Belgian nazi-saluting police kill detainee

This 20 August 2020 video says about itself:

Nazi saluting police brutality footage shows Belgian officers laughing as they pinned down prisoner

For more about Nazi-saluting police brutality: Footage shows Belgian officers laughing as they pinned down prisoner who later died, please read here.

Jozef Chovanec died in the wake of his arrest at Charleroi airport in early 2018. Footage shows him banging his head against a wall while officers pin him down.

Belgium was in shock today after footage emerged of a man being pinned down by police shortly before he died – while officers laughed and one of them gave a Nazi salute.

The footage has sparked comparisons with the death of George Floyd in the US.

Chovanec was taken off a plane in Charleroi after refusing to show a ticket as he boarded, and taken to a holding cell where the footage shows him banging his head against the wall until his face bleeds heavily.

One policeman sat on his chest for 16 minutes while a laughing female officer performed the ‘Hitler greeting‘, before Chovanec died in hospital the next day.

What do you think of the police officer doing a Nazi salute as a man dies?

Daily De Standaard in Belgium reports today that the nazi-saluting officer (an inspector, not a rank-and-file cop) will at last be transfered from working with detainees to a desk job.

Belgian slaughterhouse COVID-19 scandal

This April 2020 video from the USA says about itself:

Perdue slaughterhouse workers PROTEST during CORONAVIRUS pandemic

Last month, Perdue slaughterhouse workers staged a walkout at a facility in Georgia because they did not feed “safe” during the coronavirus pandemic.

In this video, vegan psychologist Clare Mann talks about the cycle of violence within slaughterhouses and factory farms.

Translated from Dutch NOS radio today:

More than 200 employees of the Westvlees slaughterhouse in Staden, Belgium, have to be quarantined after a coronavirus outbreak among the workers. Eighteen employees have now been tested positive for the virus. The 200 tested staff members work in the same department. A total of 850 people work at the slaughterhouse, where 1.4 million pigs are slaughtered annually.

Earlier, relatively many infections were also found at a number of Dutch and German slaughterhouses. Employees at a slaughterhouse in Helmond continued to work with coronavirus complaints, for fear of losing their job, NOS reported last Sunday.

G4S defrauds Belgian taxpayers

This 12 July 2013 British TV video says about itself:

G4S to be the subject of fraud probe

They’ve been accused of overcharging the government tens of millions of pounds for electronic tagging contracts: now the Serious Fraud Office has been called in to investigate private security firm G4S.

That was then in Britain. And now, in Belgium …

Translated from Belgian (conservative) daily De Standaard, 16 June 2020:

Just before the [coronavirus] lockdown, the Belgian Competition Authority (BMA) started a thorough and large-scale investigation into abuses in the security sector. The file revolves around illegal market practices by the main players: G4S, Securitas and Seris. The study also includes Jean-Paul Van Avermaet, until recently G4S country manager, and the [governmental postal service] Bpost CEO since 13 January.

One of the possible injured parties in the file is Van Avermaet’s current employer: the Belgian government. In recent years, it has increasingly appealed to security firms. Since the terrorist attacks, their importance has increased and they are increasingly acting as an extension of the police.

A new private security law was even introduced. This entailed new tasks for the sector and was described as “the Jambon Act”.

Banks and Zaventem airport also often use the services of security firms, as do many retail companies and organizers of mass events. They all belong to the possibly injured parties.

The security firms are suspected of overcharging their services for years. They are said to not only have made price agreements, but also agreements about price increases and the charging of costs. They are also said to have been guilty of dividing the market between them.

Belgian prince gets coronavirus at Spanish party

This June 2014 video says about itself:

Prince Joachim of Belgium, Archduke of Austria-Este (Joachim Karl-Maria Nikolaus Isabelle Marcus d’Aviano, born 9 December 1991), Prince Imperial of Austria, Prince Royal of Hungary and Bohemia, Prince of Modena, is the third child of Prince Lorenz, Archduke of Austria-Este and Princess Astrid of Belgium. He studied for a “Bachelor of International Economics, Management and Finance” from September 2011 at Bocconi University in Milan.

