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  #1181  
Old 10-03-2017, 08:01 PM
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A king totally out of his depth.

This was not a speech, it was a lecture aimed entirely at one side only! Like a father scolding an errant child! I have no sympathy for separatism, I'm a Brit of Scots descent. But the Spanish government have committed unbelievable blunder after unbelievable blunder in the last few days. Felipe has not helped anything tonight, in fact he's done the opposite.

It would have been entirely possible for him to say he believes in the unity of Spain and the rule of law, while also trying to heal some wounds, re-build some bridges, urge peaceful dialogue and negotiation. He chose not to do so. A colossal mistake.

Had the British government asked Elizabeth II to make a speech of this kind after the Scottish referendum, I truly believe she would have refused. Her secretaries would have been frantically negotiating with the government to go a different way.

Felipe clearly does not have the strength of character to do so. Extremely disappointing.
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  #1182  
Old 10-03-2017, 08:09 PM
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Yes, it would have been much better if that dialogue had started way earlier, so all of this could have been avoided. Moreover, rewarding this kind of behaviour (such as declaring independence, which is a nightmare scenario - or the use of violence in the past) with 'negotiation talks' also doesn't seem right. Although punishing the Catalan people isn't either...

Unfortunately, the national government response has made it worse instead of better. As has been said before, why all this oppression? It was illegal (and therefore had no meaning) and did not take place according to officials, so why the use of violence to prevent something that is not happing (according to themselves) from happening; that only legitimizes the referendum. For saying that they wanted to keep the country united, this was exactly the opposite what they should have done even in this tough situation.

At the moment there might not be a lot of dialogue left (hopefully that will change in the future) but compassion for his people (including the ones that have very different points of view) is something that I would expect from any monarch; so completely ignoring the violence (which in practice means condoning it) was the worst he could do.

We just can hope that somehow reasonable people will stand up and that the peace will be restored and a path forward is constructed in which all voices (including both the Catalans pro-independence and those against) to be heard.
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  #1183  
Old 10-04-2017, 12:51 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ANNIE_S View Post
The main reason they want to leave if because they don't want to be linked to poorer regions yeah how very democratic and respectable
This is not new in Europe. In Germany we have a federal system, eg Bayern, one of the wealthiest states has gone to court several times to change the system of payments to Berlin/redistributing the money to the other, poorer states. But we were talking early times, Bayern has no serious claim for independence and it's about money, as usual. The problem is in the process of being solved politically.
This point seems to have passed in Spain for many months, maybe years, a fault of all parties involved to let it come so far, including the crown when the monarch could still have acted as a moderator, knowing very well the strong separatist movement/resentment of the central government or the crown.
I missed in Felipe's speech a strong call to condemn violence of any form and a reflection of how this mess was created, something he did during the election desaster during the past year. He presented himself as Rojoy's tool in this speech.
I think that a change of constitution in Spain has been put on hold for far too long, maybe a change to a federal system would have made a difference.
Spain's King Felipe VI condemns Catalan authorities | Daily Mail Online
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  #1184  
Old 10-04-2017, 04:11 AM
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The King has been making calls to dialogue for years, has visited Catalonia much more than other regions, makes his speeches there in Catalan (which Juan Carlos never did) ... the king also has been harassed years by the Catalan independentists. They are the ones who whistle at soccer games, who burn his photos or use them to simulate their death, who make all kinds of cruel jokes about the Royal Family, including children.

In September the Catalan government reached a breaking point, where dialogue for dialogue no longer serves, because they have transgressed all laws.

They have not only organized an illegal vote that goes against the Spanish laws, they have taken Catalan laws, voted by the Catalans in referendum and have passed on them, to create new laws, that the population has not voted and everything without the legal guarantee of the Catalan Parliament itself.

The law they have approved has little of democracy, not only because of the process employed, but also because of its contents. They declare themselves immune to the law, do not comply with the separation of powers, seek to seize all the property of the Spanish State in Catalonia... and a whole series of things that are outside international law.

The Catalan government and its publicity apparatus are not ashamed to tell lies to citizens. Although the European Union has been saying for years that if they leave Spain they will be left ... they continue to say that they will continue to be part of it. And like that many promises in which they involve third parties and that legally are not viable. They promise an idyllic independence, when the process would be terribly complicated and normal citizens will suffer the consequences.

The Catalan government is lost ... they have reached a point where they have no choice but to declare their independence unilaterally ... because the other option would be to recognize that they have lied to the people and the consequence will be that those people will turn against them. In addition their independence gives them immunity, while staying in Spain will take them to jail.

The King's message yesterday was for the Catalans, to tell them they can not trust a government that violates the laws they have democratically voted, a government that drives them to face each other. They need to rely on democracy and the rule of law to defend their ideas.
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  #1185  
Old 10-04-2017, 04:43 AM
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Ridiculous how Catalunya has been hijacked by a corrupt, minority government who impose their views on all. But then again this populist wave has been going on throughout the world in the past couple of years. Unfortunately people who want a silver bullet solution to their own problems buy into the shenanigans of politicians who want to exploit sentiment for their political gain.

