The (compelling) case against Brexit

Europe’s travails run wide and deep. The European Union has careened from one financial crisis to the next. The exodus of migrant refugees from the Middle East and North Africa has overwhelmed EU nations and stoked caustic nationalism across the continent. Terrorist attacks in Paris and Brussels have further eroded what once was Europe’s rock-solid sense of security.

Europe’s struggles serve as the disquieting backdrop for Thursday, when voters in the United Kingdom head to the polls to decide whether to leave the EU for good — a pivotal decision in British and European history. A vote to “Brexit” the EU would require ratification by Parliament, but that ratification would be likely.

As troubled as Europe is, the best choice for Britons is to vote no on Brexit.

Europe’s dysfunction makes it easy to understand why so many Britons want to cut tethers to the EU. The union has been anything but united in coping with a migrant crisis that triggered ugly nationalist backlashes across the continent and seeded so much misery for refugee families. It tangles itself up in bureaucracy that vexes businesses and governments. In the end, however, a unified Europe is a stronger Europe. The continent can better navigate economic squalls and steel itself against external threats — whether manifested in terrorism or the Kremlin — if it thinks and works as a cohesive whole.

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