Spain is Operating Way Beyond Democratic Legitimacy 351


In imprisoning Catalan leaders for peaceful campaigning for Independence, and in choosing both in rhetoric and in court to treat support for Independence as “sedition”, the Spanish government is acting way beyond the limits of a democratic society. It is ignoring the basic human rights of freedom of speech and freedom of assembly. It is also undertaking massive blocking of communication and censorship of the internet in a manner never seen before in a “Western” state.

To move now to suspend the democratically elected Catalan administration, which is explicitly offering dialogue as an alternative to UDI, is to escalate the crisis in an unreasonable fashion, in the true meaning of the word unreasonable. All of this is truly dreadful, without even mentioning the violence inflicted on voters taking part in the peaceful Independence referendum.

As regular readers know, the EU reaction to the peaceful movement for Catalan independence has caused me to rethink my entire position on that institution. The failure to condemn the violence and human rights abuse has been bad enough, but the EU has gone still further and offered unqualified support to Spain, with the Commission specifically declaring Spain has a right to use violence, and Juncker saying straight out that the EU opposes Catalan Independence.

What has become more clear to me is that the modern state is simply an engine to enable the elite to control and direct its economic resources to their own benefit, those economic resources including the people. Loss of resources to the ruling elite is therefore a catastrophe. A state is not a collaborative construct voluntarily formed for mutual convenience and protection by its people. If it were, then it would be a matter of indifference to the ruling elite which particular state units people choose to form, and how these morph and form.

The idea, endorsed by the EU, that a state is an economic construct of control, in which it is legitimate to constrain entire peoples by force against their will, is surely abhorrent. The EU is become simply a cartel of power, a club to promote the sectional interest of the controlling elites of European states.

Catalonia will have a few days to decide how to react to Spanish imposition of direct rule, as that has to go through legislative bodies in Madrid. Catalonia has very little capacity militarily to defend itself against Spain. But it is difficult to see how it can be serious about Independence if it makes no effort to that purpose. Some effort at physical, if non-lethal, resistance to Spanish takeover must surely be under discussion.

More importantly, however brief the lifespan of Independent Catalonia at this stage, it must during its existence delegitimise Spanish – by which I mean pre-Independence – institutions and specifically the courts. Within Catalonia, all officers of State, and particularly judges, prosecutors and law enforcement officers, must be suspended immediately from all duties. They should then be instantly administered an oath of loyalty to the Catalan state and a specific abjuring of loyalty to the Spanish state. Those who do not take the oath would remain suspended, and after a week become dismissed.

The alternative will be an undermining of the legitimacy of the Catalan state by its own courts, and the many corrupt pro-Madrid judges and prosecutors they contain. This will be used to counteract the Independence narrative internationally and domestically.

Spain and the EU are hiding behind “the rule of law”. The violence of the Guardia Civil was validated as enforcing the ruling of Francoist judges. The censorship of the internet, the imprisonment of dissidents, all is in accordance with the “rule of law” in Spain.

I dealt with imprisonment of political prisoners all round the world when I was in the FCO. Very few of them were extra-judicially detained. Uzbekistan’s 8,000 political prisoners have almost all been tried and condemned under Uzbek law. Alexander Solzhenitsyn, Ken Saro Wiwa, Nelson Mandela, Gandhi, all were imprisoned by judges. The “rule of law”, where it ignores human rights, is not enough. That is the line the EU, to its great shame, has crossed.

As a footnote, I am researching my biography of George Murray. In 1710, following the death of George’s eldest brother John with the British army at the Battle of Malplaquet, his next eldest brother William was summoned home from India. The first available vessel was bound for Barcelona. William spent some time there waiting for a ship in the middle of a war. The interesting point is that the family letters refer repeatedly to William being in Catalonia and events in Catalonia. The word Spain does not appear in the correspondence at all.

I mention this purely as illustrative – and one of many thousands of examples that might be given – that the Catalans are a people and have been acknowledged as such in Europe for centuries. The right of self-determination in Article 2 of the UN Charter is given not to geographic regions but exclusively to “Peoples”. The Catalans, like the Scots, undoubtedly qualify as a “People”, something the EU has still failed to address.


