Francoist Clampdown in Catalonia 270


I have received an email appeal from the Candidaturas de Unidad Popular in Barcelona to say that their party HQ is under siege by the Guardia Civil and that its leaders are resisting arrest.

There is a peculiar reluctance in the British and other European mainstream media to state the truth about the very real Francoist origins of the Spanish government. The current government of Spain are the direct political heirs of Franco and that many of their ministers have personal and family connections to his rule. Rajoy, Spain’s current Prime Minister, started his political career in 1981 by joining the People’s Alliance, a party founded in 1979 and led by 7 of Franco’s ministers to carry on the Francoist legacy. The People’s Alliance became the major component in the now governing People’s Party. It is a directly Francoist party.

The fascist instincts of the Madrid government when faced with the entirely legitimate desire for a democratic vote on Catalonian Independence are therefore part of the very political DNA of the ruling party. It is a truth which it is more convenient for the Establishment to avoid, particularly in Britain where it is feared Catalan Independence might encourage Scottish Independence.

The European Commission has shown commendable rectitude in warning both Poland and Hungary in strong terms of the consequences of their right wing lurches away fro democracy. It would be good to see the Commission and European governments warning Spain now, for actions which are a bigger threat to democracy than the Polish or Hungarian right have so far dared. But that would not suit the agenda of the neo-liberal ruling Establishment, so do not hold your breath.

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270 thoughts on “Francoist Clampdown in Catalonia

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  • lysias

    When I click on Recent Comments on the 9/11 Post thread, Craig’s original post appears, but no comments in that thread appear to be accessible.

    • lysias

      That’s if I click on links for the comments in “Recent Comments”. If I click on the link for the thread name, the comments appear.

  • What's going on?

    I wonder if Spain is trying to force a ‘Yes’ vote so that the Catalan administration will be forced not just to start down the path to independence, but also to leave the EU. Once the Catalans realise what being out of the EU means, it could squash independence on a long term basis. Or at least that could be the plan of the Spanish government.

    • craig Post author

      I am quite sure the Spanish government would find no appetite whatsoever in the entire rest of the EU for forcing Catalonia out of the EU. Not going to happen.

      • David

        The EU told Scotland categorically that is they left the UK they would have to re-apply for membership of the EU. Not their smartest move in my mind, and possibly one they wouldn’t enforce in truth, but they just might.

        The same would be true for Catalan as well. The main difference being of course that the Catalan region is the economic powerhouse of Spain and so a Catalan breakaway would leave the EU with a disaster in Spain to deal with, that might temper their thoughts and actions, but who knows its the EU we are talking about, they like punishment beatings !

        This action by the Spanish government is crazy, the more they say no, the greater the call for separation will be. It would be much better, and much more democratic to allow them the vote, but do it properly. I think Catalan region will become autonomous before Scotland and my bet would be that the EU will force them to reapply, Spain would probably object and leave the region isolated, the EU would probably support that stance as they don’t want to see countries breaking up when their very stated aim is political and economic union.

  • giyane

    The SEAT is a remarkable combination of Lutheran efficiency and Roman Catholic hard graft. It’s not in Germany’s interest to revive fascism anywhere so I expect the rebukes will come, especially if Merkel does well in the election.

  • Hieroglyph

    Craig has dropped the F-Bomb! About time somebody did. I was thinking of Homage to Catalonia recently, and noted the similarities. Arrests of local Mayors, and general jackbootery abound. The fascist tendency of Governments really hasn’t changed much has it? Like the UK, the Spanish don’t really have a government, they have conservative, globalist state-managers, who prefer to keep people at arms length, whilst they faithfully execute the policies of the globalist leadership caste.

    Unlike the dolts on the Guardian, I’m not worried about Trump. I’m much more worried about the psychotics in the deep state who will stop at nothing to retain power. This particular battle is small sub-set of the larger one, so we can be sure the US deep-state is meddling already. Not for the first time, I can vaguely whiff the bitter almond of war on the horizon. World Wars are, first and foremost, a great way of misdirecting the proles, whilst also significantly reducing their number; double win.

    • K Crosby

      All governments are fascist because fascism is the state and the state is fascism. The secessionists in Catalonia are forcing the central government to expose its crypto-fascist self (ooh-er) from behind its liberal fig-leaf.

    • giyane

      Hierpglyph

      ” Like the UK, the Spanish don’t really have a government, they have conservative, globalist state-managers, who prefer to keep people at arms length, whilst they faithfully execute the policies of the globalist leadership caste. ”

      Ouch! and I think it would be fair to say that under those globalist state-managers exist another layer of Saranic eaves-droppers in the globalist corporations. These institutions also no longer have directors who like my father were technically/ scientifically competent in their business sector. They also only have conservative, globalist company-managers, who prefer to keep people at arms length, whilst they faithfully execute the policies of the globalist leadership caste.

      ” Unlike the dolts on the Guardian, I’m not worried about Trump. I’m much more worried about the psychotics in the deep state who will stop at nothing to retain power. This particular battle is small sub-set of the larger one, so we can be sure the US deep-state is meddling already ”

      Similarly in the large globalist corporations we have a management layer about whom we should be worried, the psychotics in the corporate executive who will stop at nothing to retain power. This particular battle is small sub-set of the of the small sub-set of the larger one, so we can be sure the US deep-state is meddling already, in the form of its partners in the UK, Israel, France, etc intelligence agencies and the globalist executives of Political Islam, the Muslim Brotherhood who are franchised to spy on and control the Muslims.
      The Muslim Brotherhood is another sub-set of US globalist hegemony, which is very shortly due to expire.

      Franco, franchise ? Politicians always use the slogans of idealism to deceive the idealism of the gullible.

  • lwtc247

    “led by 7 of Franco’s ministers to carry on the Francoist legacy.” – What evidence do you have for this? What plans… have you seen?

      • lwtc247

        I understood the original use.
        I was asking whether those people were deliberately trying to continue Francoist policies.
        I wasn’t ‘t comfortable with what looked like mere association.

    • DissidentX

      Brilliant indeed. But its about the only really good film I just can’t watch anymore (at least all the way to the end). I might think I’m a hard cynical man, but I get absolutely destroyed at the end every time. Brilliant work as you say.

