Theresa May was left visibly irritated this morning when a generous offer to Germany was rejected out of hand.
May’s sincere offer, to hand Sunderland over to Germany as part of Brexit negotiations, rebranding it as “UnterLand”, was met with a cold shoulder.
“It was a sign of good faith.” David Davis explained afterwards. “Our PM has extended the hand of friendship and once again it’s been rebuffed. It’s very clear the EU are not trying to make friends.”
May made the offer to Merkel during a conversation about post Brexit car manufacturing that also included Austria’s chief negotiator, Anne Schluss.
A spokesman for the EU’s negotiating task force had this to say, “Angela didn’t know if May was joking at first. In fact she thought Mrs May had said Sudetenland initially. But when May didn’t ask for Dunkirk in return, we understood her intent was not to make friends.”
The spokesman added, “We were additionally confused by the way Mrs. May kept winking at Anne. She even put her finger across her upper lip at one point and giggled while pointing at Angela. When no one else laughed she pretended to have an itchy nose. It was all very confusing.”
Formal negotiations are expected to begin in late March. It is understood the UK will open with, “You know, if you wanted to try that Poland thing again, we’ll be too busy cutting a trade deal with Guam?”
It is uncertain how many other European countries, besides Germany, Downing Street expects to be in the room.