I've been critical of Brexit, and I still think it's a bad idea, but on one thing Britain's position in trade talks with the EU is not unreasonable: it wants to regain control of its waters while the EU wants Belgian, Dutch, French and other fishermen to continue to be able to catch herring, mackerel and sole in British waters.
The UK has offered to hold annual talks to set fishing quotas, which again is a fair proposal. Current quotas date back to the 1980s.
The trouble is that Britain depends on the European market, which gives the EU leverage. Some of the most lucrative species caught by British fishermen, such as scallops and langoustines, are sold to continental Europe. In some cases the dependency is over 90 percent.
This was always going to be the issue, and it's not just with fish. There is an enormous imbalance between the EU27 and the UK. It seems to me Brexiteers never accepted this, imagining the EU needs the UK as much as the UK needs the EU. That's not the case.
Even if it were the case, the EU is willing to suffer some economic damage in order to defend the integrity of the single market. Something else Brexiteers never understood. To the rest of Europe, the EU is as much a political as an economic project. I don't think most Britons ever felt the same way.