Speculation reigns as to whether the UK will do a Brexit deal with the EU.
- There will be an early deal (or perhaps just a de facto stand-off) allowing EU citizens to remain in the UK and vice versa;
- There will not be any deal over the terms of Brexit; the UK will leave the EU in March 2019 without a deal. There are too many countries and interests wanting a slice of this or a slice of that, all with a veto;
- There will however be a trade deal between the UK and the EU either by March 2019 or shortly thereafter, with tariffs set at nil or near nil.
If this be right (time will tell) the Government stategy looks about right: the Mayflower stressing the willingness of the UK to do a Brexit deal and Boris remarking that it is no catastrophe if there is no deal.
A few things flow from the “no deal” scenario. The EU can go whistle for its 50 billion Euro claim, Spain can go whistle for its claim to Gibraltar. EU fishing fleets can go whistle for the right to fish in UK waters etc etc. Most of this stuff suits the UK just fine. It will also suit the Remoaners perfectly well too: they can howl to their heart’s content about how terrible it is that the UK is just walking away from such chaos on the Continent. And the Poison Pixie will be like a pig in shit, exploding with indignation like an egg in a microwave.
And as to Gibraltar? There are already several micro-states that are in Europe, but not in the EU: Monaco, Channel Islands, Lichstenstein, Andorra, San Marino etc. Some accomodation will be worked out; Gibraltar has been loyal to the UK for over 300 years and shows little sign of wanting to be absorbed by Spain. They might well, however, be perfectly happy to be subject to the EU, and if that is what they want, then good luck them. That’s fine.