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…

KLINGENTHAL/PARIS/BONN | | frankreich

KLINGENTHAL/PARIS/BONN (Own report) - In the next few days German-French military circles will be initiating the establishment of an EU-wide association to reinforce the population's readiness to accept war. This is based upon an agreement between the German Gesellschaft für Wehr- und Sicherheitspolitik (GfW) (Association for Defense and Security Policies) and the French Civisme Défense Armée Nation organization (CiDAN) (Civil Responsibility, Defense, Army, Nation). Both have been engaged in promoting military policy projects in their respective countries. Current planning seeks to convince particularly journalists and teachers ("multipliers") throughout Europe "of the necessity (...) of consolidating efforts in the realms of security and defense." The objective is "the maintenance of the [EU's] status in the world" through an EU army. The GfW, which, from the German side, participated in the planning, is closely linked to the Bundeswehr (German armed forces) and the German ruling parties. Over the past few years, the GfW has been repeatedly criticized because of its contacts to extreme rightist milieus. more…