Carn 169 is hot off the press today on the same day that the people of Catalonia go to the polls yet again. Carn 169 will be sent off to subscribers and members over the next couple of weeks, as the consequences of today’s vote is weighed up by the politicians and pro-independence campaigners of what should be Europe’s newest nation state.
Below is the Editorial from the current issue, which highlights how the Spanish Government are still employing the tactics of what was thought to be a bygone Fascist era. Disappointingly – though many would argue unsurprisingly – the EU is backing the actions of this oppressive system over the democratic right of the people of Catalonia to chose independence. The Editorial is set out in full below.
“It has been fascinating following recent political developments in Catalunya. In particular it was inspiring to see how the Catalan electorate stood up for their democratic right to vote, despite the unnecessary violence that was inflicted on many by the Spanish police. The Spanish government should be ashamed of their reversion to the fascist tactics reminiscent of their recent past, when the military dictator Franco ruthlessly suppressed the population.
Refusing to even enter into dialogue with the Catalan Government, Prime Minister Rajoy’s Government have shown that they care little for democratic principles and even less for freedom of expression. By contract the Catalan politicians and political activists who have simply responded to the will of their democratically elected parliament to implement the changes that were freely and openly decided upon, as is their right under international law, have conducted themselves with stoicism and dignity.
The President of Catalunya, Carles Puigdemont, was right to leave the country with members of his cabinet rather than risk arrest by the Spanish authorities to be treated like petty criminals, which is what the Spanish wanted. By travelling to Brussels, the centre of the European Union (EU), President Puigdemont has challenged Europe to help him find a solution. Even though the various governments of Belgium seem to be sympathetic to the cause of Catalunya, the reaction of the European institutions has been hopelessly biased and inept. To my mind, in their reaction to the Catalunya crisis, the European project has been shown up for what it is – a project to protect the interests of big business and the ruling class, rather than one that upholds representative democracy, liberty, human rights and peace. I still think the idea of European state governments working together to find joint solutions to common problems within a democratic system is worth striving towards. However the way that the European project is being implemented shows that it does not represent the peoples of Europe and its structure does not allow for change.
Now more than ever it seems, the Celtic countries should be putting their efforts into working more closely together to set up their own Celtic alliance. Catalunya has shown us that the European project does not (and perhaps cannot) uphold the rights of nations without a state. If a similar situation arises, as in Catalunya, in one of our own Celtic nations then where would it turn for political support? A formal political agreement or alliance between the Celtic countries could provide the reassurance needed for any of the governments in the Celtic countries to know that they could rely on the support of another government. Catalunya has found itself isolated and, with members of its government already arrested, has been left to the wolves, as Gernika/Guernica was in 1936; the support of the Irish Government for Spain and the EU attitude is reprehensible.
The Spanish Government has now seized power in Catalunya and have called a snap election to be held on 21st December 2017. I hope that the Catalan electorate come out in force to vote for those political parties that support independence, but it may well be the case that these parties will now be banned, as the Spanish have done in the Basque Country. This is not democracy. The European Union has shown itself up to be a farce for all the peoples of Europe without a state. I am convinced though that this is only the beginning. Some have commented that Brexit has sealed the fate of the EU. I would rather argue that this is history repeating itself.”