THOLOS OF ATHENA

Monday, March 15, 2004

SPANISH DECISION A REPUDIATION OF AZNAR

Today is a good day to celebrate Spanish courage, because it seems that the world cannot afford to do without it.. While still registering the shock and horror from the Madrid attacks, voters in Spain went to the polls in a huge turnout to repudiate the Aznar government. The voters there have handed power to the Socialists, because the PP and its leader could not be trusted to act in the interests of the people. The defeated party led Spain into a war in Iraq on the coattails of the Bush Administration and in direct opposition to the overwhelming majority of Spaniards. Voters had valid reasons to reject Aznar and everything he represented. This so-called leader used the long-standing skirmish with Basque extremists, to inflame the voters, before credible evidence could be assembled regarding the actual perpetrators. This effort to manipulate the dead, and use them as counters in a political game, only produced nausea and anger among Spanish voters.

The most alienated commentary (coming mostly from those outside Spain) has been to the effect that the vote somehow suggests appeasement in the face of terrorism. Oddly, even some left-of-center pundits have peddled this nonsense. The enormous expression of public will by the electorate demonstrates just the opposite. It is clear that the Spanish voter is neither intimidated by the terrorist nor by the fear-mongering government that serves at the pleasure of Bush&Co, in a cruel war.

In a democracy, a government will not long stand, if it proves untrustworthy. The others, who are now elected in Spain, must serve the will of the people with more fidelity. Aznar and his party were rejected because of a repellent use of Spain's still-mourned dead. These dead were claimed for political advantage, and voters were right to punish the manipulators.

In the aftermath of the election, a BBC article quotes Spanish economist, Rafael Lopez:

"The youth above all has brought us back. They know what is best for them. They have said no to the war and no to terrorism and all Spanish people want peace."


UPDATE: BY ALL MEANS READ JUAN COLE'S ARTICLE ON THIS SUBJECT!

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