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Anti-Americanism In Spain And Why  
User currently offlineTechRep From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Posted (11 years 6 months 1 day 12 hours ago) and read 2977 times:


I heard an interesting radio program about a man who has studied the relationship between America and Spain. Jerome Socolovsky reports on the rampant anti-American sentiment in Spain. The antipathy is not based entirely on current concerns over Iraq, but issues dating back to the Spanish American war over a century ago.

He reports that Spain has never forgiven the USA for the Spanish American War and the successful independence of the Philippians, Puerto Rico and Cuba. To understand this hatred is linked very closely to “El Desastre”. The Spanish American War (1898) was Spain’s last war against a major world power. This humiliating defeat and fall from decadence still ways heavy upon Spanish minds.

Anti-American bashing is very common in Spain and has always been prevalent. Recently Spanish Anti-War protestors were heard crying "Remember the Maine"! The Elcano Royal Institute is organizing a seminar for anti-Americanism for the Spanish Government. A poll conducted by this institute noted, that only 2% of Spaniards feel that Americas roll as a world leader is a good thing, while other European nations voted about 20% respectively.

To take it a step further many Spanish are calling the Untied States a "puppet" of the Jews and vise versa. Jewish anti-Semitism is very prevalent in Spain, not blatant but more implicit. The expulsion of the Jews in 1492 from Spain can not be overlooked. Many Spaniards are melding anti-Americanism and Jewish anti-Semitism.

El Desaster remains a key factor for Anti-American sentiment in Spain and continues to be a factor for their mistrust of our military involvement in Iraq. Many Spanish feel our involvement in the Middle East ties in closely with our relationship with Israel. Many feel the USA looks to strengthen the Jewish State and Jewish power in the region.

I understand these feelings are not held entirely by all Spaniards but it can not go unnoticed. Would any Spaniards care to comment on this?

TechRep


24 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlinePHX-LJU From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 1, posted (11 years 6 months 1 day 12 hours ago) and read 2938 times:

TechRep wrote:

"Jewish anti-Semitism is very prevalent in Spain, not blatant but more implicit. The expulsion of the Jews in 1492 from Spain can not be overlooked."

Let me get this straight... to support your wild notion that "anti-Semitism is very prevalent in Spain," you are referring to an event that happened more than 500 years ago? Wow, some people go back 50 years to claim that Geramny is anti-Semitic, forgetting that so much has changed since WWII. But 500 years???

"Many Spaniards are melding anti-Americanism and Jewish anti-Semitism."

While there are isolated cases of anti-Semitism in Europe, such attitudes are certainly not shared by mainstream European society. However, many Europeans are (often justifiably) critical of Israel and its policies; maybe you are just confusing criticism of Israel with anti-Semitism?


User currently offlineHole_courtney From United States of America, joined Jun 1999, 569 posts, RR: 1
Reply 2, posted (11 years 6 months 1 day 12 hours ago) and read 2926 times:

Well, he actually is right to use the 500 year old example.

People may say that Germany was anti-semitic, the fact is they were. But, you're overlooking all of Europe. France was MUCH more anti-semitic (Dreyfuss affair anyone? Vichy France, headed by WWI hero Pétain?) than Germany, and the British as well. Germany, contrary to popular belief, was one of the least anti-semitic countries prior to 1933.

Jews have been hated ever since the Catholic Church (and others, Martin Luther also a notable example) condemned them for their role in executing Christ.

Anti-Semitic roots are at least one thousand years old. It still continues today.

Just because you don't look to the past doesn't mean that other people aren't influenced by it. Did you see the movie, My Big Fat Greek Wedding? THe mother in that movie always calls people "bastard turks" and other insults about Turks. That's because she's Greek, and in 1919-1923 the Greeks and Turks fought and expelled each others ethnic minorities from their respective countries, this woman (and the director/script writer) obviously still remember those events, and they were 80 years ago.

It's all about perspective. History, even 500 year old history, can influence todays thinking.

live forever and stay beautiful,
hole_courtney



"[He] knew everything about literature, except how to enjoy it." - Yossarian, Catch 22
User currently offlineTechRep From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 3, posted (11 years 6 months 1 day 11 hours ago) and read 2912 times:

I think if you read the context of my article you will find the word implicit mentioned. There is underlying or a hidden resentment contained there. The reporter chronicled these statements made by Spaniards on the street; I did not make this up. These statements were also widespread regardless of region.

BTW the Spanish-American War was 105 years ago and they are yelling "Remember the Maine", at Anti-War rallies today. Old feelings are embedded into the hearts of SOME Spaniards and Jewish Anti-Semitism is there noted the reporter.

