all Australians should be deeply concerned to learn that what is still, in very profound senses of the term, our mother country is in danger of dissolution by means of assimilation into a superstate under circumstances which strongly suggest that a coalition of elites and powerful minority interests is operating a programme in flagrant disregard of the welfare of the majority of the people of Britain and of the other peoples of Europe. We are surely called upon to give whatever support we can to the British people, meaning in this context all the people of the British Isles including the independent Irish, who appear to have been given a historic opportunity to strike a great blow for truth, freedom and the continuity of Europe's many cultures and languages by rejecting this Treaty.
There is a vast literature that has accumulated over the last two centuries suggesting that men of power have been working clandestinely to bring about a World Government, sometimes called the New World Order, which would in fact inevitably become a world tyranny. There is good reason to fear that the Treaty of Lisbon is an important step in that programme.
It is extraordinary that so little coverage of this great struggle in Europe has been given by the major Australian media during the past few months. This appears to be a further evidence that our political order is seriously deformed by having a corrupted press which is working surreptitiously in the interests of the World Government programme. There is plenty of evidence from other contexts that such is the case.
Australians also need to recall that former Prime Minister Bob Hawke 'spilled the beans' a few years ago by stating that in the 1960's there had been a secret agreement by the two major political parties (the ALP and the Liberal-National coalition) to end the 'White Australia' policy and enable large-scale immigration from non-European nations without referring the issue to the Australian people through a referendum. The secret agreement was required because both parties knew that such a referendum would maintain the old policy.
Perhaps we have to adapt a famous quotation from Shakespeare's Hamlet and acknowledge that something is rotten in the state of the world. Two questions come to mind. How is it that affairs have reached this dreadful state? How can an effective movement of reform be initiated and implemented?
Perhaps the burgeoning prosperity of the Western world that followed from the scientific, industrial and IT revolutions has made our peoples soft. The promotion of various forms of public entertainment, especially involving sport, sex, food and travel, together with the cult of vacuous celebrities, may have assisted this softening. In this case a call to harden up is required, with appropriate supporting arguments from history. Secondly, it may be that the developing complexity of the modern world, with its global interlinking of trade and transport, has made it more difficult for individual persons and well-motivated groups to understand the overall situation, let alone respond to it. In that case, it seems that a valid response may be the creation of an elite cadre or order to supervise defensive action on behalf of the individual nations and their peoples. This is where the shibboleth of 'democracy' may need to be exposed. It is plain that the men of power have endeavoured to hide their machinations beneath a veil of 'democratic' propaganda. We may be wise to consider again opting for a more traditional structure of society based on caste, class, hierarchy and aristocracy.
On what spiritual and intellectual foundation could such a cadre or order be brought into existence? This, I believe, is where the fundamental cause of the current 'decline of the West' needs to be identified and opposed. Our sacred tradition of Christianity, whether Orthodox, Catholic or Protestant, has been shown by much research in many fields over the past two centuries to be deeply flawed. A profound Reformation is required, greater than that of the 15th Century, as indicated especially by the writings of the Perennialist school initiated by Rene Guenon and Ananda Coomaraswamy. Christianity in the West is in astonishing disarray at the present time; nor will the problem be solved by some sort of Gadarene rushing together of old-fashioned Roman Catholics or fervid Protestant evangelicals of various kinds. The needed Reformation will be painful for many Christians; but it is indispensable, I believe, if we are to save the present situation and develop the necessary schools of resistance to provide leadership.
Melbourne, Australia, 24th March 2008
|© Published by the Australian League of Rights, P.O. Box 27 Happy Valley, SA 5159|