  • giyane

    Much hot air on the BBC about Trump and Iran. Let’s be crystal clear. Politics is Lies. If the US and UK are demonising Russia and Iran, definitely and without a shadow of a doubt Russia and Iran are their allies/ proxies. USUKIS gets Saudi Arabia to spend trillions with a promise of a Sunni principality in the remains of Syria, and then gets Russia and Iran to trash their efforts completely. I have no idea whether Saudi Arabia is inside the plan in order to gather extremists into one sheep-pen and send them to the butcher, but I expect they are.

  • willyrobinson

    One of the big similarities between here and Scotland is the one-sided nature of the press. It’s not the same in that there does exist a pro-independence press in Catalonia, but the news that reaches the rest of Spain is filtered to the nth degree. The story ran yesterday obviously on national TV, but all of the 50,000+ people (my estimate) who took to the streets to protest were edited out. Similarly, news stories from other regions will only reach me after being filtered by Madrid.

    The emphasis is on ‘regional govt. being duly punished for breaking the law’, but clearly there’s a lot of actions being taken without due process, as well as an attempt to censor the internet a la Turkey or China.

    • MBC

      At least Catalonia has a local press which is pro-independence. In Scotland we didn’t have that at all as the local newspapers like the Dundee Courier, Aberdeen Press and Journal, Scotsman, Herald, and all the radio and TV channels were avowedly unionist and pumped out a barrage of SNP bad stories which has never let up since. The Sunday Herald did announce it was supporting independence a few weeks before the vote but was not a daily, and its pro-Indy stance has always been a bit tepid. The National is the only pro-independence daily, but that only arrived after the 2014 referendum and is vastly underresourced. It is financed by the same American owned news corporation that owns the Herald, so that many people are suspicious that it only exists to finance a unionist paper.

  • Hieroglyph

    “Stop this escalation of radicalism and disobedience once and for all,” Mariano Rajoy said in a televised statement on Wednesday night.

    What. A. Jerk.

    Firstly, a dishonest jerk, because he’s cynically conflating independence with ‘radicalism’ (which we know is code for terrorism).

    Secondly, a condescending jerk. Disobedience? Since when did we have to pay any attention whatsoever to a mere Prime Minister? He can fuck off. If people wish to protest, such is life. And if people wish to vote for Independence, that also is life. I swear in order to join our political classes, you have to basically hate people. And, in some cases, possibly be a sex criminal. I make no such allegation against the Spanish PM, it should be noted, what with Craig’s being sued. Other politicians, well, I think we can join the dots. Why did Saville have so many famous friends? A head scratcher, for sure.

  • Ba'al Zevul

    But that would not suit the agenda of the neo-liberal ruling Establishment, so do not hold your breath.

    Not so sure about that. Barcelona’s something of an economic miracle and Catalonia provides 20% of Spain’s GDP. Unlike Scotland, it has an economic case: it might well perform even better unattached to Spain. There would be a bitter irony, wouldn’t there, if Catalonia obtained independence in the EU to find that it was subsidising rSpain via EU payments?

    • willyrobinson

      I think the economic driver for this current process is not about Catalonia producing slightly more than other regions. Rather it’s about just how unfair the system is in times of deep economic crisis. Some regional governments control health and education, and that’s where all the austerity was targeted. I’m not trying to reopen a debate about whether cuts are necessary, but that health cuts in particular across Spain were remarkably uneven. Catalonia and Madrid were the big losers, leading to both the 15-M movement (Podemos) and the big upsurge in Catalan nationalism. Needless to say, central government has done nothing to change the system, as the financial crisis worked out well for them (it did away with the free press for one thing). We can expect to be just as, if not more more fucked at the next crisis unless steps are taken now. Check out the support shown yesterday for the regional government by the Catalan Instututes for architects, engineers etc etc – a huge number of professional bodies representing ordinary people wiped out by the last crisis.

      • Ba'al Zevul

        I bow to your informed opinion. And agree, I think, that the upsurge in support for independence movements (including Brexit!) is less to do with abstract patriotism than the failure of the globalist economic model to deliver benefits, or even a decent standard of living, to peripheral economic zones. I foresee an indefinite period of progressive fuckedness for anyone failing radically to reconsider their opinions on what constitutes real wealth and how it should be obtained. National fragmentation is just a symptom. And redefining national boundaries, or abolishing them, doesn’t cure the system. How can it?

  • fred

    “It is a truth which it is more convenient for the Establishment to avoid, particularly in Britain where it is feared Catalan Independence might encourage Scottish Independence.”

    Here in Britain the government whent out of their way to accomodate the Scots Nationalists, they changed the laws of the land to make it possible for the Scots Nationalists to have their referendum. They allowed two years of campaigning then the people went to the polls and voted overwhelmingly to remain part of Britain.

    I think maybe the Spannish government are looking at the Scots Nationalists and saying “what’s the point in having a referendum? When the lose they’ll just start demanding another one”.

    • reel guid

      Democracy is about the people not just having their say, but always having the right to their say. Which means another referendum on the same issue if circumstances change and there is support for another vote. The Scottish Parliament voted for another referendum. You can’t lock down democracy and continue to claim to be a democrat.

      The Spanish government are now showing themselves in their true colours. If they persist then the EU should start to take steps to have Spain expelled.

      • fred

        So you’re advocating a referendum every two years as who wins? Or just a referendum every two years till you get what you want? Some democracy.

        Mr Murray has called for Scotland to ignore the results of the referendum and declare UDI so he can hardly stand in the corner of democracy in the Catlan affair. The Scottish Nationalists are a perfect example of why democracy just doesn’t work with Nationalists, they will always weasel some excuse to ignore the result

        • reel guid

          The result of 62% Remain in Scotland has been ignored. Not ignored by pro-democracy independence supporters. Ignored by Rajoy’s friends, the apprentice fascists – and learning quickly – of Westminster.

          • fred

            I’m campaignisng for a referendum to repeal the Devolution Bill and abolish the Scottish Parliament. Scotland has only gone down hill since devolution.

            Will the SNP deny Unionists their democratic rights and refuse them a referendum?

