Benjamin Fox with Alexandra Brzozowski

Brexit 23-07-2019

The Brief – For Johnson, the campaign is over

“The campaign is over and the work begins.” So said Boris Johnson, the most unlikely, but still inevitable, of UK prime ministers. In Johnson’s case, the campaign for the keys to No10 Downing Street has been his life’s pursuit. Asked...
Politics 19-07-2019

The Brief, powered by BP – No Great Expectations

Barring a spectacular shock, a majority of Conservative party members have already voted for Boris Johnson and he will be declared as Theresa May’s successor as Prime Minister next Tuesday (23 July).
Brexit 09-07-2019

The Brief – The Lion and the Unicorn

The perils of dealing with Donald Trump have been spelt out in technicolour to the wounded British Lion, who must be wondering why nobody gives her a break. ‘Dysfunctional, unpredictable, diplomatically clumsy and inept’ were some of the phrases the...
EU Elections 2019 27-06-2019

The Brief – Everyone’s a winner

For all the ink spilled on whether the Spitzenkandidaten process will survive and speculation over the name of the next European Commission president, for real political junkies in Brussels, the action is somewhere else.
Brexit 24-05-2019

The Brief -The End of Theresa

By the end, it was painful to watch Theresa May in action. Her decision to throw in the towel, finally, came with a sense of relief. It is a miracle that she even survived so long. At her final EU...
EU Elections 2019 09-05-2019

The Brief – Guy’s World

A 35-year political career will have given Guy Verhofstadt a thick skin. And he is going to need it.
Brexit 02-05-2019

The Brief – Authority lost

Most pundits pin the loss of Theresa May’s authority to her losing her governing majority in June 2017. The two years since have gradually reduced her to a husk attracting derision or, worse, sympathy.
Brexit 25-04-2019

The Brief – Cowering from Saint Nigel of Brexit

“If we have one, we will let you know about it,” a Downing Street spokesman told reporters on Wednesday when asked when the Conservative party would be launching their European election campaign. While Nigel Farage’s newly formed Brexit party used...
Brexit 10-04-2019

The Brief powered by CEN-CENELEC – Brexit black holes

Who says eurocrats don’t have a sense of irony? A European Commission press release landed in unsuspecting inboxes on Wednesday afternoon (10 April), breathlessly proclaimed that EU-funded scientists had successfully captured the first image of a black hole.
Brexit 03-04-2019

The Brief – Brexit à la carte

Rarely in politics does despair become hope, as has happened with the Brexit negotiations. By extending the olive branch to Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn – who she has spent the last two years lampooning as ‘unfit to govern’, Theresa May...
Brexit 28-03-2019

The Brief – Mother of all messes

Think of a boys boarding school crossed with a provincial amateur drama club and you get the idea of what the House of Commons is like these days: men in tights, testosterone-fuelled debates, ancient procedures and arcane language.
Brexit 21-03-2019

The Brief – Avoiding the cliff-edge

The Brexit cliff-edge is now in sight and fast approaching. Who, if anyone, is going to apply the brakes?
EU Elections 2019 01-03-2019

The Brief – Fragmented, but fun

In their analysis of the slow death of the ‘grand coalition,’ commentators have focussed on the possible decline of socialist and social democrat parties in Europe.
EU-Africa 25-02-2019

The Brief – Migration deals with despots

Expectations for the EU-Arab League summit in Sharm el-Sheik had been downplayed so much that everyone was prepared for the final press conference and communique to be the dampest of damp squibs. Having to deal with despots and dictators must...
Brexit 20-02-2019

The Brief – The Independent Eleven

Leaving the party that got you elected is very rare in Britain. So, too, is the emergence of a new party. That makes the joining of eight ex-Labour MPs with three ex-Conservatives in the Independent Group the most significant since the launch of the Social Democrat Party in 1981.
Politics 29-01-2019

The Brief – An outbreak of visa sanity

Across the UK and the rest of Europe, citizens let out a collective groan when UK Prime Minister Theresa May said she wants to reopen the Brexit deal. But there was at least a glimmer of hope among the fudge.

The Brief, powered by Metal Packaging Europe – Brussels’ other election

The year 2019 is all about elections in Brussels, but not necessarily the European polls in May. The spiritual home of the Congolese diaspora in Europe, the Matongé district, a short walk from the EU institutions and home to many a...
Politics 06-12-2018

The Brief – Brexit purgatory waiting room blues

“Would you please consider voting for this deal so we can all get on with our lives.”
Global Europe 23-11-2018

Trans-Europe Express – Europe’s door of the desert

Known as ‘the door of the desert’ on the edge of the Sahara, the Moroccan town of Ouazarzate is home to film studios where historical epics such as Gladiator and Troy are made for Hollywood. Just as epic is the 3,000...
Politics 13-11-2018

The Brief, powered by EUSALT – A harbinger of Brexit defeats to come?

One of the reasons why detail on the UK’s strategy on the Brexit negotiations has been so elusive lies in Theresa May’s tactic of permanent obfuscation, and of concentrating information in the hands of a handful of her very closest...

Trans-Europe Express – Migration still tops EU’s agenda

The numbers may have fallen dramatically – by October the number of migrants reaching Europe had dropped to around 80,000 so far this year, compared to 300,000 in 2016 - but European leaders are still preoccupied with migration control.
Brexit 31-10-2018

The Brief – How meaningful can a Brexit vote be?

Few parliaments can match the House of Commons for ancient, arcane and apparently incomprehensible traditions and procedures. And MPs were given an intensive lesson by the grand master in procedure on Wednesday (31 October).
Politics 19-10-2018

The Brief, powered by The International Bromine Council (BSEF) – The futility of summitry

Having long been billed as the ‘make or break’ Brexit summit, Wednesday’s European Council shin-dig turned out to be a complete waste of time.
Brexit 17-10-2018

The Brief, powered by The International Bromine Council (BSEF) – Hard border surrounds fortress Britain

Theresa May and her EU counterparts seem likely to trot out the line that a Brexit deal will, probably, be struck, albeit at the 11th hour at this evening’s EU summit. The chaos promised by ‘no deal’ is very much in the minds of officials on both sides of the Channel.