He, the people of Yahoo News is calling the town Iturem, with an "m", duh!
Monday, January 31, 2005
He, the people of Yahoo News is calling the town Iturem, with an "m", duh!
Sunday, January 30, 2005
Saturday, January 29, 2005
Friday, January 28, 2005
Germany stripped a late fighter pilot's name from two military institutions Friday because his squadron participated in the devastating bombing of the Basque city of Guernica during the Spanish Civil War. A spokesman said Defense Minister Peter Struck decided to remove the name of Werner Mölders from the sites after a television news program revealed last year that the pilot had belonged to Nazi Germany's infamous Condor Legion, which served with Spanish dictator Francisco Franco's forces in the raid. Barracks in the northern town of Visselhoevede and the fighter squadron 74 in the southern town of Neuburg an der Donau will now bear new names, which have not yet been chosen. The lower house of parliament voted in 1998 to no longer allow military sites to carry the names of Condor Legion soldiers. The defense ministry spokesman said Struck had spoken with officials from the German air force and a relative of Mölder before making the decision. The pilot, who was not personally involved in the Guernica raid, died in a crash in 1941 in Poland at the age of 28. The 1937 bombardment, which Pablo Picasso captured in a celebrated painting, killed hundreds of civilians. Franco's forces took the city two days after the atrocity.
In our rosy context of "great expectations" and general niceness, would it be acceptable to sound a little note of alarm - a suggestion that the wolf is, if not right at the door, then at least in the neighborhood? I think the alarm was sounded on Saturday by the people who attacked the Defense Minister José Bono and the Euro-parliamentarian Rosa Díez in the demonstration in Madrid convoked by the Association for Victims of Terrorism.
Clearly the rage of this more or less numerous group expressed no righteous ire, but only the frustration of the right wing, lately dislodged from power, and always ready to abuse and pervert the channels of democratic expression in the name of the supposed urgencies of the outraged nation. This abuse was even more inadmissible when directed against leaders of the Socialist Party, which has always maintained a clear, firm line against terrorism.
Unfortunately this is no isolated incident. Some members of the anti-ETA group ¡Basta Ya! already experienced similar violence, in a demonstration in Bilbao against ETA. Similar violence happened in the days just after the March 11 Islamist attacks. In all these cases there were intransigent opportunists who deflected the protest away from the real criminals in the direction of sectarian feuding between parties, using entirely unacceptable, undemocratic means.
We can only condemn what happened on Saturday. But we need to examine the misunderstandings which may have served as an excuse for it. Some extremist elements may have been involved, addicted to aggression. But they were, I think, a minority, and we must ask how they were able to gather the critical mass evident that day. How have we arrived at a situation in which many victims of terrorism, and those who are worried about it, and about the separatist movements that really or supposedly threaten our democratic system, can come to see, in the government and in the Socialist party, an insensitivity to the question or an inclination to exploit and manipulate it? The obvious sympathies of many for the conservative Popular Party (PP) does not suffice to explain the exasperated hostility with which many of these people seem to regard the representatives of the center-left in the present government, in the media, or in the cinema industry.
Consider, for example, the case of someone in San Sebastián last week, someone who has personally suffered the effects of terrorist intimidation and who seeks protection under the umbrella of the democratic, constitutional political parties. On the eve of the day of the city's patron saint, he sees how a public award is given to the famous cook Berasategui, recently accused of giving funds to ETA. The lehendakari, present in person, commiserates about how ill at ease he must have felt on being questioned by the judge. Our spectator just sighs in resignation, and that night, stays home and watches the celebrations on TV, not caring to share the town's Constitution Square with people brandishing placards in favor of ETA, or of the multiple killer De Juana Chaos, who, it seems, is suffering acutely because they will not let him out of jail to kill again. Our friend knows it is useless to protest, and better just to look the other way.
On Saturday morning he attends a meeting in the Kursaal, in memory of Gregorio Ordoñez, murdered by ETA 10 years ago. The hard core of pro-Spanish constitutional people in the city are here. Most of the speakers are of the PP, a party to which Ordoñez also belonged, though friendly mention of the PSOE, it being a constitutional ally, is made in all the speeches. But few local leaders of the PSOE are there. The major figures, Odón Elorza, Paulino Luesma, Patxi López, Egiguren, all are absent. Many among the public in the hall are Socialist voters - but the people they vote for are somewhere else. With a certain feeling of abandonment, our Basque man goes away, to the cinema, to clear his head. In the one nearest his home there is a film featuring a young leftist actor who, in a recent visit to the Basque Country, remarked how intolerable the behavior of the PP and the PSOE was in the anti-terrorist struggle, with the outlawing of Batasuna, the closure of the pro-independence newspaper Egunkaria, etc. Though the general tone of his remarks suggested an intelligence deserving of pity, our Basque has taken a dislike to him, and does not care to see the film. He prefers to go home and watch TV, where he sees the demonstration in Madrid and the aggression against Bono.
Then Llamazares appears on the screen, saying that the victims have been "manipulated" by the right during two legislatures. And our Basque zaps to another channel, because he cannot be asked to watch that.
http://www.elpais.es© 2005 El Pais
Thursday, January 27, 2005
He is the second descendant of Basque immigrants to the USA who wins this award.
