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Defend Democracy

As the situation in Catalanonia develops over the next few days it’s vital to send out a message of solidarity from across Europe. That’s why the  the Catalan Defence Committee Scotland has been established.

You can add your name in support HERE today.

” The behaviour of the Spanish state is an outrage to all democrats across Europe. The peaceful and courageous action of millions of Catalans has been an inspiration. But this movement requires international support…”

As Iain Macwhirter wrote this week:

“What happens in Catalonia is not just an internal matter for Spain, and it is time this was recognised by the international community. There is an important legal context to bring to bear on the crisis. As  it says in the United Nations Charter, “all peoples have a right of self-determination”. That applied mainly to anti-colonial movements but the Canadian Supreme Court’s 1998 ruling on the question of Quebec’s secession from Canada confirmed that self-determination can also apply to regional movements in democratic states. While unilateral secession is illegal, “a clear majority vote in Quebec on a clear question in favour of secession would confer democratic legitimacy on the secession initiative”. The Clarity Act in 2000 put this into legislative effect and has been the starting point for all considerations of the law on regional separatism, including the Edinburgh Agreement in 2012.”

He concludes: “Suppression of democratic participation and denial of self-determination should be of concern to all democratic nations that subscribe to international law and human rights conventions. The EU should have condemned the actions of the police in the October referendum.”

 

Anna Arque – who will be speaking at the SIC Build 2 conference was interviewed for Newsnight here:

Defend Democracy – join the Catalan Defence Committee here.

 

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27 Comments

  • Redguantlet 3 weeks ago

    Iain MacWhirter and the Scottish chatterati could do worse than actually examine what is truly happening in Catalonia instead of letting their emotions run away with themselves.

    The government of Catalonia does not have the support of even 50% of Catalan voters to declare UDI.

    Independence supporters in the Catalan Parliament make up over 50% of MPs, just, but not of the popular vote, which reached 47%. How can any democrat possibly support UDI in such a case? It is democratically indefensible…

    Let’s try it out on Scotland: if London refused Scotland another indie vote, and at the following Scottish Parliamentary Elections, the pro indie forces of the SNP, the Greens and the SSWP, or RISE, got 47% of the popular vote, and one or two seats more than Unionist forces, is Iain MacWhirter saying he would be in favour of UDI?

    Is Bella Caledonia?

    If the SNP were to put that in their manifesto, their support would dwindle in just a few weeks…

    It is literally NOT POSSIBLE to carry out UDI without the overwhelming support of the population, and it will lead to direct rule, violence and quite possibly the loss of human life…

    This is a putsch by Puigdemont’s utterly corrupt Catalan PdeCAT in an unholy alliance with the madness of the CUP – who want to create a mythological “Paisos Catalans”, a country built on linguistic lines – who only got 8% of the vote….

    …apply a linguistic principle – instead of bilingualism or multi-ingualism – to the countries of Europe and we will see the continent return to ethnic cleansing and war…. it already happened in the past. That is what the EU was invented to prevent…

    All we hear about is the oppression from Madrid in Scotland. We never hear anything from film directors like Isabel Coixet, writers like Juan Marsé and Eduard Mendoza, or THE CATALAN ICON of resistance to Franco, the singer-songwriter Serrat, all of whom are horrified by what is happening in Catalonia, all of whom are right to be so….

    I am sick of Scottish journalists playing out their indie fantasies on a country and a people they simply do not know enough about, and thinking they are being progressive. It’s romantic bollocks. Why would Bella support the break away of Spain’s richest region from the poorer south of the country?

    UDI is not progressive politics… it’s the most serious situation in Europe since the Balkans War…

    The Scottish nationalist have been gulled, by the bullshit propaganda .

    Puigdemont and Rajoy are two nefarious, corrupt, cowardly, manipulating demagogues who are not up to the European standard of Parliamentary democracy…

    Reply
    • John 3 weeks ago

      I don’t have enough knowledge of the situation to know what is right or wrong, but for sure, what I saw, was the Spanish state cracking skulls, brutalising women and beating up on oaps a few weeks back. That’s what happened.

      Reply
      • Redguantlet 3 weeks ago

        Agreed, John, 100%.

