Open Access (free)
Domestic change through European integration

Austria's attitude towards the (West) European integration process after 1945 has been ambivalent at best. The Second Republic was designed as a democratic system, based on political pluralism and party competition. In comparison with other national parliaments the Austrian parliament is provided with strong constitutionally embodied participation rights in the field of European Union (EU) policy. To assess the changes in the Austrian policy-making process induced by European integration is somewhat difficult owing to the relatively short period of EU membership. The easiest part of the task of describing the changes Austria has undergone since the beginning of EU membership in 1995 concerns constitutional amendments. By way of conclusion, a clear-cut judgement on the form and degree of the transformation of the Austrian political and economic system as a result of European integration is far from possible.

in Fifteen into one?
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Serbian and Croatian victim-centred propaganda and the war in Yugoslavia

Comparing and contrasting propaganda in Serbia and Croatia from 1986 to 1999, this book analyses each group's contemporary interpretations of history and current events. It offers a detailed discussion of Holocaust imagery and the history of victim-centred writing in nationalist theory, including the links between the comparative genocide debate, the so-called Holocaust industry, and Serbian and Croatian nationalism. There is a detailed analysis of Serbian and Croatian propaganda over the Internet, detailing how and why the Internet war was as important as the ground wars in Kosovo, Croatia and Bosnia-Hercegovina, and a theme-by-theme analysis of Serbian and Croatian propaganda, using contemporary media sources, novels, academic works and journals.

Open Access (free)
Europeanisation and Belgian federalism

The Belgian policy toward European integration is the most significant demonstration Belgium has made of its commitment to multilateralism and international co-operation in security as well as in economic affairs. While the 'Europeanisation' of politics and policies is increasing, a question may be raised concerning the parallels between Belgian federalism and European federalisation. Such parallels have been drawn by the Belgian authorities, namely by Kings Baudouin and Albert II. While this 'official' approach might be seen as an attempt to legitimise the Belgian federal experiment as part of the European experience, one may also suggest that the two processes are moving in opposite directions. The first represents a case of 'centrifugal' federalism while the second illustrates a 'centripetal' or associative federalism.

in Fifteen into one?
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La gauche de la gauche

The growing influence of la gauche de la gauche was accompanied by the mushrooming of various militant groups and associations campaigning against racism, unemployment, homelessness and homophobia. This was boosted from the turn of the century by an emerging anti-capitalist movement. This chapter argues that the phenomenon of the 'social movement' was the product of a process of social and political polarisation to which France's party system had been unable to respond. The lack of response was because of the broad consensus which governs most areas of policy. The literature on social movements generally stressed their emergence in two waves, the post-1968 liberation movements and the post-1981 movements typified by SOS Racisme. The chapter outlines the way in which fundamental ideological differences between the parties of the mainstream left and right were being eroded. Under the Fifth Republic, revision of the electoral system forced parties to combine in alliances.

in The French party system

This chapter examines Turkey's relations with Israel, suggesting that Israel and Turkey have been motivated to weave their close ties by mutual interests, some of them existential. Israel aids Turkey with arms and equipment denied by an indifferent Europe and hostile American public opinion, while Turkey is making its space, ports and other installations available to Israel. The chapter contends that Turkey's relations with Israel and the inevitably pro-Israel position which that relationship projects offer a further expression of Turkey's growing involvement in the Middle East. It also argues that the development in Turkish–Israeli relations adds a more solid element to the much-publicised Turkish–Israeli military cooperation, implying long-term relations, even if Middle Eastern military and political circumstances change.

in Turkey: facing a new millennium
State–society relations and conflict in post-socialist Transcaucasia

The hidden transcript of ethnic conflict in post-Soviet Transcaucasia is obliged to an intellectual tradition that tries to reconcile culturalist and constructivist approaches with rational actor models. This chapter suggests a quite unorthodox way of bringing culture back into a concept of rationality. Instead of referring to cultural constraints on goal setting or manipulation of discourses as a technique of mobilisation, it introduces historically evolved and culturally embedded patterns of state-society relations as a key variable. A specific mode of state building, adapted to and shaped by a culturally mediated social structure, is analysed as a crucial precondition for the proliferation of ethnic violence. To replace nationalism with state collapse as the main factor behind the proliferation of violence in Transcaucasia not only provides answers but also raises many questions.

in Potentials of disorder

This chapter discusses the main impacts of British membership. It explains the ways in which the party system has been affected by the European Union (EU). The events of 1974-1975 and of 1992-1997, when British involvement in Europe cut across party lines, threatened the political stability of the country in these two periods. Some basic principles need to be identified to explain why Europe has proved to be so divisive. The effects on economic policy making of British membership in an increasingly integrated Europe can be divided into two main aspects. These are: policy making and convergence criteria. The effects of membership include loss of control over the setting of interest rates, much less flexibility in taxation policy and government fiscal budgeting, little control over credit restrictions and a general harmonisation of economic policy making with Europe as a whole.

in Understanding British and European political issues

This chapter reviews how far democratization has progressed in central and eastern Europe (CEE) in concrete terms and discusses some major points of contention that have arisen. It shows how democratization has been viewed in the CEE context and the nature of the conceptual lens that have been deployed to chart developments in this area. The chapter discusses democratization concepts that include transition, consolidation and stasis. The character of the political culture is often associated with the beliefs and practices that already well established in western Europe. Democratic development is often identified with Europeanization in the sense of the assumption of a consciously (west) European identity. This identity is, in practice, intimately associated with both the structures and the processes that are designed to lead to formal EU membership. Finally, the chapter examines different reasons that have been identified to explain the deficiencies of the post-communist democracies.

in Democratization through the looking-glass
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This chapter discusses the formation of the Centrumdemocraten (Centre Democrats, CD) in the Netherlands. On 5 December 1984, Hans Janmaat joined the party. Because of legal technicalities, Janmaat remained officially an independent MP. However, from the moment Janmaat joined, the CD was identified as his party. The CD does not possess a very elaborate ideological programme. The party literature contains, at best, a shallow ideology focusing on only a limited number of themes. This holds true especially for the party paper CD-Info, which by and large deals with four main themes: opposition to the multi-cultural society, populist anti-party sentiment, the undemocratic struggle against the own party, and fighting crime.

in The ideology of the extreme right
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After the expulsion of the Janmaat group at the end of 1984, the troubles of the Centrumpartij were far from over. It was declared bankrupt on 13 May 1986. The successor was founded exactly one week later, conveniently named Centrumpartij'86. The CP'86 does not have a particularly well-developed ideology. Its election programmes hold scanty introductions, which precede long lists of unsubstantiated demands. The only party programme it ever presented was copied literally from another party. Its paper mainly contains articles on current affairs. Substantial articles dealing with questions of the present or future are absent. This notwithstanding, the literature of the CP'86 is loaded with terms that seem to be part of an elaborated ideology, such as ‘third way’ or ‘national revolution’. A new goal for the party is an ethnically homogeneous Great-Netherlands in which political power is put in the hands of the Dutch people.

in The ideology of the extreme right