Him and the previous winner, Pete Cenarrusa, spearheaded a Memorial from the State of Idaho that supported the peaceful self-determination of the Basque Country.
Of course, Francoist minded idiots from Spain got a coronary over this, well, too bad for them.
By the way, Boise, home of the largest Basque community in the USA will be hosting the Jaialdi this year, it is the biggest event for the Basque American community and it takes place once every 5 years.
Wednesday, January 26, 2005
Something tells me the French have a lot to do with it. And well, Euskera did not get a lot of help from our Irish friends.
Anyway, there is those in the Basque Country pointing out this problem and they are asking people to show their opposition.
Here is the note at Berria:
EHE: “The European Constitutional Treaty is a clear move to make the linguistic conflict worse”
They have urged all Basque language supporters and members of the public to vote against in the referendum on the Constitution
Aitziber Laskibar – BILBO
The recognition of the Basque Country, linguistic rights and a language community. If the future of the Basque language is to be assured, an awareness of these three principles is essential, according to the EHE (In Basque in the Basque Country) group.
The European Constitutional Treaty does not include a single one of these concepts, and so the group believes that its endorsement would be damaging both for Euskal Herria and for Euskara, the Basque language.
So all Basque language supporters and members of the public are being urged to vote against the Constitution in the referendum scheduled for February 20 in the Southern Basque Country, because, in the EHE’s view, “it is vitally important for the members of the Basque public to make their voices clearly heard in defence of their identity”. In connection with this the EHE has called on people to join a demonstration on February 12 in Bilbo organised by numerous social players.
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And after two years of "investigation" he backs up his hypothesis with theories, how professional of him.
Here is the note at Berria that depicts the last Garzonada:
Garzon charges 36 Batasuna members with being ETA members
In a 267-page indictment the judge confirms his hypothesis put forward in the 18/98 Case and includes all the organisations of the Basque National Liberation Movement within the armed organisation “in one way or another”
Aitziber Laskibar – BILBO
Baltasar Garzon, the Spanish National Criminal Court judge, issued his indictment yesterday on the 35/02 case relating to Batasuna and the Herriko Tabernas. In it Garzon pursues the same line of argument as in the legal proceedings instituted in the 18/98 Case and maintains that all the organisations within the Basque National Liberation Movement (ENAM) are, “in one way or another”, part of the armed organisation, On the basis of this argument Garzon has indicted 36 members of the HB, Euskal Herritarrok and Batasuna, accusing them of “being members of a terrorist organisation”. The indictment is 267 pages long and in it Garzon develops his arguments at length. The 36 people concerned have been summonsed to the Spanish National Criminal Court on Monday morning to have their charges read out to them.
Judge Garzon has also decided to maintain the precautionary measures which have hitherto been in place. So apart from the freezing of Batasuna’s accounts, the seizure of the Herriko Tabernas remains in force. The judge believes that the indictees committed crimes through the Herriko Tabernas, and that is why he deduces that they are ETA members.
The indictees also include members of the BAC-Basque Autonomous Community Parliament, but they cannot be indicted and tried by the National Criminal Court. So the Judge of the 5th Examining Court of the National Criminal Court has requested the High Court of the BAC to start proceedings against them.
Garzon has used two main arguments to say that Batasuna members are members of ETA: a political and an economic one. He says that in both these spheres all the organisations in the ENAM operate within “the same parameters” and that puts them all inside ETA. This argument begins with a sentence on the first pages of the indictment made public yesterday: “ETA has not only used HB, EH and Batasuna in the political and institutional sphere, it has also used them in the economic sphere for its funding.”
In the case against Batasuna, Garzon has included the same analysis that he made concerning the funding of the ENAM in the 18/98 Case, in the one against the Pro-Amnesty Committees (AAB), in the case against Haika and Segi (Basque nationalist left youth movements) and in the Udalbiltza case. He considers the AEK, the HB, the AAB and a number of companies to be “large companies” of the ENAM. He says that the stands (set up to sell refreshments during local fêtes), the sale of materials of the organisations, the membership fees and draws all constitute sources of funding for all of them.
Tuesday, January 25, 2005
Amazing, the Basque Country in an article with a positive light.
In Basque Country, Everyone's in Cider House
January 26, 2005
In Basque Country, Everyone's in the Cider House
By Peter Meehan
SAN SEBASTIAN, Spain
A YOUNG worker at Barkaiztegi, a cider house in the hills of San Sebastian, yelled out as he scraped tallow from a hole in a giant cider cask to make way for a tiny steel spigot. People in midmeal around the long communal tables were roused to action. They grabbed their glasses and lined up near the newly tapped barrel to catch a finger or two's worth of cider from the txotx, which is what the Basques call the thin stream of hard cider that gushes from the barrel.
The end of January is when the Basque country's cider houses open dining rooms in the building where they make their cider, and until April 1 guests come to eat and to taste the new vintage straight from the cask before it is bottled.
José Maria Irizar, the 10th-generation cider maker at Barkaiztegi, said the tradition of the txotx (pronounced tchotch) goes back to centuries when families visited the local cider houses in the long nights of February and March and drank the just-fermented cider. The hosts would make the most of midwinter provisions, mainly dried sausage and salt cod, and tap into his casks.