351 thoughts on “Spain is Operating Way Beyond Democratic Legitimacy

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  • Ba'al Zevul

    The interesting point is that the family letters refer repeatedly to William being in Catalonia and events in Catalonia. The word Spain does not appear in the correspondence at all.

    He’d arrived for Act 2 of the War of the Spanish Succession (1701-14), and probably felt the need for tact. Catalonia was then part of the losing side, Aragon, It wasn’t in Bourbon, Castilian, Spain until that faction won and the war ended. And part of Catalonia, now Roussillon, had been ceded to the French earlier, too. It’s still there. French Catalonia. Not independent, either.

    (Thx, Wikipedia).

  • reel guid

    The Court of Session has upheld Amber Rudd’s decision to deport US couple Ellen and Russell Ferber.

    The Ferbers came to Scotland in 2011 on entrepeneur visas to start up a B & B in the Highlands. Their place has won an award and is surely an asset to the Scottish tourist industry.

    Home Secretary Rudd made the decision to deport on the grounds that the Ferbers do not employ enough people. As if a B & B business could employ large numbers of people. Rudd could easily have used her discretion and allowed the Ferbers to stay.

    This would not happen in an independent Scotland. No politician would make such a cruel and senseless decision against public opinion. But you can make such decisions about Scotland courtesy of the union if you’re a mean English Tory.

    • Martinned

      This would not happen in an independent Scotland.

      There are plenty of people who argued for Brexit by pointing at stupid laws passed in Brussels. To them, and to you, I’d say that you should never underestimate the stupid things that a government might do. In an independent Scotland there’d be plenty of stupid to go around.

      • reel guid

        Of course there’d be plenty of stupid. A lot less meanness though. I said Rudd was being mean, not stupid.

      • Republicofscotland

        “I’d say that you should never underestimate the stupid things that a government might do. In an independent Scotland there’d be plenty of stupid to go around.”

        Indeed, the poor folk of the Netherlands have been without a government since March.

        Though it has been rumoured that four parties have finally stopped squabbling and decided to form a coalition.

        • Martinned

          Indeed, the poor folk of the Netherlands have been without a government since March.

          That’s not stupid, that’s what compromising looks like. Brits – particularly English – tend to get confused by it because of the Westminster model’s reliance on the elected dictator model, but in other countries it takes multiple parties to form a majority, and they sometimes need a few months to figure out what they want to do for the next four years. In this case, the new government is due to go to the Palace some time next week.

        • Habbabkuk

          A few years ago Belgium was without a government for about 9 months if memory serves. Without discernable negative effect either economically or socially, I might add, everything continued tickety-boo.

          • Republicofscotland

            It really shouldn’t take 9 months to form a government. I mean it’s not Brexit now is it, and being without a government ( possibly due to parties squabbling and in-fighting) for a long period, doesn’t exactly inspire confidence now does it?

          • Martinned

            The Belgian case took more than a year.

            In the Netherlands it took 7 months because they first spent several months negotiating with the Green Party, before concluding that that was not going to work and starting over with the Christian Union instead.

            (Also, because no one was panicking, they took 3 weeks off for summer vacation.)

          • Kerch'ee Kerch'ee Coup

            The directly-elected Walloon Parliament was of course able to block for some tim e the Canadian -EU FTA with its clauses on arbitration of industrial disputes. This FTA is something of a back door for US products to the EU and we can expect large parts of it to be incorporated in ts future UK trade agreements . Hopefully the Scottish Assembly can exercise a similar role on these.

    • Republicofscotland

      reel guid.

      Yes the Highland Clearance’s never really stopped. The Home Office, has seen to that.

      Westminster and the unknown absentee land owners, want to keep the Highlands and Scotland in general fairly vacant, to allow, Scotland to remain as a fishing, and hunting stomping ground for the chinless b*stards, who see Scotland as nothing more than a playground.

  • Tony_0pmoc

    Last year most of us British about 500 of us, couldn’t wait to get out of Catalonia and we were only there for a week. I can almost but not quite, understand why The Spanish beat the shiit out of them (unless most of it) was actually faked. There’s a lot of it about.

    Almost certainly, the actions of The Spanish Government, are Dictated by The EU, and The EU is dictated by The USA (the neocons primarily in Washington DC)

    None of this has anything to do with Democracy, except BREXIT ( I am of course biased – cos I voted for it – something I rarely do ).

