Will David Cameron's gamble take Britain out of Europe?
November 05, 2014  00:14
David Cameron is in danger of becoming the prime minister who takes Britain out of the European Union by mistake.

Cameron's looming confrontation with German Chancellor Angela Merkel over the European Union's principle of free movement of peoples could set off a chain reaction which sees Britain choose to exit the EU in a referendum Cameron has promised voters in 2017.

Just a few weeks ago it appeared that miscalculations by Cameron might have seen the breakup of the United Kingdom. 

In the referendum granted to Scotland on its continued membership in the UK, he was widely criticized for agreeing to the wrong question at the wrong time, with no qualifying majority built in and with no participation rights for Scots living elsewhere in the UK. 

That the Scots in the end voted to stay was widely reckoned to owe far more to the intervention of former Labour Prime Minister Gordon Brown than to anything Cameron did.

Now Cameron is under fire again for failing to do his homework, for entering battles he cannot win and for employing dangerous short-term tactics in the hope of averting further blows from the advancing United Kingdom Independence Party at a forthcoming Parliamentary by-election and in next summer's General Election.

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