The menu today is similar: chorizo cooked in cider, omelets with stewed salt cod, sautéed deeply caramelized onions and green peppers studded with more salt cod. Chuletas - thick bone-in steaks - are then served rarer than rare with piquillo peppers.
Bread, which is torn from loaves piled in the middle of the table, used to play a more central role in the meal, functioning as place holder and plate. In leaner times without plates or even seats, you covered your food to ensure it would still be there when you returned with your refreshed glass.
During the course of a night 10 barrels or more may be tapped. And though the general procedure is to grab a splash of cider from the streaming txotx and then head back to the table, the occasional barrel warrants a second helping. There is much discussion about the subtle differences from one to the next, and guests sample as much as they please before the barrels are sealed.
Mr. Irizar makes his cider with about as little intervention as possible. In the beginning of October apples (half of them grown on the property, half bought) are hand sorted, washed and crushed. The resulting cider is transferred to giant wooden casks or modern stainless steel fermentation tanks, where ambient yeasts in the cider house and the yeasts that rode in with the apples begin the fermentation process.
By the end of January the cider has gone through malolactic fermentation, changing the biting malic acid of the apples into softer-tasting lactic acid, and has reached 6 percent alcohol by volume. It is now ready to drink. Because the cider is bottled or drunk straight from the cask it ferments in - Barkaiztegi's are not blended - each is slightly different.
The night I tasted the ciders one was forward and direct with a simple apple fruitiness, another was marked by distinctly honeyed notes, and a third batch had faintly sherrylike oxidized overtones. All shared a green-gold color and an appealingly yeasty aroma. Like all ciders from the Basque country (and many great ciders from around the world) they are not completely limpid because they are neither refined nor filtered before they are consumed.
Mr. Irizar produces about 20,000 bottles annually, all of them consumed within the year. He keeps another couple of thousand liters aside for this season of the txotx at the cider house. None of his cider or any Basque cider for that matter is exported to the United States. Very little is even exported outside the region. But if it were, this uniquely Basque ritual, with its odd rhythm - rush to get a glass of cider, eat, repeat - and its own provincial terms and rules, would be hard to follow.
The night I was at the cider house there was one table of Basque men unaccompanied by women - these used to be strictly male affairs - and they spoke only Euskera, the Basque word for Basque. A short man at the head of the table was a bertsolari, whose profession is to sing improvised songs in taverns.
He caught wind of visitors from New York in the room, and when we were gathered around a particularly good barrel, snatching up glasses of cider, he broke into a song. A friend translated as he sang:
Whether from New York or San Sebastian,
The United States or Spain,
Everyone is friends, everyone is equal
Together here in the cider house.
Monday, January 24, 2005
I said before that to create spaces for Euskera to develop is a task of titans.
Mainly because of the two linguistic giants that share the geography of Euskal Herria, Spanish and French.
So whenever Euskera loses one of its champions, one realizes more needs to be done.
I was glad to read about the hommage to Eguzkitza's work and legacy at Berria:
Always remembered… a thousand years on (*)
A group of authors organised a beautiful, moving event at the Euskalduna Hall in Bilbo yesterday to pay tribute to the late Andolin Eguzkitza
Irune Berro – BILBO
As a child he played with trains and planes. From a young age Andolin Eguzkitza (1953, Santurtzi-Bizkaia – 2004, Bilbo) had the spirit of an explorer, according to his brother, Iñaki Eguzkitza. He was an untiring explorer of the Basque language. He was a writer, linguist and member of the Academy of the Basque Language, the Euskaltzaindia. When he was 15 he joined the Basque language race; from his hometown of Santurtzi (Bizkaia) he set out on the road to become a Basque speaker. So remembering the numerous Basque citizens who have taken that road, tribute was paid to Andolin Eguzkitza yesterday in the context of the Korrika cultural events. The event, entitled Mila urte igaro eta… (*), was organised at the Euskalduna Hall in Bilbo by a number of authors to pay tribute to the Basque language lover who died last year.
The event brought together a broad spectrum of representatives of Basque culture and Basque language activity; among those present were Xabier Mendiguren-Bereziartu, the General Secretary of Kontseilua; Gabi Basañez, a member of the EHE; Joan Mari Larrarte, secretary of the Board of the EKT (the publishers of BERRIA); Andres Urrutia and Xabier Kintana, the chairman and secretary, respectively, of the Euskaltzaindia; Kirmen Uribe, the writer, and Mikel Martinez, the actor.
(*) “Mila urte igarota, ura bere bidean…”: the beginning of an epic poem dating back to approximately the 16th century about the Battle of Beotibar (1321), which means that the water follows its course a thousand years on.
Friday, January 21, 2005
Just chek out these words:
“All those who live in tyranny and hopelessness can know: the United States will not ignore your oppression, or excuse your oppressors. When you stand for your liberty, we will stand with you,” he said.
You know who said that?
Yes indeed, the man that leads the most powerful military force in the world, the man who just inaugurated his second term as president of the USA, Mr. George W. Bush.
So maybe Zapatero should reconsider the wise words by the Lehendakari to reconsider giving the Ibarretxe Plan a green light.