          • reel guid

            If there was an anti-devolution majority at Holyrood that voted for a referendum then yes, of course there would have to be one. That would be democracy.

        • kathy

          The Scottish National party in power is the democratic choice of the Scottish electorate. Are you saying you don’t believe in democracy?

          • fred

            Having a majority of MPs, which the SNP hasn’t got, doesn’t entitle a party to make constitutional changes.

            Do you think the Conservatives have the democratic right to make constitutional changes in Britain without a referendum?

            People vote for political parties for many reasons, many people voted SNP not because they are Nationalist but because in their manifesto they promissed not to raise income tax.

            https://www.ft.com/content/30abddb0-9251-11e7-a9e6-11d2f0ebb7f0

          • JOML

            “Having a majority of MPs, which the SNP hasn’t got,”
            I think you’ll find you’re wrong there, Fred. There’s only 59 MPs and the SNP have over 30. Do the arithmetic. However, amongst 600-odd, they are pissing against the wind.

          • JOML

            Kathy, Fred has a blind hatred of the YES movement and he will adjust his views on democracy to suit.

          • fred

            “I think you’ll find you’re wrong there, Fred. There’s only 59 MPs and the SNP have over 30.”

            There are 650 MPs.

          • fred

            Kathy, JOML is incapable of accepting reality so when someone tells it how it is he attributes it to hatred on their part rather than face a truth he doesn’t like.

    • giyane

      I think maybe the Spanish government is thinking that ‘dirty tricks’ such as the government used in biassed BBC propaganda are not going to work. It’s time for Culloden or Robespierre.

      • Republicofscotland

        The Britnat media told umpteen lies and distorted facts to help thwart Scottish independence.

        At least Catalonia has its runs news and tv channels something the Britnat government would never allow Scotland to have, for they know fine well Scotland would become independent sooner than later.

    • Republicofscotland

      Then we were told that remaining in the UK, would see Scotland remain in the EU, more lies, from the Britnat government.

      Of course the Britnat government bent over backwards to keep the public ill informed over the shoddy Brexit vote.

      • fred

        Have you a quote for that?

        I remember being told leaving the UK would definitely mean leaving the EU, which was true.

        With the Scots Nationalists desperately trying to avoid honouring a democratic referendum it’s no wonder the Spannish government don’t trust the Catlan Nationalists.

        • Republicofscotland

          “I remember being told leaving the UK would definitely mean leaving the EU, which was true.”

          Was it? David Cameron scurried all over Europe like a weasel imploring their foreign secretary equivalents to please please open up, and say Scotland would be outside the EU, if the voted for independence.

          If I recall only Rajoy’s oppressive government agreed and only because the brave peole of Catalonia, saw Scottish independence as a bench mark to their own self determination.

          • fred

            Nothing.

            It’s the minority deciding they are the entire country and demanding to run it’s affairs I’m against.

    • frank Hocking

      A bit of exaggeration there. The Scottish people voted overwhelmingly.
      No it was not the Scottish people. But the english Tory pot lickers ,who come up to Scotland to stay so as they could get all the free services they couldn’t get in their own country.
      It will come to a head soon , That english people wont get the vote in Scotland. or the other foreigners will be allowed to vote .
      The english are still foreigners in Scotland. And always will be.
      They will never be accepted in Scotland as long as they vote for an english fascist right wing government.
      That i can promise you.

      • fred

        Tell me again about this “Civic Nationalism” which distinguishes Scottish Nationalism from all the others.

        • JOML

          Fred, I suppose the fact no one has been killed, as a result of this ongoing constitutional debate, sets it apart.

          • fred

            They might not have put a gun to poor Charles Kenedy’s head but the effect was very much the same.

          • Republicofscotland

            JOML.

            Fred knows all about civic nationalism, I’d say he/she is just pulling your chain.

          • fred

            So why don’t you tell me.

            How does “No it was not the Scottish people. But the english Tory pot lickers ,who come up to Scotland to stay so as they could get all the free services they couldn’t get in their own country.” fit in with your “Civic Nationalism” then?

            Just how civic is “The english are still foreigners in Scotland. And always will be.
            They will never be accepted in Scotland as long as they vote for an english fascist right wing government. That i can promise you.”?

          • Republicofscotland

            “Just how civic is “The english are still foreigners in Scotland. And always will be.”

            “They will never be accepted in Scotland as long as they vote for an english
            fascist right wing government. That i can promise you.”?”

            Strange then how there’s a movement made up of English people living in Scotland called English people for Scottish independence.

            https://en-gb.facebook.com/EnglishPeopleForScottishIndependence/

            Of course don’t let that get in the way of your fantasy.

  • Julian Bond

    Austria 8,794,267
    Israel 8,743,860
    * Catalonia 7,523,000
    Bulgaria 7,101,859
    Denmark 5,760,694
    Finland 5,508,714
    * Scotland 5,295,000
    New Zealand 4,818,050
    * Cornwall 532,300
    Malta 429,344
    Iceland 343,960

    Maybe one day the EU will be 50+ regions instead of 28 (sorry 27) countries.

    • Ba'al Zevul

      * Norfolk 859,400
      Wait until the French Departements start shouting…the words ‘petit déjeuner du chien’ spring unbidden to the mind.

  • giyane

    Owen Jones. The Guardian:

    ” Britain’s current economic system is not scarred by insecurity. It is based on insecurity. The insecurity that defines the lives of millions of people does not represent a flaw in the system. It is the system.

    From the late 1970s, the ideological rationale of the Thatcherite experiment was that British citizens had become mollycoddled by the state, by collectivism, by welfarism, by socialism, by trade unions. By making people less secure – or less dependent, as the Thatcherites would have it – they would work harder and aspire more. Put someone on a treadmill, and they have to run.

    “Stand on your own two feet” has been a convenient rationale to redistribute wealth and power to the top, though. The individual earns money by their own efforts – a baseless myth – and therefore taxes on the rich should be slashed to reward hard effort. But it is a sincere belief among the Thatcherite true believers who designed our society that only by breaking collective bonds can the individual truly flourish, and an entrepreneurial economy be built.

    That promise has never been fulfilled. Indeed, in the past five years, consumer debt has surged by nearly a fifth. That’s because we have an economic model that, even when it generates growth, is incapable of increasing living standards for millions of people. Instead, it actively breeds financial insecurity and forces millions to rely on credit.

