Photo: Pro-unity Spanish demonstrators, in front of the HQ of the ANC (Credit: Jordi Borràs)
By Abel Degà
December 14th, 2017
Belgian public media published an article this past Thursday which denounced how the darker sides of Spanish nationalism have begun targeting Belgium since the President of the Generalitat, Carles Puigdemont, and part of his Government decided to exile themselves in Brussels. In a piece entitled “Go get the Belgians!”, they states that “as a result of events in Catalonia, Spanish nationalism is making its presence know in rich smells and colors,” and mentions the fascist greetings that have taken place in Spanish demonstrations, and ultra right-wingers who have sung “Cara al Sol” (the anthem of the fascist Falange party, written in 1935) shamelessly.
Photo: Carles Puigdemont in Brussels (Credit: ACN)
“It’s not just yellow and red which have appeared on the streets, but the flag of the balck eagle of the Franco regime,” the report explained. The article also shows how they have built up tension across the social networks, with threats to political leaders, or the chants of “Go get them!”, a phrase which was popularized when Spanish citizens changed this in support of Guardia Civil troops and national policemen who took leave of their barracks in Spain to travel to Catalonia and ended up causing scenes of violent repression against the thousands of Catalans who were voting peacefully on October 1.
It is with this phrase, “go get them”, that the article is titles, and it goes on to explain how Belgium has since been on the receiving attacks from pro-Spain entities. “Since the Catalan prime minister, Carles Puigdemont, has been living in Belgium, a whole series of Spanish opinion leaders have begun mentioning Belgian “interference”, and “the Spanish conservative press is doing everything possible to stir up the atmosphere”. A cover of the ABC newspaper was highlighted in which it was said that “the defender of Puigdemont in Belgium supports defenders of the Jewish genocide”, referring to the Belgian Secretary of State, who was also called a “neofascist”, and further criticized when images of an “estelada” (Catalan Flag of independence) had been placed (and left) on a police car during the demonstrations in Brussels to demand the freedom of the political prisoners and the independence of Catalonia.
Photo: Police near a police vehicle which has had an Estelada put on it, during the December 7th demonstrations in Brussels (Source: Twitter)
The text also contains threats and hate messages received by the Belgian embassy in Madrid, and texts that have been sent to the author of the article from Spain, railing on the Belgians for “supporting fugitives or terrorists from “ETA”.