This was reported on NPR news. I have never been to Spain, I just want to find out if there is any fact to this. This is no "wild notion" as you so callously referred but reportedly well documented.

TechRep


User currently offlinePHX-LJU From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 4, posted (11 years 6 months 1 day 11 hours ago) and read 2900 times:

Yes, Hole_courtney, but the Turks and the Greeks live side by side and have experienced mutual conflict fairly recently. Unresolved issues certainly still exist between the two. The Jews were largely expelled from Spain 500 years ago, and the atmosphere of the Inquisition no longer exists in Spain.

And, yes, a substantial segment of Europe was anti-Semitic before WWII, but the tragedy of the Holocaust has changed that. Today, anti-Semitism exists only on the political and social fringes (as is the case elsewhere), and is unequivocally rejected by Europe's mainstream society.

[Edited 2003-03-05 06:13:02]

User currently offlinePHX-LJU From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 5, posted (11 years 6 months 1 day 11 hours ago) and read 2889 times:

TechRep wrote:

"This is no "wild notion" as you so callously referred but reportedly well documented."


The claim that "Jewish anti-Semitism is very prevalent in Spain" is a "wild notion" to me; unless you provide me some credible and compelling evidence to back up your claim, I will continue to doubt it. Remember, we are talking about true anti-Semitism here, not legitimate criticism of Israel's policies.


User currently offlineTechRep From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 6, posted (11 years 6 months 1 day 11 hours ago) and read 2878 times:

I stand by my second post, first paragraph, implying there are implicit feelings present in the minds of some Spaniards.

I in fact question some of this information, that's why I want some input from Spaniards on the matter. I know we have a few on the forum and would like there feedback please.

I seek to prove nothing to you but seek answers for myself on this matter. I have a feeling either the reporter had an agenda, the information is sensationalized or some if not all of it is true.

TechRep


User currently offline737doctor From United States of America, joined Mar 2001, 1332 posts, RR: 39
Reply 7, posted (11 years 6 months 1 day 11 hours ago) and read 2872 times:

I can't wait for Schoenorama to chime in on this one.

{drumming fingers on desk}



Patrick Bateman is my hero.
User currently offlineHole_courtney From United States of America, joined Jun 1999, 569 posts, RR: 1
Reply 8, posted (11 years 6 months 1 day 11 hours ago) and read 2874 times:

PHX-LJU:

I would just like to respectfully disagree on a few points (well, all of them).

1. You can't tell me that there are no Jews in Spain (or even a very small population.) While the pogromatic atmosphere of the 15th century might not exist in Spain, it was only 50 years ago that Jews were hated, and 105 (as mentioned above) that the United States declared war on Spain. I bet many Germans are still angered by the Treaty of Versailles. There are a lot of Southerners in the United States still angry about the outcome of the Civil War (130 years ago?) Some Brits and British sympathises still refer to the United States as "the colonies" and the American Revolution as a "temper tantrum." The point is, just because you don't think it's mainstream, doesn't mean people don't think it.

2. Anti-semitism still exists. It's an indisputable fact. No one will admit to it (why? and be called a Holocaust sympathiser) but many people in the western world still believe in the "Jewish Conspiracy." Just because Karl Lueger is not in Vienna protesting Jewish shop owners for destroying Christianity does not mean that people still don't believe it. Political facts don't usually represent full public opinion. Just look at Bush and Iraq, 20 years from now, will history say that the United States wanted war, or the Bush Administration? Basically, just because it's in or not in politics doesn't make it indisputable. Yeah, an Anti-Semitic party would not go anywhere in politics today (KKK, for example) it doesn't mean that the feeling still does not exist.

I'm not trying to incite anything, I'm just respectfully disagreeing.

live forever and stay beautiful,
hole_courtney



"[He] knew everything about literature, except how to enjoy it." - Yossarian, Catch 22
User currently offlinePHX-LJU From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 9, posted (11 years 6 months 1 day 11 hours ago) and read 2869 times:

TechRep wrote:

"I stand by my second post, first paragraph, implying there are implicit feelings present in the minds of some Spaniards."

If "some" is the operative word here, OK; unfortunatelly, there are cases of anti-Semitism pretty much everywhere. But there's a big difference between that and your (or whoever's) statement that "Jewish anti-Semitism is very prevalent in Spain."

I'm also looking forward to what our Spanish members will say.

"I have a feeling either the reporter had an agenda, the information is sensationalized or some if not all of it is true."