    Tony

    • Martinned

      <i.Almost certainly, the actions of The Spanish Government, are Dictated by The EU, and The EU is dictated by The USA (the neocons primarily in Washington DC)

      Yes, almost certainly…

      • freddy

        I doubt that the U.S.A. – N.A.T.O. – U.K. – France – Germany – European Union
        are directing operations in Spain.
        However, I do expect they have given explicit agreement with Rajoy to
        Crack-Down as HARD
        as possible
        on Catalan independence.

  • reel guid

    The Danish Parliament the Foketinget has debated the Catalan situation and a group of MPs from no less than seven different parties has issued a statement calling on the Spanish government to stop their current policy of threats and engage the Catalan Government in dialogue.

    No Commons debate. They don’t want to know. Tories and Labour either openly or tacitly support the strongarm anti-democratic actions of the Madrid Government.

    Labour’s supposed Foreign Secretary in waiting Emily Thornberry seems completely untroubled by the fascism of Rajoy and his ministers. In complete contrast to the Danish MPs.

      • reel guid

        A token tweet or press release about police violence doesn’t excuse silence on the subject of the suspension of democracy.

    • freddy

      The Old Labour Party are expecting to become the new masters of the United Kingdom – soon.
      The Old Labour Party wish the United Kingdom to continue, so they can become the masters of the United Kingdom.
      If the Old Labour Party claim they are in support of Catalan independence, some might take it that they are also in support of Scottish independence
      but the Old Labour Party are not in support of Scottish independence.

      I hope I have cleared things up 4 u

  • Sharp Ears

    Rahoy is just a dog with a bone and he is not letting go of it.

    Catalonia crisis: Spain plans for elections as independence row grows
    57 minutes ago
    Spain’s conservative government has agreed with the socialist opposition to hold regional elections in Catalonia in January, the socialists say.

    The elections are part of a package of measures being put in place to suspend the region’s autonomy, as its leader threatens to declare independence.

    Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy will announce measures to impose direct rule after a cabinet meeting on Saturday.

    /..
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-41693318

  • freddy

    Frau Merkel
    “We have huge concerns,” she said, referring to the mass arrests in Turkey since
    President Recep Tayyip Erdogan quelled a coup attempt in June 2016.
    As a candidate to join the European Union, Turkey is receiving 4.5bn euros (£4bn; $5.3bn) in aid from the EU in 2014-2020.
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-41692951

    I did not know that the E.U. were handing cash out to Turkey.

    The sooner we leave the E.U. the better.

    • Martinned

      The EU is paying Turkey essentially in return for looking after those Syrian refugees that are no longer drowning in the Aegean. Does the Express have a problem with that?

      • Republicofscotland

        “Does the Express have a problem with that?”

        The Express, I hesitate to call it a newspaper, so I won’t, has a problem with everthing that doesn’t fit its modus operandi.

        Lord Beaverbrook, kept ownership of the Express (early-mid 20th century) for the sole purpose of propaganda.

        Nothing has changed since then.

    • Dadi

      You are speaking of Catalonia and Spain without knowledge. Before you should inform yourself on how the actual Catalan government has approved a unconstitutional and illegal referendum law, violating not only the Spanish rules but their own Catalan Statute. If you approve that you approve antidemocratic procedure for achieving goals (independence, secession, or anything), pursed from narrow parliamentary majority, electorate minority. Then they sell the image of eternal victims to people like you, well predisposed to trust.

  • reel guid

    It has emerged that Labour Party Chair and Labour’s GE coordinator Ian Lavery received £165 000 other than wages from the NUM when he was general secretary for the Northumberland Area. He got a £72 000 loan from the union to buy a house which was never paid back. He recieved £90 000 in “termination payments” when he left the job.

    For The Many (Quids) Not The Few.

  • thomaspotter2014

    Juncker has said that the EU cannot legitimise Catalunja as this will embolden every self determining
    minority in the whole of Europe to try to do likewise.
    That they are actively supporting Spanish State violence and oppression seems to be a price the EU are prepared to pay.
    They haven’t thought this through and seem to reckon it’ll all blow over sfter Spain bludveones Catalunja into submission.
    Not a good look for the EU but this where it’s going.

