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  #261  
Old 12-02-2015, 01:53 PM
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Originally Posted by MAfan View Post
If so, they cannot be considered indicative of what the King and Queen did during the first day of the lockdown.
Besides, I believe that with Bruxelles locked down it must have taken some time to arrange the safe return of the King.
Plus by the lightening, this looks like early afternoon, so the shooting wouldn't have taken place yet in Paris and they wouldn't have possibly known that there was going to be a lockdown in Brussels the next week.

And they were in the city during the work days of the lockdown as well.
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  #262  
Old 12-03-2015, 06:45 AM
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Originally Posted by Marengo View Post

According to Flandersnews.be the king speaks about 'futilities':

Read more here.
There is too much on this unpleasant affair to discuss. Of course, the spa thing is a big PR mistake from every point of view. It has nothing to do with the fact that they would not have been that useful in Brussels anyway. They should have cancelled the trip and stayed in Brussels, IMO. And the King should probably have spoken to the Nation when the situation became so worrying (I know that depends on the Government but anyway massive PR fail from all parts).

Then again, P&M have been done a flawless job since they became monarchs, and everybody makes mistakes. They are not the first royals to fail this way nor will they be the last ones. I expected from them to recognize their fault in what it takes and go on.

But. I think it's not a mistake what defines a royal, or a person, for that matter, since we all make mistakes. It's the reaction to your own mistake what does. And you have this:
Quote:
"King Filip has clearly been irritated by reactions and speaks of 'futilities'"

I know Belgium is not Spain and so I don't expect Philippe to apologize in public à la Juan Carlos, but comment nothing at all would have been a thousand times more appropriate that insinuating that the anger caused for your own mistake is a "futility".

That single quote speaks a lot more to me (and not in a good way) than the supposed scandal by itself.
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  #263  
Old 12-03-2015, 07:18 AM
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Originally Posted by ANNIE_S View Post
There is too much on this unpleasant affair to discuss. Of course, the spa thing is a big PR mistake from every point of view. It has nothing to do with the fact that they would not have been that useful in Brussels anyway. They should have cancelled the trip and stayed in Brussels, IMO. And the King should probably have spoken to the Nation when the situation became so worrying (I know that depends on the Government but anyway massive PR fail from all parts).

Then again, P&M have been done a flawless job since they became monarchs, and everybody makes mistakes. They are not the first royals to fail this way nor will they be the last ones. I expected from them to recognize their fault in what it takes and go on.

But. I think it's not a mistake what defines a royal, or a person, for that matter, since we all make mistakes. It's the reaction to your own mistake what does. And you have this:

I know Belgium is not Spain and so I don't expect Philippe to apologize in public à la Juan Carlos, but comment nothing at all would have been a thousand times more appropriate that insinuating that the anger caused for your own mistake is a "futility".

That single quote speaks a lot more to me (and not in a good way) than the supposed scandal by itself.
King Philippe is completely justified to talk about "futilities". During the lockdown, he used his personal relationship with the King of Morocco to gather useful intelligence about the terrorist threat in Belgium. Both he and the Queen also took part in public events in Brussels during the lockdown week. Since then, King Philippe has also met with families of the victims of the Paris attacks and has taken part in meetings related to programs to combat radicalization of Muslim youth in Belgium.

The "spa controversy" is a non-issue manufactured mostly by the press from France and the Netherlands, which have been engaged in a great deal of "Belgium bashing" lately. This factoid was later seized by the Flemish papers , which of course wouldn't miss an opportunity to attack the King.
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  #264  
Old 12-03-2015, 07:34 AM
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Nothing has been manufactured in the Netherlands AFAIK. The French newspaper published the photos. This was shared en masse by the Belgian media. The other French media didn't pay much attention to it. The Dutch media seem to have copied some articles from Flemish newspapers with whom they sometimes cooperate.

The king was right that it is a futility in the larger picture of things. He said those words in the context of his meeting with Belgian survivors of the Bataclan attacks. However, he should be the last one to make such a comment. Again it is very bad PR even when he is right.

Also: the attacks happened on the 13th. It was known during the whole week that something was brewing in Brussels. France was on the edge for the whole week. On the 20th in the morning the city closed down. A decision that they probably didn't take within a few minutes.

It is hardly worth the storm, but it all just leaves the impression -IMHO wrongly- that the king is detached from reality and prefers his own weekend plans over solidarity with his fellow Belgians. He is after not a private citizen but the king.

