Imagine this scenario: a group of Texas secessionists travel to Europe to spread the word of ‘Texit’.
This is what happened last week. The Texas Nationalist Movement visited England and France to “offer advice and perspective on the right of self-determination and peaceful independence”.
As the group’s website reads: “TNM greatly appreciates that our opinion is valued by our liberty-minded friends in Europe.”
Spurred on by the successful Brexit vote this past summer, the Texit movement — championed by climate science denier Christopher Monckton — now hopes to inspire and advise similar movements in France, Greece, and Spain.
This cross-Atlantic cooperation highlights the growing network between British and American euro-climate sceptics.
From Monckton leading the ‘Texit’ charge and UKIP’s Brexit champion and climate science denier Nigel Farage appearing at Donald Trump’s rally, to prominent UK ‘Leave’ campaigners courting American climate denial think tanks ahead of the EU referendum (the same think tanks that attended the Conservative Party Conference earlier this month), they are all united in their free-market belief in limited government intervention.
This often manifests into a disdain for climate change policy and environmental regulations.
And yes, there have even been calls for a ‘clexit’ by climate deniers including Monckton and US-based Marc Morano.
While it’s not entirely clear exactly how one would ‘exit’ the climate, among the group’s many demands are that nations refuse to ratify the United Nations Paris Agreement — a position shared by Republican US Presidential candidate Donald Trump (the candidate most supported by Texit-eers). So far, the clexit movement hasn’t seen much success with the Paris climate deal set to come into effect next month.
Dubbed the “Euro-trip for independence”, the self-styled “foreign minister” for Texas, Nathan Smith, met with UKIP’s eastern countries chairman George Konstantinidis to discuss “the success of the Brexit vote, progress made towards UK independence since then, and also new efforts to lead Greece out of the EU.”
Smith then attended a forum at the Abbaye de Reigny, in France, with the country’s far-right Eurosceptic Union Populaire Republicaine (UPR) where, according to the TNM website, a roundtable discussion on a possible ‘Frexit’ took place.
Brian Denny of Britain’s far-left Trade Unionists Against the EU group was in attendance along with Anthony Coughlan, secretary of the Irish Eurosceptic lobby group, the National Platform for EU Research and Information Centre, and Pierre Levy, a French cultural theorist and media scholar, who currently works at the University of Ottawa in Canada.
This isn’t the first time TNM’s Smith has travelled abroad in an effort to drum up support for secession campaigns.
In March 2015 he appeared at a St. Petersburg conference where ‘the fringe of the fringe’ gathered: the International Russian Conservative Forum hosted by a pro-Kremlin ultranationalist party.
Then again last month, Smith joined other separatist hopefuls from California, Europe and the Middle East at a Kremlin-funded conference organised by Russia’s Anti-Globalist Movement group.