THE VLAAMS BLOK IS DEAD, LONG LIVE THE VLAAMS BELANG!!!
You may remember distant rumours back in spring telling of my party, the Vlaams Blok, or rather three supporting organizations, being labeled "racist" by a court in Ghent, the second most important Flemish city. Well, on November 9, 2004 this arrest was not only confirmed by Belgium's Supreme Court in Brussels but also extended to the whole of the party. On November 9, the Vlaams Blok was declared a racist organization and as such prone to disbandment, and its members to prosecution.
I was a bit surprised to find quite some Anglosphere sites offering thorough analysis brought in a lucid way on the matter. In fact, their commenting is so good I feel I can hardly do it better, so I will just refer you to Beautiful Atrocities - Soviet Socialist Republic of Belgium and Cordon Sanitaire by Jonathan Lockhart.
The Supreme Court ruled that VB pamphlets and other textual matter incited hatred directed towards the immigrant population in Belgium, mainly from Morocco, Turkey and Algeria. Now, while it is true that of the sixteen texts which were used as proof to support the verdict, one was indeed clearly outrageous (linking the behaviour of immigrant police officers to paedophilia), most offered matter-of-fact information, such as official stats dealing with crime rates and welfare expenditures. There was also a pamphlet including a testimony from a Turkish woman who worked for the Vlaams Blok (!) in which the often lamentable position of women in Islam was described. The Supreme Court did not even deny the basic tenet of this text (nor of several other ones) but instead labeled this text also as racist on the basis of its supposed intent!
Anyway, having been declared a racist organization and there being something like an Anti-Racism Act in Belgium (tailor-made and modified SIX TIMES over the past decade to meet the requirements needed to apply it to the Vlaams Blok), the party could be disbanded and not only its members but everyone cooperating with it could be prosecuted.
That is why the leadership of the Vlaams Blok decided to convene, on November 14, 2004, a congress on which the name of the party was officially changed to Vlaams Belang - Flemish Interest - and its party program reshuffled somewhat to not resemble too much the one of the now defunct Blok. With "reshuffled" I mean just "reshuffled". For while it is true that the origins of the Vlaams Blok are murky (the veterans did sympathize with those Flemings who joined Wehrmacht and Waffen SS to fight communist Russia in WWII; also its early programs breathed in-your-face xenophobia), anno 2004 the Blok had become a relatively modern, free-market oriented(not 100%, admitted) conservative party, and did not object to immigrants living and workig here on the condition that they integrate (learn the language, NOT forsake their identity) and abide by Belgian law.
Indeed, as Frank Vanhecke, Flemish MP and Vlaams Belang Chairman put it:
Though the Vlaams Blok was Belgium’s biggest party and occupied a third of the seats in the Flemish Parliament, we felt compelled to disband. According to the Belgian Anti-Racism Act every member or collaborator of the Vlaams Blok could be brought to court.
That was one month and a half ago. We are approaching year's end, and a Le Soir poll released this week shows the Vlaams Belang has gained even more support since the verdict. I hope that this trend continues and that more and more Flemings realize that not the Vlaams Belang is a threat to democracy - as the politically correct cabals would want us to believe - but the ever growing stranglehold of that typical European brand of Leftism establishing itself not only on the Parliamentary floors but also in unions, social security services, media channels, courts etc. with a force belying its actual popular support.
In the meantime, the Vlaams Belang is waging a propaganda offensive to get the new name to be known among the public. Here is one of their posters:
The lady, Anke Vandermeersch, is a former Miss Belgium (1991) and a lawyer. As you can see it's quite a hot chi... a rather attractive woman. MFBB denies strongly that this has anything to do with his leaving the VLD in favour of the VB earlier this year.
Merry Christmas to all!