There is a recent article in the WSJ talking about the possible breakup of Spain. I am surprised by how much information about what is going on here can be read in the international media. I have read the article and it summarises what happens here more or less quite well:
This post is thought for those who want an answer to some of its questions and use Internet for that case. Needless to say that here you will find an answer but needless to say too that the answer may not be the one you would desire.
So should the US support Catalonia independence?
Well, at first, right now, it is obvious that the US just should remain silent. As any other country the US should wait and see …
But let’s imagine that the day comes when the world needs to know what the US has to say. Well, in this case, I imagine that the US just have to see what the EU says.
Once that said is it important to the US an independent Catalonia? Can that be good for the US? Some benefit of it?
It is obvious that if the US supports Catalonia indepence that can bring more little independence states into the European Union. Is htis good for the US? I imagine that this depends in the way this affects the EU.
Wrting this I am realizing how something that can be very important for us in Catalonia it cannot be at all important outside Catalonia or Spain.
As far as I know new states have been born in two ways: after a violent conflict or after an agreement. In the case of Spain and Catalonia it is not possible for me to imagine a violent conflict to take place as we are inside the European Union. Any violent conflict it would mean we go out of the EU at once, I imagine. And an agreement, we have not agreement right yet …
The famous marathon of New York takes place this time the first days of November. I have read that in the city where now Josep Guardiola is living they intend that the independence flag of Catalonia is seen everywhere.
Some days ago I remember one American saying that the Catalan people, if they want to get support for their new state, they should not worry so much why do they want independence and they should ask themselves why should the rest of the world want Catalonia independence?
As Barcelona is quite known in New York and Woody Allen even brought here Scarlett Johansson for a film with Penélope and Bardem I wonder why should New Yorkers would want Catalonia to be independent.
One of the few reasons I could imagine would be if the new state had English as another official language but unfortunately most of my countrymen are not so fond of learning English as I do.
Who knows, maybe is the international community that could suggest that of the English language. I think it would be perfect. Barcelona is quite a nice city and if English was also its official language it would mean that a lot of people from around the world could come to live in Barcelona.
In any case, I just would be happy if New Yorkers just supported us to decide our future. One day the Americans had to fight against the British to get its independence. Now the UK even let’s the Scots to decide its own future. Something like that I want for Barcelona and Catalonia.
- Spain votes to stop Catalonia independence referendum… (ca.news.yahoo.com)
The other day an American professor or soemthing was asked how coud Catalonia get independnece? He said that one of the ways to have an independent Catalonia is that the world wants it! Until now it seems that only people in Catalonia want that and not everybody.
So I have thought what could give an independent Catalonia to the world that could make an independent Catalonia to be very welcomed by the planet?
And this is my proposal. Catalonia, if it gets independent it will be a fruit of the European Union. Without the existence of the European Union it is difficult that we would be talking about an independent Catalonia.
So if a possible independent Catalonia is a fruit of the European Union then an independent catalonia must wear a European Union stamps that shines around the planet. And what has being making the European Union all this years: TO BRING STEP BY STEP, LITTLE BY LITTLE, THE FRONTIERS DOWN!
SO AN INDEPENDENT CATALONIA SHOULD BE THE FIRST STATE OF THE WORLD WITHOUT HAVING BORDERS!
Some centuries ago, cities used to have walls around them. Now they do not have them!
So now it is the same! CATALONIA SHOULD NOT HAVE BORDERS!
For Catalonia it should not be difficult to do so! All around it the same language is even spoken!
It may seem crazy not to put borders but are there borders between towns? Well, there are of course, but we do not seen them. The same could happen in a new Catalonia.
No borders with our neighbours! If a future Spain and France would want to put borders it would be their problem.
So,if we do not put borders, what are we doing with the new state. Well, we just collect taxes in Barcelona and we send our part to Brussels. Without having to send money to Madrid (at least directly!)
As I have said in other posts the current conflict between Spain and Catalonia is not just an internal problem south of the Pyrenees. It is a European problem and those who do not realise that will pity that in the years to come.
