08 de juliol 2011

The Real Fight

After all the efforts to internationalize our cause it has become obvious that the Catalan struggle is not a minor claim from a few melancholic airheads who still believe in the long gone days. Even when it appears that the country’s sanity is in tatters due to the economic trembling that led to unpopular measures from the government, civil unrest, and an apparent situation of ongoing social confrontation, Catalans still fret about the unevenness of the legal contract that ties the nation to Spain.

Too often it is referred as foes those elements within Spanish society who systematically attack any pretentions to establish a serious democracy in the country and allow the nations that make it up the right to self-determination. Nonetheless, it is generally acknowledged that no institution has done more to promote secessionism in Catalonia than the Zapatero administration over the last 7 years and his chain of deceits, being his sworn but false support to the new Catalan Statute of Autonomy in 2003 the most renowned one.

While Spain continues his crusade to guarantee its national integrity, which is a thoroughly reasonable positioning on their side, Catalans keep searching for the formula that will lead them to full sovereignty. Multiple associations, residual political parties, and fresh scissions from existing groups sell the idea of a free Catalan state atomizing the sector of the populace that favors independence. Rather than providing a multiple vanguard from which to pursue the long desired objective, the diaspora of political and social pressure is highly counterproductive and limits the impact of their claims to a very large extent.

Not only there is an evident failure on utilizing the disaffection towards Madrid the central government oppressive campaigns raise, but the lack of political unity is also a major cause of upholding the current statu quo. On related news, a recently released poll by the CEO, the Center for Opinion Studies, asked for the first time ever in an explicit manner if Catalans were in favor or against independence; the results were revealing: 43% would vote “yes’ to independence, 28% would vote “no”, and 23% would abstain from voting.

At this point, the only certainty is the imbalance existing between the two territories and the consequent need for readjustment. Ultimately, the first side that engages in proactive measures might attain a decisive edge; whether the Spanish will be able to respond to the peripheral claims for a larger self-government, or Catalan society will unite once in for all under the same political flag, could determine the final outcome of this conflict. For good or bad, the destiny of our nation is still in our hands.

Article publicat al Catalonia Direct.

6 Comentaris:

  1. Sounds as if all Catalans en bloc wanted "full sovereignty", or at least a large majority of them. Is the CEO a reliable source? Headed by a prominent pro-independence activist and since recently controlled directly by the office of the president of Catalonia, this entity is anything but willing to provide unbiased information.

    The obsession of the ideologist is to make the world believe in their twisted view of reality. Exactly the same are doing the makers of the "documentary" you referred to in your last post. A platform called Sobirania i Progrés has come out with a nice propaganda piece, nothing that resembles journalism in any way but the form. The reiterated claim made in that video that Catalans are treated "like the Jews" is ludicrous and an insult to the victims of the Shoah.

    Sobirania i Progrés is one of those "multiple associations" and parties you have mentioned (staffed to a high degree by always the same people), and almost all of them do not call for the independence of Catalonia alone, but for the independence of all "Catalan Countries".

    The world should keep that in mind when those organisations talk about "the right to self-determination". Ultimately it means uniting all Catalans from four different countries in one new state. And none of those organisations has so far given any guarantees for the minorities that would be created by such act.

  2. First of all, thanks for sharing your thoughts Candide, I apologize for this delayed answer.We would probably agree that any kind of survey has to be analyzed carefully before accepting its veracity. With that being said, it is obvious that pro-independence Catalans are a growing group, not only according to the CEO poll, but other surveys partaken by serious newspapers such as La Vanguardia. Furthermore, the fact that the political conflict between Catalonia and Spain is becoming a hot topic and an important part of the partisan agenda is another indicator that confirms this growth.

    First of all, thanks for sharing your thoughts Candide. We would probably agree that any kind of survey has to be analyzed carefully before accepting its veracity. With that being said, it is obvious that pro-independence Catalans are a growing group, not only according to the CEO poll, but other surveys partaken by serious newspapers such as La Vanguardia. Furthermore, the fact that the political conflict between Catalonia and Spain is becoming a hot topic and an important part of the partisan agenda is another indicator that confirms this growth.

