Oct 042017

Guest post by: Gwilym ab Ioan

In the early Monday morning hours, the Catalan Government issued statements saying that about 2.3 million Catalans, (42.3% out of 5.3 million eligible voters), of those, 90% cast a ‘yes’ ballot for Independence. Without the violent interference of the ‘national’ Spanish police and civil guard, the Catalan Government estimated that at least 80% of all eligible voters would have cast their ballot.

Clearly, the Spanish Government’s demonstration of ruthless and brute force was, and is, a reminder that in Europa fascism is alive and well, that the spirit of Generalissimo Franco of Spain is not dead. Brussels, miserable, spineless puppets to the transatlantic empire and the European oligarchy, remained shamefully silent – arguing it was a Spanish internal affair, as if Spain, a full member of the EU isn’t a European Union’s ‘internal affair’.

At the end of the day of the Referendum on the first of October, President Rajoy had the audacity to declare literally that there was no referendum taking place in Cataluña. He congratulated and thanked the Spanish police for protecting law and order in Barcelona and elsewhere in Cataluña and their upholding of the Spanish Constitution. Yet snippets (mostly from the ‘alternative’ media) showed and reported all-day long violent police battles against peaceful voters. The forceful, riot-clad Spanish police smashed windows and broke into schools where voting booths were located, attempting to prevent voters from voting; they also removed and destroyed ballot boxes.

At the end of the day nearly 1,000 people – 844 officially – were injured by the ‘national’ police force, deploying extreme violence, by utterly harmful and potentially deadly rubber bullets and batons smashing indiscriminately into non-violent unarmed voters (the “lambs”), including elderly people, women and children. 

There were hundreds of thousands of people, whole families who came with their children to this historic event, some camping since Friday in the schools to make sure that their right to vote was protected.

Since the Catalan police decided a hands-off policy, not to interfere with the referendum, but rather to protect the voters from possible violence, the fascist Rajoy Government sent in police and the civil guard from other parts of Spain to prevent the vote from taking place. Their brutal and excessive violence against unarmed voters was shocking. They clearly had firm instructions to employ their brutality from their masters in Madrid – the very masters that later congratulated them for carrying out their duties. It was a horrible sight to see, especially from those of us who can sympathise with our fellow Celts (The Celtic response to the referendum in Catalonia on independence from Spain) who like us are struggling for their freedom from colonial rule.

President Rajoy lauding the violent police that left hundreds of inured, many seriously wounded, is yet another testimony that fascism and Fascist mentality of some states in Europe is alive and well, and seemingly increasing. Franco’s blood must be running in Rajoy’s veins. Brussels, the headquarters of the European Police state – of the growing European military regime – already today engulfing the bulk of the 28 EU member states, concurred with this violence by remaining disgracefully silent. How much of the true news about this deplorable event did you hear from the British Bullshit Corporation and other conforming ‘official’ puppet news outlets controlled by the governments?

Let’s look a bit closer at some of the reasons behind this horrendous crackdown on people who were merely intent on expressing their opinion – a full human right, according to the UN Charter.

Cataluña with a population of about 7.5 million (out of Spain’s 46 million) and a surface area of about 7% of Spain’s 506,000 km2 contributes about 20% to Spain’s economic output, produces 25% of Spain’s exports, receives 23.5% of Spain’s foreign tourist revenue, and 57% of Spain’s foreign investments. There is a lot to lose by Cataluña’s secession. Sounds familiar doesn’t it? Re. North Sea oil, Welsh coal, water & steel, etc.

Cataluña today receives about 1,800 euros per capita in tax devolution from Madrid, but contributes at least double that amount to the Spanish Treasury. This imbalance has long been a sore thumb in the relations between Barcelona and Madrid. But Rajoy’s PP (Partido Popular) Government has always staunchly refused any dialogue for more autonomy and more financial justice. We in Cymru get Objective 1 handouts from Brussels, they go to Westminster, the money is raided and manipulated and what gets handed over to us does not reflect the amounts we are supposed to get. Add to that what’s then stolen by Charismatic Carwyn & Co. for pet projects and handouts to the third sector cronies and finally what’s jackaled by ‘consultants’ and it doesn’t take a lot of neuron power to realise why our impoverished areas continue in the same boat of abstract hopelessness.

