Issues of low political salience

The official position of the British government is that both Georgia and the Ukraine should become members of NATO, in accordance with the conclusions of the NATO ministerial meeting of April 2008 and in due course members of the European Union. These questions are not issues of high political salience in the United Kingdom, although their discussion was temporarily enhanced by the events of August, 2008, and the dispute on energy provision between Russia and the Ukraine at the turn of the year. British public opinion was divided in its response to these issues, with some commentators at least accusing the Georgian and Ukrainian governments of provocative behaviour.[1] Perhaps for this reason, the British government has not sought to focus public attention recently on the European Union’s relations with its Eastern neighbours, a topic certainly rendered less immediate to British voters by the geographical remoteness of these neighbours.

 

 

 

[1] See e.g.: Tyranny of the red lines, The Guardian, 5 September 2008.