#Catalonia: Madrid bankruptcy and EU27 insolvency

Anna van Densky, OPINION. The failure of Mariano Rajoy government to manage the political crisis in Catalonia, demonstrates the absence of real arguments to convince Catalans to stay in Kingdom of Spain, if  they had valuable reasons, we would have heard about them, and there would be no need to break fingers of voters to prevent them from dropping a ballot. It is time to admit: ‘The King is naked!’.

The UK government had a lot to offer to Scotland, so they were not afraid of a comprehensive discussion pointing at advantages for staying together. The Scottish referendum was a genuine democratic exercise of respect of right to self-determination. As a result the reason won over emotions, and seductive illusions.

On contrary, Madrid has no other arguments than to refer to the ‘law’, the Spanish politicians don’t want to change, and Constitution as if carved in stone. No one viable cultural or economic reason articulated, because they would be a pitfall of Spain: Catalonia has surpassed in all fields, and does not need to bow to Rajoy to ensure high living standards of their people, but it is Spain to lose the richest region of the Kingdom.

However those, who think about economy as a driving force of Catalan independence movement, are wrong, because it is strong national identity, that clashes with the Spanish dogma of superiority on grounds of historic ‘lineage’. It has been a long time, that Barcelona became a star among planet’s most prolific cities – one of the top 10 most visited tourist destinations in the world. The opulent cultural past and present converted Catalonia into a magnet for the artists, and Mecca of the art-pilgrims. But also students, attracted to Barcelona universities, and international schools, with UB as the leading education body of the country. In short, it is in realm of ideal that Catalans have taken the lead.

The  achievements of Catalans required a different kind of framework with Madrid, Spanish political class was reluctant to grant, responding with a riot police, leading to Rajoy’s  moral bankruptcy. The was hardly any newspaper’s front page in the world, without condemning decision to use force against peaceful Catalan plebiscite. The public opinion condemned Rajoy’s government choice of violence, but not the EU, referring to the issue as an internal matter of Spain. The failure of protection of Catalans as EU citizens, which is ‘legally’ central to the bloc, enshrined in all Treaties, means EU insolvency in issues of human rights. This betrayal of Catalan people by Brussels, opens the door to leave the EU without a regret.

By any means the in #EU27 Catalans will be donors, but not recipients, sharing their wealth with new member-states, the perspective which could be regarded in the framework of respect and recognition of Catalonia’s achievements, but not keeping them as subordinate second class citizens, risking to get their heads crushed if raising them. Ignoring the injustice, committed towards Catalans, the EU is a insolvent as a ‘Union of values’, applied selectively, and inconsistently. Praising  Kosovo ‘sui generis’, and Kiev’s Maidan revolution right to sculpture history, the EU suddenly switched to the ‘rule of law’ repertoire for Catalans when it suited its goals.

The hard work of Spanish police batons did it’s job, winning millions of friends of Catalonia all over the globe. There is no reason to fear unknown future, with Spanish banks leaving Barcelona in haste – there will be many of those eager to occupy the liberated spaces. Catalans won in people’s hearts, and there is no need to waste time  looking for fairness from the EU apparatchiks, because they are people who create history, not political chameleons in Brussels. #ViscaCatalunyaLliure!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Madrid crushed EU image of HR superpower

Catalonia’s claim of independence is not a ‘sui generis’ within European political landscape. After the fall of the USSR, the map of Europe has undergone a significant change of uniting, and fracturing states. From spontaneous reunification of Germany, and peaceful split of Czechoslovakia, to tragic loss of life in Balkan wars, leading to fracturing of Yugoslavia, and declaration of Kosovo independence. Not less turbulent was the heritage of the Soviet Union,  re-opening centuries long disputes between people once entering Russian Empire by will or by force. Even more complex the issues of created by Communist new entities – the fruit of political will.

However it has been Europe regarding itself as a
stronghold of human rights in complex process of statehood construction, with
European nations living through times of change upholing ambition
of safeguards of the human dignity. Article 2 of Lisbon Treaty states:

“The Union is founded on the values of respect for human dignity,
freedom, democracy, equality, the rule of law
and respect for human rights, including the rights
of persons belonging to minorities.”

In this line the UK government gave an example of dealing with the independence
issues, sparing no efforts to debate the Scotland’s secession,
perspective nation-wide, and offered their compatriots a referendum.

In this context the Catalan case has produced a scar in European history
with at most negative impact on the human rights cause.
The barbaric violence of the Spain’s riot police,
using baton, and rubber bullets upon Madrid orders
as an argument with the Catalan dissidence, overturned the idea of the superiority of a rule of law in the EU with a gun and a fist.

Damaging the EU image, Spanish government also undermined the cause of Human Rights worldwide. From now onwards any King of Cannibals can refer to Spanish government crackdown in Catalonia as a precedent of dealing with a dissent in Europe. Madrid ordered to shoot Catalans, but killed image of the EU as a world human rights superpower.
Amen!