  • reel guid

    Rev Stu at Wings has highlighted the Daily Record’s reporting of the Type 31 frigates broken promise. Three short sentences hidden away as unobtrusively as possible on page 14 of the paper. And even then the DR can’t tell the truth. They said the frigates order “might” go to Merseyside. Lie. They’re going to Merseyside instead of the Clyde shipyards they were originally promised too. Fact.

    • Republicofscotland

      reel guid.

      “I understand anger at Douglas Ross skiving. But what irks me is constituents getting in touch to tell me their Tory MP won’t reply to them”

      “I’ve loads of vulnerable constituents coming to me for help because they get nothing from their MP- and I’m not alone”

      “And to think I used to be able to signpost folk to two incredibly hard working SNP MPs who would do their best for them. It’s distressing”

      https://mobile.twitter.com/GillianMSP?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Fwingsoverscotland.com%2Fan-apology-to-the-daily-record%2Fcomment-page-1%2F%23comments

      Aberdeenshire is in a bit of a mess since the Tory’s won seats their at the last GE.

      • reel guid

        Ros

        Alexander Burnett MSP – Old Etonian, descended from the Russian Tsars and reputedly worth £45 million – seems to be the big Tory cheese in Aberdeenshire.

        The Colonel of course is the big Tory cheese in the rest of Scotland.

    • Anon1

      You’ve already had the two Queen Elizabeth Class carriers and now you’re getting eight Type 26 frigates. There’s enough work to keep Clyde at capacity for the next 20 years.

      In an independent Scotland you’d be building rubber dinghies.

      • reel guid

        Stop making things up.

        The Tory government promised 13 Type 26 frigates during the indyref campaign. 3 have been commissioned for the Scotstoun yards. That’s not going to provide work for 20 years.

        The promised Type 31 frigates are now going to Merseyside.

        The aircraft carriers were built and fitted out in several yards around the UK. Only a portion of the work was done on the Clyde.

  • reel guid

    Liberal Democrat leaders Cable, Lamb, Swinson, Carmichael have all failed to register a tweet about Rajoy’s plan to suspend democracy in Catalonia.

    Willie Rennie did mention it the other day. But only to castigate May for not condemning police violence. Rennie says nothing about Madrid’s planned direct rule.

    You’d have thought that professed liberals would be motivated sufficiently to protest about a Western European government that wants to suspend democratic insitutions and create political prisoners.

    But no. The truth is inescapable that the Westminster political class – Tory, Labour and Liberal – are an association of thieving, posturing, dishonest, self-serving cunts.

    By contrast real politicians from seven different parties in the Danish Parliament are protesting in strong terms to Madrid that they must stop the anti-democratic moves and must negotiate with the Catalan Government.

        • Kempe

          Churches were closed, citizens required an internal passport to move around and even then certain cities were closed areas. The NKVD/KGB’s powers of search and arrest have been well documented.

    • Laguerre

      I don’t think anyone in France is afraid that fascism is on the road. Except perhaps for Mélenchon’s lot. It’s a law that’s been coming for some time now, prolonging the state of emergency for five years. Probably necessary.

      If it were Britain, I might agree. But as you know, the French are a rather rebellious lot, and the law has always been a degree more authoritarian than in Britain. There’s long been an equivalent of the Henry VIII powers, which indeed Macron did use to get through some of his work reforms. The Brits are so placid and accepting, that such powers aren’t needed in Britain, and indeed are unacceptable.

      In any case everybody knows that the laws are only going to be used against the ethnics. When you see posses of flics banging kids up against the wall in the métro, they’re always black or brown, never white. Police racism is objectionable, but that’s where we are.

    • John Goss

      Seems very much like they are following the USA lead with Homeland Security. Or our new laws (allowed to target Muslims) but which can be used against anybody.

      • Laguerre

        Of course, these “protectionist” solutions are designed to fend off dangers that the West itself has created, the wars in the Middle East, etc. The West would do much better to cure the problem at source, by making peace in the Middle East (Ay, but Israel wouldn’t like it).

        The greater difficulties posed by Sub-Saharan African economic migration to Europe (not visible in UK), and Latinos in the US (in spite of Trump’s Wall), can equally only be resolved at source. If you can live reasonably at home, there will not be so much drive to abandon all, and risk the Libyan crossing. I remember a story about a village in Guinea, I think it was, where the subject of the story had tried twice to cross from Libya, but failed, and so was back home. He was the only young man left in the village. All the rest had left on the same road. Real “protectionism” is doing something about the situation in such states, and not sending US special forces to get killed chasing al-Qa’ida in Niger. By the way, we also need to change the regime in Saudi Arabia, which is stimulating most of the Islamist movements.

