Col·lectiu Emma - Explaining Catalonia

Monday, 16 december 2013 | Herald Scotland

English

Spain in denial as Catalonia demands independence poll (Herald Scotland)

This article by Ian Bell was originally published in the Herald Scotland on December 14th, 2013. To read the full article please click here.

A few excerpts:


"... British Unionists might certainly wonder about the tactics being pursued by Mr Rajoy. Why does he not attempt his own version of Better Together? Why does he not seek to court those nationalists amenable to a deal on autonomy? Threatening Catalonia with expulsion from the EU - one of Mr Rajoy's familiar tricks - is no more likely to win hearts and minds than the refusal even to recognise a people's right to vote.

Spanish centralists would point, no doubt, to the tensions that have run beneath the surface of the country's politics since it was rid of Franco. Elements of the Spanish military, past and present, have already begun to mutter Catalonia must be "dealt with", not necessarily by polite means. Conservatives (and plenty of Socialists) remain deeply loyal to the idea of Spain, whatever Catalans and Basques might have to say.

The fact remains Mr Rajoy is thus far refusing even to engage with the argument. That being so, he might as well be working for a double Yes vote. The Catalan sense of national identity runs deep. It survived the most vicious assaults of Franco. Catalonia is profoundly patriotic. Mr Rajoy has treated a decision of its national government with contempt.

Mr Rajoy seems determined to embitter Catalans and concentrate their minds. He is another who misunderstands the maps.

Plainly, he fails to comprehend why Catalans, like Scots, like so many others, can still be pursuing their demands after so many generations. Old nationalism does not disappear because of a clause in a new constitution.


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Col·lectiu Emma - Explaining Catalonia

Col·lectiu Emma is a network of Catalans and non-Catalans living in different countries who have made it their job to track and review news reports about Catalonia in the international media. Our goal is to ensure that the world's public opinion gets a fair picture of the country's reality today and in history.

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Col·lectiu Emma - Explaining Catalonia