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Aflevering 3, 1980 Alle samenvattingen uitklappen

Mark Deweerdt

De regeringsvorming Martens I

Auteurs Luk Holvoet en Marc Platel

    The first months of political life in Belgium in 1979 were essentially characterized by the great difficulties encoutered in the formation of a new cabinet. In 1979 Belgium lived its longest cabinet crisis in its history. As usual, the process of cabinet formation started with the nomination of an «informateur», followed by that of a «formateur». However, formateur Wilfried Martens did not succeed in forming a cabinet: oppositions on issues and strategies between the parties proved to a high to be surmounted. The King there upon introduced an innovation: he designated two «mediators». These, however, also failed to find some ground for agreement. Eventually, after elaborate informal contacts, the resigning Prime-Minister, Paul Vanden Boeynants, was nominated as formateur. After a month of laborious negotiations he successfully completed his mission. However, he preferred to leave the post of Prime-Minister of the new five party cabinet to Mr. Martens, till then president of the FlemishChristian-Democrats.

Luk Holvoet

Marc Platel

De splitsing van de Belgische Socialistische Partij

Een B te veel

Auteurs Jan Ceuleers

    This article describes the facts and events that led to the linguistic splitting of the former Belgian Socialist Party into two independent and autonomous political parties: the French speaking Parti Socialiste (PS) and the Dutch speaking Socialistische Partij (SP). Reference is made to unpublished documents and interviews with persons concerned.

Jan Ceuleers


seize ans d'expérience pluraliste

Auteurs Pierre Lefevre

    With its sixteen years, experience of pluralism, the FDF appears to represent a new type of political party in Belgian politics. Owing to the multiplicity of its origins the federalist party of Brussels was obliged in an initial stage to reconcile manifold philosophical, ideological and political tendencies; in later years it has succeeding in giving an even more concrete contents to this pluralism. lt now consciously tends to make this pluralism a political advantage in its competition with the traditional parties. Both the evolution and the structure of the party were strongly determined by this specific characteristic.

Pierre Lefevre

De Volksunie 1977-1979

Toch uit de oppositie. Een vergissing of niet?

Auteurs Marc Deweerdt

    The activities within and around the Volksunie get much media attention compared with other parties. The top politicians of the Volksunie such as former president Schiltz have more influence than their colleagues. It was Schiltz that niade his party enter the government. His opinion was that every political party must try to achieve that goal. It is not so sure that the traditional Belgian political families are willing to accept new partners. Apart from that it is possible that the Belgian, electorate wants some parties to remain in the opposition. As far as the Volksunie is concerned the policy of Mr. Schiltz has been rejected by the electorate.

Marc Deweerdt

Les relations belgo-zaïroises

Réflexion sur une pratique de la politique étrangère

Auteurs Jean-Claude Willame

    In reviewing the Belgian policy towards Zaïre for the last two decades, one is struck by a certain politica! as well as economic withdrawal which has become more obvious since the end of the sixties. In the context of the «Mobutu Plan», the Marshall Plan for Zaïre, or in that of the two Shaba upheavals, Belgium, unlike France with respect to its former colonies, has choosen to align itself with big powers policies and international organizations, and to avoid taking too strong stands in the rather confuse situation which prevails in Zaïre today. Although unanimity does no langer exist among the various Belgian pressures groups about what is tobe done in Zaïre, the official policy of the government is entrenched in a «wait and see» attitude which points to the deepening contradictions within Western states towards Africa in general and Zaïre in particular.

Jean-Claude Willame

Bilan Belgisch buitenlands beleid 1979

Auteurs Paul Van De Meerssche

    Normally the Belgian foreign policy is not an explosive matter for public debate. However during 1979 the attitude and decisions of Minister Simonet concerning the Nato-demands for production and installation of 464 Cruise- and 108 Pershing-missiles were strongly criticized. Mainly his socialist friends of the «Socialistische Partij» (Simonet belongs to the «Parti Socialiste»), the «Volksunie» and also important pressure groups as «Pax Christi» disapproved the positive attitude of Minister Simonet vis-à-vis the Nato-demands. A climax was reacted during a protest-meeting in the streets of Brussels on December 9, 1979 and during the debate in the Belgian Parliament (Chambre of Representatives). It resulted in a declaration by the Belgian Prime Minister Martens on December 12, who agreed that the Belgian Government should ask for a delay of 6 months. Among other items of Belgian foreign policy examined in this article one can notice the evolution of the position of the Belgian Government in European Affairs and in the Middle East problems. Finally, the author broadens his survey to the more fundamental question of the meaning of the foreign policy of small countries.

Paul Van De Meerssche

Le parlement européen

Comparaison des résultats de juin 1979 et portrait de l'Assemblée élue

Auteurs Dusan Sidjanski

    The results of the first European elections reflect the general distribution of the European electorate slightly center-right oriented, even if the abstentionism of almost 40 % caused some distorsions as in the case of United Kingdom. After the comparison of the results, state by state, it appears globally that the socialists ( 113) and liberals (40) regressed, the gaullists and their allies (22) suffered a serious defeat, white the christian democrats ( 107) and the communists (44) progressed and some minor parties (leftists and regionalists) entered the European Parliament. The second part contains a portrait of the new European Parliament which is younger than its predecessor, has more women including its president and has many high personnalities. As in the past, the political groupsplay a central and dynamic role. The question is to know if they will be capable of maintaining their cohesion. The examined cases give no evidence of the existence of the center-right majority in front of the left opposition. In fact, there were changing coalitions and voting constellations according to different problems, ideological options or concrete choices. The recent vote rejecting the proposed budget expresses a will of the European Parliament to impose its style and its democratic control on the European Community.

Dusan Sidjanski

Jozef Smits

Bibliographie de l'année politique 1979

Auteurs Wladimir S. Plavsic

Wladimir S. Plavsic

Editor Res Publica