Tuesday, October 9, 2018 - 06:59
Dutch Minister of Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation, Sigrid Kaag, made a strong argument against populism, during an annual lecture in September, in honour of Holocaust survivor Abel Herzberg. "We increasingly notice that parts of society are susceptible to half-truths, manipulation, fake news", she said. She drew a comparison with the Weimar Republic - Germany just after World War I - where democracy was overthrown by increasingly radical parties. Kaag also said that she is regularly confronted with her Dutch identity as a person married to a Palestinian man. She regularly has to explain that her daughter is really her daughter, just because she looks 'different'. "Sometimes, because of my marriage and career, I am treated as a foreigner in my own country. And then I wonder: who decides that? Who is the Dutch foreign national, and who is not. In the stereotype I often clearly belong, and more painfully, my children too."