Sunday 28 August 2011

Royal Wedding in Germany
No need for being jealous anymore, Germans got their own royal wedding yesterday, the third big event of this kind in Europe after the wedding of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge in April and the Monaco wedding in July.

Melbourne’s tabloid newspaper HeraldSun covered the wedding, a stunned public watched in Germany: Germans rediscover royal glamour. The Age was late and had an article on the paper's website on 29th August: Kaiser heir and princess join royal wedding fever.

Prince Georg Friedrich of Prussia, head of the Hohenzollern family and great-great-grandson of Kaiser Wilhelm II, married Princess Sophie of Isenburg, in the Friedenskirche (Peace Church) in Potsdam.

The House of Windsor was represented by Lord Nicholas Windsor, son of the Duke and Duchess of Kent, Lady Paola Windsor with their children Albert and Leopold.

Portugal's Dom Duarte Pio, Duke of Bragança, and his wife Isabel, Duchess of Bragança, attended the wedding.

Prince El-Hassan bin Talaal of Jordan and Princess Sarvath of Jordan

From Belgium came Prince Laurent, King Albert's son.

King Mihai I of Romania had sent his eldest daughter, Crown Princess Margarita and her husband.

After the ceremony, the couple travelled by a carriage drawn by six horses to Sanssouci Palace for a dinner and ball. Several thousand onlookers lined the streets to see and acclaim the couple.

The public TV station Rundfunk Berlin-Brandenburg (RBB) broadcast the wedding in a three hour programme, which was also streamed live on the internet and was viewable even here in Australia.

Friday 26 August 2011

Watch the German Royal Wedding on the internet
When asked earlier this year, RBB - Rundfunk Berlin-Brandenburg, the public TV-station of Berlin and Brandenburg - were reluctant to broadcast the wedding of HIH Prince Georg Friedrich of Prussia and HSH Princess Sophie of Isenburg.

A month ago RBB announced it would cover the wedding in Potsdam live from 11 am to 2 pm plus a 40-minute documentary with the day's highlights in the evening. They refused to stream the wedding live on the internet.

This decision has been reversed.

This Saturday the whole world can watch the "German wedding of the year" on the internet. From 19 pm AEST to 22 pm AEST the ceremony should be seen on the RBB's website or on the Hessischen Rundfunk, HR's website (which could provide a better connection).

Tuesday 23 August 2011

Loriot has died

Today's top news in Germany has nothing to do with the situation in Libya or the economic downturn, no, it is the death of a man everybody loved: Bernhard Victor von Bülow has died at the age of 87. As his alias name he had chosen Loriot, the French term for the bird of the Bülow family's coat of arms.

Broad sheet papers like the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung or the Süddeutsche Zeitung mourn the death of Vicco von Bülow, whose ancestor played a key role in defeating Napoléon at Waterloo in 1815.

He was a cartoonist, film director, actor and writer who made Germans laugh for decades. Vicco von Bülow, more commonly known as Loriot, has left behind a legacy of humor.

Born on 12th November 1923 into a noble Prussian family, Bernhard Victor Christoph Carl (or just Vicco) von Bülow started his career drawing cartoons with characters that had potatoe noses and depicted the funny side of human frailty and communication problems.

In the early 60s German television asked him to present British and US cartoons, but soon discovered not only his own cartoons but his talent as a comedian. His series of sketches and cartoons became an important part of Germany's cultural consciousness.

He and his amusing characters became such a success that he went on to produce a few full-length movies (Ödipussi and Pappa ante portas). None of them have been screened outside the German-speaking realm, but the BBC has run some of Loriot's sketches and cartoons and received a great response from an English audience.

As he grew older, Loriot even had a humorous perspective on his own age. "You're barely born and you're already 80," is how he commented the feeling he had about entering his 80s.

In answer to the question of what had most influenced his work, Loriot answered in 2007: "I remember that, when I started studying, I was living between a madhouse, a prison and a cemetery. The location alone explains everything, I think."

And this is the RadicalRoyalist's favourite sketch: Two gentlemen in a bath tub:

Loriot is dead - long live Loriot!

Sunday 21 August 2011

Another Royal Wedding - in Tonga

The South Pacific will soon see its own royal wedding. The second in line to the throne of the Kingdom of Tonga is to get married.

Prince 'Ulukalala (26), second in line to the Tongan throne, is courting Hon Sinaitakala Tu'imatamoana Fakafanua (24).

