British citizens are done with being one of many — 28, to be precise — and they made their views clear in a referendum Thursday with a vote to leave the European Union.
They wanted their borders back, their own British Pound Sterling, thank you, and the safety of being able to make their own security decisions.
The vote was called late Thursday night at 52 percent in favor of ‘Brexit’ as the leaving was called, and 48 percent against, according to ITV and the BBC.
Prime Minister David Cameron, who said his position would be ‘untenable’ if the country chose not to remain within the EU, now finds himself having to decide his next move. Cameron had warned there would be “no turning back” if the UK were to separate itself from the European body, looking at the impact on banks and other financial institutions as well as other issues.
UK Independence Party leader Nigel Farage described a poster showing a line of asylum seekers as “a statement about the whole of the European Union,” according to CNN. Farage delivered a victory speech to supporters upon hearing the news of the final results at a polling station in Birmingham.
The ‘victory’ may be a bit premature, however: Scotland warned from the outset that should England decide to leave the EU, the decision would launch a discussion about whether or not to hold another referendum on whether or not to secede from the United Kingdom.
Should Scotland vote for independence, the UK decision to leave the European Union — which may ultimately lead to the disintegration of the EU — will have led to its own dissolution as well.
Analysts around the world are now weighing the effect of the British decision on the world economy and it impacts individual nations along with their currencies, pension funds and banking systems. It is also not clear what effect this will have on the British Jewish community both in the United Kingdom and abroad.
In trading Thursday night, the British pound Sterling fell against the U.S. dollar and against the euro; however, the euro fell against the Japanese yen as well. All three stock markets dropped, and were set to open lower on Friday.
Political leaders in Europe are now deeply concerned that the split that exists in England may continue to divide other member states in the EU, prompting them to leave as well and perhaps lead to the dissolution of the entire European body.Hana Levi Julian