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#63035 - 11/11/02 05:42 PM Re: 17,900 to 187, Wow!
WB Offline
Member

Registered: 04/25/02
Posts: 63
Loc: Philadelphia
Hi, I was in Gibraltar this past summer. Not all British people in Gibraltar speak Spanish!! Actually I surprised that it wasn't the way I thought it would be.

There were a LOT of Spaniards in Gibraltar (in Burger King and ALL the employees were Spaniards). And most of the British people I met didn't speak much Spanish. I was in a pub, and a Spaniard came in for a drink and the bartender had a lot of trouble communicating with him, and the Brits in the bar were "trying" to translate. I even asked them if most of the Brits spoke Spanish, and they said they speak "a little".

I thought they would accept Euros in Gibraltar, but some places only accepted Sterling, inlcuding Hotel Caleta where I stayed. We tried to get drinks there, but we only had Euros so we had to go elsewhere.

Across the plane runway in La Linea de la Concepcion I didn't see any British people.

It was a great trip.

Winston

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#63036 - 11/11/02 07:23 PM Re: 17,900 to 187, Wow!
Wolf Offline
Member

Registered: 01/25/01
Posts: 1235
Loc: Rockford, IL/Milton, WI, USA
Booklady,

I believe the vote was nothing more than to send a signal to Parliament that Gibraltarians weren't interested in any changes. On the Spanish side, it's a matter of not accepting their vote as being of any importance. The rift isn't lessening. I'm afraid, if anything, it's really getting worse.

There are so many misconceptins about the issue. Frankly, I don't think the majority of people in Britain, or in Spain, really know the whole truth. Everything seems to be slanted so far to the point of view in each nation, that it creates a lot of problems. I just read about a couple of attacks against Gibs since the vote. It wasn't right, but on the other hand, the same thing is happening in Gibraltar. A man who voted in favor of annexation with Spain was threatened so much, because his face was on TV, that he actually asked for political asylum in Spain. Neither side is right when that happens.

I think the Brits will hang onto the rock. The Rock of Gibraltar is one of The Pillars of Hercules. The other one is in Ceuta. I believe they may perceive the whole issue from a military standpoint, where ownership of the pillars constitutes total control of what does, and does not go in and out of the Atlantic Ocean, from the Mediterranean. We're less than 60 years removed from WWII, and there are so many problems on the north coast of Africa that I think it's become a question of who will, and won't, control access through the straits.

I've dug deep to find out about crime in Gibraltar, and can't find a lot. If there's a lot of illegal contraband going through, I don't know. I do know it's a "duty free" location, and that has to rankle Spain. Especially since the Gibs don't have to abide by EU law.

On the other hand, since Spain refuses to recognize the Gibs, and won't let Britain introduce or discuss the rock in EU, I don't see how this will ever end. Until the blockades at the border (conveniently terrible conditions trying to get onto the roc) stop, I don't see anyone in the Gib camp making any gestures towards a settlement.

What's a little confusing is the fact that Spain wants to claim that the rock was given to Britain, and now it belongs to a "third party." I think it's a weak claim. But at this point, that's really all they've got. They signed away their rights to the Rock, with the Ultrech treaty.

Please! No flames on the last statement! If you have facts to offer, do so, don't go off on a tangent. It's hardly productive.

Wolf

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#63037 - 11/11/02 09:13 PM Re: 17,900 to 187, Wow!
Quintos233 Offline
Member

Registered: 10/23/02
Posts: 332
Loc: Southern California
Again when is Gibraltar going to hand over its illegal claimed land!!!!!!

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#63038 - 11/11/02 10:11 PM Re: 17,900 to 187, Wow!
Booklady Offline
Executive Member

Registered: 08/19/01
Posts: 1664
Loc: U.S.A.
Thanks Wolf and Fernando for the information, I appreciate you taking the time to fill me in. Wolf, I agree with you I didn't think that the British government would want to give up such a strategic position that easily, I was curious as to why the Gibraltarians needed to vote. In a way it is sad that the people of Gibraltar feel the need to remind Parliament that they do not wish to be disenfranchised from Britain.