    All of that was inevitable for a number of reasons. Thatcherism sought to crush trade unionism in the 1980s with a combination of punitive anti-union legislation, victories such as the one over the striking miners, and mass unemployment. Theresa May’s government has since introduced more repressive legislation. Unionism is the ultimate sin, in Thatcherite ideology. Weakening it has allowed bosses to depress wages.

    Then there is the housing crisis. The dramatic expansion of council housing in postwar Britain inculcated a socialist mentality, or so the Thatcherites thought. Sir Keith Joseph, one of Thatcher’s closest ideological allies, believed that home ownership would help “permit the forward march of embourgeoisement”. By turning tenants into homeowners, they would begin to think, act and vote like capitalists – or so the philosophy went. In practice, it meant that council housing with genuinely affordable, social rents, as well as the possibility of lifetime security, was decimated.

    A large portion of sold-off housing stock would later be let out by private landlords at much higher rents. The private rented sector was deregulated, ensuring that landlords had security but tenants did not. House prices, meanwhile, were dramatically inflated.

    The consequence? The stripping away of housing security, and the erosion of living standards. A report by the Resolution Foundation this week found that the average share of income spent by families on housing has trebled in the past 50 years. Young people today are four times more likely to rent than they were two generations ago, with nearly a quarter of their income being spent on housing. If people borrow to keep a roof over their heads, who can blame them?

    The stripping away of secure jobs has had its impact, too, thanks to privatisation of utilities and deindustrialisation. The proliferation of zero-hours contracts, bogus self-employment and temporary and agency contracts increasingly defines modern work. This benefited employers, because casualised work is harder to unionise, and it means rights that workers once took for granted – such as a pension, or paid sick and maternity leave – can be stripped away.

    This is an intentional strategy by bosses, enabled by Thatcherite deregulation, and one New Labour failed to reverse. In 2009, the CBI – the bosses’ federation – called for the recession to be used to create a “flexiforce”, with a reduced core workforce and more casualised labour. And what does precarious employment mean? Sudden drops in income – and a consequent dependence on debt. The precariousness of work adds to the debt problem.

    The Thatcherites saw evil in the welfare state. They cast it as a source of dependency, and said it turned swaths of the population into clients of the government. There was bitter irony because the Thatcherite elimination of industries in the 1980s prompted a dramatic increase in the numbers dependent on the welfare state.

    Over the past seven years, the still-hostile Tories have imposed real-terms cuts on in-work benefits, slashed disability benefits, and punished the victims of the housing crisis by taking the axe to housing benefit. The explosion of benefit sanctioning, where benefits can be stopped for the most arbitrary reasons, has left some without any money at all. Those on the receiving end have often been compelled to make up the shortfall by borrowing. A government that professes itself concerned about debt pushes poor people into it daily.

    Brexit has also played its part, contributing to a resumption in Britain’s appallingly protracted squeeze on wages, and with it a surge in consumer debt. There is no single factor that drove the close – but supposedly unthinkable – referendum result, but insecurity surely played a critical role in the vote.

    Thatcherism built our economic order on insecurity. Insecurity, we were told, was about setting the individual free. But since then we’ve learned much about insecurity, even if the Tories haven’t. It is oppressive. It leads to anxiety and stress. It forces would-be parents to delay having families. And, as we see, it saddles the individual with debt.

    The Tories have a crisis with younger people. George Freeman, Theresa May’s policy chief, is among those desperately trying to come to grips with it. But they are the stewards of our current insecurity. How can they possibly gain support without breaking from that favoured model? They have built a society where the only true security applies to those at the top. That’s no accident: it’s done by design. Consumer debt is the flashing light that proves their economic model is broken.

    • Owen Jones is a Guardian columnist

    • nevermind

      Thanks for that load of Grauniad edited leftism, Giyane. Speaking of the people, especially the young, noting that we need much change and that our system has lead us astray, comes easy for a very enthusiastic young Owen.

      I also note that the solution to the people’s mire within the downtrodden system, is not to be changed radically by giving them a proportional democratic vote, for the first time ever, as by democratic right and law, maybe a paragraph got edited out of Owen young revolution, or he is planning to get into politics himself, but I expected him to say a bit about democracy.

      And however Herr Lansmann ( Momentum founder) believes the new young masses of Corbynista’s can be steered into a Labour victory, Unless Labour considers giving young people a fair vote, unless Labour is reforming its awful electoral practises in the four B’s, i.e Blackburn, Bolton, Bradford and Birmingham, this unreformed Labour party will not be able to be sustainable in Government.

      And all its young eager and energetic supporters would be short changed.

  • reel guid

    Rajoy has described the Catalans’ referendum as a “chimera”. If he’s so confident of the No to independence vote prevailing then why doesn’t he simply allow the referendum to go ahead without impediment? And if he’s scared of Yes winning then it can’t be a chimera and has to be real.

    The same argument we’ve been using against those other authoritarians, the British unionists in Westminster. If No would win indyref2 easily then let’s have it. If Yes are going to win then your an anti-democrat to oppose a vote being held. The Britnats don’t even have the Madrid excuse that a referendum would be unconstitutional since they agreed to the one in 2014.

    The British Establishment is doing to Scottish democracy exactly what the Spanish government is doing to Catalan democracy. It’s just that they’re so far trying the less forceful route to see if they can reduce Holyrood to a talking shop. Sturgeon had better stop giving out confusing signals to pro independence voters. The cause of Scottish independence isn’t there simply to provide some people with salaries. Sociologists well know the phenomenon of the elite of a movement becoming self serving and losing touch. Just as historians well know the phenomenon of a grass roots remedial reaction.

    • fred

      “If No would win indyref2 easily then let’s have it.

      Because we can’t just keep on having referendums on constitutional changes till you get what you want.

      • nevermind

        Whys should anybody who is not born in Scotland have a vote in any referendum that decides the future of Scotland?
        Their yes to remain was ignored, fact, they had not even a whisper of an input in any of the discussions to leave, not a bad thing with hindsight, looking at the mess May made of it, but any future referendum should just go ahead with Holyroods sayso, and without immigrants interfering in it.

