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Sunday, August 23, 2009

Elderly citizen to prision for waving a Basque flag

In yet another twist of this surrealistic neofascist situation we are being forced into, Kontsuelo Agirrebarrena, 61, has been sentenced to four years of prison for carrying a flag in a protest against the undemocratic municipal government of Lizartza, Gipuzkoa.

In the last elections of 2007, the illegal Basque Left list got 187 votes, while the Spanish Conservative one got 27. Hence the Spanish Conservatives got the local administration with only 10% of the actual votes. This brutal injustice has obviously caused loads of protests and tension in the small town, with the neofascists denouncing everybody around, even against the local priest, who dared to ask the illegitimate mayor's bodyguards not to enter the church armed.

In one of such protests, Mrs. Agirrebarrena was denounced for "aggression" against the mayor. In the trial the accusation was lowered to "attempt" and the sentence gathers that all she did was waving a Basque flag while the officers passed by without any hit or anything of the like. But, in spite of that, the tribunal (Supreme Tribunal at Madrid) sentences that the crime of "attack to authority" must be applied because "who knows that intimidates or charges against a person who has authority has, therefore, the intent of attacking that person".

She has been sentenced to four years in prison and a fine of 1800 euros.

In practice, Lizartza is partly self-ruled now regardless of the official government, because the people has boycotted every single initiative of the unelected mayor Regina Otaola. All cultural activities are in fact out of the official muncipal sphere.

Source: Gara.


Kepler said...

Maju, why don't you come to Brussels? There must be a group of people who can get on a bus and head towards Belgium, distribute flyers around in the Grand Place and go do the same in front of the EU commission building, call beforehand some of the key journalists here/agencies and scale up things.

Catalans do that for fuzzier things.

But people would need to make sure they come clean from any involvement with ETA.
Basques will never gain sympathy if associating themselves with guys who are killing innocent people.
There are other ways, protesting in a wee village in the Basque country will have little resonance. The money used for a bus can be put up by the people in the Basque country. Humble workers/farmers from France, Italy and Soutern Spain can make it to Brussels and sometimes they ARE heard.

Maju said...

Not that people has not got to Brussels and wherever. For instance there's now some relevant campaign in North Ireland to prevent an extradition, as there are no human rights guarantees in Spain. A Basque bus some 10 years ago was the first group to make an illegal demonstration in Milan in many years and later to enter to the heart of NATO headquarters in Brussels, to the anger of some funny generals there.

But we won't get sovereignty and freedom from Brussels. Only when Spain surrenders, pulls back, then we will have our country back again. The EU is after all just an association of states, not people. Citizens don't matter much in Brussels, only officers and oligarchs. That's why EU is about to collapse and more and more people everywhere is becoming against EU in spite of being Europeist.

But people would need to make sure they come clean from any involvement with ETA.

At this moment, every Basque that is not loyal to Spain is suspect, you know.

And anyhow, why that obsession with ETA? I am more worried about connections with Spanish torturing police, Spanish death squads, Spanish fascists... That's what I'm worried about. Nobody asks Aznar or Rajoy to condemn Franco's coup, massacres and tyranny (nor they would because they are true fascists), nobody asks them to remove all the francoist monuments and street names that still pervade the Spanish geography wherever the tories rule. Nobody asks López or Zapatero to condemn the GAL or the tortures of the Guardia Civil, and when asked about missing people, they just shrug.

ETA is the least of our problems. The problems are others: ETA is nothing but the natural reaction of an infected body against such aggression. And that's why people is being sent to prison: for stating the obvious: for saying that there is a political problem and ETA's bombs are just a symptom.

And Catalans are whimps anyhow: always looking for pacts and deals instead of just grabbing full sovereignty like the Dutch, the Portuguese, the Venezuelans, the Cubans... did historically by means of active uprising and struggle. No wonder they are still part of Spain...

Kepler said...

It seems you are not interested in the least in trying to see things from the perspective of the rest of the world.
You haven't thought things through.

1) ETA has murdered people recently, some weeks ago even, the extremists from the other side haven't done that for a long time already. 99% of people outside those with your position know that. The Spanish government is not murdering people anymore as Franco did, ETA is.

2) You are as "independent" as people in catalonia. Thus: Basques are as whimps as the rest.
Only difference is that there is less sympathy for your movement and you don't even go to Brussels anymore, but do your marches in the Basque country
You could organize a massive, peaceful demonstration outside Spanish control, but yo do not have the critical mass. It is not an El Pais-cIA-Peace corps-Boy Scouts-FOX News complot. It is you.

You are telling me people went to Brussels ten years ago to NATO?
Well, that was silly. It is about calling the attention of European citizens in the city on a peaceful way, not of top generals.
People do that all the time and it works at least 1000 more than anything extremist groups have attained in the Basque country since Franco died over 30 years ago. I have seen many groups coming here and the press from all over the world interviews them and so on.

I am surprised you don't realize how unpopular a violent solution for the Basque country is.

4) If you wanted, you could organize an unofficial referendum, in spite of it all, but for that you need a critical mass and you, in spite of all the groups of nationalists in Donostia and villages and so on, do not have it. If you had enough people with you, the Spanish government could not prevent you from organizing that referendum. That is so in Spain or in Venezuela or anywhere else.

Maju said...

People have the right to self-defense. That's so essential that even Gandhi acknowledged it. Gandhi said: the real difference is not between those who fight with weapons and those who fight with Satyagraha (nonviolence) but between those who fight and those who do not.

Man, I'm not sure what do you think a protest in Brussels is worth. There have been dozens of those and they have just a very limited impact. They are little more than publicity stuns.

There is no "violent solution" for this country (or anywhere else), there's only democratic solution what means self-determination. All democracies have been born violently, not sure if you realize that: Swiss Revolution, Dutch Revolution, French Revolution, American nations' independence, Irish independence... wherever you look at you see violence as symptom and reaction to something that is oppressive and not working anymore. And in most cases it is only the beginning of something much bigger.

Long ago I was more or less concerned about the rest of the world, notably Spaniards. But nowadays I think it is first and foremost their problem: it is them who have to raise in arms, behead the Bourbon and get rid of Spanish fascism forever. Glad to help if possible but it's their problem first of all.

There could not be an unofficial referendum unless the process is more advanced than it is now. We have our "Fatah" (PNV) who babble but bow: they promised such a referendum a decade ago and, when the Spaniards forbade it, they just dropped their promise. Anyhow the Spaniards would have used the pretext to take the tanks to the streets. Not that I care but the Basque boot-licking corrupt "Abbases" do.

Believe me: the situation is going to stay like this for long... unless Spain collapses for other reasons, what is not impossible indeed. What is clear is that if we renounce now to our struggle, the country is finished. It is probably the last opportunity for the Basque nation to survive.

Furthermore, I'd say that the more that the repression and dismantling of democracy happens, the more people will be in favor of ETA, we like it or not.

Did you read that strange news I mentioned some months ago where people who had been trying the political path for many years decided that it was just impossible and that the only thing they could do was to join ETA? Crazy, I know, but somehow reflective of how things are now here.

Just click on the Basque politics label for instance to get a taste of how things are here.

Flag Cases said...
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Maju said...

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