Is the ‘sink Allende syndrome’ surfacing in Catalonia? – Toni Strubell

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Maybe it’s a bit early to say, but things in Catalonia are just beginning to remind observers -those with a memory- of  Chile 1973. Salvador Allende’s socialist government was under fire from conservative agencies and lobbies in the western world. Forty-four years along the line, we have a full picture of how the CIA played a very active role in the destruction of Allende’s government. Pumping thousands of dollars into yellow press, encouraging strikes such as the transport crisis and even involvement in selective killings have all been proven as events on that agenda.

So what has this to do with Catalonia today? Well it’s not so much an international CIA-inspired operation that would seem to be under way –though nothing is to be discarded with Trump in the driving seat- but certainly there are elements that allow one to suspect that State hanky-panky is playing a role in attempting to destabilize the Catalan government in a way similar to Chile 1973. There are now major strikes at Barcelona airport, that smack of the transport strikes that so badly harmed Allende. After weeks of understaffed passport control units causing monstrous delays (up to three hours), now it is the turn of another security section, run by private company Eulen, that is causing trouble. Indeed, on Tuesday last, as many as one thousand passengers are alleged to have lost their flights due to this crisis. A crisis which, significantly enough, only affects Barcelona airport. What is vital to point out is that Eulen is a company very much favoured by the PP government. Indeed, the sister of the Galician president, Alberto Nuñez Feijoo (who has been particularly active in denouncing the Catalan Referendum) is a senior member on the board of this company. Funny that the only place there should be crippling strikes is at Catalonia’s capital, Barcelona. Not in Madrid or Seville? Anything to do with the Referendum per chance?

But Barcelona Airport is not the only suspect point for mysterious strikes. The Barcelona underground has also known go-slow strikes every Monday for  the last three months, although it is a matter of debate whether the gross incompetence of Ada Colau’s transport councillor was not more decisive here than any more strategic operation against Catalan sovereignty. Likewise there have been major problems with the taxis, which are regularly on strike at the major events. Again, the Catalan administration has little possibility of solving these issues because Madrid hoards the decision-making powers. But it is significant to point out that no day goes past without heated TV appearances and press statements being broadcast blaming the Catalan government for almost everything short of the biblical Flood. Isn’t it difficult not to get a whiff of a carefully planned anti-indy strategy here?

So far, of course, the results reaped by this strategy would seem to be meagre, at least on the strikes front. Things would be much more “favorable” for the anti-indy discourse, of course, if the Catalan economy were not lurching ahead with unparalleled exports and brilliant growth figures. Luckily, public opinion is not so fickle and Catalan middle-of-the-roaders can be reminded that the Catalan government, deprived of key powers and competences in these areas, is by no means to blame. Although there are always attempts made by what would appear to be infiltrated trolls to fill the media with messages in the “Catalan-government-hasn’t- done-anything-either” line. Certainly, the Catalan government has not been able to do “anything either” because it is curtly banned from doing so at every step. Let’s not forget what the major issue is here: Catalans being able to decide or nay!

https://elpais.com/ccaa/2017/07/24/catalunya/1500929576_423195.html

In the photograph, Galician president Feijoo points at Rajoy, with ex-Francoist minister and founder of the PP Manuel Fraga Iribarne on his left.

 

Toni Strubell

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