Fernando, may I ask, who is this third party that has the isthmus? And why is Spain blocking the taking of the issue of Gibraltar to the European Union? How can the European Union help in this situation?
Saludos
_________________________
The world is a book, and those who do not travel read only a page.
--St. Augustine (354-430)

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#63039 - 11/12/02 09:03 AM Re: 17,900 to 187, Wow!
Fernando Offline
Executive Member

Registered: 07/05/01
Posts: 1551
Loc: Madrid, Spain
Wolf please, you are exagerating it by miles... Reading your post would make someone think that UK and Spain are near to a war or armed conflict, which is very far from the real nature of the conflict, which is only a social and political one.

I've heard nothing about agressions to gibraltarians, nor against the pro-spanish one. Anyway it is not a generalized violence. Perhaps it is just that the people from Gibraltar and La Línea de la Concepción have this issue as one in which all debates are heated.

Yesterday I asked my father what he thought of Gibraltar. He told me that he didn't care even a bit, and that Spain has a lot of graver problems. It does not represent nothing comercially or economicly for us, not even a strategic militar position.

I think this is the opinion of the majority of the spaniards. We want it back soon or late, but truely it has a relative importance, moreover if the borders in Europe are diluting.

Booklady: The third party would be gibraltarians. They can't be legal owners of Gibraltar (acording to the Utrecht Agreement).

Fernando

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#63040 - 11/12/02 11:24 AM Re: 17,900 to 187, Wow!
Booklady Offline
Executive Member

Registered: 08/19/01
Posts: 1664
Loc: U.S.A.
Fernando,
Gracias, it is much clearer now. You made an interesting statement, that I would like to ask your opinion. Do you think that it is a good thing overall for the borders of Europe to dissappear? Do you think it will happen in the near future, nest ten years?

By the way, I want to thank you and all the other informed folks, like Wolf, on this board who are taking the time to share these perspectives with the board members. If one wants to be more than a tourist, a traveler, one needs to understand all of the characteristics of a country including the present political issues affecting that country. I find these type of threads a wonderful
opportunity to learn about the circumstances affecting Spain today, and I thank you. Just so you would not think I'm just curious! laugh
_________________________
The world is a book, and those who do not travel read only a page.
--St. Augustine (354-430)

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#63041 - 11/12/02 12:09 PM Re: 17,900 to 187, Wow!
Fernando Offline
Executive Member

Registered: 07/05/01
Posts: 1551
Loc: Madrid, Spain
You are welcome Booklady wink

The answer is yes. I think that borders between european countries should dissapear for many reasons. It boosts our economies because we all have acces to a market of 300 million people, give us better education and work oportunities, make us more open-minded, at give us the oportunity of make tourism in other countries with other countries.

At last, I think that it is time for Europe to have a golden age of peace, end our historical grievances and cooperate. I won't mind to loose my spanish citizenship for a european one. Of course I feel spanish, but I feel european too. It is better to work shoulder to shoulder.

Fernando

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#63042 - 11/12/02 02:47 PM Re: 17,900 to 187, Wow!
Wolf Offline
Member

Registered: 01/25/01
Posts: 1235
Loc: Rockford, IL/Milton, WI, USA
Fernando,

Read the news from other sources than those in Madrid. There's a lot they don't publish.

______________________________________

Attacks make La Linea a danger area for Gibraltar visitors

La Linea has become a danger area for residents of Gibraltar in the wake of the referendum. People going there are being attacked.

A number of incidents have already been reported: A large number of linenses attacking Gibraltar youth, couples being molested and property being damaged.

When a group of Gibraltar youths were returning to Gibraltar in the early hours of Sunday morning after enjoying a night out in La Linea they were set upon by a group of 10 to 15 Spaniards.

