Susan O’Keeffe: Britain’s tough talking on Northern Ireland protocol conceals a crumbling mess

The British government’s call for a ‘standstill’ on the protocol lays bare the failings of Brexit and puts the EU back in the driving seat

Maros Sefcovic, vice-president of the European Commission, far left, and David Frost, the UK’s Brexit Minister, at a meeting in London last month. Picture: Getty

We don’t need the famous Alan Turing and his World War II codebreaking machine to read Sir David Frost’s coded message on Brexit this week.

“Happy to chat, chaps, as long as we get our own way,” is what his diplomatic posturing means. And when he’s pushed a bit harder: “Look here, we don’t want this blasted deal, so we’re going to break it. Never wanted it in the first place. Completely unfair to us.”