Thursday, December 21, 2006

The decline of the Spanish identity...?

In a extremely informative article entitled, "Spain No More?", Norman Ho, a senior editor at the Harvard International Review argues that President Zapatero has radically altered the Spanish identiy while implementing his vision for the ''new Spain''. My favorite excerpts are below.

''There can be no question that Zapatero’s reforms are bold, dynamic, and dramatically new. But whether or not they are ultimately beneficial for Spain’s national interest and world security is another question. For a nation that has been marked by historical disunity and uncertainty, Zapatero’s domestic reforms dangerously strip away the layers of Spanish society. In his attempts to create a “New Spain” and bring Spain quickly in line with other European nations, Zapatero is sacrificing Spanish national identity and showing that he simply does not understand the distinctiveness of Spain’s unique domestic and security needs.''

Zapatero’s decision to embrace Old Europe ironically brought about a decline in Spain’s prestige and influence with the rest of the European Union. Despite his administration’s heavy campaign and his assurance to France that Spaniards were the most passionate Europeans, Zapatero indubitably looked bad after the historically low turnout of Spanish voters to the EU Constitution referendum. But perhaps what is most disturbing about Zapatero’s policy is his alacrity to sacrifice Spanish natural interests to please Old Europe.''

''Zapatero, during the discussions on the EU constitution, made it clear that he would be willing to compromise Spanish voting strength for the sake of agreements on the constitution. As a result, Spain has decreased voting power compared to Germany and France and thus has less influence in EU decision making. Zapatero also, as discussed earlier, pushed away an important non-EU friend, the United States, whose political support might have given Spain future leverage it might have needed to protect and even to enhance its power within the European Union in situations which required standing up to “Old Europe.” Instead, Zapatero has alienated the United States, one of Spain’s leading economic trading partners, and has started down the path of decreasing his country’s influence in European Union.''

Read the full article here.


NeiLDC said...

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Anonymous said...

Hey i wasn't at the computer the other day when you messaged....I'm going home for christmas this weekend so I probably won't be online as much. So if i don't talk to you before hand have a good christmas and new years!!! I'll talk to you soon!! Come Home NOW!!! you know you want to.....