  • Carlos Limongi

    Is Catalonia violating any ‘established’ agreement (constitution) within the spanish comunity by declaring itself ‘independant ?

    Even if a referendum took place, at the most only 50% would agree to the independance. What would happen to the other 50%?

    The catalan issue has nothing to do nor it is anything like with the Scottish movement. Scothland is a state associated with england. Catalonia has never been a state.

    I am very sorry to say that this article has a complete lack of knowledge of the catalan issue.

    • Argie in CAT

      There are two meanings for ignorance in my opinion: lack of knowledge of a topic (it can be “cured” if there is interest, access to information, and time), and lack of the very notion of knowledge. The author of this article is not ignorant, in any of these meanings. You my friend, as most spaniards, are immune to knowledge. Bon vent i barca nova!

    • jbr

      That’s not right. At the moment the independence voters in Catalonia would easily surpass a majority. In a democracy that means Catalonia should become independent.

      • jbr

        …and if we look at Catalan history, the last five centuries have been about escaping domination by an absolutist Spanish state.
        In 1716, for example, Catalonia lost all it’s political and social institutions. Spain abolished them through ‘conquest of war’. Yet Catalonia at that time boasted the most advanced judicial institutions in Europe (only rivalled by England’s), with its Drets (Rights) and Tribunal de Contrafaccions (like an appeal court). The documents pertaining to these institutions were all burnt by Spain but some have recently been found that were in private hands. A similar system of freedoms was only instituted many decades later with the American and French revolutions.
        The fact that these things are not known by many is because Catalan historiography has always been controlled by the Spanish state and its historiographers.

        • Argie in CAT

          Thanks for trying, nice explanation. But these “type 2 ignorants” just do not want to know about it, they feel it in their stomach and nothing you can explain will make them change their mind nor, fortunately for the catalans, their strategy.

      • Carlos Limongi

        Happy day and welcome to art 155 of the spanish constitution ! Which is for all ‘spaniards’ including catalans ! Although may feel like from another blood or race

    • Curial

      In the October 1st referendum voted around 2.300.000 people (participation of 43%) plus 700.000 ballots caught by police (another 13% of the census of voters). This is, participation was of 56% under a thread of terror. 90% of the 2.300.000 where YES and 7.8% NO.

      Assuming for instance that people who didn’t vote would express in the opposite sense in case of a agreed referendum (this is 90% NO and 7,8% YES). The break even would happen with a participation of 86% (and this without considering the 13% who probably voted keeping the 90% proportion of YES). There have never been such a high participation in any referendum or parliament elections up to date. Highest, and far from others, was the election of the current catalan parliament with 77% participation).

      As for the statement that Catalonia has never been a state, at least one should try to understand this term in ancient times where the “modern states” didn’t exist and to read reputed historians like Pierre Villar for more closer times. History of Catalonia goes back to more than 1000 years, and for instance the first parliament was catalan (the word parliament comes from the catalan word “parlar” which means to discuss) or the currencies in Spain and Catalonia had been different for many years (it was in one of the many spanish bankruptcies that the former spanish currency, the “peseta”, was taken from the catalan currency at the time (around 1865)).

      On the contrary, I think that the article is a pretty good description of the situation.

  • Núria Castell

    Thank you very much, Mr. Murray, for your strong condemnation of state violence in Catalonia. Moltes gràcies!

    • Political observer

      I hope that you also condemn the police violence carried out by the Catalan police, employed in the eviction of Plaza de Cataluña in Barcelona on May 28, 2011, under the command of President Artur Mas, predecessor of President Carles Puigdemont, both members of independentist political party.

      Police of Catalonia, which, one of its high command, publicly argue that peaceful protests end when an agent of authority (police) gives the appropriate indications of ending the peaceful protest, at which point, if he persists in continuing with the peaceful protest, at that moment it stops being considered pacific and happens to have consideration of resistance to the authority.

