Gibraltar, Trafalgar and other Spanish practices


A fortnight ago I drove past Gibraltar, and, remembering the stories about the Spanish contriving six hour queues at the border, congratulated myself for having organised a flight to Malaga instead.

There is one fact curiously missing from the news coverage of the current dispute, which apparently started when the Gib government placed some concrete blocks in Algeciras Bay to prevent illegal Spanish drag netting of the sea floor. It is that Spain has its own Gibraltar. To be exact it appears to have five of them, across the Med in North Africa.

I have posted a link here to a page which shows where they are. I think it’s in Catalan, which is pertinent.

The funny thing is that the Spanish don’t realise that the issue is ultimately about democracy, but that’s why the Catalans have drawn attention to it.  Their case rests on the proposition that the Madrid government should respect the Catalans’ democratic wishes for an independent state.

Just imagine how annoying it must be for Catalans that Madrid is happy to hang on to the enclave of Cueta, for example, on the basis that its inhabitants, just across the Strait of Gibraltar, would rather be governed from Spain than Morocco, but would like Gibraltar back even though its inhabitants quite like being British and won’t give Catalonia independence even though most of its citizens would like it.

Incidentally, Cape Trafalgar, just west of Gibraltar, has a couple of memorials to the thousands who lost their lives in the 1805 battle.  Tactfully, neither mentions that Spain lost.

Read @ Nicholas Simpson

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