In the area of the Tropicana Bar a fight broke out and the locals had to make a run towards the border, said the RGP.

TRUNCHEONS

Four of the Gibraltarians were placed inside a police van, with the use of truncheons, after the group had been stopped by the La Linea municipal police.

Two of them sustained minor injuries. They supplied the Spanish police with statements and were later allowed to leave.

The commotion was such that people started congregating on this side of the frontier. Insults were being hurled across the way People had to be moved on by the RGP.

Thee are reports of local couples being molested while in La Linea, and other reports speak of motorcycle tyres being slashed and cars being scratched.

It is said that there are groups of people in La Linea who appear to be on the look-out for Gibraltar people and property, mainly at night.

The fact that the people of Gibraltar have democratically decided what they want cannot be taken in by some in La Linea, and indeed, elsewhere in Spain.

NOT UNDERSTOOD

It is as if Gibraltarians have to say that they wish to be Spanish even if they wish to remain being what they are. Many in Spain interpret the referendum result as being anti-Spanish, which it is not, in the sense that if the people of Gibraltar were asked if they wanted to be French or what-have-you, they would also say No.

Spaniards refuse to face the reality of the situation, which is that the Gibraltarians are a people in their own right - and it is as unreasonable as it is insulting to keep asking if you want to be Spanish or want Gibraltar to be Spanish, as the planned sovereignty deal envisages.

The mayor of Los Barrios Sr Alonso Rojas says he does not agree that relations could deteriorate, and points out to the thousands of Spaniards who come to Gibraltar to work etc without problems and the fact that a large contingent of Spanish media were here to cover the referendum without any incidents.

That is the case. It is not the Spanish in Gibraltar who are subject to abuse, but Gibraltarians visiting Spain...

--------------------------------------------
http://www.panorama.gi/

This is just one of several sources. I used this specifically because you don't need passwords to get in. As for my saying they are nearly at war, that's not true. You're conjuring this up in your mind, sorry. But I do know one thing -- if the Spanish fishing fleet thinks they will have over 40 boats in Irish waters next year, they're going to have some problems that won't be pretty there. frown

Wolf

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#63043 - 11/12/02 05:31 PM Re: 17,900 to 187, Wow!
Fernando Offline
Executive Member

Registered: 07/05/01
Posts: 1551
Loc: Madrid, Spain
Oh sorry, I didn't realise I was using the media of the dictatorship and not the always truthful press of Gibraltar... smile

Wolf I didn't question the truth of your sources, I was just saying that it is not a generalized thing. And I didn't sayed the spanish media has not published it, I just said I haven't seen it (at least yet). Gibraltarians and the people of the near spanish villages and towns have always been in bad terms, that is not new. The referendum has only given both of them fuel to continue it.

Keep in mind that a lot of spaniards work in Gibraltar, and lots of gibraltarians work in spanish near towns.

Quote:
But I do know one thing -- if the Spanish fishing fleet thinks they will have over 40 boats in Irish waters next year, they're going to have some problems that won't be pretty there.
I didn't understood this last one sorry.

Fernando

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#63044 - 11/12/02 05:44 PM Re: 17,900 to 187, Wow!
Espe3 Offline
Member

Registered: 05/13/02
Posts: 511
Fernando, I agree with you, except for the loosing spanish nationality for european one. But come to think of it, I guess it would end up being something more the way the United States is set up- each state has an individual ID, but we all share the same passport.

However, in the US, we have the advantage of sharing a common language (for the most part!). However, I don't think the EU is so far away from what you say, so what if the europeans don't share a passport, I already think that there is much more cooperation between the countries than there was before, after all, that's half the reason the EU works! As in the US, each state, has their own constitution and laws, but in the end have to abide by the federal constitution and laws, states don't loose their identity but manage to live in harmony with the rest. How is the EU much more different from this?
_________________________
Madrid!

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