Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
You could equally argue the right of Spaniards to democratically decide they want Spain to remain intact as is - or at the other extreme, you could give every town and village the right to democratically secede from whatever county, province or country they happen to be in. Democracy can only only operate within the confines of a state whose boundaries may have been decided by wars, colonialism or any number of other non-consensual means.

Czechoslovakia is a rare example of a state freely and democratically deciding to split in two, but that is because the majority in both freely willed it. North island and South Island could become two independent countries, but again, only by mutual consent. Would New zealand grant independence to the richer parts of Auckland, if their people willed it?

It is in the power of Westminster to grant, or not, the right of Scotland to hold another referendum, and then to impose all sorts of conditions for independence to be granted - such as a sharing of the national debt, the loss of nuclear submarine bases, the right to use the British pound etc.

Northern Ireland voted by a large majority against Brexit, (as did Scotland) and their wishes were then totally ignored. Ireland had to fight many bloody uprisings before independence was granted - in part.

The whole concept of a nation state is a relatively recent invention and most countries in the world have only existed, in their current form and territory, for a few generations. Germany Italy France and Spain are amalgamates of previous fiefdoms and kingdoms by war or other bloody means.

The stability of the EU is based on the status quo established by the outcome of WW2 and the more recent fall of the Soviet Union/end of the cold war and the break-up of Yugoslavia. Most people don't want to revisit those conflagrations all over again.

In Spain's case the civil war is still the subject of much bitterness generations later, with much of the structure of politics and the economy determined by its outcome. There is virtually no prospect of a mutually agreed parting of the ways between Spain and Catalunya, and every prospect of a revival of fascism if it is seriously attempted without that agreement.

Best that we all become better Europeans rather than fight those battles again. As you note, there is nothing to prevent a great deal of cultural diversity within a broader European framework, and nothing to be gained by disrupting it, that is worth a few hundred thousand lives.

Index of Frank's Diaries

by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Tue Oct 20th, 2020 at 01:03:20 AM EST
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