        It would be a referendum all the English people very much enjoyed during their Brexit ref. ‘a la Royston Vasey’, for local people only, a type of ref. which should go down well In Scotland….

        • fred

          “Whys should anybody who is not born in Scotland have a vote in any referendum that decides the future of Scotland?”

          Everyone born in Britain should have a vote in any referendum that decides the future of Britain.

      • kailyard rules

        Like, Scotland keeps participating in general elections and having foisted on us what the Scottish electorate did not vote for and did not want.

          • kailyard rules

            Great Britain and Northern Ireland. One country England (with Wales attached as a principality). one country Scotland, and a colonised region in the north of Ireland. There is no One Nation, There is no Union of Equals. There is perfidious Albion (read England) waiving the rules with mendacity and huge bribes. The population disparity puts the boots to any just and equitable political result.

          • fred

            A Scot has as much say as anyone else, a Scot has as much oportunity to obtain political power as anyone else, a Scot can be Prime Minister just as easily as anyone else, they can head corporations and control civic institutions just the same as anyone else can.

      • Republicofscotland

        It is a “natural” process for self determination, of a people, to move towards independence no matter how many times a referendum is called. Scotland will keep trying until it yanks itself free from the Westminster ball and chain.

        • fred

          I expect these people you talk of are the dozens of people waving flags in George Square last weekend. The majority are happy enough with things as they are.

          • Republicofscotland

            You mean the Britnats waving the Britflag, that tried to menace and goad the peaceful independence marchers.

            Happy the way things are you say, the status quo is a recipe for disaster only Britnat Uncle Tam’s believe that fantasy.

          • Republicofscotland

            JOML.

            Didn’t know that, were they tipped off ? Then again the Express is hardly a paragon of multiculturalism in the media world.

      • frank Hocking

        If we have a vote on Indyref2. then make it a Scottish vote.
        No english should be allowed to vote.
        If they are adamant that they have a right to vote just because they are living in Scotland
        Then so do the other foreigners, they are also living in Scotland. ie: Polish , Checks. lithuanians, Bulgarians,
        They would all have the right to vote as well as the english.
        They are all foreigners.
        So if YES will win Indyref easily then lets have it.
        Myself i am Scottish European First. Scottish British second.

        • David

          Then by extending your logic, Scottish people living in England should have no vote in elections etc.

          What a load of racist drivel.

    • mark golding

      I agree with Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon in her commitment to the right of a people to democratically express their will.

      She said, ““The Edinburgh Agreement is a shining example of two governments with diametrically opposed views on independence nevertheless coming together to agree a process that allowed the people to decide. I think that offers a template that can be used by others elsewhere in the world.” – Perfect.

  • Tony_0pmoc

    Craig,

    I didn’t understand what you mean by “The European Commission has shown commendable rectitude in warning both Poland and Hungary in strong terms of the consequences of their right wing lurches away fro democracy.”

    A google search revealed this “Hungary is being pursued over a new law designed to limit foreign funding of NGOs which is primarily targeted at charities run by the US-based billionaire George Soros. Mr Orban has accused the financier of running a campaign to undermine his government and has recently paid for an attack advertising campaign against him which has been condemned worldwide as anti-semitic. Eurocrats said the new law introduces “unjustified and disproportionate restrictions” on the operations of NGOs, adding that it is “discriminatory” and will stop them helping people in need.”

    Do you actually approve of the activities of Soros? In my view, he has used his massive funds to completely corrupt The Left Wing across The US, Europe and much of the world, and organizations such as Amnesty International. Its the equivalent of what Blair did to the labour Party x1000. But worse than this, there is strong evidence that “Soros-funded NGO’s have been able to achieve regime change in other countries by quite literally teaming up with Neo-nazis and “moderate” terrorists.” It’s as if Soros is directly connected to the likes of
    Ms FU EU Victoria Nuland, as well as The Dirtier parts of The CIA.

    Tony

    • Paul Barbara

      @ Tony_0pmoc September 21, 2017 at 11:26

      Absolutely. Soros has his filthy rich blood-soaked mitts all over these ‘NGO’s’ and their ‘Regime Change’ ‘Colour Revoluutions’:

      ‘Ukraine Protests Carefully Orchestrated: The Role of CANVAS, US-Financed “Color Revolution Training Group”:
      https://www.globalresearch.ca/ukraine-protests-carefully-orchestrated-the-role-of-canvas-us-financed-color-revolution-training-group/5369906
      ‘…he recent protests in Ukraine have the stench of a foreign-orchestrated attempt to destabilize the government of Viktor Yanukovych after he walked away from signing an EU Association Agreement that would have driven a deep wedge between Russia and Ukraine. Glamor-star boxer-turned political guru, Vitaly Klitschko, has been meeting with the US State Department and is close to Angela Merkel’s CDU political machine in Germany.

      The EU association agreement with Ukraine is widely resisted by many EU member states with deep economic problems of their own. The two EU figures most pushing it—Swedish Foreign Minister Carl Bildt and Polish Foreign Minister Radosław Sikorski—are both well known in the EU as close to Washington.

      The US is strongly pushing the Ukraine EU integration just as it had been behind the 2004 failed “Orange Revolution” to split Ukraine from Russia in a bid to isolate and weaken Russia. Now Ukrainians have found evidence of direct involvement of the Belgrade US-financed training group, CANVAS behind the carefully-orchestrated Kiev protests……’

      ‘The Arab Spring: Made in the USA’:
      https://dissidentvoice.org/2015/10/the-arab-spring-made-in-the-usa/
      ‘…….Democracy: America’s Biggest Export

      According to Bensaada, the MENA Arab Spring revolutions have four unique features in common:

      None were spontaneous – all required careful and lengthy (5+ years) planning, by the State Department, CIA pass through foundations, George Soros, and the pro-Israel lobby.1
      All focused exclusively on removing reviled despots without replacing the autocratic power structure that kept them in power.
      No Arab Spring protests made any reference whatsoever to powerful anti-US sentiment over Palestine and Iraq.
      All the instigators of Arab Spring uprisings were middle class, well educated youth who mysteriously vanished after 2011……’

      • mark golding

        Unquestionably Paul Thank-you. Money, the great servant of the elite and the creator and facilitator of war – nuclear war that will silence the resistance and end the struggle; the ultimate solution in the minds of British and American hawks.