Spain’s northern Basque Region fought for decades (1959-2011) for independence. The Spain-ETA armed political conflict, also known as the Basque National Liberation Movement, caused hundreds of violent deaths. When they finally reached disarmament and a peace agreement in 2011 with the central government in Madrid, they settled for a considerably fairer fiscal agreement with Madrid.

Looking at history, Cataluña became part of Spain in the 15th Century under King Felipe VI and Queen Isabella. In the 20th Century, under the Spanish Republic, Cataluña with, like us, her own culture and language, received full autonomy in 1932. It was abolished by Franco, when he came to power in 1938. After Franco’s death in 1975, Cataluña regained temporary autonomy which lapsed in 2006, when a Spanish High Court challenged the Statute of Autonomy and ruled some articles of the Statute ‘unconstitutional’. That was the time when the most recent Catalan Independence Movement began. Since then several mock referenda took place, including the latest in 2014, when 80% of those who voted (about 30% of eligible voters) opted for independence.

The 1st of October 2017 Referendum was the first serious attempt at secession since 2006. Though not conforming with the Spanish Constitution, the forceful and violent suppression of the people’s freedom of expression – was a grave human rights abuse. It will most likely backfire – badly. I hope it does.

This fierce oppression by Madrid, the unwillingness for dialogue, has definitely turned most Catalans against Madrid and for independence. A few weeks ago the polls in Cataluña indicated a close call with a slight edge for those who wanted to remain with Spain. After threats from Madrid for weeks and the violent police crackdown of this latest election, at least 80% of eligible Catalan voters now seek independence. A similar trend could be found within Spain. A couple of months ago, 10% to 20% of Spaniards were neutral or favoured independence for Cataluña. After this police fiasco, close to half of Spaniards are in solidarity with their Catalan neighbours and support Cataluña’s independence. Perhaps there’s a lesson there for those of us struggling to gain our own independence.

The fight is by no means over after Madrid’s violent attempted oppression of the vote. History’s course is often changed by just one event. What will be ours one wonders?


Brychan’s comment below, with a link to a speech by Sinn Féin MEP Matt Carthy deserves more than just a link. Here’s a video clip of it directly embedded into this post:

Didn’t hear anything like that from the British Bullshit Ccorporation or any of the other ‘mainstream’ government (false) media outlets did you? Do you wonder why? Or are you still sleep-walking with your hands over your ears?

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79 Comments on "The Silence Of The Lambs & The Greater Silence Of The Establishment Controlled Media"

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Whatever your views on Catalan (or Scottish or Welsh) separatism, it is clear that in order to enact a change in anyone’s national situation, democracy alone is not enough. Referendums lend legitimacy, but “talks”, “dialog” are as useless as sitting in a circle and singing “Kum by Yah”. Men need to get angry and take action that make others angry, of course “non-violence is the only way” only a fool would publicly suggest otherwise. It was interesting that the Catalan referendum was about national identity and self determination, very little mention of “what would we do for a currency”, “what would the EU think”, “what if we’re a wee bit worse off”. A lot to think about for nationalists in Scotland and indeed Wales.


It’s true that “very few countries or politicians on the planet will step up and publicly condemn Spain at the moment”. This is because the action taken by the Spanish central government so far can be fobbed off as a ‘little internal difficulty’.

It should be remembered that Catalonia has already voted for independence many times in the last few years in ‘advisory referendums’. This ‘real’ referendum has been planned for some time, as has Madrid’s response. No doubt there have been ‘diplomatic’ discussions with other countries over what response would be acceptable.

It should be noted that it would have been physically possible (but not politically possible) for Madrid to issue the Guardia Civil with live ammo, include water cannon, helicopter gunships, APCs, and the Juan Carlos aircraft carrier off Barcelona. This has not happened (yet), this is because if they did that it would definitely have prompted an international response.

As it is there has been some response from Wales.
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There has been a statement from the European Commission which has NOT been reported in the official media, it says “violence is not the solution”, which is diplomatic speak for ‘Spain, if you escalate, then the EU will respond’. It’s also the reason why Spain deployed agent provocateurs hoping to open the ‘anti-terrorism’ gambit.

No doubt the Madrid government has been told ‘don’t shoot’, on the other hand, other countries with independence movements like the United Kingdom would have given the advice ‘go do something’. But all that’s happened is to consolidate the will of the Catalan people. Spain must negotiate an independence settlement. They have no choice. I suspect they will suspend article 155 and call an ‘official referendum’ and try using all the powers of the state to win it’, just like Scotland.