This morning I have realized that the conflict between Catalonia and Spain could not only bring Catalonia and Spain to a terrible scenario but that in fact Catalonia and Spain could even destroy the European Union. I know it sounds crazy but let me tell you my worries. I hope I am totally wrong.
First of all let me tell you what is going on. In some weeks we have an election in Catalonia. If the parties that want Catalonia to decide its own future win they will ask fro a referendum or a consultation. Madrid refuses that. So we will have a big conflict that could last for some months or years.
In any case (and in contrast with Scotland good terms found between Salmond and Cameron) well in Spain and in Catalonia we will reach a point that it is going to be very very dramatic!: In some way we the Catalan we will vote and say what we want.
If this votes says we want to be a new state inside the European Union this is a big problem not just for Spain (Spain does not want a referendum, consultation or nothing) It is a problem for Europe.
If we Catalan people say we want to to be a new state in Europe and Spain refuses to listen to us what will the rest of European partners do???
One possibility is to say this is an internal Spanish affair. Well, this can be an answer for some weeks or months but at some point some country, or some part of another country will be in the same situation that Catalonia. The Republic of Venice will want to be a reality too maybe!
So what I mean is that the conflict between Catalonia and Spain is not just an internal affair because it is a conflict about how we see democracy!!! It is a democratic problem!
So, if Europe now just says it is an internal problem then in the future we will have chaos.
I am totally certain that if the majority of Catalonia says yes to a new state it is impossible to think that a whole continent remains silent! Will the UK or Scotland do not say a word about that?
So at some point some will support the fact that something must be done. Somebody will realise in Europe that it is not possible that a little part of Europe where most people may not want to belong to Spain are obliged to that. If other countries do not listen to what has happened in Catalonia they may even end having the same secession affair inside their states! The people of Bayern, the people of Venice, etc at some point will say something.
Or maybe countries from outside Europe say something.
So imagine that at some point a country of some weight says something. What happens then? Imagine Germany telling Madrid something.
I do not know but I think that at some point what is happening in Catalonia in the next months is going to divide the European Union! And this can be terrible! If people in Spain have the feeling that Catalonia is becoming independent because Berlin or London support the result of a consultation or a referendeum this would bring a problem to the unity of Europe. Maybe Spain would then want to leave the European Union. it would be quite hard for some people in Spain to think that the price they have to pay inside the European Union is that Berlin or Brussels dictate which are the borders in Europe!
So the best would be now to find a common solution between all memebers in Europe! It must be a solution that brings stability! If we had had already MEHR EUROPA in Spain and Catalonia maybe I would not be writing this! If Europe had put a limit in the solidarity of Catalonia to the rest of Spain maybe people in Catalonia would not be so angry with Madrid.
I am in favour of Catalonia having the last say about its future but I am also worried that at the end it may seem as if it was Berlin the one who decides which borders we have in Europe!!!!!! If Europe does not help Catalonia and Spain to find some kind of agreement between them then there will be a point when Europe will have a hot potato in their hands! Does anyone want to reach the point where it will seem as if Spain breaks in parts just because Germany accepts that? Or Italy loses Venice because Germany accepts that?
That we in Catalonia are ruled from Barcelona instead of Madrid seems to me wonderful but I am afraid that we end by just having an “independent” Spain and “independent” Catalonia just ruled from Berlin. From Brussels I would not mind.
Some people in Catalonia want independence and some other not. Unfortunately for both we are not getting a clear message from Brussels about what happens when there is secession inide a state member.
Until now the EU has been a source of stability around the continent but now it can create a difficult situation if it reamains ambiguous!
Can Scotland or Catalonia remian inside the EU if they break from the UK and Spain?
Europe should not only answer that question as son as possible. IT ALSO MUST PROVIDE WARRANTIES TO BOTH PARTS OF A BREAKING UP that Europe will do its best to make that the breaking does not mean a worse situation for the citizens.
For example, in the case of Catalonia and Spain Europe cannot say this is an internal affair. If we in Catalonia, at least some, think about a possible independent state is because we have Europe. Without the European Union establishment, its democratic and peaceful background and the existence of a common currency the idea of an independent Catalonia won’t be so successful in Catalonia!