I believe the King was reaching out to the "silent majority" who are worried about what is happening and whom he felt needed the reassurance. They are the ones also who have been reduced to silence and discredited by the current government. It is also unfortunate that because the latter does not make for interesting news, the Anglo media will play the Catalan independence movement to maximum drama. Police violence is never the answer, but anybody who thought the Guardias and the Policia would stand down in the face of civil disobedience obviously do not know how steadfast these guys are in doing their jobs. Sadly, the media was waiting for these scenes, those who voted most likely knew perfectly well this what would happen, and Puigdemont and company were likely hoping for this narrative (Francoist Spain being oppressive, etc etc) kind of angle in the media.

I don't know if the King could have done a better job, we obviously don't know what he thinks but it seems clear his idea of monarchy and its relevance is not along Queen Elizabeth's line of keeping quiet on anything political but more along his father's line of delivering a statement and making clear the position of the monarchy when things get rough politically. Then again, the modern Spanish Royal House is intrinsically linked to politics, much more so than its neighbors.

By the way somebody pointed that it there's more to the independence movement than the economic reason and that speaking a different language is a sign of a different culture. However, lots of countries in the world have people with different ethnicities and languages and they coexist and are united under a shared idea of national unity. I was in Barcelona last week (and will be back again tomorrow, which should be interesting) so this is completely anecdotal but it seems like most pro-independence citizens I spoke with have an overinflated sense of Catalunya's economic capacity and that its potential is enough to withstand whatever happens next if they become independent. I find this thinking selfish (because they do not back their sentiment with hard studies and are putting succeeding generations' futures in jeopardy) and arrogant (complete underestimation of the role of Madrid and EU in their economic prosperity). It is a sad business all in all.
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  #1186  
Old 10-04-2017, 05:41 AM
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The entire situation is a huge mess and very,very worrying.
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  #1187  
Old 10-04-2017, 07:35 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Somebody View Post
He was supposed to show some compassion for those who were unjustly brutalized by the police. Even 'civil disobedience' should not lead to a police force using unnecessary violence to their own people (who they probably don't even view as their own people). It surely is possible to both uphold your position and condemn the violence that was used - as Duke of Marmelade, wyevale and Yashal also missed in this speech. A king is to unite not divide his people. Unfortunately, king Felipe is not up to that task at probably one of his most critical moments of his reign so far.

Some are giving the King the benefit of the doubt in that he is just representing the government point of view but if he would not agree he wouldn't hold the speech. So, I do think that he fully supports this stance. Had he not, he would not have held this speech as there was no requirement for him to do so. The way he delivered his speech also was a clear sign of his enormous zeal in condemning the actions of the Catalan government and indirectly those who support them (and not of the Spanish government or the police).
Well said ...uniting people required the condemnation of faults of each side but the speach was all condmnation of catalon faults ..the king only choice was to talk and express opinions of the government ....not to talk at all will expose him to critisize from spanish people ,indead a very difficult situation for him and he prefered to take the government side for his own benefit and saving his reighn.
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  #1188  
Old 10-04-2017, 07:54 AM
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The King is the head of the Spanish State ... what should be his attitude before a coup of State?

The king in his speech supported the Catalans, those who were independentists and the millions who are not, defended the Catalan laws that the Catalans voted ... he did not support a government that is breaking the law and organizing a coup of State.

Should Juan Carlos have been sympathetic and supported to the coup militia of 23F?
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  #1189  
Old 10-04-2017, 07:58 AM
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Would it have been seen as taking sides by condemning any violence?

At least this is a position that should speak for both parties.
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  #1190  
Old 10-04-2017, 09:14 AM
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The media all seem to be one sided just reporting on Pro Independence rallies are there any anti Independence Pro unity ones taking place?
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  #1191  
Old 10-04-2017, 09:43 AM
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Duke, the problem is that words like "dialogue" or "violence" have been so poorly used in recent days that probably they have been deliberately avoided.

When there has been a condemnation of violence, in general, the independentists have used it only as a condemnation of the police action, not recognizing their violent acts.

Moby, the economic issue is interesting ... those who support the independentists are convinced that their government has everything prepared, as they are convinced that they will continue in the European Union or that the Barca will be able to continue playing in the League (even though the European leaders and the Spanish league deny it).

A biomedical company announced yesterday its transfer from Barcelona to Madrid, and today its value has gone up 30%.

The banks based in Catalonia are falling heavily in the stock market, and there are Spaniards who by boycott or fear of losing their savings are starting to change their money from banks.