Here is the note at Berria:
Ibarretxe urges Zapatero to pluck up “courage” to negotiate Plan
Lehendakari Ibarretxe said the New Statute Proposal for the Basque Autonomous Community supplanted the two political extremes by “the mainstream of society”, and stressed that the solution was to move the process forward to negotiate the Proposal
Juan Jose Ibarretxe, the Lehendakari (president) of the BAC-Basque Autonomous Community, yesterday urged the Spanish Prime Minister, Jose Luis Rodriguez-Zapatero, to pluck up “courage” to start a process of negotiation on the Proposal for a New Statute. Ibarretxe felt that the Proposal’s strongest point was that it represented the mainstream of society “between two political extremes: that of rejection represented by the PP and the PSOE, and that of Batasuna”.
In an interview given on the second channel of the ETB (the Basque Autonomous Community TV network) last night, Lehendakari Ibarretxe continually pointed out that the Proposal for a New Statute enjoyed a completely central position in the current political climate. Ibarretxe highlighted the fact that the Proposal presented by the BAC Government had sparked off a number of developments over the past week, like the letter Batasuna sent to Zapatero, the Spanish Government’s response or ETA’s latest communiqué. In Ibarretxe’s view, political movements of this nature do not materialise overnight. “All this is the consequence of the process that has been going on over the last four or five years,” he explained, and linked it with the proposal drawn up by the BAC Government.
When asked about whether there had been any “work behind the scenes” between Batasuna and the PSOE to resolve the [Basque] political conflict, the Lehendakari of the BAC said he would like this to be the case, but added that he was “not keen to raise hopes which could later be dashed”.
Thursday, January 20, 2005
Tuesday, January 18, 2005
We said goodbye to the soul and joy of our family, time will help mend the wounds.
I have been away in an attempt to sort out things and adapt to this new reality without her in my life.
One thing I know, I have to get back with my life if I want to honor hers.
In the mean time, from the bottom of my heat, thanks.
Sunday, January 16, 2005
An ETA statement, published in the Basque newspaper Gara on Sunday, said the group was "perfectly willing to take part in a process of those characteristics", and that it was "essential that the whole society has a chance to participate in such a process". It said the proposal was "the most solid political contribution yet proposed in the face of the conflict between the Basque Country and the occupying states".
But Spanish Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero says there can be no dialogue without a ceasefire first as a lame excuse to set up obstacles to peace. Responding on Sunday to ETA's press statement, Spain's Defence Minister Jose Bono said: "You can't talk to someone with a gun in his hand... Nobody sensible can sit down with these people.", strangely enough, he leads thousands of people with at least a gun on their hands.
The Spanish government has been blamed for dozens of thousands of deaths since the 1100s in its murderous campaign to invade and colonize Nabarra, the Basque homeland.
At the same time as it called for peace, the ETA communique claimed responsibility for 23 attacks - none of them fatal - carried out in Spain since September last year. But it denied it was behind a 12 December bomb hoax during a football match between Real Madrid and Basque side Real Sociedad at Madrid's Bernabeu stadium, which forced the match to be abandoned and 70,000 spectators evacuated.
Tuesday, January 11, 2005
Sadly, that tells us that he does not have too much of a moral stand and he is very willing to come up with half assed excuses to try to mend his errors of judgement.
In his long promised response the tells us that Zionism is not a form of ethnic nationalism, and therefore is not racist. He even goes to the extent of hinting that Zionism had nothing to do with the creation of Israel, that it was the Nazis threat of unleashing a new Holocaust what told the world Israel needed to be.
My question is, how can someone that writes and article about Anti Semitism in Europe like this one can be so ignorant (as he himself claimed) about the history of the Jewish people in general and Israel in particular?
Zionists started moving into the Mandate of Palestine long before 1939, by 1947 when Israel was proclaimed, the Nazis were far from being a threat.
Then he goes into this crazy explanation about how the Syrians, Egyptians and other Arabs living in Palestine should not call themselves Palestinians.
Doesn't he know that such concept is brandished by the most reactionary sectors in Israel?
Doesn't he know that there is Israelis and Jews that accept the Palestinians are a nationality?
Doesn't he understand that such concept of "there is no Palestininans" is equal to those ideals he so merrily criticise on Arana?
Doesn't he understand that while Arana lived at the turn of the XIX century, those who say the Palestinians do not exist are saying that today?
Doesn't he know the Basques do not follow Arana words as God given mandates?
It was a Check Mate from the get go, hopefully he will learn something from this.
Now the Barcepundit will have to find himself a new champion.
Sunday, January 09, 2005
My position about framing the practice of torture within the law?
That is euskara for "no".
Well, simple, it is just like death penalty, there will never be a 100% certainty that the person to be executed is actually guilty. So we as a society could very well be taking the life of an innocent person.
Don't tell me that it has not happened, the law and the application of the law is left to humans, and we humans tend to make mistakes, its human nature.
So, if anyone decides to allow torture in "certain specific cases", there will be those who will be tempted to use it against an innocent person.
Mr. Gonzales with an "s" (sure, it looks less Hispanic that way) is not alone when it comes to excusing the practice of torture on certain grounds, the USA is about to play host to another infamous torture advocate, Spanish Judge Baltasar Garzon.
Oh wait, Baltasar will tell you that he opposes torture, he could even swear that on a Bible. And he will count on you not knowing what the incommunicado practice is.
