As an intellectual exercise, managing the multifaceted complexities of Britain’s departure from the EU offers the kind of satisfaction rarely found in policy work. As a historic negotiation without precedent—no country has left the EU before, let alone one of Britain’s size and stature—it is a wonderful CV-builder.
In Brussels, where the talks will take place, officials are scrambling to involve themselves with what one calls “the sexiest file in town”.
Officials everywhere insist that their priority will be preserving the interests of the EU, not keeping Britain happy. “This is a negotiation where we have to defend Europe, not undo it,”
The other side:
For the EU, at least, that means placing hope in a British government that it fears may not warrant it. “From a rational point of view, we can’t fail,” says an official in Brussels. “But I’m not sure the rationality is there in the UK.”
European negotiators who think it is essential to act as one are staggered to hear some ministers cling to the delusion that Germany’s need to sell cars to British motorists will ensure that Mrs May secures a good deal.
The EU’s Brexit negotiators prepare for disaster, December 21, 2016 at 12:57AM