I wonder how many people in the Austrian republic, in the Hungarian republic, in Bohemia in the Czech Republic and in Modena in the Italian republic, know that this Belgian Prince Joachim is their ‘real’ sovereign 🙂

Today, Dutch NOS radio reports (translated):

Belgian prince infected after ‘party’ in Spain

Belgian Prince Joachim has tested positive for the coronavirus. King Philip‘s nephew may have been infected after a party at a house in Córdoba, Belgian media report. It is not clear with how many people he attended the party in Spain and whether the meeting was allowed at all, the Flemish broadcaster VRT reports. A day after the party, he showed the first symptoms of corona.

This looks like a ‘Flu Klux Klan‘ style party for rich people; similar to the one at which Belgian police fined extreme right MP Van Langenhove.

The Belgian royal family only confirms to Flemish broadcaster VRT that Joachim had traveled to Spain last week. This concerned “a professional relocation, for an internship in a corporation”. The 28-year-old prince will stay in Spain in the near future; he is in isolation.

According to correspondent Rop Zoutberg, the matter is far from over. The news of the prince’s contamination is headline news in Spain, he says. Possibly because the prince violated coronavirus measures, such as the quarantine obligation [on arrival] in Spain. And there are said to have been 27 people at the party, while in Córdoba a maximum of 15 people can gather.

“It’s a bit like the story of Cummings, in England. The whole country is locked down. No one is allowed to travel. And then some princeling thinks those rules don’t apply to him,” says Zoutberg. The Spanish authorities have now launched an investigation into what exactly happened. If it will turn out that rules have been broken, the fines can amount to 600,000 euros.

Belgian far-right politician spreads COVID-19

This 7 September 2018 Dutch language video with English subtitles from Belgium says about itself:

The two faces of Schild & Vrienden: right-wing movement includes secret group full of racism, sexism and weapons.

They are neat and articulate, the members of the right-wing radical movement Schild & Vrienden. Founder Dries Van Langenhove is the representative of that. Our reporting magazine “Pano” followed him since the beginning of this year, but the editors also managed to infiltrate their secret chat groups. More than 65,000 messages could be viewed. It looks completely different: explicit racism, sexism and photos with weapons are no exception. How dangerous is the Schild & Vrienden movement really?

Translated from Dutch NOS radio today:

The police in Ghent has arrested [extreme right party] Vlaams Belang MP Dries Van Langenhove (27) during a prohibited party breaking anti-COVID-19 rules. This is reported by the Belgian daily Het Nieuwsblad. The party is said to have taken place on Thursday evening, with twelve present. …

According to the newspaper, Van Langenhove will be fined 250 euros.

On 14 March 2020, Van Langenhove on Twitter had denounced Belgians having parties breaking anti-COVID-19 rules.

Here, a sarcastic tweet on Van Langenhove’s recent arrest.

Rare eagle-owls nest in flowerpot

This 18 May 2020 video, recorded in Belgium, says about itself:

Man shares apartment with family of huge owls | Vroege Vogels

We could hardly believe it when we got a message from Jos Baart telling us that Europe’s biggest owl, the Eurasian eagle-owl, had made a nest in a planter in front of his window. Not only that, she had also hatched three giant chicks! Now, when he watches television, three huge chicks watch television with him.

Vroege Vogels is a Dutch radio and television show about nature, environment, climate and animal welfare.

Most Belgian bosses risk workers’ coronavirus contagion

This 26 March 2020 video from the USA says about itself:

Coronavirus Is Spreading Through Amazon’s Warehouses In The US | Mashable News

The news comes after more than 1,500 Amazon warehouse workers started a petition asking the company to take more precautions to protect them from the virus.

Translated from the (conservative Roman Catholic) daily De Standaard in Belgium today:

85 percent of audited companies do not adhere to corona measures: “This really should not continue”

Inspections of about 328 companies in the past two weeks have shown that 280 businesses do not adhere to the corona measures. This is evident from figures requested by the Green opposition party. …

From the figures requested by Green MP Evita Willaert, it turns out that the Inspectorate for Well-being at Work (TWW) registered 704 corona-related complaints in the period from March 23 to April 3. The service also carried out 750 remote checks, by which a checklist is gone over by telephone. In 85 percent of companies, staff did not follow the rules and insufficient distance was kept between them.

