Fainting in Coyles An occasional letter from the
Heart of Euroville
Monday, March 17, 2003
Will the truth about the Maastrict referendum come out - I doubt it
Thanks to The Radical for this. The trial of the leaders of Elf Aquitaine is opening in Paris, good, and about time too, but one aspect that will doubtless be quietly cold shouldered in the investigation is mentioned in the BBC report.
"and the alleged funnelling of funds via Elf to the then German Chancellor Helmut Kohl"
Cast your minds back to the Maastricht Referendum in France in 1992, and you feel like you are living withinthin the pages of Andrew Robert's Aachen Memorandum. The vote looked close, too close. Mitterand needed help, needed finance and was casting around in desperation. Mitterand announced his cancer a week before the vote to secure a sympathy ballot. Helmut Kohl, then the inassailable Chancellor gave him cash to help fund the referendum. In the end it was this cross party and cross national illegal funding that formed the case against Kohl, and the reason why he refused to testify.
This current trial will go into the quid pro quo - what did the French offer Germany in order to secure the funding that allowed the French yes vote to pass by less than 1 per cent? A difference of less than 500,000 votes, in a referendum where there were more than 1 million spoilt ballots.