Thing is Spain knows that no matter what they do, Catalonia will still vote for independence, hence the Mexican standoff. In the meantime, it’s important for any loyal Welsh person to make arrangements in Wales to provide safe refuge for any Catalan activist should Madrid get hot-headed, go off-script, and do something silly.

I have an excellent recipe for allioli. It goes well with cockles and bara lawr. Might even invest in a bottle of Malbec.

Robert Tyler

Is anyone or any groups of Welsh people heading out there next week?

Jonathan Edwards

Diolch, Gwilym. There seems to be a sort of sliding scale of will/power when demanding independence from the capitals of former Empires, British or Spanish
Top – armed force. In the British Empire, dealing with whites, we have pretty trivial examples in the scale of things. Remember when America was 13 colonies, North Carolina (where I am now) being one? Similar to Ireland: lot of civil disobedience. Cornwallis (Battle of Guilford Court House in NC), General Post Office in Ireland + what followed. Nasty on one level but smoothed over and embarrassing in retrospect. Not being suggested for Wales!
Middling – riot police, nobody dies. As in Catalunya. Very unpleasant considering its 2017 and we are all in the EU (and we’re going to stay, OK?). But do not underestimate the need for guts, willpower, pride and outrage in what the Catalans have done, and endured.Requires intention and backbone! Again, not being suggested for Wales.
Piddling – a united expression of national will. As in – Welsh Labour stands up to London Labour. And demands, say, Dominion Status ie lots of independence but not 100%, and we keep the Queen and stay in the Commonwealth. Nice and soft and squishy and all very British Constitutional ie Black Rod and Cap of Maintenance nonsense, but acceptable after private hiccups in NO.10. Dominion Status is as clear as mud, compared with Statehood ie a Convention followed by written Welsh Constitution but, hey, this is the land of Majesty, mystery and still not adjusting to winning the Battle of Britain but still coming second in Europe. Say Labour demanded Dominion Status. The whole rotten house of cards that is modern Britain, with its hang-ups about Brexit and political correctness and don’t want to lose Scotland, its non-existent Constitution – this would all collapse. So all Labour has to do is unite in Wales and demand. No armed force, no riot police. Maybe block the Severn bridge for 10 minutes, that’d be about it. If Labour stood up to Labour, a piddling expression of Welsh National will – we’d as near as dammit be independent. But are we Catalans in the rain………


No doubt there are many who have previously viewed the European Union as a ‘cuddly club of human rights democrats’. Their inaction over the rights of the people of Catalonia to express their will through the ballot box may well have shattered this illusion. It’s important to understand what kind of institution the EU really is, and to do this we need to look back to 1991 where a similar situation arose over the succession of Slovenia.


It’s important to note that the first reaction of the EU is shown at 8.22. Whilst it’s unlikely that Spain will send in a column of tanks after Catalonia declares succession as the events in Slovenia show that this is known blind alley as tanks need fuel and are only a sledgehammer used in advance of infantry. I doubt if the EU will sanction such a move. Key to obtaining independence is international recognition.

In the case of Croatia it should be noted that Germany favoured recognition but France and the United Kingdom opposed. In fact the United Kingdom proposed a resolution at the United Nations to prevent German recognition. They were defeated by Italy and Denmark who supported Germany. The UK backed down on 14/12/1991 and on 19/12/1992 Iceland also recognised Slovenia as an independent state, closely followed by Sweden. The rest is history.

So who will be the first to recognise Catalonia?

Ireland? It should be noted that the reason why the United Kingdom and France initially opposed the recognition of Croatia and Slovenia is because they have their own internal issues of self-determination, namely, Brittany, Basque, Scotland and Wales.

I suggest that there needs to be a ‘Dublin Summit’.

I cannot see the view of the United Kingdom as a whole being of any relevance; it’s already alienated all other EU states, and is heading for Brexit (whatever that is). It’s now important that Scotland and Wales now make their voices heard. Of course, if Russia recognises Catalonia, then there’s a whole new dimension. Such a possibility might concentrate the minds of Angela Merkel and the ‘other’ small nations in the EU.

Le Gallois Fou

An interesting and informative article, unfortunately spoiled by the usual obsessive little rant about Europe.

