Traditional Britain Group Annual Dinner Speech by MEP Philip Claeys
by The Editor
European MEP Philip Claeys's inspiring speech to the TBG's Annual Dinner.
Ladies and gentlemen,
First of all, let me tell you it's a pleasure and an honour to be able to speak to you today. It’s always a pleasure to be in London, especially in the company of friends. So I would like to thank the Traditional Britain Group for inviting me so kindly to its Annual Dinner.
Gregory Lauder-Frost has asked me to say something about the developments in Belgium regarding immigration, Islamification, about Flanders possiby seceeding, about the future of the EU, and what the future holds in my country and for traditionalists everywhere. It’s a vast number of subjects, so I will get started right away – and I’ll start with the situation in Belgium.
After the general election of 2010, it took a year and a half to form a federal government, and it’s a government that doesn’t even have a majority on the Flemish side. It’s a world record, and the reason for this is quite simple: Belgium is not a real country, let alone a real nation. It’s two countries in reality: Flanders, the Dutch-speaking northern part, and Wallonia, the French-speaking southern part. Flanders and Wallonia are two separate political, economic, social and cultural realities. Flemings and Walloons don’t read each other’s newspapers, they don’t watch each other’s television programs. They literally don’t speak the same language. Apart from the communist party, there are no Belgian political parties; there are just Flemish and Walloon parties.
Belgium is the last surviving artificially created state in Europe after the collapse of the Soviet Union, Czechoslovakia and Yugoslavia. These are not my own words, by the way, but those of a journalist of The Times online.
First of all, there is no such thing as a Belgian national feeling or national consciousness. There is no Belgian people, but two peoples forced to live together. Politically speaking, the Flemings almost never agree with the Walloons. Flanders is in favour of a free-market economy whereas Wallonia wants – and gets – big government socialism. 40% of the active population in Wallonia is government- employed, whereas this figure is 25% in Flanders. The unemployment rate in Wallonia is 18%, in Flanders it about 8%.
On a yearly basis, every Fleming has to pay 1.600 Pounds on average to Wallonia. In proportion, this is more than the money flowing from Western Germany to the former German democratic republic after the reunification.
It’s no mystery why taxes in Belgium are among the highest in the world.
The French-speakers in Belgium account for less than 40% of the total population, but they get half of the government ministers and half of the seats in the Belgian Senate. The Walloon minority has the right to veto any form of legislation decided by a Flemish majority in Parliament. In other words, majority rule is only theoretical in Belgium. The Walloon minority that rules the country is lead by an aggressive, extremist and archaic socialist party.
To summarize: Belgium is an ungovernable country. Yes, we eventually got a federal government after one and a half year of negotiation, but that government doesn’t even have a majority on the Flemish side. It’s dominated by the French-speaking minority and it takes measures that hurt Flemish taxpayers and Flemish businesses and Flemish interests in general.
One of he biggest problems in Belgium is mass immigration. Each year more than 100.000 foreigners are moving in, that’s the size of the total population of a midsized town. You have to know that Flanders already is the most overpopulated country in continental Europe.
We constantly have to provide more schools, more social housing projects, more hospitals and even new prisons. In cities like Brussels and Antwerp, more than three quarters of social houses are inhabited by migrants. People of foreign origin already are in the majority in these cities.
We have witnessed the emergence of parallel societies, where North-Africans and Turks, for instance, are leading a life as if they were still living in there own countries. They have their own mosques of course, their own satellite dishes to watch their own television programs, they have their own clubs, their own butchers and other shops, their own barbers, etc, where they use their own language and talk about their own problems.
Many of these people don’t speak Dutch or French, and complain that they can’t find a job. They blame it on racism and discrimination. And the crazy thing is that leftist and many other politicians agree, or pretend to agree. They pretend to agree because they want the immigrant votes.
And yes, non-citizens can vote in local and European elections in Belgium. Moreover, it’s so easy to get Belgian nationality that you don’t even have to speak any of our official languages, let alone that you would have to prove that you’re integrated. You don’t need all that. You just need to prove 5 years of legal residence in Belgium. That’s why the law that makes this possible is called the “get-Belgian-quickly” law. More than half a million foreigners got the Belgian nationality in ten years. These people are now Belgian citizens, so they can even vote in the parliamentary elections.
All this was imposed to the Flemings by the French-speaking parties. These parties all wanted this because they are waging a demographic war against Flanders. It is their strategy to dilute the Flemish population and to undermine its national identity by way of mass immigration. And this strategy is actually working.
