Imagine: John Lennon sows discord at EU summit

The Beatles perform at Carnegie Hall in New York City, Feb. 12, 1964. From left: bassist Paul McCartney, guitarist George Harrison, drummer Ringo Starr, and guitarist John Lennon. (AP)

John Lennon is turning into a factor at the European Union summit when his famous prose from “Imagine” is turning into a war of words about Brexit negotiations.

First, European Council President Donald Tusk said that “You may say I am a dreamer but I’m not the only one” when it came to still holding hopes that Britain could stay.

Belgian Prime Minister Charles Michel then had his quick retort. He said: “I am not a dreamer. And I am not the only one.”

Michel insisted the British people had chosen to leave and negotiations should now proceed apace.

He added that “What we also need is certainty, for our companies in Belgium, in Europe.”

“If we back this image that Brexit perhaps would not happen, it brings an uncertainty.” 

Imagining an EU without Britain 

German Chancellor Angela Merkel also was focused on imagining an EU without Britain.

“For me, shaping the future of the 27 (remaining) member-states has priority over the question of the negotiations with Britain on its exit,” Merkel said.

When May officially triggered the two-year unraveling process in March, she forced the EU to realize it was losing one of its biggest members and a global player.

Tusk, who grew up in Communist Poland before the Soviet Union collapsed in 1991, said, however, that his personal history has taught him never to give up hope.

And he has not been alone.

French President Emmanuel Macron said last week that the door is still open for Britain to remain. He said from a European point of view, as long as the negotiations are not over, there is still a possibility to change the course of the events.

Tusk has seen history change before his eyes in Poland.

“Miracles do happen and some of my political dreams have come true,” he said.

In contrast, EU Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker is a hard-nosed realist.

“In Europe, I never have illusions because I don’t want to lose them,” Juncker said.

Last Update: Wednesday, 20 May 2020 KSA 09:50 - GMT 06:50