La Caixa is an icon in Catalonia, but more than 80% of its business is in the rest of Spain. According to the press, they have everything prepared to move to Madrid if there is independence. There are big Catalan companies that will have to leave an independent Catalonia if they want to survive ... because without being in Spain or in the European Union their future in very black.
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  #1192  
Old 10-04-2017, 09:56 AM
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An Ard Ri, on Saturday there were demonstrations in favor of the unity of Spain in all Spanish cities, including Barcelona.

In Catalonia, non-independents are a silent majority. Their government is in favor of independence, have been promoting Catalan and despising Spain for 40 years ... so for them, free expression is much more difficult, and they can suffer attacks from the most radical independentists.

Only in the last years has emerged a political party, Ciudadanos, and some social movements that from Catalonia defend openly the membership to Spain.

In recent weeks, many famous Catalans, not suspected of being so, have been singled out as fascists for not supporting the referendum.
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  #1193  
Old 10-04-2017, 11:32 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by An Ard Ri View Post
The media all seem to be one sided just reporting on Pro Independence rallies are there any anti Independence Pro unity ones taking place?
I haven't seen any pro unity rallies in Madrid (I might have been asleep the whole weekend) but there are lots of Spanish flags on windows and on the day of the referendum, people were walking around using the flag as cape or tied to their purses.

But the majority usually doesn't go out to the streets, same reason why there were barely any anti-Brexit rallies. They feel like the fight is between the government, or the govt should fight for them, or they are just complacent.
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  #1194  
Old 10-04-2017, 01:23 PM
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Originally Posted by lula View Post
Duke, the problem is that words like "dialogue" or "violence" have been so poorly used in recent days that probably they have been deliberately avoided.

When there has been a condemnation of violence, in general, the independentists have used it only as a condemnation of the police action, not recognizing their violent acts.

Moby, the economic issue is interesting ... those who support the independentists are convinced that their government has everything prepared, as they are convinced that they will continue in the European Union or that the Barca will be able to continue playing in the League (even though the European leaders and the Spanish league deny it).

A biomedical company announced yesterday its transfer from Barcelona to Madrid, and today its value has gone up 30%.

The banks based in Catalonia are falling heavily in the stock market, and there are Spaniards who by boycott or fear of losing their savings are starting to change their money from banks.

La Caixa is an icon in Catalonia, but more than 80% of its business is in the rest of Spain. According to the press, they have everything prepared to move to Madrid if there is independence. There are big Catalan companies that will have to leave an independent Catalonia if they want to survive ... because without being in Spain or in the European Union their future in very black.
Lula thank you for sharing this news about the possible economic impact of the independence movement.
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  #1195  
Old 10-04-2017, 02:21 PM
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Manifestations in defense of the unity of Spain on Saturday 30 in many Spanish cities.

Referéndum Cataluña 1-O: Gritos de "Puigdemont, a prisión" en la marcha de miles de personas en Barcelona contra el 1-O | EL MUNDO

Manifestaciones por la unidad de España en Madrid y otras ciudades, Telediario - RTVE.es A la Carta

Barcelona

https://www.elconfidencial.com/espan...endum_1452751/
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  #1196  
Old 10-04-2017, 07:10 PM
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I also ask that forum members in Spain continue to send us sources to check out on the Catalonian issue. I find news coverage in the US to be slanted and the info shared here provides a more robust coverage of issues. I care far more about Spain than I did before I joined the Forums and I think that's a good thing?
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  #1197  
Old 10-04-2017, 07:57 PM
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Doesn't King Felipe know that saying things that are highly partisan, when your country is in crisis, is a good way to result in the monarchy being abolished, and that staying totally neutral and quiet is sometimes the best approach?

Maybe the former king of Greece could remind him.
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  #1198  
Old 10-04-2017, 08:37 PM
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He is a constitutional monarch therefore he speaks for the government.

He may, behind the scenes, have tried for an approach which spoke of the need for dialogue.

However, according to the rule of law in Spain (the Constitution) the referendum was illegal. So there was no way he could say it was ok.

And there is more to this than meets the eye of the outsider (like me). I have had overload of referenddi in the UK and I heard all the arguments. But Catalonia (like Scotland) would be on its own - not a member of a stable country, not a member of the EU, no currency.......

Scotland were asked and said no. It is a pity that even asking the question is not allowed by the constitution of Spain.

I feel that it is going to be very painful for the people of Spain.
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Old 10-05-2017, 12:50 AM
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Catalonian president attacks Spanish king for 'ignoring his people' after independence vote in televised speech
Catalonian president attacks Spanish king for 'ignoring his people' after independence vote | The Independent

“With this attitude you have disappointed many Catalans who held you in esteem. The constitution gives you a role as a moderator which you have failed to use.”

Puigdemont criticised the King both for echoing the government’s views and for failing to refer to the hundreds of injured during heavy-handed police actions against a illegal pro-independence referendum in Catalonia over the weekend.
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  #1200  
Old 10-05-2017, 01:59 AM
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Pro-Spain Catalonians make their voices heard

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