        The struggle is of course to retain subservience to the dollar. The greatest hindrance to world peace is the hegemonic1944 Bretton Woods international monetary system: http://www.imf.org/external/pubs/ft/fandd/2017/09/james.htm – now China and Russia have created a viable alternative.

        Part 1 of this battle is the skirmish. An argument precursor in the form of sanctions. The Act passed by Congress makes it illegal and severely punishable if any European company makes investments in international energy projects where Russia is involved.

        Part 2 is the promulgation using the Murdoch mania press and others to promote disturbance, agitation and confusion using immigrants, ISIS, Daesh, radical Islam and boogy men.

        Part 3 is war – war everywhere and the reason, the saneness and the insanity of Soros and those gods standing judgement over us to advance a mafia don, an arrogant male, a one world government Rockefella surrogate to light the fuze.

    • Sinister Burt

      You don’t have to like George Sorros to not like Viktor Orban. George Sorros’ influence is probably a little bit overstated in the scheme of things in my view – like such people as the rothschilds, it suits the elite to have us focus on these front of house bogeymen rather than the the slightly boring ideas of collective elite class power which encompasses them all as well as all the less showy actors behind the curtain (not to mention the inherent structural properties of the power structures independent of the will or control of the actors). The problem doesn’t come from these individual bond villains but from their self reinforcing power as a group, which will re-generate as long as the economic and power relations remain the same (cutting the head off the hydra only results in three growing back). But our power as the ‘lower orders’ is ultimately more powerful, hence the efforts the elite classes need to constantly maintain to keep us complicit or befuddled.

  • reel guid

    The BBC has now dropped anything about the situation in Catalonia from their web pages. So that’s what it’s come to. Democracy is overturned in part of Europe and the BBC doesn’t really think it’s a story.

        • reel guid

          There is nothing on the main BBC World section of the web pages. You have to go to the Europe sub section.

          Of course World at One would have to cover it. Radio 4 is for the intelligentsia and the BBC could not get away with downgrading the story to that audience. Overall the BBC is trying to give minimal coverage to events in Catalonia.

          • frank Hocking

            Just as well the BBC are not saying anything. if they did you can guarantee it would be a pack of lies.
            They are computerised by the right wing fascist regime in westminster.

          • Ian

            Ah, the dastardly BBC only reports news for the ‘intelligentsia’ on their own special channels where the lower classes aren’t allowed.. I see. The bounders and cads.

  • Ba'al Zevul

    In other, related, news:

    https://www.unz.com/pcockburn/

    An independent Kurdish state in Iraq (and/or Syria) would be just the thorn in Iranian flesh that the US and its little sponsor have always dreamed of. Although the US has not yet stepped over the line to say so, opinion there is being changed by carefully staged degrees. Despite the PKK having been declared a terrorist organisation by the EU, the PUK are of course clear-eyed tribal warriors for just causes, and nothing to do with the PKK at all. At the moment.

    http://www.aljazeera.com/news/2017/09/erdogan-warns-sanctions-kurds-independence-bid-170920131642900.html
    http://www.aljazeera.com/indepth/opinion/regional-implications-kurdish-independence-vote-170918123748896.html

    These are a little contradictory over Turkey’s opinion. Nothing’s that simple.

    • Phil Ex-Frog

      Baal
      “PUK are of course clear-eyed tribal warriors for just causes, and nothing to do with the PKK at all. At the moment”

      It’s hard to imagine the polar differences could be overcome by an appeal to nationalism. Maybe Ocelan will have another conversion and declare Kurds to be the best of social democrats of course.

      You got to smile at a cult leader figure telling his followers they should reject leadership. There is so much conflicting information re Rojava. The spin seems almost designed to appeal to the likes of me. Yet reports of councils on the ground are thin. The fog of war survives the internet age.

    • Laguerre

      Patrick Cockburn is very rose-tinted spectacles about the Kurds. All his objectivity disappears when it’s about the Kurds, and he becomes a stenographer for Erbil.

    • Manda

      Catalonian struggle for independence and the Imperialist colonial promotion of a ‘Kurdistan’ cannot be compared in my simple minded opinion.

      • Ba'al Zevul

        Nice of you to admit your deficiency. But I would have thought that the aspiration of the Kurds to national independence from the imperialist colonial entity Iraq* might have engaged your romanticism at least.

        *founded, lest we forget, on the collapse of the imperialist colonialist Ottoman empire, by the imperialist colonialist British

        Still, if politicians didn’t have double standards, they wouldn’t have any standards at all…

        • Manda

          “But I would have thought that the aspiration of the Kurds to national independence from the imperialist colonial entity Iraq* might have engaged your romanticism at least.”

          You are wrong on every single point about what you think my views and motives are.

        • Laguerre

          “from the imperialist colonial entity Iraq”

          I’m bewildered. Where is the imperialism? or indeed colonialism? Iraq doesn’t have any colonies nor is it a colony. It is not an imperial power either. Normally you can do better than that, Baal.

    • giyane

      Mmm.. The translator uses the word chapters for branches of the NPD. Political slogans borrowed from religious terminology are a giveaway of malice.

      • Paul Barbara

        @ giyane September 21, 2017 at 13:17
        ‘Chapters’ are also used in Union terminology – generally Left Wing and not that religious.
        But malice or not, do you dispute the article?
        I know some of the thugs who were used on the streets of the Ukraine were trained in Poland, and suspected Germany also would be assisting them, but wasn’t sure, so I did a bit of searching on the web, and came up with that article. I suspect they had a lot more to do with it.
        Ukraine’s gold was taken to Germany, perhaps in transit to the US, or perhaps as part of the gold owed to
        Germany by the US, of which only a small fraction has actually been returned to Germany.

  • reel guid

    Nothing on Corbyn’s twitter account about the Catalan crisis. Nothing at all.

    He tweets though about Labour wanting to abolish tuition fees. But makes it sound like an abolition everywhere by omitting to say in England and Wales. The SNP abolished tuition fees in Scotland a decade ago.

