In the coming days Madrid will issue an arrest warrant for President Puigdemont of Catalonia on the charge of Rebellion.
It has the sound of something from a bygone age ,something that happened in the 18th or19th Century,not something that happens in 2017.
It leads one to believe this will not end in a 30 day custodial sentence and a €500 fine for the good President.
The last President of Catalonia to declare Independence Lluís Companys was put up against a wall in 1940 by Franco’s fascists and shot.
He remains to this day the only incumbent democratically elected President of a European country to ever have been executed.
Let us hope that this remains the case forever more.
However we do not know what the intentions of this extreme right wing minority government of Spain is in regards to President Puigdemont,we don’t even know if this charge of Rebellion can result in the death penalty.
It was certainly hinted at by a PP official a couple of weeks ago suggesting that Puigdemont could indeed face the same fate as Companys.
The PP Government in Madrid have shown already that extreme violence is in their modus operandi, followed by denial that it ever happened.
Many of us watched and listened in disbelief as the Spanish Government Minister Alfons Dastis,suggested that all reports of violence were in fact “fake news”
He implied many of the images we saw live on television ,or photographs and clips seen on social media were ‘staged’.
The social democrats amongst us were more than annoyed that Mr Marr was not a little more aggressive in his interviewing techniques with this apologist for fascism.
Then we remembered it was Andrew Marr,it was the BBC ,it was the British Establishment.
An establishment that has given its wholehearted backing for extreme violence and assault on the human rights of the Catalan population.
Further acts against the rights of the Catalan people are being put in place by Madrid under Article 155.
The Independent Press and broadcasters of Catalonia will now have the cherished freedom of the press removed.
The Catalan Media and Press will now have control and censorship from Madrid imposed on them.
Already several newspaper editors and heads of radio stations have been dragged off to Madrid to face charges for accepting adverts promoting the October 1st Referendum.
It seems almost unbelievable that in this day and age in a Western Democracy a country that is a member of the EU that this can actually be happening.
It has been announced that Madrid will force Direct Rule on Catalonia and force new elections ,in these elections Parties that believe in Independence for Catalonia will be prevented from standing,only Parties loyal to Madrid and Unionism will be permitted to stand.
This will all be ‘legal’ this will not bring a rebuke from the EU or any other International body it seems because it too will be ‘legal’
Between 1933 &1945 a lot of vile inhuman actions were ‘legal’ in Germany,that didn’t stop people facing trial at Nuremberg in 1945 .
Last Friday Donald Tusk and Jean Claude Juncker travelled to Spain to receive a Spanish Government Award from the King of Spain.
That was a golden opportunity for the EU to regain some lost credibility in this whole sorry mess .
These two senior EU officials should have declined the invitation while Spain insists on imprisoning political prisoners,and beating pensioners with wooden clubs.
Alas they didn’t ,they could not wait to get feted by a King and an extreme right wing demagogue.
While all social democrats and lovers of democracy show solidarity to the people of Catalonia what is the situation in UK?
Well we know our very own extreme right wing xenophobic UK Government and even more extreme right wing media back the violence and anti democratic behaviour of Rajoy and his goons.
They have allowed any shred of decency, any support of what is right to be ignored .
Their reasons are simple they do not want to offend a Spanish Government ,no matter how repugnant their actions , because they will need their vote for the Brexit fiasco.
Therefore the democratic and civil rights of the Catalans are secondary to the needs of the spivs and shysters in the square mile of London.
Besides if Spain gets away with this affront to democracy and human rights London can do the same to the Sweaty Socks if they attempt a democratic referendum.
What of the Parties and their supporters in Scotland?
Well the Tories and their right wing racist,religious bigots and extremists are creaming themselves at Spanish Robocops beating up pensioners and lefties.
Nothing Little Brits like more than seeing some Johnny Foreigners getting the shit kicked out of them.
The only thing more pleasurable for them would be if they could go there and help Robocops beat up the population.
Then we have SLAB and their supporters on one hand trying to con the Scottish voters into believing that they have refound their socialism and internationalism after an absence of about 65 years.
Only problem with this is, it isn’t true ,they are as right wing neo liberal as ever, the Red Tories can change the branch manager they cannot change their DNA .
Their Internationalism starts at Carlisle and ends at Dover.
To be on the side of right in Catalonia would mean SLAB being on the same side as the dreaded SNP,and that just cannot happen.
The Willie Bain Principle stretches to every policy, every statement,initiative,idea,suggestion of the SNP.
Therefore SLAB and the Branch Office and all who sail in her are on the same side as the baton wielding ,anti democratic extreme right wingers of Rajoy and the PP.
They try to dress this disgrace up in two ways the “Referendum is not legal and the separatists are acting illegally”
The other poor excuse they are hiding behind came from no less than Paul Holleran a NUJ Official and the Scottish Organiser for NUJ who in trying to justify the ending of press freedoms in Catalonia referred to the democratically elected Catalan Government thus,
“Franco was a Spanish dictator but died in 1977. Since then the Spanish constitution has protected the country from a return to fascism supporting weaker- poorer parts of the country by the distribution of wealth. The current rag-tag anarchist Catalan coalition threatens that”
‘The current rag-tag anarchist Catalan coalition’,seems Paul doesn’t recognize the democratically elected government of the Catalan people.
Now where have I heard nonsense like this before?
Ah yes , we had Anas Sarwar who told the HOC that Scotland was a dictatorship, that Holyrood was undemocratic because Scottish voters had elected an SNP majority.
How often have we heard Scottish Britnats referring to Scotland as a one party State undemocratic etc?
They of course never saw this as a problem when SLAB had control of all levers of Government ,National and Local, it only became a ‘problem’ when the evil SNP became the People’s Party of choice.
Yesterday members of the Guardia Civil were going around small villages and towns like mine in Catalonia taking photographs and noting addresses of houses displaying Catalan Flags
(possibly Saltires too, who knows with fascists?)
They were not doing this so Mariano Rajoy could send us all Christmas cards.
It is being done so that when the repression begins they know which doors to knock ,which people to terrorise and imprison.
Today as the people of Catalonia see their democratic and human rights stripped away from them, the freedom of the press ended I have to say to them ,do not expect any help from The Scottish Labour Movement .
These hypocrites view the entire world through the prism of hating the SNP and their own country .
Their only focus is power, and self aggrandisement, the protection of the British State and its institutions.
Should you lose all your democratic rights,your way of life ,indeed your own life you are merely collateral damage to SLABBERS and their zealots.
These people are so obsessed ,and so blinded with hate of the SNP they no longer see the suffering of the poor and dispossessed .
They no longer value democracy and the rights of man over their right to rule unopposed, their right to get a British bauble or title,or the ultimate, Ermine and to be called a Lord ,or Lady.
That my Catalan friends and neighbours is our Labour Party in Scotland.
That is why it is incumbent on every social democrat everywhere to redouble their efforts to defend the democratic rights and freedoms of the Catalan people.
Let them know they are not alone,they may have been abandoned by the Establishment Parties throughout the EU but not by the good people of Europe and beyond.
We all need to stand shoulder to shoulder with our Catalan neighbours.