Forged under the pressure of the Second World War, the Five Eyes has linked together the United States (US), the United Kingdom (UK), Australia, Canada and New Zealand in unprecedented cooperation on intelligence sharing. The current international security backdrop, however, remains particularly salient in terms of great-power competition from authoritarian powers seeking to challenge the US-led liberal international order. For the Five Eyes to strengthen its security resilience, enhanced intelligence cooperation and alliance expansion will be vital to effectively thwart the malign behaviour of rogue powers on the international stage.
Regarding the future of EU-UK trade, it is crucial to find a solution to the volatile situation at the Northern Ireland border so that the Good Friday Agreement is not jeopardized. Meanwhile, the EU should not allow a de facto backdoor to the Single Market. To quote professor Kalypso Nicolaïdis, the problem with the Brits is that they are “too French” – avoir le beurre, l’argent du beurre et les baisers de la fermiere (loosely translated “wanting not only to have their cake and eat it but also to kiss the baker’s daughter”). Indeed, this time they must be more realistic and eventually they might be forced to be satisfied only with a cake. However, why not a cake and a handshake?
When the UK left the EU, the British public was promised a series of new trade deals, including with Britain’s most important trading partner: the United States of America. Yet, there are numerous barriers preventing a smooth negotiation, among them, the status of Northern Ireland. The US is committed to protecting the Good Friday Agreement and President Biden takes a personal interest in Ireland, but the UK is threatening to violate the agreement due to issues with the Northern Ireland protocol. Could Ireland threaten the UK’s hopes for a trade deal with the US, and if so, how?