        But the police violence seen in Catalonia over the last few weeks, has been seen ALL OVER SPAIN, since the start of “la crisis”, and especially since the mass movement of 15-M and the indignados in 2011, as you can see here. It just wasn’t reported in the MSM in the UK, and it certainly wasn’t on the front page of The National…

        Music by the brilliantly talented RAP group Chicos de Maiz, a track called COP$….

        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JzLonVcg2Ec

        Reply
        • Steve Cairns 3 weeks ago

          That acceptance “all over spain” doesn’t justify the violence Redguantlet. It makes a pretty good case to me for rejecting a state which chooses such violence as it’s arbiter, even most of it’s regions have a lower GDP and higher poverty rates than you. (As would be the case with many parts of the UK if Scotland left.)

          Catalonian independence is obviously not something you want to happen. Your prerogative, and I make no judgement on that. My interest is almost entirely reserved to how the dispute is to be resolved, as frankly should be the EU’s.
          On that question of how you wish to gain your preferred outcome, I find you unclear:
          Do you seek an opportunity for all the citizens of Catalonia, to express their collective democratic will unmolested… as the Scots did in 2014…. Or do you seek some other method, which prevents that solution, and instead guarantees the defeat of the presumed separatist minority you seem to despise?

          Reply
          • Graham 3 weeks ago

            Well said, Steve. It’s outrageous they way European leaders have supported Rajoy unreservedly and have not called for dialogue and discussion to reach a settlement and have merely parroted the Spanish trope of “one Spain indivisible”. It signifies that European leaders are not truly interested in democracy, but merely with shoring up their own positions and retaining power at the centre. “You can have democracy, but it’s our version you’ll have or not at all.”

            Rajoy has regressed to the Francoist past and the rest of Europe turn a blind eye. The Scottish Government is one of the few voices saying the people of Catalonia “must have the ability to determine their own future”. It’s a bad time for real democrats who believe in the sovereignty of the people.

  • Robert McGowan 3 weeks ago

    Good on the folk of Catalonia sending best wishes from Scotland

    Reply
  • David Allan 3 weeks ago

    The Spanish Constitution denies the Catalans the opportunity to express their will either way in a “legal” referendum.

    Hypothetically were the EU Constitution constructed in a similar manner and a region/country expressed a democratic wish to leave yet all other members denied them that opportunity . No Brexit! Would the UK be a willing partner thereafter?

    Is the Spanish Constitution beyond an amendment? Have the Spanish Government no vision other their stubborn tactic of defending at all costs their flawed Constitution?

    Reply
  • Redguantlet 3 weeks ago

    People in Scotland have to understand is that all of the repression which is going to come down on Catalonia from the Spanish Establishment is EXACTLY what Puigdemont and Junqueras want, let alone the CUP, who want a full scale social revolution.

    Their strategy is, “the worse things get, the better for our cause”…. that’s the game plan.

    Which was the game plan of the martyrs of 1916 when they stormed the Post Office in Dublin. The only problem is, we’re in 2017, in one the richest democracies in Europe, not in colonial, impoverished Ireland under the heel of Imperial England for 800 years…

    Given Rajoy and the PP are a bunch of authoritarian neo-Francoist retards – their instincts are authoritarian, they truly don’t understand what a democratic response even looks like – that strategy is working a treat…Both Puigdemont and Junqueras are going to end up in jail…

    What I don’t understand about the Scottish chatterati and their love-in with Catalonia is, why are you not out on the streets with your Saltires demanding a second independence referendum? What are you waiting for?

    The SNP got as much of the popular vote on their own- 46.5% – at the last Scottish Parliament elections as the entire cross-party Junts Pel Si put together!!! That’s without the Greens… What are you waiting for? Get your Saltires out and get marching…

    With the Brexit farce, there is a clear and solid change in “material circumstances”. So what is your problem? Calumn MacGregor, Lesley Riddoch, Mike Small, Iain MacWhirter, and my many own personal friends from the YES movement, what are you waiting for?

    Get out, demand a second referendum, when London says no, you hold it anyway, okay?

