Wednesday, June 26, 2002
Javier Solana, the European Union's foreign-policy chief who will be at the G8 summit, said, "you know that for us, the elected leaders are the elected leaders."
Particularly ironic, given this other news item from this morning: "Spain Bans Separatist Party Despite Basque Fears":
Spain's parliament passed a law on Tuesday aimed at banning a Basque separatist party, despite warnings from Basque politicians and church leaders that it could backfire and fuel a bloody campaign for independence.
The bill...takes aim at the Basque political party Batasuna, which won 10 percent of the vote last year in regional elections.
Now, why would Spain outlaw a party that clearly is responding to the freely-expressed electoral will of the Basque people?
The government accuses Batasuna of being the political arm of the outlawed Basque nationalist group ETA, which has killed 800 people since 1968 in its quest for an independent Basque homeland in northeast Spain and southwest France....
The ruling Popular Party of Prime Minister Jose Maria Aznar has received overwhelming support from lawmakers for his drive to ban Batasuna. Even the main opposition Socialists threw their support behind the government.
"We cannot allow a legal political party to use its headquarters as an arms depot or to provide cover for murderers,'' Justice Minister Angel Acebes told the Senate before the vote.
Place your own epithet about Spanish hypocrisy here. And allow me to link back to this tongue-in-cheek post from yesteryear.
[Wallin] was co-host of CTV's Canada AM, and briefly, CBC's ill-fated Prime Time News, and she was host of the Canadian edition of Who Wants to be a Millionaire. Currently, she is host of Pamela Wallin's Talk TV, produced by her own company for CTV and talktv.
How about Regis Philbin as next U.S. ambassador to Canada?
Representatives speaking for an umbrella group of individuals protesting against the meeting of Group of Eight leaders in Kananaskis, Alta., argued that they will respect a diversity of tactics in the demonstrations.
"I'm not necessarily opposed to some types of property damage," said Amanda Dorter, an organizer with Take the Capital.
Ms. Dorter said she also sees no problems with those who spray-paint businesses they believe exploit the Third World.
Perhaps Ms. Dorter will soon defend the graffiti on the playground near my house. After all, some of the children who play there must have parents who work for evil multinational corporations.
In a related note, three protesters decided that a really good way to spark public sympathy for their cause would be to snarl commuter traffic for a few hours:
Meanwhile, yesterday, police ticketed three protesters who caused a massive traffic tie-up on Highway 401 just west of Kingston. The three were part of a nine-car chain that snaked down the highway at speeds between 30 and 40 kilometres an hour in an effort to bring publicity to their cause.
RCMP Sergeant Kevin Fahey said the drivers had been on the road for about four hours and had created a traffic jam about 11 kilometres long when police intervened and diverted them onto a truck weigh-scale exit near Gananoque....
"The motorists were getting frustrated, as you can imagine," Sgt. Fahey said.
If only they had had a compatriot bicycling alongside the commuters asking for contributions to the cause....
Whatever the implications of Mr. Bush's speech for peace in the Middle East, it was a triumph of domestic politics. Broadly supported by the American public, the speech thrilled the pro-Israeli Christian right, a critical component of the Republicans' political base. It was even more appreciated by American Jews, who voted almost en masse for Democrats Al Gore and Joseph Lieberman in the 2000 election.
Because we know that Bush's statement is really just a manifestation of domestic pandering, rather than a statement of foreign policy principle.