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The Future of Belgium - Is Secession in the Air?

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  • The Future of Belgium - Is Secession in the Air?

    Originally posted by BBC News
    Belgium's Flemish separatists make big election gains

    Belgium's Flemish separatist party, the New Flemish Alliance (NVA), has emerged as the largest force in parliament, with coalition talks set to start.


    Bart De Wever's ultimate aim is Flemish independence

    The NVA, whose ultimate aim is independence for Flanders, Belgium's northern half, took 27 of 150 seats.

    The Socialists from the southern half, Wallonia, came second.

    Correspondents say lengthy coalition talks could undermine efforts to control Belgium's debt and overshadow its upcoming EU presidency.

    Belgium's King Albert was expected to start consulting party leaders on Monday, on the prospects for forming a new government.
    Full Article

    So, with the Nieuw-Vlaamse Alliantie (NVA) making massive grounds and expressing a very strong desire for Flemish independence, what do you think is the future of Belgium?
    21
    Flanders and Wallonia will split apart into independent states.
    14.29%
    3
    Flanders and Wallonia will split apart, with one or both being incorporated into an existing nation.
    23.81%
    5
    Belgium will remain intact, but each region will have greater control over its own affairs.
    28.57%
    6
    Belgium will remain intact, and things will remain much the same.
    19.05%
    4
    Something else is in store for Belgium.
    14.29%
    3
    Last edited by Daemon of Decay; 15 Jun 10, 02:19.

  • #2
    I selected the choice that each region will have greater control over its own affair. I have a question: Has the greater European integration over the last several decades made the desire for independence greater? In other words, do people feel that they have less need for Belgium, as they feel, for example, Flemish and European, and Belgium doesn't really do much for them?
    Last edited by lakechampainer; 15 Jun 10, 06:59.

    Comment


    • #3
      Looks like a great bargaining chip for the Flemish!

      Comment


      • #4
        Its an accepted fact in Europe that Belgium is not a united state, the two sides can't wait to get away from each other. For a while now the two sides have been like a divorced couple who continue to live together in the same house.

        I think this is going to end in a complete seperation, but it will take a while for this to come to fruition. I chose the "something else in store" option in the vote becuase frankly I think as seperation is pursued the **** will hit the fan and civil disturbance/war will be the end result. Most of the trouble will be in Brussels because technically and populations wise it does not really belong to either side. Might become another Jerusalem.

        The EU will also have a hard time dealing with the breakup, as the current constitution can't cope with another member (its legally limited to 27 and were maxed out already). Of course the EU might bend if it thinks it can grab Brussels as a federal capital territory of the EU!!!!!!!!

        As for either part of Belgium joining another country, France will probably resist any efforts to absorb Wallonia, the Dutch might be more receptive to the Flemish but nothing is really so simple. It will be really interesting to see what happens.
        Anyone else here from the planet fubar?

        Comment


        • #5
          Voted second option;
          While I do not think that the Flemish would like to join the Netherlands as they find the Dutch too loud and too arrogant and Flanders could be a viable state all by itself,
          the situation is different for Wallonia. This area is much poorer than Flanders is and has no access to the North Sea coast. As a state it is not very viable. I see Wallonia be incorporated into France much easier than Flanders into Holland.

          As an afterthought: As the choice of what language in what situation in Belgium is often causing problems, why not chose for its third language: German? Neutral for all and although not many people know this, the third official language of Belgium
          BoRG

          You may not be interested in War, but War is interested in You - Leon Trotski, June 1919.

          Comment


          • #6
            Major,

            Luxembourg has no access to North Sea but is a viable independant state

            Comment


            • #7
              Metryll, I cannot find fault at your statement

              My point is that Wallonia's prospects as an independant state, being poorer in so many aspects than Flanders (or Luxembourg for that matter), would have been considerably more viable had it been in possession of a sea harbour, quod non.
              That is one of the reasons why I consider the chance of Wallonia being incorporated into France after a break up as being more likely than Flanders becoming a part of the Netherlands.
              Last edited by Colonel Sennef; 15 Jun 10, 10:16.
              BoRG

              You may not be interested in War, but War is interested in You - Leon Trotski, June 1919.

              Comment


              • #8
                Personally I think in the longer run Belgium will be split up in two seperate states . Voted for option 1 , not that i would say its a good thing ,but , i think they are heading there in the near future .
                French speaking Wallons and the Dutch speaking Flanders have always been incompetition with each other . Quarrels about the language existed for as long as the Belgium state exists . But nowadays its also a costly economical problem . The Wallons aged industry is almost dead or dying , large unemployment ,wich is mainly paid for by the Flemish part now who according to the last outcome of their last elections feel better off with a separation .
                I think the Flemish may have a good chance of being able to survive alone economically as a separate country , but the French Wallon part will be in deep trouble if it gets that far i think . In a way Belgium starts looking more and more like Italy's political theatre where administrations fall over sometimes twice a year ..

