Everything I was going to say today was blown out of the water by news from Spain. I don't usually blog politics on here (I have other outlets for my rabid liberalism, slowly morphing with age into drooling toryness), but I can't square it with myself to blog some crap about toenails or salt, when one hundred and ninety people have been killed on their way to work for no bloody reason.
So instead of me wanking on about something pointless, I'm going to quote an email from Tris, about this outrage. Tristan, as well as being a generally all round great bloke, is part Spanish, and was replying to Looby's question: Al-Quaeda or ETA?
It's the Spanish general election this Sunday, with the horrible ruling conservative PP party currently just only about a percentage point ahead in the polls, as opposed to 6 or 7 percent last week.
I imagine therefore that it is ETA, although I don't think anyone's claimed responsibility yet.
As you may know, the Spanish government recently closed down the Basque language newspapers which was read by many Basque people, because ETA used it to announce stuff.
I know that occasionally the newspaper was a mouthpiece for ETA but this was because ETA came to them, they are reporters reporting the news, and the paper carried all sorts of news.
This decision outraged many people. It would be like the Irish government closing down "An phoeblacht/Republican News" or the Saudis closing down "Al Jazeera" because the IRA and Al-Qaeda, repectively, used it for announcing stuff. The Spanish government also outlawed Herri Batasuna, the alleged political wing of ETA (which, to make analogies, would be as outrageous as the British government outlawing Sinn Fein) and closed down their offices, nicked their computers, etc.
This outraged people as it smacked of the old Franco days when people were not even allowed to speak non-Spanish languages in Spain, let alone have newspapers written in it.
The bomb attacks, if they are ETA, are very very stupid and horrible, set off by lamebrains. If it is ETA then, this may be a backlash of the recent right-wing PP attacks on their freedom. But to do these attacks three days before a General Election, with the conservatives looking like they may lose power (a couple of polls even had the socialists slightly ahead!) then this is surely one of the most classic cases of Schadenfreude or however the feck it's spelt.
This will push the vote back towards the hardline PP. Had PSOE got in, I dare say that they would have not been as anti-Basque. Idiots.
That is, of course, if it IS ETA. The government is saying it's ETA. Which is of course what the government would like the Spanish to think.
If it is Al-Qaeda, and if the Spanish government know it is and are saying it's ETA (hey I'm a wannabe screenwriter I'm allowed to think laterally) then this would be a major scandal. As an Al-Qaeda attack like this would mean that PP would almost definitely lose the election, as 91% of Spaniards were against the Iraq war in the first place. They believe that the Spanish government have made Spain more vulnerable by sticking their noses in where we're not needed, and by supporting a phoney war against a country that was no threat to us.
I dare say that until it's confirmed it's ETA, we won't know. And if it's the government confirming it's ETA, well.....!