The Bruges Group spearheaded the intellectual battle to win a vote to leave the European Union and, above all, against the emergence of a centralised EU state.

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Alternatives to the European Union

“The events of September 11, far from proving that closer EU integration is the way forward for the UK, seem to suggest that the UK follow an entirely different direction. This crisis illustrates that within NATO, only the US and the UK can act globally and genuinely in concert in terms of military, economic, and diplomatic strategies relating to crises.”

“Americans who value it [the special relationship] must vehemently oppose the Prime Minister’s ambitions to join the Euro.”

“A referendum on Britain’s entry into the Euro-zone may occur as early as this parliament. A yes vote would irrevocably merge British sovereignty into a larger European supranational construct, if the rhetoric of the current Euro-zone members is to be believed. This is, quite simply, the last real chance for Britain to choose an alternate future path, one that recognizes that its natural economic and political partner remains the United States and not the European Union.”

“…An alternative to Prime Minister Blair’s ‘third way’ push for ever closer integration with Europe, we should rally round a rival standard: Britain’s entry into a Global Free Trade Association (GFTA), with the US and the UK as charter members. Such a plan requires the UK to shift its politico-economic focus from Europe and instead return its gaze to what is clearly the most successful partnership of the twentieth century.”

“As Henry Kissinger has suggested, European identity is now defined largely in terms of an 'almost congenital opposition to the United States'. The EU may even attempt to become a rival hegemon in the long-term.”

Other speakers at the Bruges Group Conference included:
Prof. Christie Davies, author and academic;
H.E. the Rt. Hon. Don McKinnon, Commonwealth Secretary-General;
Roger Helmer MEP, Conservative MEP;
Mike Shaw, businessman;
Michael Shrimpton, constitutional lawyer;
Dr. Helen Szamuely, foreign policy expert;
Prof. Ivar Raig, Director of the research centre, Free Europe;
Dr. Brian Hindley, economist;
Margit Gennser, Swedish eurosceptic MP;
and Anthony Coughlan, leader of the Irish ‘No’ Campaign.