I share those impressions.


User currently offlinePHX-LJU From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 10, posted (11 years 6 months 1 day 10 hours ago) and read 2861 times:

hole_courtney wrote:

"I bet many Germans are still angered by the Treaty of Versailles."

I think you are using the word "many" too losely here. Sure, there are some people who feel that way, no doubt about it, but they are a tiny percentage of Germany's population. To most Germans, living in a free, prosperous, and united Europe of the 21st century, the Treaty is a thing of the distant past.

"The point is, just because you don't think it's mainstream, doesn't mean people don't think it."

When you examine fringe groups, you get all sorts of nutty opinions. But precisely because these views are rejected by mainstream society, their significance is minor.

"Anti-semitism still exists."

Unfortunately, it does -- on the political fringes (as it does elsewhere). Fortunately, most Europeans reject it.

"Just because Karl Lueger is not in Vienna protesting Jewish shop owners for destroying Christianity does not mean that people still don't believe it."

There is absolutely no evidence to support the notion that anti-Semitism in Europe today goes beyond some extremist elements; certainly you cannot even compare it with the pre-WWII situation. If that is your claim, I would like to see some specific evidence from a credible and unbiased source.

You are right when it comes to historic facts, but I think you are mistaken if you think that Europe is stuck in the past -- the continent has changed dramatically since 1945, more than ever before in its history. Today, most Europeans are looking to the future, not back to the Inquisition or the Treaty of Versailles. The only exceptions are places with unresolved conflicts (Kosovo, Bosnia...).

[Edited 2003-03-05 07:11:27]

User currently offlineKrushny From Spain, joined Dec 2000, 776 posts, RR: 1
Reply 11, posted (11 years 6 months 1 day 4 hours ago) and read 2818 times:

That Jerome Socolovsky is totally clueless about the Spanish-American relations, his studies have been really superficial and incomplete and it looks to me this guy has a certain agenda. I bet he is one that tries to sell that the EU position in the Israel/Palestinian conflict is because of Europe's antisemitism, but well I digress. Going back to the topic, some comments :

1) Nobody in Spain cares nowadays about the 1898 war. This was a big issue in the first third of the last Century, and to a certain extent it had influence in most writers and politicians . But the main conclusion extracted from the war was that Spain had become an obsolete and irrevelant country, that could be easily defeated by an emerging power like the USA, and absolutely sub par with respect to the main powers of the time, like Britain, France or Germany. So Spain needed actually a regeneration and forget about past glories, it was no longer an Empire where the sun never set.
I cannot deny that then there was some Anti-American sentiment then, after all this was an Imperialistic war of aggression from the USA, which was trying to expand their influence in the world. And let me tell you an anecdote, my grand-grandfather fought in the Cuba war and came back home crippled and with an absolute contempt for the USA, he was probably one of the first Anti-Americans in Europe !!! My father told me it was funny to see him in the twenties/thirties shouting at the kids he saw chewing gum, "don't you know this is an American invention, how can you buy anything from those bucaneers???"  Wink/being sarcastic
But well this is all history. As I told before, todays sentiments about the USA have not anything to do with that war.

2) I would not say there is today a "rampant anti-American sentiment in Spain". McDonalds' are full, Levi's are big sellers here, plenty of Hollywood films in the cinemas, etc. But politic opinions are a different thing, true. But you do not have to trace back to the Cuban war, the dislike of American policies, there are basically two reasons for that :
- US support of Franco's fascist dictatorship . When we hear how Americans came generously to save Europe from Nazism we cannot but laugh. To make matters worse, our democracy suffered a militar coup in 1981 (fortunately failed), and in the first hours when the outcome was not yet clear, the dork then in charge of the Secretary of State (Alexander Haig, I believe) was interviewed about that and said it was an "Spanish internal affair", see how much he cared about democracy in the world.
- US policies in Latin America, which was treated like some kind of backyard with no respect for democracy values. Support of nasty autocrats and criminal governments (Nicaragua, Argentina), overthrow of democratic governments (Chile, Guatemala), etc. In this region it was clearly showed that USA cared first about its interests and second about things like democracy, freedom or human rights, which the US is supposed to champion worlwide. But to be fair, it must be said that the American policy has changed a lot for the better in LA since the eighties.