I must say I find it a bit contradictory that you are now condemning European neo-Facists for their activities in Spain but only a few months ago you were having wet dreams about an equally right wing Marine Le Pen striding to victory in France.

This was all very amusing for those of us who understood that Le Pen had more hope of winning the European Song Contest than she ever had of becoming President of France, but adds little to your credibility as a political commentator.

Very few countries or politicians on the planet will step up and publicly condemn Spain at the moment, because, whether social media find it convenient or not, it is currently an internal Spanish problem and has a long way to run before others get involved publicly.

Take Jeremy Corbyn for example. Did he climb on his little soapbox and invoke the spirit of the International Brigades to defend Catalonian democracy?
Did he call for his fellow international socialists to condemn the violence?
Did he call for protests on the streets to show support for the oppressed?

No he didn’t. He went and asked the leader of the Tory party to have a quiet word.

Yes, that’s the same Tories who unleashed riot police, mounted police and solders dressed in police uniforms against striking miners back in the good old days, to which the anti-Europe brigade (mention no names) want us to return.

But there’s no anti-EU mileage in that, so we’ll just ignore it – shall we?

I know you’ll find it difficult to believe that 430 million slavering and misguided Euro-facists are so obsessed by their burgeoning economy and their globally influential currency that they dare think they have a better democratic system than our beloved and cherished British two party state, run so efficiently by our much cherished Establishment (aka rich bastards), but I’m afraid that’s the case.


No point using Catalan crisis as an apology for EU. This crisis sets it clearly in context – the EU having a strong institutional preference for the status quo within its membership but happy to connive with others to dismember states outside of its membership.

Sometimes they have their own crisis when old allegiances and friendships get in the way for a while. Croatia was a good example with Germany polarising to its defence p.d.q as Croatian leaders had links to old Ustasa members who had aided Adolf with great enthusiasm some 50 years earlier. UK and France had bonds with Serbia from same war, but when they realised that Serbia was an obstacle to a new “vision” they created a bogey man overnight when in fact he was a small time hood who could have been “done” within weeks had they been so inclined. So it’s all about the lying,scheming major powers and what happens to suit them. They will shit themselves over Catalonia because if that works to fruition what odds on Northern Italy, Walloonia, even Wales or Scotland,which could lead to a real Europe of the regions.

Personally I just love seeing empires crumble so I’m all in favour of it !

K. A. Mylchreest

I can well see the logic of this to the big nations in the EU with their own simmering separatists, but what has shocked me, more than the actual events in Catalonia themselves, is the apparent lack (correct me if I’m wrong, please) of any condemnation of Spain or support for the Catalans from all the small nations of Europe, many indeed scarcely a generation away from their own often ‘illegal’ move to independence. The Baltics for example, and further back, Ireland. In fact the only people speaking out for the Catalans seem to be UKIP! Enough to make you give up on the EU and support Brexit after all. At least for once I’d have the satisfaction of being on the ‘winning’ side — LOL!


K. A. Mylchreest – Please find below a video of a speech at the EU parliament by Matt Cathy MEP of the Republic of Ireland.


What you observe is the lack of coverage by the British media to events, not the events themselves. There has been huge condemnation of the Spanish government from many, if not all of the ‘independent small nations’ of Europe. The BBC has of course ignored this.


For those who watch their football on freeview….

No doubt you’d have seen the cracking strike by Lawrence to give us the critical victory over Georgia. Live on S4C where the telly tax paid in Wales is often reported as the BBC handing a “subsidy” to Welsh language broadcasting.

The question everyone was asking as to what happened elsewhere in the group qualifiers?

Daryl Murphy’s brace kept Ireland’s World Cup ambitions alive Ireland enjoyed a facile 2-0 victory over Moldova in Dublin. No live feed or updates were broadcast in Wales. We have hand over our telly tax to the BBC to help them broadcast the England group games through to Welsh screens.

Here’s the O’Neill interview.
The dragons shall rise.

As for ‘Just call me Jase’ of BBC Wales – While you fly back to your beloved Manchester, just stay there. Then we can use our cash that is currently being handed over to the BBC to get thelive feed from RTE on what’s actually happening in OUR OWN group qualifiers.

Then Wales fans can see what’s relevant to Wales.

