Sunday, May 04, 2003

Here's an article by Carlos Semprún Maura from Libertad Digital. I just thought it was kind of interesting. I haven't posted too many pro-American articles from the Spanish press, mostly because there aren't too many. Libertad Digital is almost the only place you'll find real pro-Americanism in Spain. Oh, by the way, guys, Mr. Controversial, Pío Moa of LD, is not particularly pro-American or pro-British; he's got the old Spanish Catholic anti-Americanism, angry at Spain's weakness and America's comparative power, distrustful of Protestantism (and Masonry--these LD guys have a real bee in their bonnet about the Masons), suspicious about the change and progress that America symbolizes, and unwilling to give up the paternalistic state in exchange for the risks of competition, again seen as "Anglo-Saxon".

Europe is dead, the world isn't

There is a lot of talk about a confrontation between two Europes, Tony Blair's and Jacques Chirac's, a united Europe allied with the United States, or a powerful Europe, a rival or even enemy of the USA.

It is true that Chirac has softened the terms of his anti-Yankee discourse, but he continues working toward his imperial dream of a powerful Europe led by France and supported by Russia and the Arab countries, an imperialist and highly reactionary dream, since, besides, in his search for any sort of alliance against the American "empire", he acts like the PNV (Basque Nationalist Party) does toward the ETA; that is, he implicitly uses Islamic terrorism and the Arab dictatorships to create a "frente unido, jamás vencido" (united front, never conquered). We've just verified this in the case of Iraq, not only with the fraud of the inspectors, but, as the British press is revealing these days, a collaboration, just as real as secret, of the French authorities with the Iraqi tyranny until the war came.

It goes without saying that Tony Blair's European vision, and that of the majority of the democratic countries, members of the EU or candidates, seems more realistic and democratic than the French imperial dream because, with things the way they are, Chirac has the support of the immense majority of the French people. But the European political crisis has been so serious, the disagreements so deep, over subjects much more important than the common agricultural policy or the liberalization of public services or even the entry or not of Turkey into the EU (just what we need!), that all these ceremonies of the Convention, the plan for a European constitution, a president, a government, a foreign policy, an army, are all a bad joke. All of this, so what?, if there's nothing inside. The candidates to join Europe, yesterday submitted to the Soviet yoke and before that, for some of them, the less ferocious Ottoman yoke, (or the comparatively benign Hapsburg or Romanov yokes) do not want, either their citizens or their governments, to participate in the construction of a new empire, especially one that goes against the United States. Therefore, instead of accelerating the authoritarian construction of a powerful Europe, which would crash us straight into a wall (there is not the slightest doubt), destroying the very idea of a Europe of cooperation, more pragmatic and efficient, it would be better to set a timetable to strengthen the only positive thing, or, at least the most positive thing created in Europe, the common market.

Spain yesterday, just as much as Poland today, base their desire for Europe, essentially, on the end of economic autarchy, on an open economy, on trade without frontiers, and despite all the problems and ups-and-downs, this is what has really existed and progressed toward the euro. And this is what we have to protect and improve, accepting great flexibility on political issues (war or peace, alliance or rupture) for each nation. "We've only made Europe a free-trade area", say dismissively the old-fashioned nationalist or imperialist politicians; well, this has caused a considerable increase in the welfare of the poor, one of the fundaments for any really progressive policy. Getting down to it, the different Spanish governments have maintained themselves firmly in the common market, while in foreign policy, say, the differences are notable. The government of Felipe González supported--symbolically--President Bush during the Gulf War, while Prime Minister Aznar, supporting--symbolically--President Bush in the second act of that same war, has become, it appears, the lapdog of Yankee imperialism. Politics is even more irrational than the economy...

As Antonio Escohotado reminded us the other day in an article in El Mundo, of the 220 member states of the UN, 150 are dictatorships.

This is sad reality, and all the statements on international law, human rights--protected by Libya--the defense of democracy, and other tomfoolery, are nonsense. To go no farther, China, a permanent member of the Security Council, a great world power with nuclear arms, is, above all, a one-party dictatorship, without the most elemental freedoms of opinion, of organization, without the right to strike, et cetera. Therefore, the hawks in Washington are completely right when they propose creating an international democratic alliance, outside the UN, outside the UE, which wouldn't be a mere reform of the Atlantic Pact, being more universal, since countries like Japan, Taiwan, India, or Australia could form part of this new alliance. In my view, the basic criteria of such an alliance are as demanding as they are simple; free elections, a plurality of parties and unions, freedom of expression, and a market economy. To this we would have to add, under the current circumstances, the will to defend ourselves against Islamic fundamentalism, tyrannies, and the rest of the terrorists, whether nationalist, Marxist-Leninist, or narcoguerrillas--defending and fighting for democracy, recognizing democratic legality. And doing it like, for a good example, our
(Aznar's) government against ETA, without the Socialist Party's GAL (80s government anti-ETA death squad) or the vile complicity of the Basque Nationalist Party. And, of course, keeping this new alliance under preparation in the correct perspective, France will be absent. You can't defend democracy and Saddam at the same time.

No comments: