View all newsletters
Sign up to our newsletters

Support 110 years of independent journalism.

  1. Politics
  2. Brexit
24 June 2016

How the European press is responding to Britain’s Brexit vote

From France to Poland, we'll be rounding up Europe's responses to the EU referendum result.

By Stephanie Boland

*/

The laughing stock of the world?

Süddeutsche Zeitung has asked whether Britain has decided to make itself “the laughing stock of the world”:

Britain has just catapulted itself far backwards on the imagined scale of important major nations in the world. It’s strange: this country, which has always known its size and historical relevance, seems to have lost its instincts. Triggered by a simple, internal party power struggle, enriched by ill-founded fears, and fuelled by lies, and populist resentments, the UK has brought together a concert of powers and delivered the following experiment: will I shrink myself into insignificance, will I ruin my economy, will I make myself the laughing stock of the world?

They’ve called it a “historic disaster”.

At least Zeit is comforting, though. Does “die politische Kultur ist kaputt” even need translating…?

Select and enter your email address Your weekly guide to the best writing on ideas, politics, books and culture every Saturday. The best way to sign up for The Saturday Read is via saturdayread.substack.com The New Statesman's quick and essential guide to the news and politics of the day. The best way to sign up for Morning Call is via morningcall.substack.com Our Thursday ideas newsletter, delving into philosophy, criticism, and intellectual history. The best way to sign up for The Salvo is via thesalvo.substack.com Stay up to date with NS events, subscription offers & updates. Weekly analysis of the shift to a new economy from the New Statesman's Spotlight on Policy team.
  • Administration / Office
  • Arts and Culture
  • Board Member
  • Business / Corporate Services
  • Client / Customer Services
  • Communications
  • Construction, Works, Engineering
  • Education, Curriculum and Teaching
  • Environment, Conservation and NRM
  • Facility / Grounds Management and Maintenance
  • Finance Management
  • Health - Medical and Nursing Management
  • HR, Training and Organisational Development
  • Information and Communications Technology
  • Information Services, Statistics, Records, Archives
  • Infrastructure Management - Transport, Utilities
  • Legal Officers and Practitioners
  • Librarians and Library Management
  • Management
  • Marketing
  • OH&S, Risk Management
  • Operations Management
  • Planning, Policy, Strategy
  • Printing, Design, Publishing, Web
  • Projects, Programs and Advisors
  • Property, Assets and Fleet Management
  • Public Relations and Media
  • Purchasing and Procurement
  • Quality Management
  • Science and Technical Research and Development
  • Security and Law Enforcement
  • Service Delivery
  • Sport and Recreation
  • Travel, Accommodation, Tourism
  • Wellbeing, Community / Social Services
Visit our privacy Policy for more information about our services, how New Statesman Media Group may use, process and share your personal data, including information on your rights in respect of your personal data and how you can unsubscribe from future marketing communications.
THANK YOU

Their emoji header is cute, though.

Obligatory restructuring?

In Spanish, the front page of Le País warns that the British referendum will force a reconstruction of the EU:

Photo: The front page of Le País

Rewriting history

“The British have rewritten history”, writes Dutch outlet NRC.

They have revoked the decision they themselves made when they became a member of the European community in 1973. Their step today will inevitably increase demands for a referendum in other Member States. In this way, the British have changed their country irrevocably. It is clear that many of them shrugged their shoulders at the economic warnings from Prime Minister David Cameron and his ilk. The promise that Brexit would return “power” to the British themselves, and provide a solution for immigration, sounded attractive.

The big question is what course the United Kingdom will choose. Is the channel now a moat and the drawbridge raised? In the pro-Brexit camp is considerable division. Some Eurosceptics are libertarian internationalists who believe that free trade is in the future of a globalized world. But what became clear in recent months is that the voters are demanding that borders be closed. Brexit is for many people a choice for less globalization, less openness and especially less immigration.

Photo: The front page of NRC: “Good morning, Europe. Everybody still there?” (No.)

“The virus of nationalism has escaped”

Spanish news outlet ABC writes:

Brexit, the nightmare of the markets, the cloud of sorrow that has afflicted Europe, the possible wishbone of a populist wave, is already a reality. Between “Little England” and a “strong Great Britain in Europe”, the British have chosen the nationalist option in a country where the giant bureaucratic EU has never been liked, and has looked very undemocratic.

They have also called the Remain campaign “erratic” and Corbyn “spineless”, although they’ve saved the strongest words for Cameron, saying that he has “opened Pandora’s box and the virus of nationalism has escaped”.

Photo: ABC’s front page today: “To be or not to be . . . Europe”

“I can only sigh”

In Poland, the Warsaw Voice is quoting Poland’s foreign minister:

“I can only sigh. It’s really happened. This is bad news for Europe, and especially bad news for Poland. First, it means destabilization in Britain itself at this time”, Waszczykowski said.

Fakt.pl has echoed his sentiments, writing that a weaker EU referendum also weakens Poland’s negotiating position, and is “the end of an era”, especially for the large number of Poles who have settled in the UK.

Yesterday, their editor asked Britain to stay, saying:

“If a referendum has Britain unsubscribe from the European Union, it will stay as an offended, spoiled child who says: ‘I do not like your sandpit, I’m taking my toys and leaving’”

Content from our partners
Data science can help developers design future-proof infrastructure
How to tackle the UK's plastic pollution problem – with Coca-Cola
The hard truth about soft skills

Select and enter your email address Your weekly guide to the best writing on ideas, politics, books and culture every Saturday. The best way to sign up for The Saturday Read is via saturdayread.substack.com The New Statesman's quick and essential guide to the news and politics of the day. The best way to sign up for Morning Call is via morningcall.substack.com Our Thursday ideas newsletter, delving into philosophy, criticism, and intellectual history. The best way to sign up for The Salvo is via thesalvo.substack.com Stay up to date with NS events, subscription offers & updates. Weekly analysis of the shift to a new economy from the New Statesman's Spotlight on Policy team.
  • Administration / Office
  • Arts and Culture
  • Board Member
  • Business / Corporate Services
  • Client / Customer Services
  • Communications
  • Construction, Works, Engineering
  • Education, Curriculum and Teaching
  • Environment, Conservation and NRM
  • Facility / Grounds Management and Maintenance
  • Finance Management
  • Health - Medical and Nursing Management
  • HR, Training and Organisational Development
  • Information and Communications Technology
  • Information Services, Statistics, Records, Archives
  • Infrastructure Management - Transport, Utilities
  • Legal Officers and Practitioners
  • Librarians and Library Management
  • Management
  • Marketing
  • OH&S, Risk Management
  • Operations Management
  • Planning, Policy, Strategy
  • Printing, Design, Publishing, Web
  • Projects, Programs and Advisors
  • Property, Assets and Fleet Management
  • Public Relations and Media
  • Purchasing and Procurement
  • Quality Management
  • Science and Technical Research and Development
  • Security and Law Enforcement
  • Service Delivery
  • Sport and Recreation
  • Travel, Accommodation, Tourism
  • Wellbeing, Community / Social Services
Visit our privacy Policy for more information about our services, how New Statesman Media Group may use, process and share your personal data, including information on your rights in respect of your personal data and how you can unsubscribe from future marketing communications.
THANK YOU