Daley Gleephart

Quote: “Yes, that’s the same Tories who unleashed riot police, mounted police and solders dressed in police uniforms against striking miners back in the good old days, to which the anti-Europe brigade (mention no names) want us to return.”
Are you trying to re-write history? The events happened after the UK had joined. The anti-Europe gangs were peddling stories about the EU interfering with domestic matters during the EU Referendum campaign and they are now criticizing Brussels / Strasbourg for not interfering in Spain.
Those spouting out about Article 7 of the EU Lisbon Treaty and expecting an immediate, rapid response from the EU to Spain’s actions should take a good and long read of it and note the following passages: –
“On a reasoned proposal by one third of the Member States, by the European Parliament or by the European Commission, the Council, acting by a majority of four fifths of its members after obtaining the consent of the European Parliament, may determine that there is a clear risk of a serious breach by a Member State of the values referred to in Article 2. Before making such a determination, the Council shall hear the Member State in question and may address recommendations to it, acting in accordance with the same procedure. The Council shall regularly verify that the grounds on which such a determination was made continue to apply”.
“The European Council, acting by unanimity on a proposal by one third of the Member States or by the Commission and after obtaining the consent of the European Parliament, may determine the existence of a serious and persistent breach by a Member State of the values referred to in Article 2, after inviting the Member State in question to submit its observations”.
“Where a determination under paragraph 2 has been made, the Council, acting by a qualified majority, may decide to suspend certain of the rights deriving from the application of the Treaties to the Member State in question, including the voting rights of the representative of the government of that Member State in the Council. In doing so, the Council shall take into account the possible consequences of such a suspension on the rights and obligations of natural and legal persons.The obligations of the Member State in question under the Treaties shall in any case continue to be binding on that State”.

Red Flag

Yes, that’s the same Tories who unleashed riot police, mounted police and solders dressed in police uniforms against striking miners back in the good old days, to which the anti-Europe brigade (mention no names) want us to return.”

There were no soldiers dressed as police officers used against the miners. This is an urban legend that stems from the military’s obligations under MACC/MACM/MACP/MACA.

During the strike Police were billeted and administered from TA Centres and normal TA training also continued at the same time from the same TA Centres. People saw Police going in and out in uniform and TA soldiers going in and out in mixed dress and civilian clothing.

The use of TA Centres to support the Civil Community, Civil Ministries, Civil Powers and Civil Authorites is not only normal – it’s an obligation by law.

During my last three years in the Forces, I was the Regular Army instuctor (PSI) attached to a TA unit in North West England. I had contingency plans for the TA Centre to be used for natural disaster, pile-ups on the nearby motorway, explosions at the nearby chemical works, a feeding station in case of major power failures, a Crisis Management Centre for the Police, Fire and Ambulance etc etc etc. And in fact we were co-opted once during my tenure by the local council when the kitchens in a nearby old peoples home caught fire and they were initially brought there for safety, then for several weeks all their food was prepared there and taken to the home. TA Centres are also regularly used by the Police as bases when high-ranking VIPs visit an area.

The military involvement in the miners strike was merely the provision of and staffing of nearby TA Centres.


When you say “There were no soldiers dressed as police officers used against the miners”, this is not correct. Serving members of the Royal Military Police were drafted in (Red Caps). These held existing police warrant cards, and under the emergency powers were assigned various duties.


This is going to be interesting times. The EU’s inaction shows that it truly is a mess. Ultimately they’ll have to choose between Spain and the Catalans. If they choose Cataluña then Sardinia and Corsica are surely going to be getting ideas… which effects France and Italy respectively. So… with that in mind they’ll choose Spain. I think this will escalate personally and its one of those situations you don’t really know how. Civil War? Maybe… but can Spain afford that? The chance of Basques joining with the Catalans? Really is one of those situations where the Spanish… not sure what they were thinking. Cataluña outplayed Spain… they provoked with a legitimate cause of action. They also had the flare up of being so nastily oppressed by Franco… and situations like that define nations. Nationalism is like a hedgehog… benign until some one pokes it then it rolls up into a tight ball to protect itself.

I kind of advocate a similar approach for any future nationalist movements here. Make demands that we’ve got a right too… not for Independence… making that our destination is just a waste of time. Making it a solution when our demands for certain things are not met? Yeah thats where we’re going. Us getting used as a penal colony needs to be sorted out but most people are looking towards the international stage… and thats where we need to win them… put on a show. A peaceful one. Least from our side. Now we know it works thanks too Cataluña.

