It’s exactly a year before Brexit happens: Is EU in chaos or united?
It all started in June 23, 2016, when Britain's political leadership was gobbled up by the gene it had unleashed as the country voted in favour of an exit from the European Union (EU) by a wafer thin majority.
On March 29, 2018, the pro-Brexit campaigners of Britain will wait for the last 365 days of the country's official exit from the European Union (EU). The Brexit is officially going to take place at midnight on March 29, 2019, and it will be the biggest event in life of Europe in the post-Second World War integration days.
The general belief is that Brexit would leave the EU in a chaos and especially at a time when President Donald Trump's US has not shown much affection for his country's age-old Europe links, the departure of the UK, the internal problems in NATO and the growing assertion of powers like Russia would open more challenges for the EU.
But to the surprise of many, Brexit has proved to be a unifying force and the reason for that is its chaos witnessed so far, according to a piece in Guardian.
Take for example, Alexander Stubb, a former prime minister of Finland. According to Guardian, Stubb said he did not see the bloc so united and attributed it to the Brexit vote and the election of Trump across the Atlantic. He told Guardian that the European leadership has understood in the wake of these two incidents that they could not afford to bash EU as they have been doing.
Stubb, a EU veteran, said it was unlikely that the UK would split the unity in the EU. "What will keep a lot of the member states at bay from having bilateral type of arrangements is the fear the UK will be better off outside the European Union," the Guardian quoted him as saying.
The turmoil which has come with Brexit has made the European leadership apprehensive and there is a clear tendency to get closer to each other and not invite more such radical shake-ups.
Luuk van Middelaar, former adviser to former European Council president Herman Van Rompuy told Guardian that Brexit is a forgettable experience both for the EU and UK which violated the image of Europe as a club of all-European countries.
However, the Guardian article said that the challenges for EU still remain and that is visible from the fact that while 70 per cent Europeans favoured the EU in 1991 when the Soviet Union collapsed, the number came down to only 40 per cent in 2017, suggesting that the common people were less supportive of the EU than those in power.