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Thread: Battle of Dunkirk

  1. #31
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    Some interesting documentary lecture on the Dunkirk movie and of course the event itself:
    https://archive.org/details/Dunkirk-...-Peter-Hammond


    Quote Originally Posted by Chlodovech View Post
    .....
    Leopold III had hoped that he could save the monarchy and still play a role in a German dominated Europe this way, he had talks with Hitler to this end but they didn't amount to much and the matter was postphoned when it became clear the war would continue despite the fall of France. But it's another thing the opponents of Leopold III blamed him for, his contacts with Berlin - Leopold III was pro-New Order and against the politicians prior to the war already anyway. His adversaries would also criticize his p.o.w. status because he remarried during the war and had privileges as an imprisoned monarch (more like placed under house arrest). His new wife was no less than a commoner, Lilian Baels - which was scandalous for some people back in the day.
    At least the Belgian Monarch didn't flee the country. And yeah, officers do have privileges in captivity, too. House arrest is the right term.
    The Dutch Monarchy did flee the country and obviously in a pre-planned fashion towards Canada, which was part of the British Empire. If the Netherlands were really neutral, they would have gone to a neutral country. OK, anyone investigating the subject thoroughly and with an open mind, will know that the Dutch and Belgian proclamations of neutrality were pretentious and not to be take seriously, since they allowed Allied forces to cross their territory so that targets in Germany could be investigated and bombed. There were of course a lot of more things going on their. E.g. relating to the resources stockpiled in the Netherlands. And how the Brits did investigate this.

    A lot of the stuff revealing Allied-Benelux conniving between 1939-1940 is actually discoverable in the archives.

    Quote Originally Posted by Chlodovech View Post
    However, these opponents were virtually all Walloons & leftists and also a part of the upper class - a referendum was held after the war about the fate of the king and Flanders massively voted in favor of a return, the Walloons voted against - the return camp won a landslide victory, the Walloons then threatened civil war - and the king abdicated given the mounting pressure and the possibility of war. That was the only time we ever held a referendum in this country and we'll never have one again because it can only end with a huge ethnic brawl. But it goes to show that the democratic will and the desires of the Flemings don't matter in this country, that was true back then and right now.
    I think that needs some explanation. Belgium is actually a parliamentary (or constitutional) Monarchy. The Walloons are in the minority, yet they seem to run the state and bureaucracy by dominating the political field.

  2. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by Theunissen
    OK, anyone investigating the subject thoroughly and with an open mind, will know that the Dutch and Belgian proclamations of neutrality were pretentious and not to be take seriously, since they allowed Allied forces to cross their territory so that targets in Germany could be investigated and bombed. There were of course a lot of more things going on their. E.g. relating to the resources stockpiled in the Netherlands. And how the Brits did investigate this.
    Belgium allowed allies forces to cross its territory? Not sure what event(s) you refer to here. Unless you mean Belgium allowing allied troop movements on Belgian soil in the case of war between Belgium and Germany ("the Dyle plan"). Belgium was allied to France until 1936, but due to the lack of a French reaction to the remilitarisation of the Rhineland Belgium lost faith in the French and adopted a policy of neutrality from then on, however, the Belgian and French armies had nonetheless a secret plan to confront an invasion. Yet the Belgian military shot down several allied and German airplanes during the phoney war.

    A lot of the stuff revealing Allied-Benelux conniving between 1939-1940 is actually discoverable in the archives.
    There were undoubtedly contacts behind the scenes, they're well documented. As pointed out above, there were Franco-Belgian and Franco-Dutch plans in place for the defense of the Low Countries. Belgian and Dutch armies prepared exclusively for war with Germany.

    I think that needs some explanation. Belgium is actually a parliamentary (or constitutional) Monarchy. The Walloons are in the minority, yet they seem to run the state and bureaucracy by dominating the political field.
    From the Middle Ages until the 1960s the Flemish elite spoke French, sometimes the elite consisted of actual Frenchmen when Flanders was occupied by the French. And French culture has global reach, it was always hard to resist France's cultural power for Flemings. Especially the Napoleonic era convinced the Walloon elite of the superiority of French culture and things went rapidly downhill from then on. Without an independent Flemish elite thinking in terms of protecting Flemish national interests back in the 19th century, an era in which Flanders was poor after being robbed of its wealth by foreign occupiers for centuries and in which voting was the privilege of the elite (meaning, Francophones and the frenchified Flemish elite), there was simply no serious political resistance to Francophone supremacism. Until 1967 (!) there was only a French version of the Belgian constitution.

    When Flemings finally safeguarded their culture in 1970 it came at a heavy cost - which shouldn't have been paid. Amongst other things, Flanders had to relinquish its demographic superiority;ever since Francophone votes have been more worth than Flemish ones as Francophones can only vote for Francophone parties in Wallonia and Flemings for Flemish parties in Flanders - with the exception of Brussels, were people can vote for Flemish and Francophone parties. It's a disaster, because Flanders can never use its numerical superiority to win elections and change the country. It's theoretically possible to rule this country with only Francophone parties and a single minor Flemish one in a federal coalition government.

    Francophone superiority has simply been institutionalized and only the will of a single party truly matters (the Walloon socialists), they hold the most power and influence. They can and will block every reform unless they fear the consequences of doing nothing more: every time there were state reforms in Belgium the changes made to the institutions were meant to save the Belgian state and the Flemish negotiators whom provided their signatures for these reforms were spineless traitors/pro-Belgian collaborators. Independence is the only way out.

    But hey, today, 21/09/20, has been a great day for Flanders - we took another step towards independence - it looks like there will be new elections soon as the political parties are unable to form a new Belgian government. The polls predict massive gains for the Flemish nationalists.
    "Anyone who hasn’t experienced the ecstasy of betrayal knows nothing about ecstasy at all." – Jean Genet

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