      • Carlos Limongi

        Good point ! During the riots of 14N of 2012 Ester Quintana lost one eye caused by rubber bullet shot by catalan police of Arthur Mas. There is a mention of this event in this article which clearly shows the tendency of this article

  • MSR

    All of my life I has been a pro-Europe. And -crytal clear- I was agains Brexit.
    But now, – how you explain in few but perfect words, – the curtain in front of my eyes is falling quite fast.
    And I am starting to see what it is the real European Union and I do not want anymore to be part of.

    • Laguerre

      Really? What’s your problem? I suspect you’re one of the innumerable Brexiters who are playing the game of pretending to have once been remainers, but have changed their mind.

    • DiDa

      Impartial!! False and mistyfiyng , justifying antidemocratic methods in Catalan parliament and unilateral propaganda?

      • fred

        To Mr Murray democracy means everybody getting what he wants. The referendum could have been legal fair and well run but unless the result said what he wanted to hear he’d ignore it. We had a referendum here in Scotland in 2014 where the people voted to remain part of the UK so Mr Murray started calling for the government to declare UDI anyway. That is the respect Mr Murray has for democracy.

  • A Mallorca's cityzen

    it is very clear that you have no idea what is happening here in Spain. Their statements are totally subjective, manipulated, manipulative, and leave me more than clear that you just want to draw attention, and I am ashamed to read these statements you make about a country that has been characterized for 40 years by respect for rights human rights, legality, and freedom. in Catalonia, the legitimate government of this autonomous community, which is a region of Spain, has completely skipped the law, calling for a referendum on independence. The government of the nation of Spain, the only thing that has done has been to repeatedly warn the Catalan government to return to legality, to be able to dialogue. I would like you to inform yourself a little more before giving this absolutely false information.

    • reel guid

      Well why doesn’t Rajoy negotiate with the Catalan Government over the Spanish Consitution’s prohibition of independence referenda? If Madrid is so sure there’s an anti-independence majority in Catalonia then they’ve got no need to prevent one, and can agree to one in the same way the UK Government did with the Scottish Government in 2012.

      If there is a pro-independence majority in Catalonia then to deny a referendum is against the UN core value of the right to self-determination.

      If the Spanish Government refuses to talk and prefers to impose direct rule they will be invoking the spirit of the dictator Franco. Is that the image the people of modern Spain want to acquire?

  • Imonewiththeforce

    Thank u mr. Craig. We want to thank also belgium charles michel slovenia socialists israel switzerland björk daniel estulin but its not enough. we need more help and comprehension. Lets hope catalexit can be the third post truth this year. Eu has never been a democracy and it will be always managed by the popular party (arithmetics). They try to scare us with kurz’s election or programme us with a symbolic image of a dog in a forest fire in galicia (some of them provoked) carrying its black dead baby. We are not dummies anymore. We want freedom with peace (very important. -violence and dirty game always in the other side-. our hero is Trapero, head of our Police, the same that Rajoy doesnt want in Europol -after a terrorist attack-. ah coincidence with Christine de Bolle s spanish rejection to lead the same org after prime minister support to cat?) and republican democracy. Two innocent guys in jail and maybe tomorrow a blackout in the catalan tv.. like being ai wei wei and sinéad o’connor at the same time… oh yes the same thing. Where is all the people that have loved us…? They dont really care about us? We dont understand the feedback. help♡cat

  • Joan Carles Igual

    Dear Mr. Murray,
    I want to tell you that reading your words has been like a fresh air stream in this smoke-infested environment, an old-fashioned smoke. A smoke that has been locked up for about 40 years … Until a few days ago, as you said, I also believed in Europe, but today we are facing a great disappointment at all … Many critical voices emit sentences like yours these days, but it seems that nobody is hearing out there … Within Spain there are also many similar voices, but the PP Party has for years indoctrinating the Spanish people against the Catalan people, getting a considerable degree of contempt for Catalonia. We could see and hear when the Guardia Civil troops left for Catalonia, they cheered and hummed an “Go for them”, as if they were going to the war to eliminate a dangerous enemy. Is that why they beat us with so much desire and so much anger with their truncheons? You had to see the glowing eyes of some Civil Guard, they were enjoying their work. I understand, they had to fight against dangerous neighbors armed with votes … INCREDIBLE TODAY! Isn’t it? That is why I think that the current government appears as the unique solution to save the country from those Catalan independentists, almost terrorist (as we have been compared with the disappeared terrorist organization ETA …) President Rajoy appears today as the only one which guarantees of being able to stop us. No negotiation, no dialogue, no listening, nothing … Only, police, sticks, rubber balls, repression, censorship, judges, jail and this just started … I believe that in a national elections the current government would obtain the majority once again. It is incredible that the spanish people are not able to see clearly and recognize the wolf in sheep skin that is ruling Spain today and that thanks to our movement, we have made them to show the world a bit of their true identity.