Incommunicado is a legal tool in Spain, and it is quite simple, after being arrested the Spanish police can keep you from contacting your lawyer or your family for whole five days. Sounds democratic huh?
On top of it, Spanish law prohibits the use of video cameras at detention places, and only a court appointed doctor or physician can evaluate the arrestee after the five days of incommunicado.
Perfect conditions for torture to be practiced regularly in Spain.
But wait, it gets better.
When a person is being held incommunicado, there is always two police officers in the room, just in case you confess to something during the time you're "questioned" (that is the eufemism used by Spanish police officers) . So then if brought to trial, the second police officer will be the witness for the accusing part, this being the Spanish Government.
And many times a preventive prison sentence has been handed down on the sole testimony of that second police officer.
And that is just the first step, then you can be held in preventive prison for up to five years without being brought to trial before a judge.
What happens usually right before the five years are over is that the charges are dropped for lack of evidence, but since you confesed to the crime you still have to post bail to walk free.
Such legal niceties are the ones that Judge Baltasar Garzón stands for.
Just one more thing, in Spain a judge like this Garzón can conduct and investigation on you as if he was the prosecutor, and then himself act as the judge in your case. Separation of powers is not exactly common practice in Spain.
That is why I say NO to torture, nowhere, never.
It is only the more reactionary sectors of the Catholic Church the ones that tend to position themselves on the side of those who are still clinging to past glories in Spain.
Here is a note about what a Basque Bishop has to say regarding the reaction of the Opus Dei:
Bishop Uriarte says Church cannot judge proposal from moral standpoint
He was responding to the declarations made by the Spanish Bishops’ Conference with respect to the Basque Autonomous Community Government’s Statute Proposal
Editorial Staff – DONOSTIA (San Sebastian)
In a letter made public yesterday Juan Maria Uriarte, the Bishop of Donostia (San Sebastian), said passing judgement on the recently approved New Statute Proposal of the BAC Government was not one of his ecclesiastical duties. “I do not have sufficient motives to give a moral assessment which would involve the Church’s authority,” said the Bishop in his letter.
The aim of the Bishop’s letter was to respond to the declaration the Spanish Bishops’ Conference had made the day before yesterday about the BAC Government’s proposal. In a statement put out the day before yesterday the Spanish Bishops’ Conference in fact fiercely criticised the New Statute Proposal, Basque nationalism and independence as options. Uriarte said it was not one of the Bishop’s duties “to determine the juridical or political nature of the text or to impose limits on how far the proposal should go”.
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Friday, January 07, 2005
A simple message, from one called "The Nazarene".
The cornerstone of secularity; political matters on one side, religious matters on the other. No intermingling in order to make sure that each does what they are supposed to do.
Then you read a heading like this one:
Spanish Bishops reject Basque Autonomy push.
And you are reminded that in Spain there is a core group that truly got stuck in some sort of alternate time frame that makes them think this is 1492.
The king, yes like that, with lower cap, I was born a free man, the king of Spain, the same one that was reinstated to the throne by Herr Adolph Hitler, the king said that Spain most remain one. He said that on tuesday.
So today, one of the most reactionary churches in the world followed suit and declared that they reject the right of the Basques to decide their own future.
Can someone tell those idiots that they have absolutely no say in the issue?
They should worry about the matters of the poor souls that still believe that bishops are some sort of deity employees, they should worry about the matters of a religion that is not in touch with their flock anymore; and leave the political relationship between the BAC and Spain to the Basques in the first place, and the politicians in the second place.
What is next, a Crusade?
Thursday, January 06, 2005
Do you know what that word in the title means?
That is the way a Basque calls himself, just like a German calls himself Deutsch, Basques call themselves Euskaldunak.
Do you know what that means?
Here is the composites to the word:
Euskal - from Euskara, the Basque language.
Dun - suffix which indicates possesion.
Since Basque is an aglutinating language, instead of Euskaradun, you get Euskaldun, ask a linguist how that is called, I forgot, something to do with phonemas.
So, literally it would translate into "one that owns the Basque language".
Meaning, "Basque speaker".
And what about the clickity clacky "ak"?
Ak - suffix which expresses the plural of the definite article.
So, when you add it to the word Euskaldun, you get Euskaldunak, "Basque speakers".
And so, Euskal Herria means "Land of the Basque speakers".
How about that for "ethnic" racism.
That is how John from the Trasatlantic Intelligencer is right about now.
To a simple question he came up with some convoluted response that answers nothing.
If you have time and you need a good laugh, you can read it here.
I hand him one, he figured out that I read a couple of his essays regarding Anti-Semitism and the Kosovo issue.
That is how I figured out how to expose him with his "all ethnic nationalisms are racist".
As Marcus pointed out at his blog, there was no other form of nationalism besides "ethnic nationalism", hello, if you know anything about history and anthropology you should know that.
As we speak, he is scrambling for a way out of the hole he digged up for himself, trying to come to the rescue of the dimwit broadcasting from the beautiful and multiculturalist Catalonian city of Barcelona.
It is pretty much the same that everyone else says, but then there is this little pearl:
Even in the Basque country itself, opinion is split on the issue. The province of Alava, one of three in the Basque country, has fewer Basque nationalists than the two other provinces. Its district administrator, Popular Party member Ramon Rabanero, said if the autonomy plan did somehow become reality, Alava would choose to stay with Spain.