Interestingly about the BBC… the recent situation in Puerto Rico (they actually had a Catalan delegation a few years ago funnily enough) a few of them seemed to think the best source for news other than island based media was the BBC. Lots of misinformation going on there though – Trump trying to pave over his bad handling of it all (was to busy talking about players kneeling at an NFL game). Really saw that Imperialism is still alive on kicking and the media is now its greatest weapon. Literally the guy was throwing budget packets of paper towels into crowds of thirsty, starving people.

Did occur to me that BBC and the British government may have interest in seeing America look bad under Trump though. Britain is coming off the EU/Germany’s leash and oh look Canada has a trade war with the USA (Bombadier)! Add Boris Johnson to the mix, as well as some one like Jacbob Rees-Mogg whose already living in 1850… makes you wonder if they may be having dreams of grandeur.


In 1916 with the Easter Rising in Dublin, it was ‘free newspapers’. The Times was in Amiens.

In 1968 with the tet offensive in Vietnam, it was ‘freelance small camera film’. CNN was in Guam.

In 1991 with the tanks in Ljubljana it was ‘VHS video tape’ while the BBC was in Bonn.

In 2017 we have Twitter.

I couldn’t help laugh when a BBC reporter was doing a piece to camera ‘from their correspondent in Madrid’, when he was interrupted by i-phone footage of some polling station brutality. It was emailed direct to London, from a school.

Robert Morgan

Sorry us (Wales) could not stand alone, we do not have the income and most definitely don’t have the savvy to run a small country.
Non starter.


I don’t normally publish comments from trolls but I’m letting this one through to test the response.

Robert Tyler

Well here is a much considered and, indeed, if I may say so,
erudite response: “Fuck off.” (I spent a lot of time on that). No offense with the language, Royston, but this shite is so pathetic it merits nothing further. Engaging in an economic argument with a 77 Brigader (or. mayhap, a moron) like this bellend would be fruitless. I am amazed this prick could spell ‘savvy”.


As you have decided to join the debate perhaps you can offer some intelligent observation / evidence to support your position, to enable Jac, and others, assess the strength of your case.


Sadly there are clusters of lazy yet comfortable dependency types all over this country. They might either move out or get off their arses and put in some effort in a radically different environment. Indeed the way the Mayhem regime is running the U.K and the lavish goodies Corbyn is promising to unleash if he ever takes over, guys like you are going to be in for a rough ride anyway, so independence might suddenly become a better proposition. Posturing power crazy U.K governments who think nothing of tying up 100’s of billions in a nuclear defence “umbrella” when they really need a big investment in specialised (and Special)forces if they really believe in the “big threat” posed by all sorts of dark forces out there.

Apart from the woolly thinking and corruption in spending there is a major fault in policy. Pampering the NHS while planning privatisation of chunks of it ( the areas where big profits can be made, of course)is akin to fattening the beast ready for slaughter and pays little or no attention to the endemic inefficiencies within that bloated service. Education is going the same way with slack regulation allowing the spivs who run universities to pay themselves like drug barons while the intrinsic quality of higher education goes down the tubes. Fuckin’ marvelous ! and that’s the shit pit you want to stay in.

Daley Gleephart

Looking at the Prime Minister and her Cabinet, not one of them has the ‘savvy’ to run a small ice cream parlour let alone a country. On the other hand, Byron Davies (former Tory MP for Gower) is ideal for a tiny outlet serving coffee and tea.


I think not. His background in the higher echelons of local government makes him well suited for scoffing tea and biscuits but I wouldn’t rely on him to serve it properly without incurring a massive overspend !


Why did you feel the need to specify the nation you were talking about? Surely the word “we” would have been adequate? Maybe you’re suffering some kind of awkward national identity crises? Because the rest of the comment is a huge disconnect with who we are…

The Danube is strong in this one…

Nigel Stapley

Ah! The ‘too small’, ‘too weak’, ‘too poo-war’, ‘too stew-ped’ line again!

