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Korteweg, Ariejan

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2 articles of this author have been cited in the European Press Review so far.

De Volkskrant - Netherlands | 06/11/2009

The dangers of the identity debate

The question of national identity is being heatedly discussed in France. An unnecessary and possibly dangerous waste of time, writes the left-liberal daily De Volkskrant: "Regional meetings in the coming months will doubtlessly be ... the scene of fervid conflict. Then when all is said and done the minister will draw his conclusions and further tighten the reins of the naturalisation programmes for immigrants in France. Because - let's be clear on this - that's what it's all about. As a result countless energy will be put into a debate that could have been avoided altogether. Because if there ever was a country with a strong identity, it's France. Its territory has remained basically unchanged for ages, and its language and culture are firmly entrenched. The central power was established long ago and bolstered by personalities such as Louis XIV, Napoleon and Charles de Gaulle. With this debate on national identity France runs the risk of talking itself into an identity crisis."

De Volkskrant - Netherlands | 19/03/2009

Social unrest in France

Up to 2.5 million people will take part in nation-wide strikes against Nicolas Sarkozy's crisis policy today, Thursday. The social unrest arising from the crisis is growing, the national daily De Volkskrant writes: "If the social conflict becomes politically charged it is the Left that is mainly to blame for failing to direct the discontent in a particular direction. The Socialist Party is still immersed in a power struggle which drains it of the energy to formulate an alternative to government policy. The unions are happy to see the masses demonstrating. … Meanwhile Sarkozy and [Prime Minister] François Fillon are willing to make generous concessions for the sake of peace. In view of such a lack of leadership the extremist forces have free reign."

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