A royal salute to the commonwealth

June 1, 2018 History

Sometimes we forget about our own history, our country’s history. What we come from and who we are, deep down. In short: our identity. In my view, this article, “A royal salute to the Commonwealth”, 2011 by the British journalist and political commentator Peter Oborne, is about the dilemma between modern ways and the old days. Peter Oborne describes his concerns about our modern political culture, in comparison with the old culture, when Great Britain was an Empire and the Queen was Empress.

He believes it is time to reinvent the Commonwealth. The Commonwealth is an organization consisting of the UK and most of the countries that used to be a part of the British Empire, when Great Britain was a Colonial power. Peter Oborne gives a lot of arguments. He writes, “Over the past few decades Britain has been unlucky in its leaders …they have been hostile or blind to the British history”. The Commonwealth has not been a priority he says. All the way back when Edward Heath was a Conservative Prime Minister, 1970-1974.

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He led us into the European Union and turned his back on the Commonwealth and in the reign of the New Labour Leader Tony Blair, the commonwealth was nonexistent. In that period the Commonwealth was not at all taken seriously. Peter Oborne says: “… the Commonwealth has only really been sustained thanks to the immense personal charisma of the monarch. ” That’s a big mistake he says. We should prioritize the Commonwealth. That’s why he salutes the Duke and the Duchess of Cambridge for going to Canada because Canada is one of the commonwealth members.

Not only that, he calls Canada family, because the Canadians and the Brits fought side by side, in the two Great World Wars of the 20’th century. Commonwealth is also cheap it cost Britain 20p per head to be a part of the membership and it cost 50 pounds to be a part of the European Union, Peter Oborn claims. Because of the history the Commonwealth countries have together, the countries have crated friendly connections between them. All these countries are based on democratic values.

None of these countries wants to use the military force to interfere in other countries affairs. That’s a virtue, Peter Oborne thinks. He says that maybe it would be a better solution to place emphasis on cooperation with these countries instead of the countries I the EU. In a way you can compare the Commonwealth with the North, where Denmark, Norway and Sweden are a part of. We have this friendly connection too with one antoher and are always helping each other, in for example wars.

Plus in Denmark we hear a lot of in the medias that people has forgotten our history and that we should have more history in the schools because people know to little. Also the EU is too dependent on the USA’s economy and because of the USA had a huge crisis, the countries in EU also got an economic crisis. Is that really something we want to be depending on? But maybe there is a chance for the Commonwealth, because David Cameron the prime Minister since 2010 has shown his interest for the Commonwealth countries by taking his first trip to a Commonwealth country.

But also because the Queen has shown interest in the Commonwealth and are one of the few who understands the meaning of it. She has repentantly been engaged by being the chairman of this organization and by showing up to every meeting hosted by “Family Commonwealth”. So in all I understand what Peter Oborne says, but something I don’t understand is, just because Britain should take priority in the Commonwealth doesn’t mean Britain can’t take priority I EU to. Does it?


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