BERLIN/BARCELONA/MILAN/ANTWERP | | italienbelgien

BERLIN/BARCELONA/MILAN/ANTWERP (Own report) - As can be seen in an analysis of the separatist movements in Catalonia, Lombardy and Flanders, the deliberate promotion of exclusive cooperation between German companies and prosperous areas in countries with impoverished regions has systematically facilitated the autonomist-secessionist movements in Western Europe. According to this study, Flanders, as well as Lombardy - two already economically prosperous regions - have been able to widen the gap between themselves and the impoverished regions of Belgium and Italy, also because they have played an important role in the expansion of the German economy, the strongest in the EU. Through an exclusive cooperation with the state Baden Württemberg, Catalonia and Lombardy have been able to expand their economic lead over more impoverished regions of Spain and Italy, which has spurred their respective regional elites to seek to halt their financial contributions for federal reallocations through greater autonomy or even secession. The consequences of deliberate cooperation - not with foreign nations - but only with prosperous regions, can be seen with Yugoslavia. more…

VIENNA/ANTWERP/BERLIN | | belgienoesterreich

VIENNA/ANTWERP/BERLIN (Own report) - Several of the uttermost right-wing parties in Europe are proceeding - with the cooperation of German organizations - to forge international alliances. The Austrian Freedom Party (FPÖ) has announced its extension of relations to the rapidly developing US-American Tea Party movement. Just a few days ago, FPÖ functionaries visited Israel, together with leading party members of the Belgian Vlaams Belang (The Flemish Cause) in an effort to dispel their reputations of being anti-Semitic. Both parties are based in the tradition of Nazi collaboration. They are among the strongest uttermost right-wing parties on the continent and are profiting from the renewed German hegemony over Europe. They are including the German "pro-"movements into their current efforts to build an alliance. Parallel structures are being established, also with German influence, under the leadership of the Dutch racist, Geert Wilders, meaning that two rival racist party networks are vying for the leadership of the European extreme right - both with German participation. more…

RUESSELSHEIM/VIENNA/MOSCOW | | spaniengrossbritannienbelgien

RUESSELSHEIM/VIENNA/MOSCOW (Own report) - Under massive protests, Opel is preparing further steps toward the consolidation of the European auto industry in Germany. According to recent reports, the company's plants and those of its affiliate Vauxhall in Great Britain and Spain will be scaled back by one-third. The Opel plant in Belgium will be completely shut down. At the same time, loss of jobs in the company's German plants will be far below the average, and an enormous share of this phased out industrial capacity will be transferred to Austria, which has very close economic ties to Germany. Whereas employees in Spain and Belgium have taken to the barricades in opposition to these measures, German trade unionists are defending the plans. Whoever is "not in a competitive position" will have to look job reductions "in the eye," explained the chairman of the German Opel shop committee, Klaus Franz. German trade unionists are among those standing to benefit most from these deals. With the help of billions in Opel employees' wage waivers; they are seeking a ten-percent share of the company, promising an enormous boost in their power. more…

BRUSSELS/EUPEN/DUESSELDORF/BERLIN | | belgien

BRUSSELS/EUPEN/DUESSELDORF/BERLIN (Own report) - The ongoing current government crisis in Brussels is provoking discussions of secession projects in Belgium's Germanophonic eastern cantons. If the two large regions in Belgium, Flanders and Wallonia, really separate, why should the Eupen and St. Vith region not reorient itself - is a question being raised among the 70.000 Germanophones in eastern Belgium, who are also discussing their region's possible accession to Luxemburg or Germany. Intensive preparations by Germany's North Rhine-Westphalia, in close cooperation with the Germanophonic administration in eastern Belgium, point toward the German option. The two regions initiated new forms of cooperation last summer. Flemish separatism is at the root of Belgium's current government crisis and could, eventually, lead to a breakup of the country. In the past, Flemish separatism was strongly influenced by an anti-French alliance with a westward spreading German hegemonic policy. Berlin's objective was always to roll back French influence on its western neighbor. more…

AACHEN/EYNATTEN | | belgien

AACHEN/EYNATTEN One of the largest semi-official German associations is beginning to extend its organisational structure to the territories of neighbouring states. The ,,Sozialverband VdK"has founded the ,,VdK Local Association of Euregio East Belgium"which is affiliated to the VdK District Association in Aachen (Germany) as its thirteenth local branch. more…

EUPEN, BELGIUM (Own report) | | belgien

EUPEN, BELGIUM (Own report) As long as fifteen years ago, the hidden work of German influence in eastern Belgium gave rise to investigations by the Eupen Regional Assembly. In October 1995 this resulted in the appointment of an investigating committee which followed new lines of enquiry. more…

EUPEN/BRUSSELS (Own report) | | belgien

EUPEN/BRUSSELS (Own report) A German expert on ,,ethnic groups", who worked in previous years not only for German ,,Expellee"organisations but also for the doubtfully reputable Federal Institute for Eastern Reseach and International Studies, is the permanent representative in Brussels for the eastern Belgian German-speaking community. This was announced on Belgian radio. more…

KOENIGSWINTER | | tschechische-republikbelgien

KOENIGSWINTER The states of Eastern Europe should ,,in part take the outstanding Belgian laws for the protection of minorities"as a model. This was demanded at a conference of the ,,Cultural Foundation of German Expellees"and the ,,Study Group for Policy and International Law (Voelkerrecht)"in Koenigswinter. The German-speaking minority in Belgium uses its constitutionally guaranteed special rights to fight for further far reaching autonomy. Even secession from the Belgian state is no longer excluded from the debate. more…

BRUSSELS | | belgien

BRUSSELS The ,,German speaking community"in East Belgium is demanding greater autonomy and wants, in the long term, to be recognised as an ,,equal region"in federal Belgium. The Minister President of the Community, Karl-Heinz Lambertz announced in the Belgian capital Brussels that he had opened negotiations with the Belgian Region of Wallonia. The German speaking community, which already has sole responsibility in its area for culture and education, goes back to the former Reich districts of Eupen and Malmedy which were transferred to Belgium by the Treaty of Paris (Versailles). more…