So, Europe, I mean the European Union, should find a consensus so that Europe has a future. It does not make sense that Scotland maybe become independent and be inside the UE and we in Catalonia we are not allowed evne to decide our future and we are even threatened to be put out of Europe from some wonderful amigos we have in this part of Europe. We are European citizens! All this is happening because of the EU structure. So there must be a European answer!
If in Europe each day we are going to be ruled more from Brussels it is not strange that people in Barcelona and catalonia may think that it is crazy to be ruled from Madrid and then from Brusssels. Too much! Why not directly then from Brussels?
I am not only thinking about the lands who want to create new states. I am thinking too about the states that may break up. If Catalonia leaves Spain then Spain won’t get money from Catalonia in the current way? Is Germany the one to give to Spain the money that Catalonia won’t give?
This must be answered now and without fear! All this conflict between Catalonia and Spain is also related a lot about Catalonia having to ask now for money to Madrid (the Spanish government is giving us the money as if they were making us a favour!) when Catalonia would have much more money if we had not been during decades being given so much solidarity money to the rest of Spain. It is crazy that now we have to ask money to Madrid when madrid has during decades taken our money! This is ridiculous! It is almost as if Germany went bankrupt because it has bailout Spain and now Germany has to beg Spain to give them money to make ends meet! Why do you think that so many people want independence in Catalonia? One thing is to have solidarity with Spain and another quite different is that you have to beg Spain to lend you money because you have nothing because during decades you have been so solidarious with Spain! I feel very angry with this! Some people in Catalonia have the feeling as if a roberry had happened and now the one who has robbed as gives us a little coin and even asks us to say thank you!
All this could be solved within Europe! Europe could establish the solidarity between different lands!
Who knows maybe Catalonia becomes independent and then it happens that the EU then aks Catalonia to have a lot of solidarity to Spain and then we are back to square one!
It is thanks to the fact that we are in the European Union that we expect that even if we have another state in this part of Europe we will share a same currency and the borders will be open as it is now. But what could happen if the European Union collapsed? Will this mean war again in Europe?
In brief Europe must realise that its own existence makes that some lands in Europe want to become new states. Europe should try, in my opinion, not to encourage Europe divided in a thousand little states or just the opposite, a Europe too tighten and to rigid inside the current states. I am not talking avoid welcoming a lot of new states or rejecting them. This is too sensitive. I am just talking about creating a framework in Europe that:
1. Ensures that some Europeans are not bad treated by other Europeans to the extent that wealthy parts have to act almost as beggars (the case of Catalonia with respect to Spain!)
2. Ensures that if a state breaks in two Europe will do its best not to avoid that or promote that but to get sure that both citizens of both states remain in the European Union, respect each other and have solidarity between them too!
Europe should ensure that whatever it happens in Spain (to remain all ruled from Barcelona, Madrid and Brussels or let Catalonians be ruled just from Barcelona and Brussles) well Europe should ensure that Spain and Catalonia abide to the rules of Europe.
So for example Europe could tell Spain that it should listen to its people, even if they happen to be Catalan people. And it could tell Catalan people that Catalonia as an independent state will have to abide to the solidarity that Brussels says!
If Europe stays silent what we have it just some people from Spain (Almunia, fortunately, is different) that threaten Catalan people to have to leave the EU if we vote for independent (they do not allow us to vote for that but they tell us what will happen if we did!) And we have people in Catalonia that promote independence because it seems we will be so rich as we will have much more of our money for us! Europe should put order in this! I do not think it is right to threaten European citiziens of the EU to be put out of the EU just because they do not want to be ruled from Madrid! This is ridiculuous! Europe should say something!
On the other hand if Europe said something then maybe some could not idealize an independent Catalonia where we have a lot og money while Spain who knows how would do! Europe should not allow lacks of solidarity. I say that because if Catalonia leaves Spain, Spain will get poorer and Spain is people Europe should care that apart of Europe does not go belew a minimum level.
If Spain get poorer with a rich independent Catalonia and Europe allowed then why do we have Europe?