MP Evita Willaert (Groen) reacted indignantly to Radio1: “In 85 percent of the cases where inspection came, they had to give a warning. In 20 cases it was also decided to close company halls. 85 percent, you really can’t do that. That’s way too much.”

52 employers were also given a period to comply and one company received a misdemeanour police citation.

“People play games with the health of all employees by being so lax with the guidelines”, says Willaert.

Belgium: Faced with this, social struggles have multiplied in many enterprises (Audi, Volvo, Decathlon, Leonidas, Neuhaus, Brice, Bombardier, Safran Aero, Sonaca, Arcelor and many others) where protests and work stoppages have forced the National Security Council to tighten the screws on certain companies and sectors. The union leaderships have agreed with the bosses to establish a list of essential sectors where work can be authorized with fewer – and therefore more dangerous – measures of social distance. This list includes sectors that make sense (food, pharmacies and health care for example) but the devil is in the detail. For example, all petrochemicals are considered ” essential “, including those used to make perfume or plastic gadgets: here.

Belgian anti-Big Pharma doctor Van Duppen, RIP

This video is about the presentation of Dirk Van Duppen’s last book in the Roma theatre in Antwerp, Belgium on 9 February 2020.

Translated from Belgian (right-wing Roman Catholic) daily De Standaard today:

Doctor and politician Dirk Van Duppen (63) passed away

Dirk Van Duppen, one of the prominent doctors of Medicine for the People, passed away on Monday evening. [His leftist political party] PVDA confirms this. Van Duppen had been suffering from cancer for some time.

Van Duppen became known to the general public as the ‘communist general practitioner’ (because of his PVDA membership), an ardent advocate of Medicine for the People and as the creator of the kiwi model. In it, governments have to issue public offers for medicines and only reimburse the cheapest bidder. Van Duppen was not a fan of the big pharmaceutical companies throughout his life. “A sick business model,” he called it. “I have to push on it or nothing will change.”

At the beginning of this year he was still on the stage of the Roma [theatre in Antwerp] to present his new and also last book: “This is how the time allotted to me went.” Van Duppen already knew that he was terminal. He was diagnosed with an aggressive form of pancreatic cancer last year. Monday night he lost the fight at the age of 63.

Also from De Standaard. 15 February 2020:

“I see that my life has made sense”

A Marxist who hates dogma. A doctor who works for a worker’s wage. A terminally ill man who is hopeful. Dirk Van Duppen, figurehead of Medicine for the People and PVDA politician, is it all. An adieu. “Not many people are lucky enough to be able to go to their end like this.”

By Ann-Sofie Dekeyser

Sunday 9 February, 5.15 pm. “O bella ciao, ciao, ciao! / O partigiano, portami via / ché mi sento di morir.” The Roma in Borgerhout is filled to the brim. The venue was sold out in three days. 1,350 people are standing. Some put their left fists in the air, others wipe away a tear. They sing the partisan song full heart. The translation on the red screen does not allow any misunderstandings. “Oh comrades, take me / Because it feels like I’m dying.”

Translated from the site of Van Duppen’s PVDA party, 31 March 2020:

He devoted his life to the most noble cause: caring for others. “In the struggle of life, you’ll find more love. And in the struggle, you will be loved also “, he liked to quote Woody Guthrie‘s famous song. Happiness was for him: being able to mean something to others. …

As chairman of Medicine for the People, he tirelessly went to war against the scheming of Big Pharma and launched the kiwi model for affordable medicines. “Health should not be a commodity on the market. Healthcare must be public, high-quality and accessible”, he argued. That couldn’t be more topical today.

Dirk recognized the dockworkers’ back ailments as an occupational disease, earning him the honorary title of “straight-backed doctor”. But Dirk was also an activist for healthy air. He helped prevent the construction of the Lange Wapperbrug in Antwerp.

