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Europe And Britain: Prickly Partners

The gulf between old Europe and the sceptered isle was on display during a meeting in London of French President Jacques Chirac and Prime Minister Tony Blair on Nov. 24. The gift of a signed photo from Blair's 3-year-old son, Leo, was not enough to stop Chirac from griping that the U.S. and British were moving too slowly to hand over power in Baghdad to Iraqis. At the same time, Chancellor of the Exchequer Gordon Brown blasted wasteful European Union regulation and vowed to resist EU efforts to harmonize taxes. With Blair and Euro-skeptic Brown locked in a power struggle, Britain is likely to remain a prickly partner for Paris and Brussels until at least the next general election. EDITED BY Edited by Rose Brady

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