So, Mr. Rabanero, member of a party founded by Francoist ministers, wants for Araba to secede from the Basque Autonomous Community.
It was not enough with dividing Hegoalde, the Southern Basque Country, into the Basque Autonomous Community (that encompasses Araba, Bizkaia and Gipuzkoa) and the Foral Community of Navarre).
Divide and you will conquer.
So lets divide again.
Like all lap dogs, Mr. Rabanero wants to wag his tail as to get a bigger bone, oh yes, I can hear the Spin Doctors going, "you see, not all Basques want independence".
Correct, just like not all Colonials wanted independence from England.
The last victims of the repression?
Yup, while other countries complain that their youth refuses to engage with the rest of the society in order to build a better present and plan for the future, the Spanish authorities stomp on the rights of the Basque youth to gather and implement programs that will provide young Basques with spaces were to develop their interests.
Once again, without any evidence, on the "one fits all" charge of terrorism, the Spanish Courts sentence Basques to years and years of jail time.
State violence, that is how is called.
Here is a note that appeared today at Berria regarding this new case of opression:
Indictees say case is attack on all young Basque people
They believe the response also has to be big and are planning to start talks with young people’s groups
Aitziber Laskibar – BILBO
“654 years is the penalty they want to make us pay for creating and developing the tools needed to build the Basque Country. In this country 654 years is the price exacted for engaging in the struggle against the job insecurity we young people suffer, or for fighting for our own education system. In this country it is a crime to build a Basque Country made up of seven provinces. In this country the 654 years requested by the Public Prosecutor is the price for setting up communication projects for young people, for regaining linguistic rights, for promoting leisure activities, a spirit of criticism, and alternative life styles in the youth centres, and for working in favour of gender equality.” This was the reaction expressed yesterday by the people indicted in the case involving the Haika and Segi Basque nationalist left youth organisations to the penalties that the Prosecutor of the Spanish National Criminal Court is requesting.
The indictees say the Court regards the 42 people who have been working in these spheres as criminals; the court is, in fact, aiming to pass judgement on the work done by young peoples’ organisations over the last 25 years. This is why they are saying that it is an assault on all Basque youth and on the whole of the Basque Country. They therefore believe that the response should be on the same scale: “All young Basque people have to respond to this situation,” explained Markel Ormazabal, on behalf on the indictees.
Ormazabal said they would therefore be holding a series of talks with youth organisations “to unite as many forces as possible in the face of an assault of such proportions, and to send a clear message to the [Spanish and French] States that they will not achieve their aims as far as Basque youth is concerned”. So the indictees are planning to meet “with as wide a range of organisations as possible”, explained Ibon Meñika.
However, the young people want to take this beyond mere talks. “What we want is for all young people to express themselves alongside us; we want to respond to this situation brought about by the States by uniting the maximum number of forces in order to channel the denunciation by all kinds of young people.” So this is what the indictees will be asking of the young people working in different fields: to give a united response to the Haika-Segi case. Yesterday’s press conference was the initial response of the young and not so young to the support they are demanding. The indictees were joined by representatives of many different organisations expressing their support. There were about 80 people behind the seven indictees during yesterday’s press conference.
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I'm sure that right about now the members of the PP are throwing a hissy fit.
The PSOE is to allow a debate on the Ibarretxe Plan, and at least they show more courage and more political will than Aznar and his underlings, including Aznar's puppet, Mariano Rajoy.
No more threats, they do not fit in modern Europe.
Here is the note that appeared at Berria:
PSOE says Spanish Parliament’s Presiding Committee will allow debate
The Spanish Socialists have reiterated their intention to vote against the Basque Autonomous Community Parliament’s Proposal in a plenary session
Editorial Staff – DONOSTIA (San Sebastian)
The New Statute Proposal passed by the Parliament of the BAC-Basque Autonomous Community will, with the approval of the Presiding Committee of Congress (lower chamber of the Spanish Parliament), get as far as a plenary session as long as it “satisfies all the formal conditions”. This is what Diego Lopez-Garrido, the PSOE’s General Secretary, said in parliament yesterday. So he confirmed yesterday that the socialists in the Parliamentary Presiding Committee would be voting in favour of allowing the BAC Parliament’s proposal to proceed. “Voting against would hamper debate; and we are not in the least bit afraid of that debate,” he pointed out.
In an interview given to El País newspaper last Sunday the Spanish Prime Minister, Jose Luis Rodriguez-Zapatero, indicated what the PSOE’s attitude would be. He ruled out any chance of negotiations between the BAC Government and the Spanish Government and said that the debate on it would take place in Parliament with the result that the proposal would be rejected thanks to the votes against of the PSOE and the PP.
Lopez-Garrido pointed out yesterday that “the Presiding Committee of Congress is not the Constitutional Court and does not have to examine the content of the proposal”. So the BAC Parliament’s Proposal will not have any problems getting the green light from the Committee. It will have the votes in favour of the PSOE (3), the CiU (1) and the IU (1), even though the four PP members of the Committee will be voting against.