                BTW Holland is not very receptive for a Flemish integration into the Netherlands .
                Were good friends and neighbours ..but ehh sorry ..no marriage
                Last edited by Heinrich; 15 Jun 10, 10:50.
                ' Because it has Electrolytes ! '

                regards:
                Henk

                Comment


                • #9
                  MJ,

                  Wallonia being poorer is a common independantist Flemish statment to be taken with a pitch of salt :

                  "Gross Domestic Product in Belgium (2006)[5] Rank NUTS region 2006 GDP (PPP)
                  per capita
                  in Euros % of the average GDP
                  of EU27 in 2006
                  1 Brussels 55,100 233.3
                  2 Flemish Region 27,900 118.0
                  3 Walloon Region 20,100 85.1"

                  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Economy_of_Belgium

                  By comparison, Romania is 25% of EU average.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Ahhh, it's not as bad as it looks like...

                    Both parties are willing to cooperate together.

                    They hung on together for so many centuries, why would they suddenly part????

                    All loud talk of the radicals on both sides. Actually, that's all it is...

                    First the Walloons gone, then the Turks, then the Marokkans, then the Africans, then the people of the former Soviet eastern blocks...where will it end?

                    It's been done before:





                    Greets,
                    Stratego
                    Death is nothing, but to live defeated and inglorious is to die daily.- Napoleon

                    It is better to fail in originality than to succeed in imitation.- Herman Melville

                    Aut viam inveniam aut faciam

                    BORG

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      German choosed ?
                      Originally posted by MajorSennef View Post
                      Voted second option;
                      While I do not think that the Flemish would like to join the Netherlands as they find the Dutch too loud and too arrogant and Flanders could be a viable state all by itself,
                      the situation is different for Wallonia. This area is much poorer than Flanders is and has no access to the North Sea coast. As a state it is not very viable. I see Wallonia be incorporated into France much easier than Flanders into Holland.

                      As an afterthought: As the choice of what language in what situation in Belgium is often causing problems, why not chose for its third language: German? Neutral for all and although not many people know this, the third official language of Belgium
                      German as language ?That's assuming the French speaking able or willing to learn German

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by ljadw View Post
                        German choosed ?

                        German as language ?That's assuming the French speaking able or willing to learn German
                        I think you may be right in assessing that the Walloons are equally unwilling (unlike PM Leterme I'll not comment on them being unable) to learn German as they are to learning Dutch.
                        The German language at least has the advantage of being a 'neutral' language like English is.
                        The added advantage that German has over English is that it is an official language of Belgium, so the unique character of Belgium remains inviolate.
                        As a measure to keep Belgium together I think the role of neutral German deserves closer attention.
                        BoRG

                        You may not be interested in War, but War is interested in You - Leon Trotski, June 1919.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Metryll View Post
                          MJ,

                          Wallonia being poorer is a common independantist Flemish statment to be taken with a pitch of salt :

                          "Gross Domestic Product in Belgium (2006)[5] Rank NUTS region 2006 GDP (PPP)
                          per capita
                          in Euros % of the average GDP
                          of EU27 in 2006
                          1 Brussels 55,100 233.3
                          2 Flemish Region 27,900 118.0
                          3 Walloon Region 20,100 85.1"

                          http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Economy_of_Belgium

                          By comparison, Romania is 25% of EU average.
                          You are right, again. One should always read such data carefully and put them in context.

                          If the EU average GDP is put on 100, then
                          the Flemish region has an average of 118.0
                          which is comparable to its Dutch neighbours' of 130.9

                          The Walloon region has an average GDP of 85.1
                          while neighbouring France enjoys an average of 109.5
                          (not to mention Luxembourg's staggering 267.1 )

                          The region most comparable to the Wallon average is Saxony in East Germany with an average of 85.2

                          http://europa.eu/rapid/pressReleases...guiLanguage=en
                          BoRG

                          You may not be interested in War, but War is interested in You - Leon Trotski, June 1919.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            I remember reading somewhere that flemish and waloons cant vote for the same parties and that this means that its easy to blame everything that goes wrong on the others. Kind of like its always the foreigners who are the bad ones...

                            So, i'd agree on the need for understanding one anothers language and would add common parties. Blame the left, blame the right but dont blame "the" flemish/waloons.
                            Ha, wie so stolz und hehr
                            Wirft über Land und Meer
                            Weithin der deutsche Aar
                            Flammenden Blick.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              One question...
                              Why is Ricky Gervais in that picture?
                              Winnie says
                              ---------------------------------
                              "He fell out of a Gestapo car, over a bridge, and onto a railway line. Then was run over by the Berlin Express.

                              It was an Accident."
                              Herr Flick.

                              Comment

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