    The Unionists don’t take part in it because they see it as illegitimate – there are no democratic guarantees; the SNP administration organizes the whole referendum, nothing has been negotiated with London – and then make a unilateral declaration of independence when you get a 90% victory and a 50% abstention rate….

    Why is Nicola Sturgeon saying “we need to convince people, we need to listen to people, we need to win them over” instead of doing the above?

    Because Nicola is a democrat and serious politician. Because she knows UDI is not credible with 50% of the country behind you, it is not doable, it would bring Scotland to a standstill and tarnish the cause for a generation. And the SNP are not corrupt.

    Puigdemont’s party – PDECAT – was so corrupt it had to liquidate its former organization and reform under this new-fangled name. It has advocated independence for Catalonia for a grand total of three years.

    Three years campaigning, and they’re declaring UDI….hee hee hee….it’s a total JOKE… Three years!!! Hilarious…

    The whole thing is a farce… How can a political party – a neo liberal political party, mired in corruption – which had advocated independence for a mere three years just declare UDI?

    The SNP was founded with the sole reason of achieving Scottish independence, almost 100 years ago. It is a serious political party, with serious democratic credentials, respected throughout Europe.

    As I say, enjoy your love-in with Catalonia, friends. They’re great people and it’s a cool place, and a great culture. Parlo una mica. I studied the language for a year. I read the Catalan poets.

    But don’t tell me that what we’re seeing is “democratic”. Neither Rajoy nor Puigdemont are behaving like democrats…

    Reply
  • Redguantlet 3 weeks ago

    PS: The word on the street is that the international dialing code for the new independent Catalan Republic is going to be 155…. hee hee hee….

    And that the first thing that President Puigdemont is going to do – when he gets out of jail that is – is commission a statue of Mariano Rajoy, as one of the founding fathers of the Catalan Republic…. hee hee hee…

    Reply
  • William Ross 3 weeks ago

    I suspect Redgauntlet is actually trying to defend his beloved EU. Now Catalans are finding out that the “rights of EU citizens ” mean nothing.

    There is a huge difference between Scotland and Catalonia. The UK is a highly sophisticated democracy which allows successionist movements to flourish and will even allow referenda which ( if a YES vote is returned) will dissolve the state. So a Scottish referendum actually happened in 2014 and it was full and fair. Unfortunately, YES lost. Canada is a similar kind of democracy. We have seen two Quebec referenda. But try breaking away from the US, Brazil, Spain, Italy and things will be different…Sorry to put a plug in for British democracy but it is one of the best.

    Spain, however, does not take the same enlightened approach. It ( ridiculously) will not recognise that Catalans are a distinct people with a right to self determination. Even Thatcher conceded that Scots had that right! So Catalonia has had no alternative to the course it has taken. I am afraid it may get nasty. And the Catalans should expect ABSOLUTELY no help from Brussels. I hope some around here will reflect on that….

    I have voted for the SNP all my life and did so again in GE 2017. Another Indy ref is certainly coming but not before Brexit. The Scottish people do not want such a mistimed referendum and, as Nicola well knows, any such referendum will be lost and we are kaput.

    Reply
    • Redguantlet 3 weeks ago

      William Ross, it’s you who is obsessed – like most Brexiteers – with the EU, not me, mate.

      I see the EU as a lesser evil, just like Democracy by the way, which can throw up some terrible results but is the only system which avoids tyranny and is relatively representative.

      What is the alternative to the EU, William Ross? Well, it would return us to the days when Europe is divided into two or three power blocks. One around France, one around Germany and one around Russia….

      The Russians would be all over the former Eastern Europe countries, wielding their influence on governments and elections there, and Spain and Italy would align towards either France or Germany, depending on events…

      …we’d have an inter-European trade wars with frequency, and all the old inter-territorial questions – German speaking north Italy, Basque speaking France, to name just two examples, would flare up all over the continent. Dictatorships would appear again, along the lines of Putin’s Russia, in, say Poland and Hungary and possibly even Spain…

      It’s a bad idea man. You either don’t know European history, or you’re stupid, one of the two…

      Reply
  • Willie 3 weeks ago

    Spain has shown that is a fascist state.