That bridge would have generated much air pollution by cars.

And as a PVDA city councilor, he mobilized the people of Antwerp against the water shutoffs by the Antwerp local authorities.

Again anti-Semitism controversy at Aalst, Belgium carnival

Aalst, Belgium carnival float with 'gold Wailing Wall', EPA photo

This EPA photo shows a carnival group in Aalst, Belgium dressed as vermin and walking along today with a ‘golden’ ‘Wailing Wall‘ in this year’s parade.

Translated from Dutch NOS radio today:

Jewish caricatures again at carnival parade in Aalst, criticism of ‘hate festival’

Carnival celebrators in Aalst today have mocked the indignation about Jewish stereotypes during the annual carnival parade in the Belgian city. Last year there was a lot of criticism of a carnival float with dolls of stereotypical orthodox Jews with hook noses and money bags.

In this year’s parade, carnival society Lossendeirdeveirdeirdeir showed a ‘humour tribunal’ on its float, with a Jewish caricature with long toes at the front.

In Dutch, the expression ‘lange tenen’ (long toes) means that someone is easily offended by trivial things.

A group also walked with a ‘wailing wall’ of gold bars. Members of the group were dressed as insects and wore ringlets hair and shtreimels, fur hats worn by orthodox Jews.

“More painful than last year”

The parade immediately led to fierce criticism from the Jewish community. Eg, the European section of the American Jewish Committee calls on the European Unity to investigate Belgium because the country has allowed the “hate festival”.

Depicting Jews as vermin is reminiscent, according to the organization, of dehumanizing Jews, as happened in the Nazi era. “My stomach turns around”, Ronny Naftaniel, chairman of the Jewish Humanitarian Fund, tweeted about the procession in Aalst.

The Belgian Forum of Jewish Organizations called the caricatures in this year’s parade “even more painful” than last year’s. “At that time we could still think that it might not have been the intention to insult, but now they are doing a bit more. That really defies all imagination,” said a spokesperson for the umbrella organization to newspaper Het Nieuwsblad.

The controversial dolls with hooked noses and ringlets hair that last year led to the carnival in Aalst being scrapped from the UNESCO list of intangible heritage were on display again today. This year the dolls were on a car with other caricatures in a kind of shooting gallery.

[Mayor of Aalst] D’Haese [of the ‘centre-right’ N-VA party]: “I have not seen any manifestations of racism or anti-Semitism”.

Belgian parade features costumes of haredi Jews with insect bodies: here.

Carnival parade in Spain features Nazi uniforms, trains with crematoria. February 25, 2020. By Cnaan Liphshiz.

Brown shrike in Belgium, first ever

This 25 October 2019 video from Heist in Belgium says about itself:

NEW FOR BELGIUM: Brown Shrike – Lanius cristatus

The first Brown Shrike for Belgium ever, a spectacular adult male!

Translated from Belgian daily De Standaard today:

The brown shrike was spotted in Heist on Friday, reports Natuurpunt. It is the first time that the bird is seen in Belgium.

On Friday bird watchers discovered a brown shrike in Heist. This brings the number of bird species found in Belgium to 452.

The species is originally from East Asia. In 1985 a specimen was discovered for the first time in Europe, more specifically in Great Britain. Later the bird was also noticed in other European countries, such as Denmark, Germany, France, Ireland, Italy, Malta, Norway, Spain and Sweden.

In the Netherlands, the species has been spotted four times, the first time in January 2014, the last two times this month. The species was also seen in France and Sweden, and it was this species’ first time in North America this year.

Other species

It is not the first rare bird species that was detected in Belgium last month. On the coast, for example, an isabelline wheatear, a Pallas’s grasshopper warbler, a red-eyed vireo and a Daurian shrike could already be noticed.

Why such species are seen in Belgium is not entirely clear, but according to Natuurpunt it is not surprising that they are discovered in the coastal area. The North Sea forms a natural barrier that most songbirds do not like to fly over, and in the harbour area there is bright light at night that attracts the birds.