Now in catalonia I do not read this but I think that if Catalonia was quite rich and Spain poorer and Europe allowed that then people fromSpain will have to go to work in Catalonia. So Catalonia would be an independent state but it will be full of people from another state searching for work. I wonder this is what people in Catalonia want, really want.
Europe, please put order right now! Today is Scotland. Tomorrow can be Catalonia and the day after tomorrow can be Venice. Europe should take care that if this happens Europe is strengthened and not the opposite. And it must care that all goes smooth! We do not know how many years the European Union will survive. If thanks to the EU framework Europe divides itself in a lot of little states this could be problem without the European Union.
In Spain in Catalonia we are now at odds but we are still in peace. Let us help to remain so! Help us before it is too late! TRY TO BRING AN AGREEMENT BETWEEN POLITICIANS IN MADRID AND IN BARCELONA. Currently what we have is just some telling us they won’t allow us to have a referendum and people in Catalonia saying we will do in any case! CANNOT SEE EUROPE THAT NOW WE NEED EUROPE?? The Spanish nationalistic party PP and the nationalistic Catalan party CiU are not able now to agree in such a basic thing as WHAT DEMOCRACY MEANS!!!!! This is serious. Please help Spain! Please help Catalonia! Do not allow that each day the situation deteriorates more and more. If Spain breaks up in a bad way without a minimum consensus bewteen Madrid and Barcelona this could isolate Spain again from the rest of Europe!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Some people in Madrid want us in Catalonia wnat to have fear that we will have to leave the EU but I am afraid that we end being both expelled from the EU!!!!! I wonder how Europe is lending us money seeing how unable are we of finding solutions for the disputes between Madrid and Barcelona. Real madrid and FC Barcelona are some of the best or the best football teams of the word or so that say! But the rules of football come from England! So maybe now is the same. We have to learn from England again I think. But if in madrid do not like to learn from David Cameron at least Brussels should bring some rules to this dispute between Madrid and Barcelona!
- Brian Wilson: SNP can’t make rules for Europe (scotsman.com)
- Uncertain world: Will the EU expand via secession? (indrus.in)
- Catalan MEPs ask for EU help against Spanish army (euobserver.com)
- Secession Fever Sweeping Europe Meaningless Without Debt Repudiation (thedailybell.com)
- Guest Post: Secession Fever Sweeping Europe Meaningless Without Debt Repudiation (zerohedge.com)
Well, before continuing let me say that me, personally, rightly or wrongly, I do not feel at all threaten by the Spanish military. I just feel as if I was inside a war of words between Catalonia and Spain.
Some minutes ago I have read in Gulf Times (not my usual source of news! Maybe my first visit to that website!) the news that four parliamentarians from Catalonia has asked almost for preventive action to the EU against Spain as there is a kind of threat from Spanish military to Spain.
I feel it maybe a bit unfortunate this letter but let tell to the world that some days ago some politician from Brussels said something that was not precisely a source of calm for Catalan people. I am talking about Vidal-Quadras.
So I do not know what to think. It is true that some military also said some words that could be consider as a threat of intervention but in no case these threats were coming from the president of Spain or the King of Spain or the army in general! What I mean is that I am afraid now we are giving the feeling to the outside world as if Catalonia was in a terrible threat from the malevolous Spanish military forces and I really DON’T THINK THIS IS THE CASE AT ALL! I would only be afraid if the presidnet of Spain or the king of Spain threaten Catalonia. Just because an eccentric parlamentarian and some people from the army have said some very unfortunate comments I do not feel threatened at all by Spain.
I think that back in Spain and Catalonia we should be very careful because at one point Madrid and Barcelona will have to agree in something and the more we quarrel the worse image we give to the world.
In any case, once said that I do not think at all that Spanish army is a threat at all for Catalonia (in fact in an independent catalonia maybe the best to cut expenses would be to have the same army Catalonia and Spain!) I think that it is time the international community realises that Spain and Catalonia need not just economical help but also political help! WE HAVE A BIG PROBLEM BETWEEN MADRID AND BARCELONA and we cannot find a common ground!!!!!
