Last week I was having especially an unpleasant exchange of words with a Briton who was hurling the usual insults against Belgium, 'not a real country', 'base of the EU', 'hypocrits' and sooner Belgium dissolved to nothing the better for him. This really makes me very angry, both because I am not 100% behind EU and it makes no sense to me for those who agree on this to cut each other down and also because I expect the British would be better than that, to insult and wish the demise of the Belgians. Truthfully, there have been tensions between the British and Belgians for a long time but in general the two countries have, in their modern history, always been friends. From the choosing of King Leopold I the kingdoms of Belgium and Great Britain have had the same Royal Family (Saxe-Coburg-Gotha before they changed in the war to "of Belgium" and "Windsor") and during the Great War the British, claimed at least, to be getting involved in order to defend against the invasion of Belgium, a noble way of standing up for the rights of small countries against the aggression of the more powerful countries.
How different it is today from that time when so many in Britain considered it a matter of honor to defend and support Belgium now to have so many cheering on the possible death of the kingdom across the water. It seems also that the British could look at their own situation and know better than to triumph in the misfortune of Belgium because they seem in so many ways to be going down the same destructive path that has Belgium. Consider the sitution: They Belgium is not a "proper country" because the people are divided and speak different languages. But people in Britain used to speak different languages before English was forced on everyone just as French used to be the one official language for Belgium. In fact they had more much than two with some speaks English, Cornish, Welsh, Scots Gaelic and then in Ireland. Today there are more efforts to revive these regional languages so that is making Britain less a proper country? Maybe they dismiss language and say it is about the divisions political. But again they really have more than one government in Britain today. Most of Ireland broke away and is a republic now. The part that did not is "autonomous" with his own government. Scotland now has a parliament of its own and even Wales has its own local government though they have been part of England since hundreds of years.
Just today another Englishman tells me that I must not have understanding of the British government because English still have lots of power in Scotland. Maybe so, but they claimed at least they had no knowledge or control of the Scotland law courts from releasing a convicted terrorist back to Libya and no matter what powers these assemblies have it is obvious, is it not, that the trend lately in Britain, just like it was in Belgium decades past, is being towards division and disunity rather than greater unity. Just like Flemish nationalists want to end Belgium by having independent Flanders the British also have the Scottish National Party that wants to end United Kingdom by having an independent Scotland. It is obvious the situation is not so serious as in Belgium but everything points to the same direction and I would think anyone could see this and Britons who love their United Kingdom would be somewhat concerned for this and not exulting in the problems of the Belgians knowing that there is no reason the same cannot happen to them. Already the British Empire is fallen away and the country has turned more to Europe, more to EU and depend for themselves on allies rather than acting independently in matters economic and military.
I am not total supporter of EU and I do not want to see Great Britain breaking up into pieces either but I am sometimes angered into saying things I later regret because some of them do want that for my country. And why? How did Belgium offend? We did not invent EU and we had no more greater voice in building it or running it than any other country. I hope Britons will stop the insults and consider that they could someday be in the same position and rather than start fights with the Belgians be accepting of any sympathetic to the situation and wanting both countries to survive and prosper.