05 de setembre 2007

Spain vetoes the Catalonia - USA football match

In a great proof of the natural Spanish democratic behaviour, the Royal Spanish Football Federation has vetoed the friendly football (soccer) match between Catalonia and USA that was going to be played next October 14 in Barcelona. The reason is that October 14 is a FIFA day, it means that it is a day where the national selections do compete, so Spain plays a match the day before. The Spanish Federation says that a "regional" selection like Catalonia cannot play even a friendly match that day. Even more, the Federation says that "regional" selections must compete just once a year in December (maybe they think we have to thank them for being so generous).

But this argument, as all Spanish arguments, has a dark side. Last year the national football teams of Catalonia and Euskadi (Basque Country) played a match in a FIFA day in Barcelona. Moreover in the last years, Catalonia has played twice a year. The fact is that the Spanish Federation, and all Spanish media, are offended because the Catalan selection of Futsal (a five-to-five indoor sport similar to football) has been internationally recognized as an independent member in the European Union of Futsal and in the Futsal World Assotiation. Moreover, in the last World Cup organised in Iakutsk (Russia), Catalonia and Spain (that has a national team recognized by the FWA also) shared the same classification group. This was the first international and official match between Catalonia and Spain ever. The Catalan anthem at the same level of the Spanish anthem. The result: Catalonia 5 - 3 Spain. A historical victory for Catalonia that has been rejected by Spain (that want it to be declared illegal) under the argument that the FWA is not an official Assotiation (if that was true why Spain is a member of it as well as Argentina, Paraguay, Russia, Germany, Italy, France, Equador, USA, Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Mexico, Peru, Canada, Brasil, Australia, Belgium, and many others? If it was not official, why the Spanish Government ordered an official investigation of that match to find and accuse their own Spanish team of an illegal usurpation of the Spanish national symbols? Why didn't they order that investigation before that match? Why so much worry? Maybe the result is too big to swallow? Maybe Spain cannot tolerate being defeated by Catalonia in a fair match without the intervention of the "legal" Spanish machinery?. That is the real truth. The Spanish pride has been offended by the evil Catalans and Spaniards are trying to avenge this offense vetoing a match in another sport where Catalonia is not internationally recognized yet).

All the insults said and written since that futsal match, and the diplomatic foul-play, pressures and blackmails made by the Spanish embassies trying to forbid the Catalan international selection of Futsal have just one aim: the repression of the Catalan national selections and its will to be internationally recognized. The main interest of Spain is to hide the Catalan national demands to the world. They try to make us invisible and they use legal or illegal plots to success in that "democratic" repression. They know that if the world knew about our national claims and the situation of Catalonia in Spain, the Spanish international reputation would be seriously affected. Their democracy would appear as a hypocritical disguise. They fear us. They fear losing their last colonies (and above all they fear losing the benefit of our taxes). That is why they try to hide us under the carpet with their legal sweepers while trying to de-nationalize us and turn Catalans into good Spaniards.
Even though these Spanish efforts there are many Catalan Federations in some minor sports that have been recognized in the world and can compete internationally: pitch and putt, karate, taekwondo, twirling, australian football, futsal, icestock, corfball, kick-boxing, racketball, bodybuilding, roller hockey (recognized by the South-American Confederation) and the last one is bowling (Marca, a sports newspaper edited in Madrid, says that this last international recognition is a "scandal" because Spain is defined in the Spanish Constitution as "unique and undivisible" and accuses ERC (the Catalan independentist party) of being behind this "delirium" and "mixing sport and politics" (as you can see only Spaniards can mix them -who did first mention the Constitution and the Spanish laws? Isn't Marca the first one mixing politics and sport?). Marca affirms that "the International Bowling Federation is a complete joke" because they accept Catalonia "in a restricted area where only Spain is allowed". Moreover, Marca laugh at that international federation because it includes other federations as Gibraltar, Jersey, Isle of Man, or Wales (maybe Marca do forget that Spain is a member of that "joke" also). So Gibraltar, Jersey, Isle of Man and Wales are a joke to Marca. To insult Catalans they insult all the rest of the world if necessary (the International Bowling "joke" Federation includes other countries as Albania, Austria, Iceland, Finland, Greece, Germany, Poland, France, Russia, Romania, Italy, Morocco, The Netherlands, Denmark, England, Bulgaria, Croatia, Portugal, Israel, Ireland... all of them a "big joke" to Marca, I presume). Making friends, huh? Spanish "democrats" of course.

That is why they have vetoed the Catalonia - USA football match (I'd like to know what the American players will think of Spain from now on). The Catalan victory in the Futsal match was too much for Spain. The reaction is the only thing Spain do well: to censor, to veto, to forbid, to repress, to prohibit, to ban and to insult. An offended Spaniard becomes a non-democratic Spaniard.

But Jordi Roche, president of the Catalan Footbal Federation, has declared to the press that if the Spanish Football Federation insists in vetoing the Catalonia - USA match with no justified reaons the affair will go to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS). The Catalan Football Federation has the support of the Catalan Government and the most important Catalan clubs: FC Barcelona and RCD Espanyol among others.

Shame on Spain.