Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Xenophobia and Remembrance Day

You'd think there's no connection between Remembrance Day and immigration. Not so, according to the Daily Express

For those not sure about Remembrance Day and what it represents, a look at Leo Mckinstry’s piece ("Today, in a nation that has lost its history, the white cliffs have no such resonance") in the Daily Express will just put you off altogether. He makes a dazzling connection between the fact that soldiers sacrificed their lives during WWII and the fact that, since then, Britain has become host to generations of immigrants. Of course, Mckinstry omits to say that people also emigrated to France, Germany, Belgium and many other countries, but perhaps if he did he wouldn’t be writing for the Express.

He wonders why "the union flag is seen as an offensive symbol of xenophobia”. As he rejects that foreign-sounding word, xenophobia, he writes that "our once green and pleasant land" is now "surrounded by foreigners with whom [the Britons have] no sense of mutual belonging or trust" and live in "cities turned into modern Babels full of discordant tongues and wailing mosques". “The very idea of British citizenship”, he adds, “has been rendered meaningless by the twin malign forces of the EU and mass immigration".

However, the Express columnist may be cheered up by an e-mail we've received from a Spanish reader called Gustavo who shows genuine empathy about living in a country "that has lost its history", "swallowed up by mass development" and invaded by “foreigners”.

"Dear Mr Mckinstry,

Please excuse my English but I am a Spanish citizen. I read your article in the Express and I understand exactly where you're coming from. First let me say, like yourself, I am not a xenophobe. However, we too are losing our history. Like many from his generation, my grandfather sacrificed his life during the Spanish Civil war. But if he was alive now I don't know if he'd cheer or weep. All over the country, from Costa Brava to Costa Dorada, through to Costa Blanca and Andalusia, we have been invaded by at least 800,000 (and still counting) Britons. Apparently, they have programmes on their national TV that promote the idea of snatching our property and even building from scratch on Spanish land. That may explain why they arrive in droves, even in winter, and many decide to stay. And I worry if they are bringing disease, because at all hours you can spot them being sick in our once proud and quaint towns.

Our police officers don’t know where to begin because, when they don't get jiggy in the street, those invaders often become very rowdy, fight and smash bottles on each other's head. Like you said in your article, those immigrants have no sense of belonging to our land. None of them bothers to pick up the language apart from the word "cerveza". You mention your "wailing mosques" and I know what you mean cos we have entire towns where clubs full of Brits whack some sort of incessant beat until the early hours of the morning. My grandfather would have mistaken it for an air raid siren.

Even our politicians are gradually becoming foreign. We have local councils where British people are being elected and entire towns where Brits make up the greatest majority of the population. Like you mentioned in your excellent piece, areas that used to be unspoilt and natural are now prey to "mass development". Oblivious to our heritage, many of those Brits do not care if their villas are built in compliance with the law and there have been increasing cases of bribes and corruption. Even though in some parts of Spain we have serious water shortages, those Brits insist on building one swimming pool after the other. Many residents don’t even bother to register with the local council but they peruse our facilities (such as our own NHS) nonetheless. Therefore, you can imagine: local authorities are allocated funding according to the number of people registered, and find it very difficult to cope with the extra burden. Thanks to those foreigners, our public services, to quote one of the expressions you use, are “left in tatters".

The other day I was walking down the promenade in Lloret del Mar and there was a girl handing out nightclub leaflets. I reached out for one but she said "No, not you. You're Spanish". Is this what my granddad sacrificed his life for? The idea itself of Spain is being "rendered meaningless" by all this. Our towns are "losing their souls". Where once my grandfather would have seen a tapas bar, there are now English pubs or Fish& chips shops and McDonald's. What are we going to do, Mr Mckinstry?

Yours sincerely,
Gustavo Lopez Orta"


Anonymous said...

Well at least the Brits in Spain are European and not from the 'third world' I suspect would be the answer off the record.

Remembrance Day is bullshit, men were coerced to die for the State with mass conscription, and Propaganda to get into the minds of men and send them off.

Look up sir Basil Zaharoff, its people like him who make wars and benefit from them.

Stan Moss said...

Exactly, anonymous.
When People go on about Winston Churchill... you even get insurance dogs and stuff named after him. And in the end you get the idea hammered into you that Churchill was some kind of WWII-style Nelson Mandela. And he wasn't.

Anonymous said...

Es una verguenza. Estos llegan aqui y hacen el que qieren. Pollas