TODAY we remember all those who came from sky and sea and landed on the shores of France on D Day. A new memorial has been built above Gold Beach. I was lucky enough to know quite a number of them in the paratroops and later as valued friends including two of my bosses in HM Diplomatic Service. Now that tells you how our own society has changed.
So how is liberated Europe doing this morning?
More customs checks are carried out on the EU’s Irish Sea border at Belfast and Larne than at Europe’s largest port, Rotterdam. Let’s get in this proportion by comparing the two ports.
THE PORT OF BELFAST
In 2014 476,000 freight vehicles used the Port, a 2.2 per cent increase over 2013. By 2019, Belfast-Loch Ryan route, Belfast-Birkenhead and Belfast-Heysham service together carried 542,000 freight vehicles; a record number for nine consecutive years.
In 2009, 125,000 containers and 6million tons of bulk cargo were handled. By 2019, bulk cargo throughput had increased to 9.9million tons and the number of containers handled at Victoria Terminal 3 increased to more than 130,000 units, carrying over 2.1million tons of goods. The total trade tonnage in 2019 exceeded 24million tons for the second successive year.
THE PORT OF ROTTERDAM
Area 11,900 acres.
Ship arrivals per year 30,000 plus another 130,000 barges.
Containers handled per year 14,000,000.
Annual cargo tonnage 470millions.
These figures are 2018.
The EU are insisting on more checks between a million and a half people in Ulster than between 400million Europeans and the rest of the planet, although Lord Frost’s staff say that one should not confuse electronic checks with the rare physical checks in Rotterdam. Unless the latest grace extension is prolonged, some 30,000 agrifood checks will be required each day. Our electronic clearance systen cannot talk to the EU system. Sorting that out might take another two years. If successful, I’m told it would be the customs wonder of the world. Once again, Dave Frost is taking the common sense approach, but he needs the support of us, the voters. Here’s why. This mess has been allowed to drift for far too long. We can’t rely on his fellow politicians, they seem not to see the obvious right under their noses
Dare I suggest that perhaps there’s been quite a lot of collusion between Ursula, Martin Selmayr in Vienna, and the butter-wouldn’t-melt politicians of Dublin. This is annexation of Ulster with paper instead of electronics. If you make it so difficult to do business with England, local traders will be forced into the Republic’s economy. Why do you think Sturgeon and her Scots Nasties are so keen to return to Auntie Ursula’s EU? Dare I also suggest there are rather a lot of Catholics involved in these manipulations for Northern Irish peace of mind? Religion is at the heart of Irish partition.
Ursula is playing that favourite German card: trip up the other team’s centre forward. We saw it played with David Davis although that landed her with Boris Johnson as PM. Now we hear they miss Gove. (Are they trying to get rid of Gove as well or has he told them that he’ll surrender?)
Meanwhile I’d like to know how much we know about the scheming and plotting that’s been going on over the phone between Berlin and Brussels with Dublin, Edinburgh (or should I now say Glasgow) and Cardiff?
WHAT SHOULD WE DO?
Boycott – starting with Irish beef, whiskey and whatever. It’s a shame but they have to know. Above all boycott expensive items from the EU, cars, machinery, aircraft, because until we reduce imports from the EU to a trickle people like Ursula and Mutti, let alone Selmayr, all of whom have brain blinkers and skins thick as jackboot leather, won’t get it.
Our schoolchildren politicians are not tough enough to deal with these people. We are fellow voters and taxpayers. Fellow voters and taxpayers, the estimated costs of these customs arrangement are £ 750 millions to £ 1 billion already . . . time to get on with it? I think so.
Personally I like the Swiss approach for the last 800 years. By all means have politicians but the people vote on all big decisions. Actually it’s not so foreign, the Saxons did the same until the Normans introduced European style rule from the top.