The pair, who are both great-grandchildren of the late Queen Salote, were matched in a Faitohi ceremony held by their families at Ma'ufanga on 28th July.

The Faitohi ceremony is a traditional Tongan courting ritual in which Prince 'Ulukalala officially asked for Hon Sinaitakala's hand in marriage at her residence Siatapu at Ma'ufanga.

Prince 'Ulukalala is the eldest son of Crown Prince Tupouto'a Lavaka and Princess Nanasipau'u Tuku'aho.

Hon. Sinaitakala is the only daughter of Princess 'Ofeina Fakafanua and the late Fakafanua (Tutoatasi).

The King of Tonga, His Majesty Siaosi (George) Tupou V, is a bachelor and has no children.

For more photos of the Faitohi ceremony go to Matangi Tonga online.

Saturday 20 August 2011

The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall visit London's riot communities

The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall met families whose homes were burnt down, and those from the emergency services who were on the frontline of the London riots on 17th August. They broke off from their holiday in Scotland to show solidarity with urban communities scarred by the violence, arson and looting.

Speaking of the unease still gripping many neighbourhoods, Prince Charles said it was time to deal with the "real causes" rather than the "symptoms" of England's worst civil unrest in decades

On a visit to Tottenham Green Leisure Centre in Tottenham, North London, where an emergency relief effort is under way, Their Royal Highnesses also chatted to volunteers who have been helping those affected get their lives back on track.

During the visit, Their Royal Highnesses met children at the Tottenham Green Leisure Centre, where the Salvation Army is also helping to sort through items donated to the centre.

In Hackney Prince Charles met youth ambassadors and volunteers at a centre for The Prince's Trust, the charity he founded in 1976 to help turn around the lives of disadvantaged youngsters. Volunteers from Youth United, an organisation established by The Prince to bring together a number of youth groups including The Scouts Association, Boys Brigade and The Prince’s Trust among others, took to the streets today to help clean up the mess caused as a result of the riots.

"Young people join gangs because it is a cry for help," the heir to the throne said. "There are not enough extra-curricular activities and young people are lacking opportunity. A lot of people are dealing with the symptoms and not looking at the real causes. You can now go out there and motivate others and set an example for young people and show them there is another way. You are the army we have to mobilise."

The Prince has been committed to helping young people for many years, and in 1976 established The Prince's Trust to help change young lives. The Prince's Trust announced it will be providing a £2.5 million investment to communities that have been hardest hit by the riots including Manchester, Birmingham and the London communities of Hackney, Tottenham and Croydon.

In Lambeth, The Prince and The Duchess met those from support services who had been at the frontline of the riots, including police, ambulance and fire services from other boroughs.

Early warnings fom The Prince's Trust
Earlier this year, The Prince’s Trust has warned the UK is developing a "youth underclass". A survey for the Prince's Trust of more than 2,300 people aged 16-24 published on 18th May suggested those from deprived backgrounds were three times more likely to say they will "end up on benefits".

The Prince's Trust blamed an "aspiration gap" between rich and poor. The research revealed what the trust described as the tragedy of young people from poor homes who feel they have no future.

A quarter of those from deprived backgrounds believed they would achieve few or none of their life goals, with a similar proportion expecting to end up on benefits for at least part of their life.

Some 23% from this group thought they were destined for a dead-end job compared to 6% of those from affluent families.


Friday 19 August 2011

Final preparations for Germany's royal wedding of the year

Very soon Germany will host a royal wedding that might be modest in comparison to the wedding of the Duke and the Duchess of Cambridge on 29th April, but when HIH Prince Georg Friedrich of Prussia and HSH Princess Sophie of Isenburg marry in Potsdam on 27th August, several hundred journalists will cover the ceremony and an interested German public will follow the events in Brandenburg very closely.

To satisfy the great interest, the public broadcasting system of Berlin and Brandenburg – RBB – Radio Berlin-Brandenburg – will broadcast live from 11 am to 2 pm. RBB will also show a 40-minutes summary at 8.15 pm on the same day. Viewers all over Germany – and in effect in great parts of Europe - can follow the event via television (either cable or satellite). However, RBB will not be offering live streaming.

For everybody outside Germany who would like to watch the „German wedding of the Year“ (Die Welt) on the internet, there is a chance from 9 pm onwards on 27th August. RBB will offer the evening summary for viewing here for a couple of days.

