The sight of body-armoured thugs raising batons against peaceful protest has become a depressingly familiar scene, events in Catalonia a vicious replay of the state suppressing the democratic will of a people. In the case of the Catalans, a just and rightful desire for national freedom is being forcefully denied by an authority which, in its endorsement of police brutality, is reminding the world of the dark days of facism in Spain.
As with Tibetans the cultural and national identity of Catalonia has been shackled. While not suffering a cultural genocide the likes of which Tibet has witnessed since China invaded in 1950, Catalans, like their neighbors in the Basque Country, have endured years of oppression at the hands of a Spanish government that refuses to allow those peoples the full enjoyment of democratic rights. Most importantly on the subject of external self-determination Spain has taken the route of the tyrant, dispatching its security forces to ensure Catalonia remains a Spanish possession.
In this regard, like the Chinese regime, it is acting from a position of fear, a dread of losing control and territory which its exploits. The irony of course is that repression and violence are entirely counter-productive, brutalizing a people has only a superficial effect, as internally it generates a more determined resolve and demand for the very freedoms being refused. The arrival of an independent Catalonia is another step nearer, the draconian excesses of the Spanish police, approved by the authorities, is a major miscalculation. All tyranny falls upon its sword, a fate which awaits the Chinese regime also!
Scottish politician @ChristinaSNP issues a jointly signed public appeal for the European Union to take action against the suppression of democracy and human rights in Catalunya.We totally support that statement and respect her and fellow signatories for issuing it.
However why is the party, of which she is a member, seemingly dedicated to national freedom so selective with its condemnation? Surely wherever a people are violently denied democratic freedoms and human rights it would be a reasonable expectation for the Scottish National Party (SNP) to express solidarity and oppose such oppression?
Unfortunately such principled consistency looks to be absent from Ms McKelvie’s party. As evidenced by its comparative silence on the plight of the Tibetan people, who since 1950 endured a genocidal assault upon their national and cultural identity.
Where then are the public declarations from the SNP supporting Tibet? Has Ms McKelvie or her colleagues released an official statement condemning the Chinese government for its brutal suppression of Tibetans and violently denying them the most basic of freedoms?
Being a member of a Scottish Parliamentary group on Tibet, which Ms McKelvie declared on Twitter as a defense against the charge of double-standards, is not the issue. What’s troubling is the selectivity applied by her party. Proud to issue bold statements of support for Catalunya, but silent on Tibet. Such a contradiction demanded to be exposed and challenged, especially when the likely reason for the hypocrisy is political sensitivity on the matter of 10 billion UK pounds of Chinese investments, and trade with Scotland.
We wonder, were the Spanish authorities investing the same amounts of cash into the Scottish economy if Ms McKelvie, the SNP and Scottish Parliamentarians would have publicly called upon Donald Tusk of the European Union to oppose the dark excesses of the Spanish authorities against the people of Catalunya?