COMMON MARKET: Pompidou's Grenade

It was Georges Pompidou who ended France's decade-long opposition to British membership in the Common Market. Last week the French President unexpectedly—and presumably unintentionally—threw a grenade in Britain's path to Brussels. At the end of an Elysée Palace press conference, Pompidou announced that he would call a national referendum in late April on the treaties admitting Britain, Ireland, Norway and Denmark to the six-nation Market. The French people, he explained, should be allowed to "express their opinion directly on this new policy of a new Europe."

There were domestic political considerations behind...

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