    Regarding the video posted recently, I personally thought it was pretty objective and well documented. What happens is that when Spaniards have to face these sorts of unbiased information they shut down and are unable to accept them. But then again, that´s nothing we didn’t already know.

    The way I see it, the eventual goal is to allow Catalans, as free citizens of the world, to decide their future; today we still are not allowed to. In the future, if these rights are fortunately extended to the peoples of other territories that will decide whether they want or not to become part of a potential Catalan state.

    Is it really that awful to be a far-reaching advocate of liberty, freedom, and ultimately, democracy? I wouldn't think so.

  3. Thank you for your nice words, Miquel. We are obviously on opposing ends regarding this issue. Not that I would deny anybody the right to speak, vote, congregate and pursue their political goal. My disagreement starts with the question if independence is necessary (and for what?) and goes all the way to observe what means are used to this end. But I do not want to digress to much into basics.

    I do not accept La Vanguardia as a valid source either, having shown this newspaper a high degree of bias on the issue. I take the unofficial referendum between 2009 and 2011 as an indicator, and in absence of independent opinion polls the elections. Both show that about 20% are voting for independence. I agree with you, however, that independence is a hot topic.

    As to the video, there is nothing unbiased to it, but quite the contrary. It is made by an independentist group, almost all the interviewees on the Catalan side are either members of this group (e.g. Matthew Tree) or are directly liked to its activities or other pro-independence activities headed by prominent leaders of this group (e.g. the unofficial referendum).

    This is too much inbreeding to be called "unbiased".

    Furthermore, the accusation that "the Spanish" treat Catalans "like the Jews" reveals not only a bias, it is a terrible hyperbole. Some Spanish extremists have accused the Catalans of giving the same treatment to the Spanish speaking majority of Catalonia, and that is equally unsavoury.

    If you advocate for any political aim, I'd advise you to be as much objective in your argumentation as you can (intersubjective) and to not insult anybody.

  4. Dear Miquel, since we have treated the issue of "Spain's Secret Conflict" let me inform you that I have today posted an entry on my blog in which I deal at length with that film.

  5. Candide, I will definitely read thoroughly your personal thoughts on the documentary we've been discussing here.

    As for your second comment, I remain on my grounds that the video is a pretty objective piece of work. I personally haven’t discovered any links between the filmmakers and the organization you stated. You talk about Matthew Tree and people "linked" to pro-independence parties but you forget to mention the individuals interviewed on the other side. Characters like Curry Valenzuela and Jiménez Losantos are two of Spain's loudest hate-spreading speakers on the crusade against the Catalan cause; I couldn't have thought myself of two better individuals to represent the opposite side to "estelades” and "dret a la determinació".

    Candide, you seem to put much emphasis on Tree’s possibly inopportune comparison between Catalans and Jews; fortunately, the outcome of “Spain’s Secret Conflict” does not depend on the opinions of one character or the other but on the will of a whole nation. It would be extremely easy for me to go back and remind the readers about some of Losantos or Valenzuela’s continuous broadcasted fallacies regarding this issue, but I resolutely decline to downgrade the interesting debate we have had so far.

    As I said in my first response, the Spanish, or better said, those who oppose the Catalan pro-sovereign movement from Spain, have proven not be able to assimilate information that does not favor their opinions even when it comes from a neutral source; and this might just very well be the last example of it.

    Please allow me a couple days to get through the analysis on your blog, and thanks again for sharing your thoughts.

  6. Certainly, you will find there the arguments (and links) which I should not repeat at length here.

    You will also find there a swipe at Losantos. To call him and Valenzuela "two of Spain's loudest hate-spreading speakers" is something I wouldn't argue with. However, I see it as poor journalism to rely on the extremes and not let more serious voices be heard.

    Losantos and others will be treated more in my blog. And I will try to evaluate who stands for what and which political influence each current has. Bit by bit, text by text. That will take some time.

    You'll be welcome at my place.


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