David Davis, the UK’s Brexit secretary [Image: Maja Suslin/EPA].

Please forgive This Writer for taking a moment to enjoy the mass media’s admission that the news agenda is now controlled by social media sites like Vox Political.

This Site published its own article showing the EU warning the UK against employing “divide and rule” tactics, almost a week ago.

At the time, European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker was simply saying the UK should not try such tactics in its negotiations, and any sanction that may be imposed was only implied.

But ministers in European countries are now agreeing with MEPs that the UK’s behaviour could lead to us being unceremoniously dumped out of the EU with no deal in place.

“The British government tries to divide and rule,” German MEP Elmar Brok is quoted as saying. “They believe they can take members of parliament out of certain nations … to win support by dividing us. If they try to negotiate while trying to interfere in our side then we can do that too. We can make a big fuss over Scotland. Or Northern Ireland.”

And Tomáš Prouza, the Czech minister for EU affairs, is quoted thus: “The benefits go to the UK only. There is a real danger that British politics, with all its whipped up resentments of Europe, will mean British negotiators are unable to compromise, and we will head for a crash-landing.”

Gianni Pittella, leader of the socialist bloc in the parliament, said the UK’s apparent attempt to split Europe was “certainly not the best way to kick off very complicated negotiations. This inappropriate attitude could undermine the outcome.”

“At the moment, it seems like Mrs May thinks of the EU as a restaurant where she can walk in order everything on the menu and then demand that the restaurant itself pays the bill,” the former Bulgarian prime minister Sergei Stanishev said last week. “My view this is creating an illusion for domestic purposes, or it’s wishful thinking.”

Perhaps these EU representatives felt they needed to make their opinions clearer, which suggests that the UK has been intractable for the last six days.

David Davis, the Brexit minister and alleged sex pest, is pleading innocence, despite having held meetings with politicians from Sweden, Finland, Denmark, Latvia and Estonia in an attempt to find sympathetic allies.

Even if he really isn’t trying underhand tricks (unlikely – he is, after all, a Tory) it won’t do the UK any good if he is perceived to be misbehaving.

Perhaps this time the Tories really have met their match – a powerful political bloc that won’t be misled, no matter how much so-called “charm” Mr Davis tries to apply.

British attempts to “blackmail and divide” EU countries in the run-up to Brexit negotiations will lead to a disastrous “crash-landing” out of the bloc, European politicians have told the Guardian.

Source: Divide and rule tactics could leave UK without deal, say EU politicians | UK news | The Guardian

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