July 2016 \ Cover Story \ COVER STORY: BRITAIN’S EXIT FROM E.U.

By Malay Mishra

I have served in Europe in three different stages of my diplomatic career, at the beginning as a diplomat trainee assigned to Paris to learn French, which I did rather well in the intellectual precincts of the Sorbonne, for the second time in my mid-career to Berlin, exactly a decade after the fall of the ideological wall which had coterised Europe into East and West, with Berlin standing a mute, yet splendid witness to the clinical debauchery recorded so minutely at Charlie Point and countless other nooks of the historical city, and finally as Ambassador to Budapest, ravaged by the times and discovering itself as a newly emerging market economy delivered from Fascism and Communism, in that order. All three postings gave me ample time to study the growth and maturity of the European Union built brick by brick nearly half a century ago to form a robust economic and political power bloc in the world today. Many interim visits had reinforced my close contacts with Europe and strengthened my vantage point observations of the strength of the EU derived from the individual core strengths of each member country. Here, for the first time in its history was a full-fledged state seeking to break away on its own, a state which has its own independent clout as one of the P-5 and G-8 besides being an important nuclear power, a leading member of NATO and OECD.

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