Garrido did, however, criticise the BAC Parliament’s Proposal and the attitude of Juan Jose Ibarretxe, the Lehendakari (President) of the BAC. He pointed out that there could be no negotiation on the Proposal and that consensus had to be achieved in the BAC. “What the Lehendakari cannot solve in Euskadi cannot be solved in the [Spanish] State,” he said.
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Wednesday, January 05, 2005
It is amazing to see how many detractors of the simple concept of self determination are out there, and how they manage to come together and pat themselves in the back.
The Trasatlantic Intelligencer wrote a piece about ethnic nationalism and at the very end he plain out says that Basque nationalism is a form of racism, like if all other nationalisms were not firmly anchored in concepts that could be deemed as racism.
This idea of One Spain is not exactly a "new agey, we are all the same, take this flower" concept, it is actually an arrogant display of imperialism, and what fuels imperialism? The thought that you are superior to the people you conquered. If you think you are superior to the people you conquer, then you are a racist, as simple as that.
What is happening here is that some individuals are looking for ways to blame the victim for the sins of the attacker, they transpond what moved the attacker into depriving the victim of its rights and make the victim the carrier of those sins, that way somehow these individuals are at peace with themselves, it is called the rapist strategy.
She was weaing a miniskirt, a red miniskirt, that is why I raped her.
So now, the Basques are accused of being racists for doing what many other nations have done in the past and are doing today; preserve their cultural identity, their language, their expressions as a people.
Twisted logic, but sadly, there is those who actually think its right.
It is simple evolution, the colonizing power will never be able to suffocate the national identity and the right to the self determination of the colonized nations.
Here is a nothe that appeared today at Berria regarding the wish of the Basques in the Basque Autonomous Community to be heard regarding their right to their self determination, reason why the voted again, and again, for a moderate nationalist political party:
Ibarretxe: “The wishes of the Basque people will not be overridden by the PP and the PSOE”
The President of the Basque Autonomous Community told Zapatero yesterday that he was prepared to negotiate the Proposal for the New Statute of Autonomy and stressed that “an opportunity which we must not waste” would present itself
Edurne Begiristain – GASTEIZ (Vitoria)
Juan Jose Ibarretxe, the Lehendakari (President) of the BAC-Basque Autonomous Community, appeared before the media for the first time yesterday since the New Statute Proposal was passed by an absolute majority in the BAC Parliament last Thursday. During breakfast with journalists at the Lehendakari’s headquarters Ibarretxe reiterated that the period of negotiations had started and that the PP and the PSOE were not going to “override” the wishes of the Basque people.
He explained, among other things, that the New Statute Proposal was no longer a project of the BAC Government, but of the BAC Parliament, now that it had been passed. He went on to say that the commitment made by the BAC Government four years ago had been fulfilled, because the proposal for resolving the conflict had been put on the table, debated and put to the vote. However, he would not commit himself on the date for the referendum.
Tuesday, January 04, 2005
Well, what a surprise.
I'm guessing here that the Spanish Crown did not take kindly the pronouncements by Simón Bolivar or Miguel Hidalgo, and I will venture to say that they said no back then.
But such things come with being a colonizing and imperialist nation, sooner or later the invaded countries and nations will seek their independence. And is not like this is the first time the Basques tried.
The last time was not too long ago either, and the irony is, the Basques were on the side that won the war.
Yup, the Basques were on the side of the Allies, while Franco, the person that destroyed the newly created Basque Republic (and the Catalonian Republic for that matter) was on the side of the Axis.
Now there is a little lap dog from Barcelona repeating ad nauseum that the Plan Ibarretxe is illegal because Basques that oppose it get killed.
This individual is in fact saying that the PNV is out there harassing and even killing people that opposes the proposal for a new statute. And he has a few people in the international community fooled with a rather comical "good cop, bad cop" analogy. You can imagine who the bad cop is.
So he is piling everything on Ibarretxe and the PNV, booby-trapping the political proposal with references of Sabino Arana and ETA. He is not too courageous either, he states these moronic ideas making sure he does not allow any comments on them, unlike the author of this blog that provides his detractors with a space where to express their minds.
Here is a note that appeared at Berria:
Zapatero says Ibarretxe’s Plan won’t go any further
The PP has called on the PSOE Government to “waste no time” filing an appeal with the Spanish Constitutional Court against the decision of the Basque Autonomous Community Parliament
Editorial Staff – BILBO
“Ibarretxe’s Plan has no juridical legitimacy and will not go any further,” said Spanish Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez-Zapatero yesterday. “No one is above the law,” he pointed out, adding that “the destiny of countries is governed by laws". He assured everyone that the Proposal passed by the BAC Parliament on Thursday would not go any further, because it was against the law.
Zapatero felt that there was no place for such Statute Proposals in the future, because Ibarretxe’s plan was based on antiquated policies which only led to disagreement. “The future is based on the integration between Spain and the countries of Europe and that is what we intend to work towards: unity made up of Spain and the countries of Europe,” he stressed.
Zapatero said that although this was his position, he would nevertheless be meeting with Juan Jose Ibarretxe, the Lehendakari of the BAC, because the Spanish Government was keen to be “consistent” with its style of engaging in politics. “Once again, I shall listen to what the Lehendakari Ibarretxe has to say and he will have to listen to me, too,” he said, adding that “outside the Spanish Constitution there is nothing to talk about”.