    But then again Jeremy knows so little about actual politics that he might not be aware that the Westminster Education Secretary doesn’t govern Scottish education. Well not yet anyway. The way Westminster Tories clearly have plans to reduce devolution to nothing. Corbyn probably wouldn’t have much to say about that either, same as the Catalan situation.

    The duplicitous fool doesn’t care about democracy in Catalonia, Basque Country, Scotland or Wales. He’s happy for these four countries to be ruled by reactionary conservatives in Madrid and London until he and his socialist comrades can take over…….And then institute a regime of centralised socialism every bit as anti-autonomy and unresponsive. It’s all notional though. Corbyn being in office.

    Go on Corbyn, tweet something about democracy being suspended in Catalonia. Or is it to be No Homage To Catalonia. But then Orwell was a real socialist because he cared about people and the truth even if it entailed his criticising the doctrine of socialism quite often. Corbyn is a fraud.

    • Phil Ex-Frog

      Reactionary conservatives vs progressive nationalists?

      You can’t put a soggy rizla between them.

    • fred

      “Nothing on Corbyn’s twitter account about the Catalan crisis. Nothing at all. ”

      When US President Barack Obama and former US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton commented on the Scottish independence debate – Clinton saying she would “hate” Britain to “lose Scotland” and Obama saying he believed the UK “worked pretty well” – Scotland’s First Minister Alex Salmond, leader of the SNP, responded by saying both politicians would do well to appreciate the nation’s “thrawn-ness”. “[Thrawn] doesn’t mean stubborn, it basically means Scots don’t like being told what to do.

      Maybe Corbyn considers Spaniards might not like being told what to do.

      • JOML

        Fred, I think there is a significant difference in speaking up in support of the oppressed, than joining in and supporting the oppressors. You’d expect Corby to speak out in support of the oppressed, whereas you’d expect Obama and Clinton to support the oppressors.

        • fred

          I would expect Corbyn to realise he has no business interfering in the affairs of other sovereign states even if he is leader of the opposition.

          • JOML

            Walk by on the other side, you mean, Fred? As leader of the opposition, I’d hope he’d speak out at the oppression of fellow people, regardless of where they reside. However, I suspect he’s got enough to speak out about in his own UK at the moment, so perhaps we should cut him some slack.

          • fred

            They would have to be officially classified as oppressed by the United Nations otherwise people would think he was just some crank making it up as he goes along.

          • JOML

            Fred, would that be the same United Nations who stood back in silence, while the gold old US of A carpet bombed Cambodia, while not formally at war with Vietnam? If so, I suggest we look to ourselves to make our own classifications – although perhaps not like Tony Bliar and his buddy, Bush junior.

      • Rob Royston

        So you’re saying all Scots are thrawn, so why did they invent the word? I’ve always thought that thrawn people were just set in their ways and difficult for others to get them to change their views.

      • Republicofscotland

        Ah yes that would be the same Obama, who at the last minute at a press conference had a note thrust into his hand, by David Cameron, in which Obama urged Scots to remain in the UK.

        Several weeks earlier Obama, said in a press conference that Ireland had become great little independent country, and it was doing well.

        More vile machinations from the Britnat governments of yesteryear.

        • fred

          So Scots Nationalists don’t like others telling them what to do but feel they have the right to tell others what to do.

          Typical nationalists.

          • Republicofscotland

            Ha.

            Says the Britnat, whose Westminster government definitely don’t like being told what to do by the EU.

            But then again hypocrisy is a Westminster mainstay.

  • Habbabkuk

    It has sometimes been said that the politician who resorts to shouting “Hitler” or “Nazi” is in fact attempting to close off an argument by employing the political rhetorical equivalent of the H -Bomb. It appears to me that Craig Murray is doing precisely the same thing by raising the ghost of Franco and Francoism in the context of the planned Catalan referendum and the central govt’s reaction to it. It is a cheap and silly trick.

    The fact is that the Catalan govt, by attempting to call for a referendum which is anti-Constitutional and therefore illegal, is attempting to stage a coup d’état.

    Moreover, the true motive for this attempted coup d’état – apart from the fact that the status of local Catalan politicians would be enhanced if they were to run an independent country rather than a mere autonomous region of Spain, would appear to be an attempt to get rid of current revenue transfers from relatively well-off Catalonia to other poorer regions of Spain. In that sense, the Catalan independentists are no better that the nutters of the various Northern Italian Leagues led by some pretty unsavoury characters.

    • willyrobinson

      We have that Nazi bingo running daily here. For example, Puigdemont used the word ‘totalitarian’ to criticise the governments actions yesterday morning. Rajoy used it in his evening address to describe the seperatists. ‘Coup d’état’ gets thrown around on both sides quite a bit too, but not with much precision…

    • John Goss

      “It is a cheap and silly trick.”

      “Commies” “Reds under the bed” “Stalinists” “Leninists” “Marxists” “Trotskyists” “Nazi” “fascist” “Neocons” are all derogatory terms to label someone, usually by those who have no idea what they mean, or what philosophy such terms are aligned with, to denigrate the target. Will it stop? No.

  • Manolo I. Segovia

    “Please find below the link to the English version of the fantastic Leading Article in Spain’s leading newspaper (which happens to be of left wing ideology, a The Guardian equivalent-ish).

    It is is entitled “The lies of the Catalan regional premier”.

    When both the conservatives, socialists and centrists in a country agree on something, there is likely to be some truth in it … and in the handling of the sedition of the radical Catalan independentistas, the Spanish conservative government has the suport of both the socialist and centrists”.

    https://elpais.com/elpais/2017/09/20/inenglish/1505917320_788824.html

    • reel guid

      A load of mealy mouthed nonsense from El Pais. Just a collection of rationalisations to justify neo-Francoism.

      To argue, as this paper does, that free parliamentary elections in Catalonia are a fair substitute for the right of self-determination is insulting the intelligence of all intelligent Europeans.

      Who made the Spanish constitution that says Catalonia has no right to secede? Did Catalans make it?
      No. Francoists did. And their political and spiritual heirs are happily employing that Francoist inspired constitution.

    • Phil Ex-Frog

      “the conservatives, socialists and centrists in a country agree ”

      It’s nice when all parties agree to let loose the violence of the state.

