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27 octobre 2008 1 27 /10 /octobre /2008 09:03

Dave Sinardet, post doctoraal medewerker aan het Departement Politieke Wetenschappen van de Universiteit Antwerpen en lid van het Wetenschappelijk Comité van het Studiecentrum Franstaligen in Vlaanderen, kwam aan bod op de BBC.

"According to Dave Sinardet, a political scientist at Antwerp University, the fact that Belgium's communities lead largely separate lives, and have no great affection for each other, need not spell the end of the country.

"These things are also true of the European Union and are not a problem for its continued existence," he says.

This raises an interesting point about parallels between Belgium and the EU.

The country was long regarded as a model for nations living in harmony under common institutions.

Then, over the past year, the Belgian stalemate was seen as a reflection of the EU's divisions and the travails of its reform treaty.

The real parallel, however, may be neither rosy nor gloomy, but bitter-sweet.

In both Belgium and the EU, shared institutions seem able to muddle through despite indifference from their constituent nations - rather like old couples who don't talk but stay together because separation is more trouble than it is worth.

Federalists both in Belgium and Europe might see this as too negative an argument for union - but it is a comfort of sorts."

(Bron: Can divided Belgium hold, together?, BBC new, 20 oktober 2008)

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