• Nigel Farage MEP, Leader of the UK Independence Party (UKIP), Co-President of the Europe of Freedom and Direct Democracy (EFDD) Group in the European Parliament - @Nigel_Farage
• Debate: Current situation in the European Union
- Statements by Mr François Hollande, President of the French Republic, and Ms Angela Merkel, Chancellor of the Federal Republic of Germany
Nobody in their right minds would not agree that it was a sensible thing to do to get France and Germany together, round the table, to break bread with each other, to have a trade deal with each other back in the 1950's and to work as sovereign, democratic, nations together for peace. All of that was absolutely right and high minded.
Sadly, the whole thing has become corrupted. Tony Blair said, "the EU today is no longer about peace, it is about power" and how right he was and how that power has shifted. When Kohl and Mitterand came here, representing their countries 25 years ago it was a partnership of equals but no longer. France is now severely diminished, trapped inside a currency from which frankly she can't recover and the French voice in this relationship and in Europe is little more now frankly than a pipsqueak.
It's an irony isn't it, that the project that was designed to contain German power has now given us a totally German-dominated Europe. Just look at the euro, Germany has a currency that is undervalued by twenty percent, a growing and massive trade surplus and most growth in the German economy since the collapse of 2008 has indeed been in exports to other Eurozone countries such as your very big arm sales to countries like Greece.
And when we have a General Election that says a country like Greece wants to change direction, well I'm sorry but that now must be brushed aside because the Germans don't want it. And in what must count as perhaps the worst piece of public policy seen in modern Europe for half a century, when you compounded the already failed and flawed EU Common Asylum Policy by saying to the whole world please come to Europe, and we saw frankly, virtually a stampede and we learnt that eighty percent of those that are coming are not Syrian refugees, in fact what you've done is to open the door to young, male, economic migrants. Many of whom I have to say behave in a rather aggressive manner, quite the opposite to what you would ever expect to see from any refugee, and yet when that failure is met by objections from countries like Hungary their opinions are crushed.
This isn't a Europe of peace, it's a Europe of division, it's a Europe of disharmony, it's a Europe that is a recipe for resentment. And yet faced with all this failure, both of you said the same thing today. You said Europe isn't working so we must have more Europe. More of the same failing, well there is I think a bright star on the horizon. It's called the British referendum and given that none of you want to concede Britain the ability to take back control of her own borders a Brexit now looks more likely than at any point in modern time and I hope and pray that Britain voting to leave the European Union will be the beginning of the end of a project, however noble its original intentions, has gone wrong.