Denmark. According to Countryaah.com, Denmark Independence Day is April 16. Denmark’s participation in the war against Saddam Hussein’s regime in Iraq dominated the political debate during the year. In March, the bourgeois government decided to provide military support to the US-led coalition by sending two naval vessels to the Persian Gulf. The Social Democrat-led opposition was very critical of the war adventure and felt that it violated international law. However, the government parties Venstre and the Conservative got a majority for their proposal in the Folketing with the help of the Danish People’s Party. After the war, the Folketing decided by a large majority to send a few hundred Danish soldiers to join the multinational security force.
The debate over Denmark’s participation in the war against Iraq continued during the summer. The opposition demanded an independent inquiry into the government’s basis for joining the war. The former head of the UN weapons inspection, Hans Blix, criticized Foreign Minister Per Stig Møller, saying that he had interpreted Blix’s reports on weapons of mass destruction in the same way as the US and Britain had done.
In August, a Danish soldier in Iraq was killed by a comrade’s shotgun. The Danish force was several times involved in the shooting when Iraqis were killed. In October, the Folketing decided to send another 90 soldiers to the Danish force, which would thus amount to over 500 men. The force was stationed in southeastern Iraq and was under British command.
The government declared during the year that a new referendum on EMU is planned, probably in 2004. The Danes will also have to take a stand on Denmark’s other exceptions to EU cooperation and vote on the new EU constitution. Government Support Party The Danish People’s Party declared that it will fight against the proposal for a new EU constitution. The party believes that it is a new state formation that poses a threat to Denmark’s freedom and right to self-determination.
The tightening of the Danish Immigration Act 2002 meant, among other things, that it became difficult for a foreigner to marry a Danish and accompany him to Denmark to live there. The couple must live in the country where they spent the most time together. Therefore, after harsh criticism from both Danes and foreigners, the Minister of Integration presented a new proposal in 2003 that would exempt certain wealthy countries such as Japan, the United States and Canada from the regulations. The new proposal was also criticized for being discriminatory. The tightening of immigration policy in general led to a sharp reduction in the number of asylum seekers during the year.
In the early summer, a Chinese ship outside Bornholm sank after a collision. The oil leak became extensive and reached the southern coast of Skåne. The Danish authorities received criticism from the Swedish Coast Guard for delaying the rescue work and attempts to reduce the damage caused by the oil spill.
At the end of the summer, several thousand people protested against the government’s plans to restrict the freedom of the residents of the so-called Christiania sanctuary in Copenhagen.
In October, Crown Prince Frederik engaged with Mary Donaldson from Australia. The wedding between Denmark’s future king and queen will be held in May 2004.
Community Fight 1971-72
In the 1971 elections, the Social Democracy regained some of its parliamentary strength and formed government – supported by SF. But the cooperation was not as close as in 1966-67, and the government had to maneuver on a case-by-case basis. To a certain extent, the government was protected by the bourgeois parties because of conflicting interests in the Community issue. The Krag government saw it as its main task to get Denmark into the EC, despite considerable opposition within the party and trade union movement. In January 1972, the EC Treaty was signed in Brussels and it was decided to conduct a referendum on the issue on 2 October.
The desire for Community membership came primarily from agriculture and farmers’ organizations, which would have better outlets and higher prices. The majority of the industry also advocated membership for economic and political reasons in particular. Industry could fear greater competition in the domestic market and the common commodity tariff in the EC would increase industry spending. More important than this, however, was the alliance with the ruling classes of the major capitalist countries. An alliance that could be traced back to the late 1940’s.
Political motives were also most important for opposition to the EC, even though parts of the industrial and petty bourgeoisie in the cities had economic interests in standing outside. But for those classes where resistance was strongest – the working class and the middle classes in public service – the main fear was that the strength of relations between the classes would be undermined and that rights and reforms that had been fought for decades should be attacked. Opposition to the EC widened rapidly from 1971. It was not certain that the referendum would end with a victory for supporters. At the turn of the year 1971-72, the “Joint Committee on Community Membership” was established, in which DKP and SF collaborated with the anti-EC wing of the Social Democracy, as well as with the League of Law, the Danish Assembly and various nationalist, anti-German organizations. In addition, individual Community opponents from the Left, the radical and the conservative, participated. A large number of local committees emerged, and during 1972 a broad front organization developed, which must be described as the post-war’s largest popular social movement:The People’s Movement against the EC. The variegated composition of the front was at the same time its weakness. It lacked the ability – and within SF and DKP’s will – to formulate real, credible political alternatives to Community membership. Thus, the strong membership of the voting membership (63.5% for, and 36.5% against) was not only a product of the large and demagogic Community campaign of the major bourgeois and social democratic organizations, but also of a lack of confidence in an alternative among the broad strata of the population.
Copenhagen – music
Copenhagen has a rich musical life on both the classical and the rhythmic stage. Historically, the city has attracted musicians and composers who have shaped the Copenhagen music scene, and in addition to classical music, jazz, rock and other rhythmic styles also live in the Copenhagen space today at festivals, venues and at concerts.
Classical music life
The city’s position as capital from the 1400’s, and the Reformation of 1536 became crucial to the establishment of a musical life. The reason for the Royal Chapel had already been laid in the 1400’s, and court music flourished under Frederik II and especially under Christian IV, who brought foreign musicians to the city.
From 1689, opera was played, mostly under the auspices of the court. Popular was Mingotti’s opera troupe, which performed 1747-56, but from 1748 received competition from the newly established Kgl. Theater that became the center of dramatic music. The theater was also a concert-giving institution, under the band masters JAP Schulz and FLÆ. Kunzen. 1700’s Copenhagen was also characterized by musical companies such as the Musical Society with semi-public concerts.
In the early 1800’s, the music life was dominated by the composers CEF Weyse and Fr. Kuhlau. In 1836, the Music Association was founded, and under Niels W. Gade’s leadership (1850-90) it gained a central status as a concert organization. Cæciliaforeningen (1851-1934) was established by Henrik Rung specializing in older Italian choral music, and Studenter-Sangforeningen was formed in 1839 with JPE Hartmann as a central figure. HC Lumbye was the leader of the Tivoli Concert Hall Orchestra (from 1843), and the still existing Chamber Music Association arose in 1868. Several smaller music associations tried their hand later in the 1800’s, with new repertoire, and the hiring of Joh. Svendsen at the Royal Theater in 1883 meant performances of Wagner and Verdi’s music. The 1920’s and 1930’s brought several innovations, partly the establishment of Statsradiofonien (1925), which from 1933 began the Thursday concerts, partly the founding of Det Unge Tonekunstnerselskab (1920-94), now replaced by Musica Nova, for the new music. Finally, the Copenhagen Boys’ and Men’s Choir was founded in 1924 by Mogens Wöldike. Most old music associations did not survive the 1930’s.
Copenhagen has a number of orchestras; most prominent is the Royal Kapel, DR Radio Symphony Orchestra and the Zealand Symphony Orchestra. Modern musical drama has been housed in Plex since 1994 (until 2006 known as The Second Opera). The education for classical musician takes place at the Conservatory of Music (founded 1867), and musicology was established as a subject at the University in 1896. Music collections can be found in the Royal Library and in the Museum of Music History and Carl Claudius’ Collection. Copenhagen is home to the Statens Musikråd, which includes the Danish Music Information Center (established 1980).