Homage to Catalonia (and 239 and counting)

October 01, 2017

In this brief dispatch, I attach three photos with captions I have written.

-- Tom Gross



Above: This is what the Spanish security forces have been doing this afternoon to Catalan grandmothers, who dared to try and take part in a free and fair democratic vote for independence.

(There are many more photos and videos here in the international media or in the Spanish media.)

Some of the very same Spanish officials who have been at the forefront of criticizing Israel for supposedly not allowing Palestinian independence (even though successive Israeli prime ministers have offered Palestinians an independent state), have been egging on the Spanish police to use brute force today to stop the Catalan independence vote taking place.

The nation of Catalonia has more than 7.5 million citizens. Over 800 Catalan civilians trying to vote were injured today by what some might term the Spanish “occupation forces”, many by rubber bullets as they lined up to vote.

In spite of the police violence, and 300 polling stations being shut by the police, over two million Catalans managed to vote today in towns and villages across Catalonia. The police then seized many of the ballot boxes.

A number of European and Israeli MPs were invited by the Catalan authorities to observe today’s vote and many have expressed shock at the level of violence they witnessed.

Catalan leaders say that if the vote is overwhelmingly “yes”, they may declare independence in the next week or two. That would likely result in a strong reaction against this move by Spain, and possibly by the EU too.

(In sharp contrast, Spain unilaterally recognized a Palestinian state in 2014 and encouraged others to do so.)



Above: Passengers waiting outside Marseille’s main train station today, in France’s second-biggest city, after French soldiers shot dead an Islamist after he slit two women’s throats (the second woman was stabbed in the throat and then the back) and tried to kill more, while shouting “Allahu Akbar” (Allah is Greatest).

Today’s victims brought to at least 239 the official total number of people killed in France by jihadists since 2015. (This figure doesn’t include a large number of other attacks where the police claimed the perpetrators were psychologically disturbed and therefore could not be sure the attacks were Islamicly motivated even though the perpetrators on many occasions shouted “Allahu Akbar” as they carried them out.)

A state of emergency continues in France. Over 7,000 troops are still guarding transport hubs, tourist sites and prominent churches and synagogues.

As was the case with the Islamist terror attack in Finland’s second largest city a few weeks ago, the Marseille attacker today reportedly targeted only women (for not dressing “correctly”) slashing their throats. Today’s attack follows last night’s vehicle and stabbing attacks by Islamists in Edmonton, Canada. An ISIS flag was found in the perpetrator’s vehicle.



Above: More than 50 people were arrested in Gothenburg, Sweden on Saturday as over 600 black-clad members of the neo-Nazi Nordic Resistance Movement, tried to attack the city’s main synagogue, as the city’s tiny Jewish community prayed during Yom Kippur. Several people were injured in running battles as police tried to protect the synagogue. The Nordic Resistance Movement had a permit from police to hold the march, which the authorities then tried to re-route away from the synagogue.

Allan Stutzinsky, hear of the Gothenburg Jewish community, said anti-Semitic threats from the Nordic Resistance Movement had already resulted in the closing down in April of the small Jewish community center in Umea, a city in northeastern Sweden.

In Sweden, Jews have been under attack in recent years from Islamists, from the extreme right and from the extreme left.


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All notes and summaries copyright © Tom Gross. All rights reserved.