Ian Payne is Leading Britain's Conversation.
30 March 2017, 11:31
David Mellor: Let's Win This First Brexit Row
David Mellor says we're negotiating from a position of power when it comes to security - so let's win this row with the EU.
Theresa May has pointed that our crime and security resources might be at stake for the EU if the Brexit negotiations proceed too slowly.
Some of the EU's top negotiators have been moaning about that implied threat already, something David has little time for.
"What's wrong with using that as a negotiating device?" he asks, before launching into a takedown of "mouthy Belgian" Guy Verhofstadt, the leader of the European Parliament's negotiators.
"Of course he would cry foul!" blasted Mellor. "Belgium is not a united country. There are bits of Brussels where police don't go and terrorists and potential terrorists have free run.
"That's why so many of the terrorist problems in France last year emanated from Brussels."
David wants to know why if Europe wants to use our crime resources, we can't insist on decent and civilised treatment in return. But, he cautions, expect a lot more rows like this.
"Make no mistake. We are on a course that will be long and tedious and rows like this will be ten-a-penny.
"So why not let's try and win the first one on ground where we are so strong?"