    It used brutal force to try to stop a democratically organised referendum.
    It has removed a democratically elected government. It has rejected the expressed wishes of an electorate. It has imprisoned political campaigners on the trumped up grounds of treason. It has suspended the chefs of the local police.

    It’s a real rip roaring democracy don’t you think Red Gauntlet or are you just a Unionist spoiler.

    Reply
  • Redguantlet 3 weeks ago

    The chefs of the Catalan police have been sacked, Willie? Where are they going to get their dinner, eh?

    The Catalans have been asking for a referendum for about four or five years! That’s all!.

    They saw Scots getting one, and Artur Mas, Puigdemont’s predecessor, a total chancer and an opportunist, and the leader of one of the most corrupt political parties in all of Europe, along with the PP, decided the Catalans should get one too, regardless what the Spanish Constitution says.

    Our referendum took one hundred years to achieve!!! One hundred years!!!

    If you go up to the Calton Hill in Edinburgh, you can see a memorial to the Scottish independence activists who had a permanent encampment up there for thirty years or thereabouts, to achieve a Scottish parliament…. think about that, before you lend the name of Scottish nationalism to a cause at such a cheap price.

    That is what you call an example to the world of democratic civic nationalism, Scotland has a tradition to be proud of, which runs rings around Carles Puidgemont and Artur Mas and their ridiculous UDI.

    Catalan nationalism, instead of actually campaigning and mobilizing and lobbying and joining forces with the other political forces in Spain – like Podemos, like the Basque nationalists, like the Galician nationalists – to reform the Spanish Constitution, which might have taken five or ten years – but never one hundred – go and hold not one but TWO referenda in three years. It’s a TOTAL JOKE!!!

    Compare and contrast another point:

    Any YES activist will tell you that the way votes on 18S were won was by chapping on people’s doors and talking to the undecided. Reasoning with them. Explaining calmly why Scotland should be independent.

    There is no campaigning as such in Catalonia, no chapping on doors, no calm and reasoned explaining. What there is are endless demonstration, flags, rallies… the mentality of crowds… emotions running high and reason running low…

    I’m amazed so many otherwise reasonable, smart Scottish independence supporters are letting emotions cloud their judgement…

    Reply
    • Willie 3 weeks ago

      Where is all your angst coming from RG. Petty repetitive ranting seems to be your hallmark.

      Take a pill and chill before you distress yourself more.

      Reply
  • William Ross 3 weeks ago

    Redgauntlet

    I do not share your analysis of European security and trade. The defence of Europe is in the capable hands of NATO. The EU is quite incapable of defending anything. The current EU could quite easily function as a free trading group of nations like NAFTA. Instead they tried to set up a chaotic confederation which they hope will be a United States of Europe one day.

    Is this entity democratic? You are surely not referring to the Big Pretendy Parliament? This parliament is not and could not be democratic. It does not represent a demos. There is no European nation, only European nations. It is a fake and only now are dumb Remainers grasping that.

    Catalonia is changing a lot of YES minds on the EU. But the warning signs have been there for decades. How can you lot oppose Osborne austerity when you say nothing about the senseless extreme austerity that was handed out to Greece?

    And by the way, Redgauntlet, the Catalan people fought for independence in the Civil War. They are not Johnny come latelys.

    Reply
    • Redguantlet 3 weeks ago

      I said you were either stupid or ignorant, William Ross, and possibly both, and ignorant you certainly are if you think the Spanish Civil War was about Catalan independence.

      It had nothing whatsoever to do with Catalan independence… zero.

      The last city to fall to Franco was Madrid… it was a war by Spanish Fascists, aided by Nazi Germany and Mussolini’s Italy, against a Republican democracy which was the most progressive government of its day in Europe. The first country to give women the vote was the Spanish Republic.