Zapatero said he would also be meeting with the PP Chairman Mariano Raxoi and sent out a clear message of resolve directed at the PP: “The Government will act firmly, prudently and sensibly and everyone may rest assured that we will not be taking any steps that lack the necessary basis.” He said it was necessary to consider the matter carefully before taking legal measures. In the meantime, he would be keeping the doors for dialogue open, despite making it clear that the Plan would get no backing from either the Spanish Government or from the PSOE.
And a few other sources saying pretty much the same, of course, some with the classic venom dished out to anything and everything Basque.
International Herald Tribune: PM Issues Stern Rebuke of Basque Home Plan
Local Government International Bureau: "No Way": José
ISN: Spanish PM to Reject Basque "Sovereignty" Plan
Big News Network: Spain's PM Predicts Basque Plan Failure
And so on, and so forth...
Monday, January 03, 2005
There is one double standard that amuses me a lot and that has been brought to the limelight.
When a Basque defends the idea of self-determination, he is asked to state his position regarding ETA. Again and again, Basques state that they are against ETA's violent campaign and they condemn ETA's attacks at every opportunity they have. Just like I did.
But when an Spaniard defends the idea of One Spain, no one ever asks from him or her to state his or her position regarding Francisco Franco and his beliefs.
This is as a result of the ignorance that surrounds the topic, it is not surprise that after decades of media manipulation people in the international community forgets what Franco did, where he stood, the violence he unleashed and the thousands of Spaniards he killed.
This is why it was easy for the Barcepundit to call me a terrorist supporter on a thinly veiled phrase that I reproduce here:
Of course, I'm not accusing Ingerelaz's author of any relationship with Basque terrorism; I don't know him and have just seen his blog for the fist time.
He knows better than to activate a comment system at his blog, that way he can dish out accusations like this one without getting a response.
Double standard is a bitch.
Usually the victims of domestic violence keep quiet, and unless one of them ends up killed, what happens to them usually goes unnoticed.
Same with the grinding violence against the Basques in Spain (and to certain degree in France).
That is the violence that no one talks about, gallons of ink are spilled by people that claims that "they refuse to ackowledge the right of the Basques to their self determination as long as they allow ETA to conduct attacks".
As if ETA would go from home to home in the Basque Country to ask for permition to plant a bomb or kill someone.
I said it before, ETA is on the run, and that includes being on the run in the Basque Country because its been a long time since the majority of Basques have turn their backs on them, condemning their violent ways.
But do you ever see all those rivers of ink being spilled over issues like the torture against Basque prisoners held under incommunicado detention?
Do you ever read about the policy of dispersion that has killed and wounded hundreds of Basques, draining their economic resources on top of it?
Do you ever read something about the preventive prison terms where Basques have gone up to 5 years without going to trial just to walk free after paying a bail just to have the charges dropped?
Do you ever read anything about the paramilitary groups operating in the Basque Country, harassing, kidnapping and killing Basques that dare to say that they love their fatherland?
No, you don't, that would require serious journalist work, and now a days to be a journalist or a reporter doesn't require much, just ask Jayson Blair.
That hidden brand of violence is the one the Basques have endured since 1936, but no one talks about it. On top, today, they have to endure the violence of ETA, the terrorist organization that allegedly wants their independence but that in reality, is a self serving group that lost all contact with the will of the Basque people a long time ago.
Here is a note that appeared today at Berria regarding the efforts to end that murderous practice called "the dispersion":
8,000 people remember prisoners at the end of the year
Rallies were held in about 60 towns throughout the Basque Country; a demo is planned for January 8 in Bilbo
Editorial Staff – BAIONA (Bayonne)
Rallies took place in support of Basque prisoners the day before yesterday in the afternoon in response to a call made by Etxerat. They coincided with the last Friday of the month, which was New Year’s Eve, so that the prisoners would be remembered at the end of the year, too. 8,000 people gathered in about 60 towns in Gipuzkoa, Bizkaia, Navarre, Araba and Lapurdi. About 50 people gathered outside the prison of Soto del Real (Madrid). The biggest rallies took place in Bilbo and Azkoitia, with the attendance of 700 and 500 people, respectively.
A demonstration is scheduled for this coming Saturday in Bilbao. The slogan will be: Euskal Presoak Euskal Herrira orain (Bring the Basque prisoners to the Basque Country now!). During the rallies the day before yesterday Etxerat appealed to people to take part in the march scheduled to set out from La Casilla in Bilbo at 17.00 hours.
Etxerat believes 2004 has been the year which has seen a worsening in the situation of the prisoners. “There are more Basque prisoners than ever, 716 family members and friends are more dispersed than ever in 88 prisons in 6 countries,” Etxerat pointed out. The association went on to declare that “both the French and Spanish States have announced that they will be maintaining these cruel measures” to send the prisoners further away from the Basque Country than ever, and to “isolate and leave them without any protection”.
Criticism was also directed at the Basque Country’s political parties. “They have had neither the courage nor the will to put an end to all this suffering”. The parties were accused of regarding the prisoners and their relatives as “second class citizens”. “As far as those who call themselves democratic are concerned, our lives are worth less than automatic cash dispensers”.
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