We in Catalonia want to have a referendum to decide whether we remain in Spain or not. In Madrid they just don’t want that so they put as excuse the Spanish constitution. It is obvious that the constitution is an excuse because they could change it if they thought Catalonia should decide their own future. So incontrast with the smooth path in the UK with Scotland here we are just in a situation that can only go worse! It is very necessary that Europe does something! Only that Europe said the amount that Catalonia has to give to the rest of Spain as solidarity I think it could bring some peace. Because Catalonia is a wealthy part of Spain and we have been giving solidarity for decades to Spain and now we do not have money for ourselves! And we even have to ask money from Spain. Do you imagine Germany asking money from Spain? Well, for us people in Catalonia is outrageous that we have to ask money to Spain because we do not have because we have to give so much in solidarity! (let me say too, however, that I understand a bit too that Spain is in a bad situation so that it is not a very good time to accept less solidarity from Catalonia but I feel that now in Catalonia we have the feeling we have reaced a limit of what solidarity should be!)
The European Union must realize that the States of the European Union will break apart if something faire is not done. Tomorrow can be Sctland. Catalonia next. Venice tomoorow. I am not in favour or against independence. I am just again this happening in a crazy way! Europe should do all the necessary so that Catalonia receives a fair treatment from Madrid. The solidarity between territories should be a European thing to decide! And if Europe cannot stop the states to break apart then it must do all possible so that the new states and the ones who break can find in the EU a place to meet and try to live as neighbours!
Europe should not allow, for example, that Spanish government threatens Catalonia to be out of the European Union if we vote for independence! The idea behind Europe is to unite . Not to threaten people to be outside Europe!
As you may know some of my countrymen in Catalonia have the dream of a new European state. Unfortunately Spain is giving fuel to their desires because the more Spain does not allow a referendum as any democratic and civilised country would do, the more that people in Catalonia want independence. Nobody likes to be part of a forced marriage and let alone if you are the one paying the wedding for eternity.
That said, I feel that what we need is not more states but less states! A Europe full of little independent states could become a nightmare as agreement between so much is going to be quite difficult. Besides if we hava a lot of new states I wonder if it is fair that countries with little population can have so much power as countries with much more weight.
I understand that a lot of people in Catalonia want independence because Catalan public tv just shows how awful is Spain for us. If we were an independent state we would be so wealthy! I may say that sometimes I even feel a bit shame of some of the things that I hear from Catalan politicians. In fact I find a bit of bad taste that you choose the worst moment of Spain to want independence. I imagine this is a kind of historical revenge.
I find a bit funny that some of the people in Catalonia who want independence talk a lot about Europe but they forget to see that Spain is also Europe. And if you do not want to support Spain in such a time I wonder what Europe can expect of nations like Catalonia. How can we build a strong Europe when we are not able to be in good term with our neighbouring lands!
If Catalonia becomes independent it would mean that there would be borders between people speaking the same language. Catalonia is surrounded by lands who speak the same language and that in some parts they call valencià. What I mean is that I find a new state means one more border. I would find better for Europe that, for example, France and Germany become closer or that Portugal and Spain become closer.
Unfortunately because Spain does not even let us decide our future to the Catalan people people in Catalonia have a very strong point in wanting independence. This is a pity because if Spain acted like the UK then in Catalonia one could speak of Spain without a kind of shame.
Europe must tackle the rebirth of nationalism in Europe. There is the danger that the European Union is creating its own end.
There should be a European law that says how much one territory should pay for the rest so that Catalonia payer should pay the same whether Catalonia is independent or not. While this does not happen is very normal that the independence movement is each day greater as it seems that once you are independent you do not pay so much as solidarity!
Another thing that worries me a lot is that while we have the European Union it is not such a problem to have Europe divided in a lot of little states but if Europe collapses then a Europe with so many little countries could be a nightmare.
I find quite worrying that people support Europe so much and at the same time do not want to help people from not so far away.
If Catalonia and Spain became two different states would not be such a tragedy is the European Union serves as a bridge so that we have the same currency, etc. But what would happen if the UE falls apart? That would mean that Europe at the end has more borders than before the birth of the European Union.
