The UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson has started to unravel his Brexit strategy with different leaders from European Union countries. In trying to highlight the importance of staying true to the referendum results, Boris Johnson boasted a certain style of Brexit negotiation whereby he wants Brexit deal or no deal.
During his visit to Paris to meet with French President Emmanuel Macron, Boris Johnson started his speech in English with a Merci Monsieur le Président, demonstrating a controlled seriousness so as not to fall into his infamous and sometimes inappropriate jokes. It wouldn’t have surprised anybody if he had paraphrased or even hummed some of La Marseillaise.
Although very inclined to cite quotes, he almost ran out of time to say the well-known phrase where there’s a will there’s a way. Even though there may be a will for Brexit, Boris fails to see that the way has two divisions: the backstop between Northern Ireland and the rest of the United Kingdom, or a border between the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland. The solution isn’t to find a way but in fact which direction to choose when neither are welcome. A third division will have to be created where there is no way.
Boris Johnson smiled and nodded during Emmanuel Macron’s speech in French, it can be assumed that Boris understood and that it wasn’t simply nervousness; he probably still maintains his French from his years as a columnist for a newspaper in Brussels. This may have also given him an advantage in the know-how of the Francophones. But we shall see if this gives him an advantage in the Brexit negotiations, and his famous ‘we’ll have Brexit deal or no deal’, or if ultimately it will be one of his well-known brags. Also, if instead of Brexit, the UK will end up having to call a general election to find another prime minister and continue finding a solution to Brexit.
While quoting, Boris Johnson may have demonstrated a more savoir-faire style if he had paraphrased the words of the great poet Antonio Machado, buried in the French town of Collioure: ‘Wanderer there is no road, the road is made by walking’…