An EU agenda: keeping British in, Russians out, Germans down

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By Paul Taylor ROME (Reuters) - The first secretary-general of NATO, Lord Ismay, once said the Western defense alliance was created "to keep the Americans in, the Russians out and the Germans down". The task facing the European Union now might be described as to keep the British in, the Russians out and the Germans down. BRITISH IN Prime Minister David Cameron's demand to redraw Britain's relationship with the EU and put the result to a referendum in 2017 means the next few years are bound to be dogged by haggling over Brussels' powers and about opt-outs for London. If Britain, Europe's third largest economy, main financial center and joint biggest military and diplomatic power, were to become the first country ever to leave the bloc, it would deal a severe blow to itself but also to the EU's global standing.