    Equally grave, I believe that it was the two interventions made by the King of Spain Philip VI, of incredible and astonishing shame, he warned us and even almost threatening, yes, with democracy and the rule of law by flag … “Their state of right and their democracy “. What a Chief of state … who it is supoused to have mediation and conciliation powers. He is no more than an alleged mere replicant of the corrupt PP government. In a video that was on the Internet the next day, the King’s speech was compared with that of Mariano Rajoy a few days before … and seems written by the same person. Unheard!.

    I hope that the Spanish people will realize it in time and react, because in fact the Catalans are giving a golden opportunity to all the Spanish, to end the worst government that Spain has had since the beginning of this “democracy” even the most corrupt in history (by far), the most centralist and who has been able to create more division among all. Divide and conquer … so that…

    A warm greeting from Catalonia and very grateful for your words Mr. Murray. By the way, I apologize for my poor english

    Visca Catalonia lliure!

    Joan Carles

    • Political observer

      Do not forget that the political party PdeCat (predecessor CIU formation) to which Mr. Puigdemont belongs and his predecessor Mr. Mas, is the political party after the PP of Mr. Rajoy, the popular party with more cases of corruption of all the Spanish state.

      The Catalan independence people, has not been compared in any comment with the terrorist band ETA. They have been publicly seen and publicly held, defending the bloody acts committed by Mr. Arnaldo Otegi, an active member of the ETA terrorist command since 1977, handed over by France to Spain in July 1987 as a terrorist.

      Terrorist group that carried out more than 80 attacks in Catalan territory, with a balance of 54 people killed and more than 224 injured. Attacks carried out in terrorist collaboration Terra Lliure of Catalan independence ideology founded in 1978.

  • THANKS FROM BARCELONA

    Dear Mr. Murray,

    I want to tell you that reading your words has been like a fresh air stream in this smoke-infested environment, an old-fashioned smoke. A smoke that has been locked up for about 40 years … Until a few days ago, as you said, I also believed in Europe, but today we are facing a great disappointment at all … Many critical voices emit sentences like yours these days, but it seems that nobody is hearing out there … Within Spain there are also many similar voices, but the PP Party has for years indoctrinating the Spanish people against the Catalan people, getting a considerable degree of contempt for Catalonia. We could see and hear when the Guardia Civil troops left for Catalonia, they cheered and hummed an “Go for them”, as if they were going to the war to eliminate a dangerous enemy. Is that why they beat us with so much desire and so much anger with their truncheons? You had to see the glowing eyes of some Civil Guard, they were enjoying their work. I understand, they had to fight against dangerous neighbors armed with votes … INCREDIBLE TODAY! Isn’t it? That is why I think that the current government appears as the unique solution to save the country from those Catalan independentists, almost terrorist (as we have been compared with the disappeared terrorist organization ETA …) President Rajoy appears today as the only one which guarantees of being able to stop us. No negotiation, no dialogue, no listening, nothing … Only, police, sticks, rubber balls, repression, censorship, judges, jail and this just started … I believe that in a national elections the current government would obtain the majority once again. It is incredible that the spanish people are not able to see clearly and recognize the wolf in sheep skin that is ruling Spain today and that thanks to our movement, we have made them to show the world a bit of their true identity.

    Equally grave, I believe that it was the two interventions made by the King of Spain Philip VI, of incredible and astonishing shame, he warned us and even almost threatening, yes, with democracy and the rule of law by flag … “Their state of right and their democracy “. What a Chief of state … who it is supoused to have mediation and conciliation powers. He is no more than an alleged mere replicant of the corrupt PP government. In a video that was on the Internet the next day, the King’s speech was compared with that of Mariano Rajoy a few days before … and seems written by the same person. Unheard!.