In the followng months we are going to see the birth of some new state in Europe I think. I must admit that a rebirth of La Sereníssima seems to me quite romantic. Venice as the capital of a new Republic seems quite suggesting but I would only like that if this new republic does not make poorer the rest of what now is Italy.
We must act quickly! I don’t have no problem with an independent Catalonia but if this happens I would feel force to help Spain if I see that an independent Catalonia means a poorer Spain. I don’t like the feeling of independence to leave the poorer parts of Europe to its own devices. But as Spain seems to force us Catalan people to be married to Spain for eternity I must admit that I understnad pretty well people in Catalonia wanting independence. I am quite saddened by Madrid and Barcelona.
I am quite sad with politicians in Spain in Catalonia. Politicians in Madrid do not seem to realize that they seem bad people if they pretend Catalonia to be part of Spain just by stopping us to vote! On the other hand I have the feeling that Catalonia is acting a bit with a bit of bad taste. Just in the worst time for Spain Catalonia wants to leave Spain. But I imagine this is always what happens.
Some hours ago I asked for help to Europe to solve the conflict between Spain and Catalonia. While I wait for that help today I have read that some kind of Spanish general has reminded everyone how a Catalan president ended some decades ago. Well, the dictator Franco killed him.
So you see. Threats are coming from Spain.
As Spain is now in the European Union and in Nato it is difficult to imagine this general and people like him taking power in Spain in an forced way but who knows.
When a military in Spain reminds us what happens to a Catalan president some decades ago he is threatening the Catalan people to do the same with their president if we in Catalonia decide to be free at least from people like this man.
The other day a person on a train said. What a situation we are. Now it seems as if you onlu could be a fascist or a independentist in Catalonia! It is of course an exaggeration but the climate is quite hard now in Catalonia.
Some people in Scotland maybe worried if they will continue inside the UK or not but they can be comforted that whatever it happens Scotland and the United Kingdom are giving an imge of a very advanced socitey where the things are solved in a peaceful way.
On the contrary in Spain and in Catalonia we have at least three worries:
ONE: THE CRISIS
Will we survive this terrible crisis without bringing the eurozne to collapse? I think the answer is positive because Germany is showing to the world that if once it was the face of the devil now it is at the heart of European peace and stability. We are so used to Germany doing this this last decades that maybe we forget that this could not be the case.
TWO: THE COUNTRY OF MY FUTURE
I envy those people who know that it is quite possible that they will die in the same state that they were born. This is not the case in Catalonia. We may change from being part of a Spanish State to being part of a Catalan State. This is wonderful for some but unfortunately I see advantages and also disadvantges. Would I be able to have a passport from Catalonia and also another from Spain as that would be my wish?
THREE: THE REACTION OF SPAIN TO A REFERENDUM AND THE REACTION OF THE WORLD TO THAT REACTION
This is maybe the most terrible thing. Spain politicians and Catalan government are not able to agrre on how to solve the new panorama that has come to this part of Europe. In fact not only a solution is not been found but the opposite. Spain is acting in a way that won’t bring independence feeling down but just the opposite. Threats and fears seem to be the only thing coming from Madrid. Meanwhile from Barcelona there are different answers. This reminds me unhappily of old times when Catalonia was a source of different solutions while some Spain had just one solution.
But who has the key to solve all this?
As anybody know Spain once upon a time had a lot of lands. Most of these lands now are independent countries. But all these lands were out of the Iberian peninsula. I think it is quite hard for Spain to accept that Catalonia can leave Spain. I understand people that want Catalonia to be part of Spain because when you are in Madrid you even would wish that Portugal was part of a joint venture with Spain. But it has nonsense Catalonia to be part of Spain if most people in Catalonia do not want. It would be quite weird this to happen to say the least.
So I ask again help to Europe.
- Spain votes to stop Catalonia independence referendum… (ca.news.yahoo.com)
- Spanish Military Threatens Treason As Catalonia Seeks Secession Referendum (zerohedge.com)
- Spanish Crisis Revives Calls For Catalan Secession (wnyc.org)
- Scottish independence: Not so much homage to Catalonia, more a warning for Scotland (scotsman.com)