Saturday, November 21, 2015

You don't have to get far into Garzón's 507 page tome on corruption since 1939 to appreciate that Franco's fascism didn't end with his death. This is essentially because, to this day, no one has paid a price for crimes committed during almost 40 years of dictatorship. And nor have all the symbols of this fell period been eradicated from Spanish life. 
Worst of all, the monumental insult of the cathedral and mausoleum in the Valley of [ some] of the Fallen hasn't been blown to smithereens, along with the man's corpse. Next month, residual worshippers of Franco will gather there to honour his birthday. (Or his death. Who cares?). And at least 16 churches around Spain will 'celebrate' Masses for his putrid soul. Before that, they will gather on the anniversary of the death of the son of the dictator who ruled Spain in the 1920s. Can you imagine this happening in Germany?
Has this got anything to do with modern Spain? Well, yes. The corruption of the Franco era has continued untramelled since then - under governments of both the right and the left - reaching its jaw-dropping apogee in the phoney boom years after the introduction of the totally inappropriate Euro currency.
And the government currently running Spain comprises the children and grandchildren of fascist leaders. Unsurprisingly, they retain family attitudes to humane measures such as the identification of the graves of executed Republicans. And, of course, to the opportunity to seize with 3 hands the opportunity to make millions - billions even - from their ministerial positions. With total impunity, if ever caught out and processed through the courts to an inevitable presidential pardon. As in the Third World.
One day, the fatalistic attitude attitude of the Spanish to this - literally - state of affairs will change. And this will finally become an even better place in which to live.
BTW . . I never set out to write this post. It must have been lurking below the surface.

1 comment:

Q10 said...

Colin, Bravo old chap.

I heard today that BBC Four 21:00 Tue 08-12-15 will broadcast "Blood And Gold: The Making Of Spain" With Simon Sebag Montefiore.

This should answer all your questions and put your mind at rest. Ha.


In this rich and thrilling three part series for BBC Four, Simon Sebag Montefiore embarks on a fascinating journey to unlock 2,000 years of Spain’s history.

In the first episode Simon explores the early years of the country, when Iberia was a minor province of Carthage - then the most coveted of Rome’s colonies - through to the glories of Spain's Moslem age and the Córdoba Caliphate.

Simon travels to Cadiz with Spain’s first invaders and visits a sacred island where the Carthaginian warrior Hannibal received the blessing of the Gods. We learn how early Spain was a battleground for empires and visit Italica - a perfectly preserved Roman city with one of the finest amphitheatres outside Rome. From there this episode covers the early, brazen Christian Martyrs; the Visigoths and the Moslem conquest.