      Look at that line up. Get yourself some fascists (rumour is you already do) and the support of a foreign powers (you do, you do) and you can relive the glory of 36.

    • nevermind

      which happens to be of left wing ideology, a The Guardian equivalent-ish).

      More like the Blairit’ish faction of the Franco hangers on. If socialists support such repression then they have to live with it. More worried about autonomous regions that won’t pay their wages, then they are about the failed measures that supposed to get their economy into the black.
      Rajoy has resided over an ambitious housing program for tourists that never came, the man is yesterdays leftover.

  • John A

    Teresa May in her UN speech, has compared the people of Donbas, who want independence from Ukraine and the neo nazi US coup installed regime in Kiev, to Hezbollah.
    Anyone seen the incredibly embarrasing ‘we are at war with Russia’ video made by Morgan Freeman. For a black man to boast about 241 years of shining US democracy is incredible.

  • Manolo I. Segovia

    La presión de la perfida Albion sobre España crece por momentos. Editorial de The Times: “El gobierno español debe permitir que el referéndum siga adelante, a pesar de que sea anticonstitucional.”
    Se ve que para The Times (y el núcleo duro del Establishment funcionarial que lo sostiene), España es un país de 2ª que no merece ser un estado de derecho, reducido a la categoría de república bananera sometida a intereses extranjeros. El editorial no tiene desperdicio: “Rajoy el matón… España está tropezando… tácticas contraproducentes de Rajoy… Rajoy está alimentando una crisis… sueño de la independencia… opresión franquista… Cataluña paga una parte desproporcionadamente grande al presupuesto nacional…”
    Reino Unido aprovecha su poder diplomático y mediático para alimentar el independentismo catalán para sacar ventajas en los temas del Brexit y Gibraltar. Y eso es algo que se dice públicamente en el parlamento británico desde 2013. Y cuidado con Ceuta y Melilla, la otra amenaza subyacente. El gobierno debería ponerse en lo peor. La presión parece cada vez más concertada. Manifiesto firmado esta misma mañana por 21 parlamentarios británicos: “…estamos extremadamente preocupados por las medidas adoptadas por el Gobierno español para impedir el referéndum… Este referéndum fue aceptado democráticamente por el Parlamento de Cataluña. Tratar de impedirlo o detenerlo mediante sanciones, cargos penales y acciones directas del Estado español es un insulto a la democracia.”

    appgcatalonia.org.uk

    The National, el periódico de referencia del partido de gobierno en Escocia se suma a la presión de las instituciones británicas sobre el gobierno español. ¿Ha llegado el momento de comunicar el cierre del Consulado General de Edimburgo?

    The National Newspaper

    • willyrobinson

      tácticas contraproducentes de Rajoy… Rajoy está alimentando una crisis…

      What part of these is incorrect? If the goal is to prevent the break up of Spain, then he’s going about it the wrong way. If I was a unionist I’d be furious with him.

  • Paul Barbara

    ‘THE “BLUE WATER RULE” AND THE SELF-DETERMINATION OF NATIONS’:
    https://intercontinentalcry.org/blue-water-rule-self-determination-nations/

    The US and it’s NATO cronies (except Turkey) and Israel back a ‘Kurdish’ State in what was Iraq, for bases and to further their original Balkanisation plans, just as they would back the Kurds breaking off part of Syria. Israel, of course, has a free pass to do as they please with Palestine.

    But in countries which the US sees as friendly, they will oppose secessions.

  • Sharp Ears

    Catalonia referendum: Madrid court fines organisers
    22 minutes ago
    Protesters shout slogans and wave Esteladas (Catalan separatist flags) as they gather outside the High Court of Justice of Catalonia in Barcelona, Spain, 21 September 2017 Image

    There were protests outside a Barcelona court deciding whether to free pro-independence Catalan officials

    Spain’s constitutional court has imposed daily fines of up to €12,000 (£10,600; $14,300) on top Catalan officials for every day they continue organising a banned referendum.

    Among those threatened is Josep Maria Jove, a top Catalan treasury official, who is being held on sedition charges.

    More than a dozen Catalan politicians arrested Wednesday are yet to appear in court in Barcelona.

    Separatist supporters have been protesting outside the court.

    The constitutional court says the vote is illegal but the region’s vice-president said it would go ahead if possible.

    /..
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-41346839

    Oriol Junqueras admitted that police action on Wednesday to disrupt planning for the 1 October referendum, including seizing about 10 million voting slips from a warehouse, had “altered the state of play”.

    But he said “everything is being done” to allow the vote to proceed.

    • frank Hocking

      Was there anyone for her to talk to at the UN. The ones that were there. must have been the ones she paid to be there.
      like she did when she came to address the people of scotland . Had a few Tory faces meet her in a cow shed in a wood in Banchory Aberdeenshire. she never spoke to anyone from Scotland they all travelled up from england on the bus.

  • Manolo I. Segovia

    “Interesting that all the comments came from non-Spaniards. I am. There is a misunderstanding here. Many write that the Central Gvmt are taking meassures against the Catalan Referendum for the creation of a Catalonian Republic. This is ilegal under the Spanish WRITTEN Constitution, which was approved in a Referendum by all regions in Spain, including Catalonia.
    Hence, it is not a decision of the Central Government to stop the independence voting but rather a decision of the judiciary. That is exactly was is being done”.

    “To “let them have a referendum” implies that, under the present written Constitution, the whole of Spain must vote, either this or a change in the Constitution which must have a great consensus and that would be extremely complex”.

    “The Spanish written Constitution says that if there’s a vote then everyone, the whole of Spain, should have the right take part”.

    “The problem is rooted in the past. Previous Gvrnmts of different colour have ignored the problem or covered it up by giving money and allowing more autonomy. It is interesting that the Basque Country Gvrmt presented a similar plan to the Spanish parliament which was not accepted and they complied with the law, after many years of terrorism as we all know”.

    • JOML

      Manolo, I suspect the issue here is that many Catalonians see themselves as “non-Spaniard”. The fact that your constitution is WRITTEN, doesn’t make it right , even if it were written in stone tablets. I hope the situation is resolved amicably, without the Spanish government resorting to violence and oppression.

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