      SFA to do with Catalan independence, which wasn’t even mooted back at the time…

      If anybody is interested, our own Neal Ascherson’s six part The Spanish Civil War produced by Granada is available on Youtube, which is decent introduction to what happened:

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x7S9XcDMkdA

      On the question of Brexit:

      A) What is your solution to the Irish border question? Nobody ever talks about it. I’d like to hear how you think that can be solved, given that you are one of the geniuses who voted for it? Most probably, like the Tories, you don’t give a FF about the Good Friday Agreement…

      B) Why do you keep going on and on and on about the EU on Bella, given that Brexit won? It strikes me that you keep posting here to justify yourself in some way… You’ll have to go and find another bogey man once the Tories drive us all off a Brexit cliff some day soon, better get used to it…

      Reply
  • Robert 3 weeks ago

    I don’t have direct experience of the Catalan situation, but I’ve lived in or near the Basque Country for the past 18 years. I think the situation in Catalonia is becoming very unstable, and I agree with Redgauntlet that the pro-independence parties have behaved in a way that is unwise and does not favour their cause. Quite the opposite: they have provoked a situation in which they really can’t win. The Spanish state can crush Catalan independence with broad international support.

    I should say that I am neither for nor against Catalan independence as such. I do believe that they should have the right to decide (which they are denied under the present constitution). And I saw the independence referendum as an inspiring example of civil disobedience, but no more than that. It didn’t give the pro-independence parties a clear mandate for UDI. I was quite shocked when UDI was declared because, really, the pro-independence parties are playing into Rajoy’s hands, giving him all the ammunition he needs to take direct control.

    I happened to be in Barcelona last weekend (for reasons unconnected with the independence debate). What surprised me was how little the atmosphere of the city seemed to suggest the capital of a country on the verge of self-determination. Apart from the organised demonstration on Saturday, I saw very few Catalan flags (and even fewer Spanish ones), and little else to suggest that ordinary people were heavily invested in the independence debate. My feeling was that the majority of people were doing their best to ignore the situation and hope it was going to go away.

    I think we are at a point in history when thinking and debate are becoming ever more polarised, as more and more people exist in a bubble with others who think like them and get their news from the same sources.

    Defending democracy doesn’t mean defending our right to ignore those who don’t think like us.

    Reply
    • Redguantlet 3 weeks ago

      Good post, Robert, I agree with you 100%.

      As for Barcelona not feeling like it was on the verge of self-determination, well, that’s because it isn’t. How can it be? It’s like you say, the State is too powerful, they will shut you down.

      And how can anybody take seriously the declaration of an independent Republic which was proclaimed and then immediately suspended; whose President then hummed and hawed for a week when he was asked by Rajoy to clarify the situation; who then said he was willing to call elections in December if Rajoy would guarantee he wouldn’t apply Article 155; and who finally decided to pass the buck back to the Catalan Parliament to decide if Catalonia was an independent Republic or not? How can anybody take that seriously?

      Imagine that was Scotland? Imagine that was the proclamation of an independent Scotland? Would you not just curl and die of shame for the sheer ridiculousness of the whole thing? It’s a farce…

      It’s all just gamesmanship, it’s all just tactics, and these are highly reckless tactics, which are causing millions of people uncertainty, anxiety and stress, and which lead to more violence next week. To act outside the law, and without sufficient legitimacy, is to embolden the radicals and give carte blanche to the worst instincts in the worse kind of Spaniard… Catalonia is not Spain? You better believe it is…. same lack of respect for the democratic rules of the game pertain in both Madrid and Barcelona I’m sorry to say.

      Wait until somebody gets killed, and then Puigdemont and Rajoy will wash their hands of it…. the irresponsibility is staggering… I am thoroughly sick of Spain. Some of us are trying to work, and you have this going on and on and on for months and years, sapping everybody’s energy… a JOKE of a democracy is Spain, and that includes Catalonia…

      Spanish politicians are just the worst: Rajoy, Puigdemont, Artur Mas, Felipe Gonzalez, Alfonso Guerra, the entire PP and the King, are a complete discredit to European democracy… they should all be sacked and sidelined and exiled to some banana Republic en masse, along with the editors or El Pais newspaper, the people who run the state broadcasters of both TVE and TV3…

      Reply
  • Gordon McShean 3 weeks ago

    I visited Barcelona in the 1950s as a young Scot to learn practices nationalism bases upon Catalana practices. My recent book RETIRED TERRORIST (2011), which acknowledges are failure over such times, that we must wind!

    Reply
  • William Ross 3 weeks ago

    Redgauntlet

    Whether an intemperate individual like yourself characterises me as ignorant or stupid is of no consequence.