Again: Leopold III lost his throne because he did not seem to undergo the same fate as his fellow Belgians soldiers during the war. Although it is clear that the king must have suffered during the war as he was in a deep depression- he did lose his throne due to a perception of him being detached, enjoying himself with miss Baels while the country was suffering. Perceptions do matter, even when they are wrong.
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  #265  
Old 12-03-2015, 07:43 AM
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Correct me if I'm wrong, but as far as I have understood:
- sometime on Friday Philippe and Mathilde were pictured in a spa in France;
- later on Friday night there was the attack in Paris;
- on Saturday it emerged that likely an attack could take place also in Belgium; the King was in constant touch with the Government; Bruxelles was locked down;
- on Sunday the couple returned in Bruxelles.
I believe it may have taken some time to arrange a safe return back to (the by the time locked down) Bruxelles.
Maybe they could have indeed returned already on Saturday, but maybe it wouldn't have been much safe. However I doubt that many details about who, how and when such decisions have been taken.
In conclusion, I don't think they could have done something more or more quickly.

Besides that, I wonder: why to wait so much time for raising the issue?
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  #266  
Old 12-03-2015, 07:53 AM
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The attack in Paris was the week before, on the 13th. In the week that followed many things led to Molenbeek in Brussels. It was coninuously on the news, several arrests were made before the lockdown.

Friday the 20th the king goes to the wellness resort, this is also the day that the pictures were taken. The next morning, saturday the 21st Brussels is closed down due to terrorist threats. The king stayed in Bretagne for the day, according to the court he was regulary updated about the situation. Sunday the couple planned to go home. According to the court they left home a little earlier then planned.

Quote:
Besides that, I wonder: why to wait so much time for raising the issue?
The absense of the king was already noted by some newspapers. I suppose that only two days ago the press saw these pictures and the comment from sources in the French security services that were amazed that the king didn't return to Brussels right away.

***

Anyway, though it is a PR blunder the Belgians can also laugh about it. Instead of 'terror level 4' the press now refers to 'wellness level 4'.
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  #267  
Old 12-03-2015, 08:24 AM
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The attack in Paris was the week before, on the 13th.
My fault, don't know why but I've mixed up the dates and "postdated" the Paris attack.
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  #268  
Old 12-03-2015, 08:24 AM
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For Christmas instead of Message Royal it is Massage royal etc....
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  #269  
Old 12-10-2015, 12:50 PM
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In Point de Vue this week : the bad choice of the King !
You see a picture of our great Grand Place empty with only militairies with guns and car, and anther picture of our King drinking a cocktail in a Thalasso equipment !
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  #270  
Old 12-11-2015, 11:58 AM
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Originally Posted by maria-olivia View Post
In Point de Vue this week : the bad choice of the King !
You see a picture of our great Grand Place empty with only militairies with guns and car, and anther picture of our King drinking a cocktail in a Thalasso equipment !
Is the press still trying to milk this factoid ? I thought it had become clear that the "cocktail picture" was taken before the terrorist threat level was raised in Brussels.
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  #271  
Old 12-11-2015, 02:55 PM
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In Belgium it is his Thalasso equipment who makes us joking.
They travelled and booked on a private name such as Mr and Mrs Van Laeken ?
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  #272  
Old 12-11-2015, 05:21 PM
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Originally Posted by maria-olivia View Post
In Belgium it is his Thalasso equipment who makes us joking.
They travelled and booked on a private name such as Mr and Mrs Van Laeken ?
AFAIK Philippe is not legally allowed to do that anymore, he has to take military planes wherever he goes.
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  #273  
Old 12-11-2015, 05:36 PM
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In Belgium it is his Thalasso equipment who makes us joking.
They travelled and booked on a private name such as Mr and Mrs Van Laeken ?
I imagine what happens with this whole issue in the Social media there and not to blame I hope the Kings have enough humor to bear it
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  #274  
Old 12-18-2015, 11:16 AM
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The family's Christmas wish (with new family photo):
https://twitter.com/MonarchieBe/stat...65657715703808

Larger format: https://pbs.twimg.com/media/CWhDOROVAAATc_t.jpg:large
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  #275  
Old 12-18-2015, 12:34 PM
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A nice family picture I think it's the same published on the birthday of Princess Elizabeth.
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  #276  
Old 12-18-2015, 02:27 PM
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Lovely picture of the family.
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  #277  
Old 12-18-2015, 07:23 PM
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That's a lovely photo of the family. I love seeing all the royals' Christmas card photos.

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Originally Posted by eya View Post
A nice family picture I think it's the same published on the birthday of Princess Elizabeth.
I think you're right:

14th Birthday
Christmas card photo
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  #278  
Old 01-08-2016, 10:05 AM
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King Philip has given away 104.000 euro an people/ familys in need

article
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  #279  
Old 02-08-2016, 02:06 PM
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Week of sports and family holiday....

https://scontent.fath4-1.fna.fbcdn.n...97348846_o.jpg

https://scontent.fath4-1.fna.fbcdn.n...44257966_o.jpg
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  #280  
Old 02-08-2016, 03:16 PM
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Cute picture of the 4

the royal couple
http://www.epa.eu/thumb.php/52577121...olZ60Dfn81iCJ8
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