What we need to hammer home to the populace at every opportunity is:

1) About half the member states of the UN are smaller than Cymru in population, area, or both;
2) If we’re too weak, it’s because our political and media élites have deliberately stunted our growth as a society to create a near-terminal dependency on Greater England and its fifth columnists here;
3) If we’re too poor, then that is an argument for Independence, not against it, because it demonstrates that a country with so much going for it is in the decrepit state it’s in because of colonial governance.
4) For ‘too stupid’, see under ‘too weak’ (above).


Nigel , well said

David Robins

Spain’s constitution is a post-Franco compromise. Nearly half of all Catalans weren’t even born when it was ratified in 1978 yet are still expected to acknowledge this dictatorship of the dead.

Given Labour’s record on colonialism (external bad, internal good), it’s really not surprising to see the MP for Rhondda lining up with Rajoy and the fascists. What puzzles me is the contribution from Jonathan Edwards above, imagining ‘Welsh’ Labour demanding the old Plaid Cymru goal of Dominion Status. I find the thought of ‘Welsh’ Labour ever doing anything for Wales most unsettling. Perhaps the idea is that if independence is inevitable it had better be achieved by the current ruling party. Otherwise, there’s a serious risk of quisling snouts being hauled out of troughs and paraded through the streets.


It’s worth remembering that the Spanish Civil War was only partly ideological; something else that motivated the army and the political right was the concessions granted to Basques, Catalans and others by the Republic, which they saw as threatening the unity of Spain.

Which explains why today’s Spanish constitution is a compromise. Once Franco popped his clogs those who had supported him or benefited from his rule knew that concessions had to be made to democracy and minority identities. These they were prepared to concede, but not to the point where they threatened the unity of the state.

In many ways, the situation in Catalunya should – like the Scottish referendum – never have happened because devolution was supposed to kill off thoughts of complete separation.

A correspondent who has been in contact by another medium draws a further comparison, for he sees a parallel with Ireland in 1916. Those who rose at Easter did not have widespread support, certainly not in Dublin, but the brutal reaction of the British authorities virtually guaranteed some form of independence.

Now the Spanish authorities are persuading banks and other businesses to leave Catalunya. It reminds me of a scene from Quebec – during the October 1970 crisis? – where the Canadian federal authorities arranged for Brinks armoured cars to collect money from banks in downtown Montreal and drive off to Toronto.

Never was the ‘flight of capital’ so theatrically played out!


Same with the Yanks wasn’t it… one third for, one third against and one third neither. Disappointed at the Irish governments response. Pretty much said they support self determination when its done within the law. Not sure how that works when there’s specifically a law against it.


The UK ambassador to Spain, Simon Manley, has issued a statement..

“The UK wants to see the rule of law upheld, the Spanish Constitution respected and Spanish unity preserved.”

I assume this refers to the the Spanish constitution of 1978 which states that GIBRALTAR is inside the Spanish territorial claim?


now now Brychan ! You know well that British rights supercede any foreign claims to anything ! Mr Manley obviously presumes that we all concur with that view of the world.

John Young

Foot in mouth moment I think.


given the fury over football over on IMJ’s site and your tweet re ARG, it should be remembered that no-one has a divine right to be at the World Cup or any other tournament.

Wales had blown their qualification in the early matches giving themselves all that catch-up effort they didn’t want. They still managed to come close which just goes to show how much better it is to rack up a few good results early on to ease that pressure, although it often gives even more momentum to producing a very positive outcome.

As for ARG they have enjoyed success for ages but playing against a bunch of other South American sides with large helpings of talent dictates that the challenge will always be intensive. Our friends over the border found out the other night that you have to take all opponents seriously even those bits of Soviet Russia that weren’t visible in football 30 years ago.

Wales now need to tout for a few friendlies with some of those countries going to the Russian Finals to keep their motor turning and progress to Euro 2020 with a clear sense of purpose, finely tuned (and a fit squad!)


So here we have it the declaration of “Catalan independence within the EU”
Catalan capitulation in the face of the EU.
All forgotten before Christmas.


‘Beware of the risen people’. Pearse.


Obvious from the outset that the EU (as distinct from selected MEP’s)was not going to do anything that compromised Spanish regime. Sends out a neat warning to Ms Sturgeon & SNP that they rank lowish in EU concerns as the retention of UK ( stalling then derailing the Brexit process) is the primary goal. As for Cymru, all those dumb folk who expected so much love from EU towards the “emerging nations” can now reflect on their naivety. If you want independence you have to take it and walk away from EU, UK and form new relationships with other emerging nations.