    But you are the ignorant one. Before pronouncing on the Spanish Civil War you should really do some background reading. The Spanish Civil War had many different causes and many different actors. It is a subject that really fascinates me as I lived in Latin America for many years and am a fluent Spanish speaker. Let me recommend that you read Hugh Thomas`s magisterial “The Spanish Civil War”.”Homage to Catalonia” by George Orwell is also very useful. Going to Thomas`s book at Chapter 7 you will find that a scheme of Catalan devolution was introduced in 1932. I 1931, Luis Companys proclaimed Catalonia as ” the Catalan Republic”. Thomas, page 46.The Esquerra wanted Catalan independence but they did have to deal with powerful anarchists, communists and fascists! A powerful Catalan nationalist movement has existed since the beginning of the twentieth century. It is in every way the equal of the SNP. What would have happened had the Spanish Republic won?

    Regarding the Irish Border issue, I would reflect as follows. Free movement of people between the UK and Ireland should continue as it has for over half a century. So Irish citizens can come and live in the UK and vice versa. EU citizens living legally in Northern Ireland or the UK will clearly have free movement to Ireland. EU citizens in Ireland will be able to travel freely to the UK on a yellow card visa for tourism purposes but will not be able to live and work without a proper visa. There is very little problem for people.

    Trade is more difficult, given that we all want to avoid border checks of even the most minimal kind. I am not an expert on this. We do have a model regarding the Norwegian/Swedish border. However, but that is not totally in point, as both Norway and Sweden are in the Single Market, but not the Customs Union. The UK has made a number of suggestions to handle tariff and regulatory compliance which could involve exporters paying tariffs electronically upfront. The regulatory checks are possibly the most difficult. It would be good if the EU really tried to co-operate.

    Regarding the Good Friday Agreement, I care passionately about it. However, I am not prepared to stay a powerless member of a failing “project” based on the future risk that some checks may or may not be carried out on some part of our frontiers. The backdrop to the Good Friday Agreement was that the IRA had lost the war. Is anyone going back to war because the EU Commission has lost its sway over the UK?

    I do not generally post on Bella because I am not a man of the left. However, Bella is well written and interesting, even if often depressingly negative. Our 2014 referendum taught me that I am a citizen and I have every right to contribute my views. I campaigned strongly for Leave. I am also a life-long nationalist. I am thus highly interested in Brexit. As stated, I am also highly interested in Spain.

    Adios amigo,

    Guillermo

    Reply
    • Redguantlet 3 weeks ago

      William Ross,

      I’ve lived most of my adult life in Spain, in both Barcelona and Madrid, and I’ve read a lot about the Spanish Civil War. Too much.

      Lluis Companys declared the Catalan Republic WITHIN Spain in 1934, the Right having just won power in the Spanish general elections, for which he was jailed, in a prison ship in Cadiz.

      Catalan nationalists and Spanish nationalists, both for different reasons, try to make out that Companys was trying to declare independence from Spain, but that is not the case.

      When Companys was released, he was cheered by the crowds in Cadiz and Madrid. He was a hero of the Left all over Spain.

      The Scottish media – both Unionist and Nationalist – are so obsessed with nationalism, that they can only look at the Catalan situation in nationalist terms, when it is far more fruitful to look at it on a Left-Right, Republican-Monarchy, Federal-Centralist-axis, a divide right throughout the whole country commonly known as the Two Spains…

      Iain MacWhiter – our Iain MacWhirter, a guy I have always read and admired for his intelligence – today says in The Herald that: “Catalonia was originally integrated into the Spain by force in 1715, and again in 1938”. This is factually incorrect, on both counts.

      But let’s just stick to 1938. To describe Franco’s genocide on Republican Spain as a war against Catalan independence is simply an outrage against truth and historical memory. It’s a lie on the scale of the Nazis or Stalin being peddled by TV3 and Catalan nationalists, and being repeated by the Scottish press, who are using Catalonia as a kind of vanity mirror within which to achieve a vicarious independence they don’t have the cojones to achieve in Scotland, despite Brexit…

      The only Scottish columnist worth reading on Spain is the Wee Ginger Dug. He knows Spain, and you can tell…

      As for your comments on Ireland, you guys just don’t get it. There’s no cherry picking William. You can’t have free movement with Ireland and not the rest of the EU. It’s like David Davis says, way back, that as soon as Brexit is voted, the UK will cut a trade deal with Germany… eh, sorry, no.

