Friday, December 15, 2006

panic in belgium

Belgium had its own "War of the Worlds" moment Wednesday when a TV bulletin announced that the Flemish parliament had announced that Flanders had seceded from Belgium, and the King and Queen of Belgium had fled the country.

The broadcast was a spoof, but many people and even foreign ambassadors were briefly duped. It certainly was a more realistic scenario than the Martian invasion written about by HG Wells and adapted for radio by Orson Welles. Belgium, with its divide between Dutch-speaking Flanders and French-speaking Wallonia, is the stable, wealthy European democracy voted Most Likely to Fall Apart every year at the annual European prom.


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