Should we Fight to Defend Gibraltar?

The EU negotiating team has declared that, unless we agree to cede Gibraltar, against the wishes of about 99.99% of her people, to Spain, we should be permitted no trade deal with Europe when we leave.

There is an obvious point to be made: if the EU is determined that the people of Gibraltar should not be allowed to decide their own future, we are plainly quite right to leave. It is extraordinary that an organisation that thinks itself “right-on” and frightfully keen on “human rights” should have decided, because it wants to do down the UK, that Gibraltar should be given, despite her people’s extreme opposition, to Spain.

I should make it plain that I don’t love Gibraltar. I went there one day, about twenty-five years ago (so it may well have changed). I thought it a rather disagreeable place. It seemed to be committed to a sort of 1950s sergeants’ mess culture. There was lots of warm beer, fish and chips with far too much batter and horribly overcooked roast beef (the climate is not the best for that kind of cuisine).

But the love of bad food and gassy beer is no reason for Gibraltar’s people’s wish to remain British to be overridden by the EU. Brussels may think self-determination is a bad thing, that the people of Gibraltar should bow down to Spain in order to humiliate the United Kingdom. But some of us think the wishes of the people of Gibraltar are more important than the EU’s desire to annoy the UK.

It won’t, of course, come to a war (if only because we would be bound to win it). But, if the EU really is determined that a free trade agreement with the UK is conditional on the UK surrendering the right of the people of Gibraltar to self-determination, I trust we will be brave enough to opt for no deal.

Charles

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13 thoughts on “Should we Fight to Defend Gibraltar?

  1. I absolutely agree, Charles, Gibraltar’s right to choose is non-negotiable. It was absurd that it was ever mentioned.

    The idea of Spain starting a war over this issue is absurd, but we should make it quite clear to Brussels that it is a matter of principle to support Gibraltar without reservation.

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  2. It’s not that simple. The EU is bound by treaty to support its members in disputes, territorial or financial. Spain is, of course, 120pc wrong — that hellish place almost invariably is — but with the UK’s imminent withdrawal from the EU, Spain’s position is the one that the EU is bound to support — at least officially. If Spain truly were to try to kick up a fuss and make life difficult, pressure could be put on Madrid.

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  3. So the EU is held to ransom? Just a point though – where would you land? Airstrip is right next to the border with La Linea. Navy? You no longer have one. Army? Where would you put them, with the Barbary apes? War in 2017 is not the same as 1717. Wise up, clam up, do a deal.

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    • I obviously failed to make my point clearly enough. I don’t think, for one moment, there will be a war. If the EU insists that we have to give up the rights of the people of Gibraltar to self-determination or have no free trade deal, we will just opt for no free trade deal.

      Charles

      Liked by 1 person

    • I think it unlikely that Spain will invade Gibraltar. It may be, I accept, that the EU would support Spain, but NATO and the UN would be bound to support the people of Gibraltar.

      Charles

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