      The EU are not going to allow the UK to have different deals with different EU member States. It’s not going to happen. Which is what guys like you just don’t get.

      As for your description of the Good Friday Agreement as “the IRA losing the war”, I’ll leave that to somebody else to answer…

      Reply
  • William Ross 3 weeks ago

    Redgauntlet

    Yes, I appreciate that you have lived long years in Spain. I have not asserted that Catalonia ever actually declared full independence in the 1930s though that was what Esquerra ultimately wanted. Franco`s Fascist war was a war against many cherished things but one of them was the very concept of Catalan nationality and identity.

    Read Antony Beevor ” The Battle for Spain”. In describing the General Strike of 1934 he states:” The Catalan left, on the other hand, exasperated at the Madrid government`s treatment of their statute of autonomy , saw in the general strike an opportunity for accelerating their own independence”
    The goal and will to independence of Catalan nationalists has always been clear.

    Regarding Ireland, again you are the one who fails to get it. There is as yet no seamless EU immigration policy for non-EU nationals. The EU may want to change that. However, Ireland can easily arrive at a bespoke immigration deal with a Brexit UK. That, off course, is not true with goods.

    Reply
  • douglas clark 3 weeks ago

    It is pretty clear that both Redgauntlet and William Ross know their Iberian Peninsula history pretty well, far better than I.

    Y’know, history of the 1930’s is just that history. This is 2017.

    It does however sound ridiculous when the actions of the Spanish State in suppressing a referendum – and the legality of it seems to me to be the least of our worries – through rigging it, suppressing it, denying it and doing all they can to destroy it – up to and including a violent use of civil power is acceptable to anyone living in what they take to be a democracy. The argument is about freedom of expression and the ridiculously overbearing means and methods that the Spanish State used to suppress it.

    Spain wants to protect it’s historical boundaries. But it is just a construct one that once included the entire peninsula.

    This is going to end up as yet another colonial power which has lost all of it’s colonies acting in the same manner it did as a colonist to people it wants to say are it’s own citizens who do not want to be. They will lie, they will cheat they will play the soft card and the hard card. I kind of expect that violence will not be far away, and I say that with deep regret as it suggests that the last hurrah! of ex-colonial powers will be to turn on their own.

    Reply
  • douglas clark 3 weeks ago

    Quite astonished that my comment has not appeared? Any thoughts or advice?

    Reply
  • douglas clark 3 weeks ago

    I will give you the benefit of the doubt and just assume that the ‘ahem’ discussion between William Ross and Redgauntlet is to be a private affair, informed exclusively by historians bickering, which they appear astonishingly good at. Quite why they think that they are informed about current affairs is a question for both of them, historians and you.

    They just like displaying their knowledge, like a couple of Pheasants displaying their plumes.

    I have made very minor financial contributions to this site and I wish it well. I am not, however, at all happy that my comments appear to be in moderation when a couple of folk, riffing off each others prejudices, get free reign.

    I shall withdraw from this site if an explanation is not forthcoming.

    Reply
    • Bella Caledonia Editor 3 weeks ago

      Hi Douglas – your comments seemed to appear quickly – did it not? You are not ‘in moderation’ – people who have commented before and been accepted and whose post doesnt contain banned words – appear automatically. There may be reasons beyond my control it doesnt appear ‘instantly’ though. Your contributions is welcome and I hope you dont disappear (!) [and thank you for financial contribution!!]

      Reply
      • douglas clark 3 weeks ago

        Fair enough. It was not my experience. My initial comment did not appear – at this end – over a good few hours. Now all three do!

        Let’s put it down to technical issues with this internet thingy.

        ———————–

        Just to add, I completely agree with the post. Mainly because we need justice for Catalonian self expression which has been a beacon of light in how an energised and motivated populace can fight back. Rather less optimistically, Scottish independence supporters cannot allow Westminster to see this crack-down as a template for any future Scottish referendum.

        Reply

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