Letter to the Editor
“Little shared history, insignificant bilateral trade and little in the way of key diplomatic relations over the years” !!! Get real! Has your reporter never heard of Portugal being Britain’s oldest ally, of George Canning’s record as British Foreign Secretary and then Prime Minister, of the Royal Navy’s role in escorting the Portuguese royal family here in 1808, of Britain’s subsequent role in Brazil’s opening-up to international (meaning, then, mainly British) trade, investment and banking, of the construction of the railways, the ending of the slave trade, and the creation of Uruguay as a buffer state to prevent a potential war with Argentina … Yes, it’s true that the relationship has – sadly – become less close over the past century or so, and Mr Cable’s visit is therefore a welcome one, but history cannot be denied.