In July Prince Georg Georg Friedrich and his fiancée, Princess Sophie, attended the wedding in Monaco together.

Prince Georg Friedrich’s father, HRH Prince Louis Ferdinand of Prussia, married in 1975.

The grandfather of Prince Georg Friedrich, HIH Prince Louis Ferdinand of Prussia, married Grand Duchess Kira of Russia in 1938.

There have not been a lot of great weddings of the German Imperial Family. This underlines the importance on this year's wedding of the head of the Hohenzollern family, it's a once in a generation event. The last great Imperial wedding of the German Empire was in 1913 when Princess Viktoria Luise which was filmed using an early colour system, married Duke Ernst August of Hanover. Together they ascended to the throne of the Duchy of Brunswick.

Thanks to the internet, the RadicalRoyalist should have downloaded RBB's wedding programme by Sunday, 28th August. Anyone in Australia interested in receiving a wedding DVD?

Thursday 18 August 2011

The Swedish Crown Princess Couple is expecting a child

Their Royal Highnesses The Crown Princess Victoria and Prince Daniel are happy to announce that The Crown Princess is expecting their first child.

The birth is expected to take place in March of 2012. No changes in the schedule of The Crown Princess´s public engagements are planned during the autumn of 2011.

Swedish tabloids immediately jumped into a frenzy over the the news.

"It is with great joy that I have been informed of the news that the Crown Princess and Prince Daniel are expecting a baby. You have a fantastic experience to look forward to and I want to send my warmest congratulations to you both," wrote Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt in a statement.

Crown Princess Victoria and Prince Daniel married on 19th June 2010. Their wedding attracted 500,000 spectators to the streets of Stockholm (according to the TV station RTL: "Selon les premières estimations officieuses, quelque 500.000 curieux seraient descendus dans les rues de Stockholm pour assister aux noces de la future reine de Suède.")

Sunday 7 August 2011

The late Prince Ali Reza's daughter was born seven months after his death

HIH Prince Ali Reza, second son of the late Shahanshah Mohammed Reza of Iran, committed suicide on 4th January 2011 (see the RadicalRoyalist's obituary).

Darius Kadivar, an exiled Iranian Monarchist blogger, reported two days ago:
It has been officially announced that the late Prince Ali Reza has a daughter named Iryana Leila born on July 26th, 2011 to his relationship with fiancee Raha Didevar.

Prince Ali Reza was formally engaged in 2001 to Sarah Tabatabai, but it seems that the relationship ended some time afterwards.

On the website of HIM Shah Reza II this message was published:
On behalf of my family, I wish to inform our compatriots & friends of the birth of Iryana Leila, daughter of our beloved Alireza, on July 26th, 2011.

We know you will join us, out of respect and love for our dearest
Alireza, and allow the baby and her mother Ms. Raha Didevar to recover & thrive in peace and privacy.

We continue to be touched and grateful for your love and heartfelt sympathies that have been extended to us, unconditionally, since our loss.

Tuesday 2 August 2011

Is this the result of the "Egyptian Spring"?

On a Royalist forum this sentence was posted yesterday:

«Bonjour, je viens d'apprendre que l'impératrice Farah Pahlavi à l'occasion de la date d'anniversaire du décès de son époux le défunt Shah Mohammed Reza Pahlavi a été interdite de séjour en Egypte par les autorités égyptiennes.»

«I have just learned that the Empress Farah Pahlavi was forbidden by the new Egyptian authorities from visiting the country on the occasion of the anniversary of her husband's, the late Shah Mohammed Reza Pahlavi, death.»

Should this be true it indicates that the Arab spring, that led to the toppling of the longtime dictator Husni Mubarak, is heading in the wrong direction. Should such a step please the Muslim brothers who always opposed His Imperial Majesty - and all Monarchies in the region? Or should it give a signal to Iran that Egypt was trying to appease the Mullah regime?

The Shahanshah’s tomb in Cairo’s Al Rifa’i Mosque.

In any case, not allowing Her Imperial Majesty to pay homage to her late husband's tomb should be seen as an inhumane and dishonest act. And it would certainly not give a reassuring sign to the Western world.

Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi died on 27th July 1980. His last words: “I wait upon Fate, never ceasing to pray for Iran, and for my people. I think only of their suffering.” In Cairo, a grand funeral honoured him. Three million Egyptians followed the procession.