Mark Naessens [jv]

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Maurice is a retired police officer in the ghostly village of Doel. He can tell amazing stories about his job, the people he met, and the village he loved. That village, Doel, is now becoming the victim of the economy's expanse: the harbour is quicly gaining territory and the once lovely village of Doel, surrounded by lush green fields, woods and farms, lies now in the shadow of container cranes and is enclosed between long, cold docks. That, the people of Doel could have lived with and dealt with, and have moved on with their lives. Just like they did in the seventies, when they built the nuclear powerplant less than a mile away from this peacefull village. But the state doesn't care about these people. They're pushing to build yet another sea-dock, this time exactly where Doel lies now: the village will be erased, the church, the small library, that little yacht harbour - all will be gone. Untill 2007, the state cannot force the people to leave their houses and commence this project. They know that when the time has come to make the decision, the resistance of the villagers of Doel will be fierce, and they are afraid of the public opinion. So they've resorted to dirty tactics. They can't force the people to move away, so they're making life as hard as possible for the villagers, to make them move away 'unforced'. They are letting the village turn to ruins, not stopping thieves and vandals; all shops are closed now, and they employ so called social assistants and civilian advisors, paid to scare the people from Doel away - mostly older people. A lot of people could not endure this anymore, and have now left the village these past years and months. A small group of villagers continues to fight for their land, however. It is not an easy fight, a battle they are very unlikely to win, but they don't give up. Their courage, loyalty and love for their traditions, their village, and their neighbours and friends, is most inspiring. Maurice is one of the leaders of this committee. After interviewing him for over two hours, I have to say he is a truly amazing person. Underneath the little hair he has left, and behind the wrinkled face, there hides dedication, courage, honesty and wisdom rarely seen today.

Comments and critique welcome.