    I hope that the Spanish people will realize it in time and react, because in fact the Catalans are giving a golden opportunity to all the Spanish, to end the worst government that Spain has had since the beginning of this “democracy” even the most corrupt in history (by far), the most centralist and who has been able to create more division among all. Divide and conquer … so that…

    A warm greeting from Catalonia and very grateful for your words Mr. Murray. By the way, I apologize for my poor english

    Visca Catalonia lliure!

    Joan Carles I.

  • DiDa

    Please Mr Murray
    Inform you before arguing about the issue. The actual Catalan government did not respect any democratic procedure to impose the law of October 1 referendum. No respect of Spanish constitution, no respect of Catalan statute and no respect of Catalan parliamentary rules. No qualified majority, no time for discussion, sudden changes in agenda, no respect of internal experts reports. They forced all Catalans in an illegal and highly socially conflictive situation , in the name of the “people of Catalonia” when they are a minority imposing their vision. And you argue in their favour? You are sustaining antidemocratic methods, fascists ..if you prefer to call them.

  • Conjunction

    I wonder if the Eu would have taken a different stance to Catalonia if Britain had not been Brexiting.

  • Perico

    Obiously, you are completely misinformed about cataluña, which is clear because you are not Spanish, cataluña government has spread lot of lies and you have bitten.

    You’d better write about matters you know, Spanish political situation is not.

  • reel guid

    A despicable speech from the Spanish king. Saying that it will all be resolved by “legitimate democratic institutions”. The current Catalan Parliament is a legitimate democratic institution. And if the Spanish Government calls new elections for it and manipulates by disallowing candidates, disallowing free speech, intimidating voters and committing electoral fraud then any resulting new pro-Madrid Catalan Parliament would be a total sham and illegitimate.

    • Political observer

      On 6 and 7 September, the Catalan government acted in the most anti-democratic way that is remembered in Catalonia. Approving the law of referendum, without complying with the laws of the parliament of Catalonia itself, as if it were a coup.

      You (the independence people) accuse the Spanish government of not being democratic, they accuse you of manipulating the press and television, you accuse them of repression. And he knows one thing, his Catalan independence government, is no better than the Spanish government. Because his Catalan government proved not to be democratic, because it shows evidence of manipulating the Catalan press and television.

      The difference is that for you (the independence people), they favorably justify any act that the government of Catalonia does, because for you, the end justifies the means, and for you any act is favorable with the aim of achieving independence, although to obtain it in an illegal, anti-democratic, and outlaw way including the law of the parliament of Catalonia.

  • reel guid

    Any European socialist parties that either openly or tacitly approves of the actions of the Francoist Spanish Government are being fascist friends and facilitators. This includes the British Nationalist Labour Party and it’s leader Jeremy Corbyn unless they speak out against Rajoy. Jeremy Corbyn the fascist friend.

  • judith Cobeña i Guardia

    Thanks Mr. Murray to clarify to those who would read beyond the “official version ” what is happen in Catalonia and Spain now.

  • Michael

    Despite the initial erroneous claim about freedom of speech and assembly being denied (police have been allowing protests in Catalonia for years) the writer’s points were generally valid, I thought.
    That is until he suggested that Catalonia should now militarily defend itself in the face of parliament’s decision to remove Catalonia’s autonomy.
    If Catalonia had voted for independence and THEN direct rule was imposed, it would be a different matter. But no such vote occurred. Most opinion polls have the region’s voters split at around 50/50. The vote was unrepresentative and unconstitutional and Puigdemont, whilst admirably pushing for more dialogue, stubbornly refused to state that independence had not been declared.
    Both sides should still now sit down to discuss what changes will occur to better reflect the true value of Catalonia to the Spanish economy, and the viability of a constitutional vote for independence. But the Spanish government had no choice but to act as it did.

  • Francesc Gilaberte

    Thank you very much for your clear description about the Catalan-Spanish description, Mr. Murray.
    Unfortunately, neither Spanish nor EU politician will never recognise than their own actions cast a shame shadow over their foundational treaties.
    Anyway, Catalonia’s independence will need as much as possible a fast and wide international support
    Thank you again

  • M Rosa Vila

    Thank goodnes I can read a realistic text.
    Spain will never recognise Catalonia as people who want to be free but as rebels who have to be smashed.
    Europe gives us the back but we, as ever, will keep up again and again, never surrender.
    Thanks

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