Look at Brussels, for instance, which historically and geographically is a Flemish city. But it’s a Flemish city where the Flemings today account for only about 5 or 6 % of the population. Flemings have massively fled their city because of mass immigration, Islamification, multiculturalism and crime. Today more and more French-speaking Belgians are leaving Brussels and are settling in the Flemish municipalities close to the capital. This is a win-win situation for the French speaking parties: they get rid of the Flemings in Brussels, and in the same time they can make territorial claims on Flemish communes around the city.
You might think you have enough problems of your own in Great Britain, and that I don’t have to bother you with mine as a Fleming, but the problem for all of us is that Belgium seems to have become a kind of role model for the European superstate. Belgium acts as a model for the European Union in its efforts to create an artificial state out of different peoples with separate languages, cultures and traditions. It seems to emulate Belgium’s political traditions of corruption and lack of democracy and accountability.
Many Belgian politicians even take pride in that fact, and recommend this so-called model for the rest of Europe. King Albert, the former king of Belgium, and Guy Verhofstadt, the former Prime Minister, have both openly stated this in public.
So what I would like to say to you, my friends, is: always think of Belgium when you hear about further European integration.
Belgium and the EU share many fundamental characteristics.
There’s the lack of democratic legitimacy. Belgium doesn’t care what the Flemish voters want. The EU doesn’t take the referenda on the European constitution and the Lisbon treaty into account. They don’t care about the voters in France, in Holland and in Ireland, where they had the privilege to have their say.
There is the structural money-flow from the north to the south, just like in Belgium.
Another characteristic is the constant and endless bickering on competences and power, where no-one ever seems to be satisfied.
The EU has an open-border policy, just like Belgium.
And of course, worst of all is the willingness to create a European artificial superstate, that would be something like a greater Belgium.
As a Flemish nationalist, as a Flemish patriot, I’m fighting for an independent Flemish state.
And the late Harvard political scientist Samuel Huntington was not afraid to say what it's all about. It's Islam against the West, it's also mass immigration, multiculturalism and relativism against the preservation of our identity, it's political correctness against freedom of speech.
And one might think the aggressive expansion of Islam is the biggest threat to the West today. Well, there is an even bigger threat. It's what happens in our minds. How can we expect to be respected as a culture, as a civilization, when we don't even respect ourselves? We don't believe in ourselves anymore, just look at the falling birth rates in most of the European countries, look at our acceptance of the fact that major parts of our cities have become ghettoes. Look at the feeling of guilt we have inflicted upon ourselves after being convinced we are racists. (if not personally, then institutionally)
Gains by Eurosceptic parties. It certainly was the case in Britain, with the UK Independence Party emerging as biggest party. But this was also the case in France with the Front National of Marine Le Pen, in Denmark with the Danish People's Party. And in several other member states, like the Netherlands and Finland, Eurosceptic parties came out very strong.
It's important that all these parties and MEPs work efficiently so that their voices can be heard. You have to realise the European Parliament has 751 members coming from 28 countries and speaking 23 official languages. It's more like a tower of Babel than a proper Parliament. Speaking time in the plenary session is one minute, two minutes if you're lucky.
The European Parliament is an institution with very complex rules and procedures, an institution - and what did you expect - with a very powerful and self-serving bureaucracy which is of course rather in favour of even more EU integration. There are more than 6000 civil servants working for the European Parliament, and I'm not counting the assistants of the members.
In that context, you need to work together, you need to join forces if you want to be taken into account.
Most of the patriotic parties don't belong to a political group. That's why their MEPs are called 'non-attached' members. But these MEPs are being discriminated. They don't enjoy the same rights and facilities as those of the MEPs that belong to a group. For instance, they cannot table amendments or resolutions in the plenary session. They can do that in the committee meetings, but not in the plenary session. They cannot chair committee meetings. They have less staff than their colleagues, they don’t have guaranteed speaking time in all the important debates, etc.
So we are going to establish a new group in the EP.
I’m convinced that one day, my grandchildren or their children will have history schoolbooks stating that Enoch Powell was speaking the truth when he delivered his so-called Rivers of blood speech in 1968. They will say that the French writer Jean Raspail was right when he predicted the problems of uncontrolled mass immigration in his visionary novel ‘Le camp des saints’ that was published a few years later, in 1973. They will say that Geert Wilders was right when he started his campaign against the Islamification of the Netherlands and the rest of Europe.
People have lost their jobs for having stated the obvious. They have been vilified. They have been persecuted. They have been threatened. Some have even been killed because of their ideas, like Pim Fortuyn and Theo Van Gogh.
But there is one thing at least that no one will ever take away from us.
Enoch Powell and Jean Raspail and Geert Wilders and so many others have proven that we patriots and conservatives are not stuck in the past, but on the contrary, that we are actually on the forefront of political thought. We make the correct analysis of the problems, we offer the right solutions, we have the courage to speak up and to go against the flow and that’s why, my friends, the future belongs to us.