A striking feature of socialist Europe is the proliferation of separatist movements. Growing numbers in Northern Ireland want to split from the UK and found a new nation called Ulster. Nationalists in Scotland also want to go it alone. Belgium’s Flemings (the Dutch) want independence and some Walloons (the French) have responded with a proposed state of their own (you cannot fire me, I quit!). Denmark’s Faroe Islands and Greenland both have independence movements. In France, there are separatist rumblings in Brittany, Corsica, and the Basque country. Catalonia has recently expressed its displeasure with being part of Spain. Germany’s Bavaria gets restless now and then. In fact, there are many such movements within most European countries, although not all of them must be taken seriously.
A preoccupation with ethnicity, minorities, and differences erodes national identities based on what a people have in common. (Photo: public domain)