3) Anti-semitism in Spain. Well, Spain was guilty, OK. Or more precisely the Kingdoms that existed in the Iberian Peninsula at the end of the Middle Ages (Castilla, Aragon, Navarra & Portugal). There were pogroms in Spain in the XIV-XV centuries. One of the patron saints of my city (St Vicent Ferrer) was a vocal antisemite. The jews were finally expelled in 1492 from the Peninsular Kingdoms. The Inquisition made life difficult to the jews converted to Christianism. If you come to my city I can show you some places and tell some terrible stories about that time. But have in mind that Spain then was a Christian fundamentalist project. Life was hard for the Muslims too, and eventually they were expelled too in 1609.
But since then, anti-semitism has cooled a lot, among other things because there were no jews around to hate or made scapegoats of anything.
(to be continued later...)



User currently offlineTechRep From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 12, posted (11 years 6 months 1 day 3 hours ago) and read 2800 times:

I love to learn new things thanks Krushny.

Techrep


User currently offlineSchoenorama From Spain, joined Apr 2001, 2440 posts, RR: 25
Reply 13, posted (11 years 6 months 1 day 2 hours ago) and read 2788 times:

Here I am 737doctor!

Although not a Spaniard I have been living here for more than 20 years, so I believe I can post my opinion on this thread.

I agree with Krushny that the people in Spain don't really care about the 1898 war. This would also imply that a majority of the Spanish people have a very good knowledge of history, something which in my opinion is, regretfully, not the case.

The current anti-americanism is based on recent history, the last 40 years or so. Like Krushny says, US support of Franco has not done very good and neither has US's role in South and Middle America. It should not be forgotten that this anti-americanism is not directed toward the american people, but towards the US Foreign Policy. From my own experience, I know that Spanish people have never had any problems with the many American GI's when the US Airforce used Madrid's Torrejon Airbase.

"Jewish anti-Semitism is very prevalent in Spain, not blatant but more implicit."

I don't believe this is true. OK, Spain has not experienced the anti Jew-hatred which experienced many other European countries during WWII, and therefor sometimes remarks by Spanish people are a bit blunt, when compared with other European countries. For instance, not too long ago, one could still hear the term "negrito" on Spanish national television when referring to a black soccer-player. Such a remark in other European countries would have been impossible, but I do not believe there is a higher level of hatred towards Jews than in other European countries.

I have noticed that many times, also on these discussion forums, a critical attitude towards Israel is often explained as being anti-Jewish. Although this is something completely different, I believe that maybe Mr Socolovsky is doing the same.






Utinam logica falsa tuam philosophiam totam suffodiant!
User currently offlineAlpha 1 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 14, posted (11 years 6 months 1 day 2 hours ago) and read 2785 times:

It should not be forgotten that this anti-americanism is not directed toward the american people..

God, I get tired of that cop-out. If it's only the foreign policy they don't like, then let them march, peacefully, to the U.S. Embassy or the nearest U.S. Consulate. If it's not against the American people, then the people in Europe who are spitting on Americans, or giving them hell, need to stop, because when THAT happens, it IS directed at the American people.


User currently offlineGo Canada! From United Kingdom, joined Jun 2001, 2955 posts, RR: 11
Reply 15, posted (11 years 6 months 1 day 2 hours ago) and read 2784 times:

Germany, contrary to popular belief, was one of the least anti-semitic countries prior to 1933.

and pigs fly in the sky, i suggest you read Llyod Gartners the Jews in Mondern Times. Germany had several popular anti semitic parites before 1933.

from studying jewish history i would say that Spain isnt anti semitic. A high number of Jes converted and became new christains. The fact is that the jews werent emancipated anywhere in 1492 and were only allowed to live in pales and certain areas. Spain may have had anti-Jewish feelings but you cant equate this to modern antisemitism.



It is amazing what can be accomplised when nobody takes the credit
User currently offlineHepkat From Austria, joined Aug 2000, 2341 posts, RR: 2
Reply 16, posted (11 years 6 months 1 day 2 hours ago) and read 2780 times:

If it's not against the American people, then the people in Europe who are spitting on Americans, or giving them hell, need to stop, because when THAT happens, it IS directed at the American people.

Alpha1, WHERE in Europe is this happening? I've been here 5 years and I know many Americans accross the continent and I've never heard of these things. You can't use isolated incidents to form such broad generalizations. Using such logic, Muslims could very well cite ill-treatment at airports as American anti-Arabic sentiments. Without exception, all my experiences have shown that European anger is directed towards American policy and not towards the American people.


User currently offlineGo Canada! From United Kingdom, joined Jun 2001, 2955 posts, RR: 11
Reply 17, posted (11 years 6 months 1 day 2 hours ago) and read 2776 times:

Without exception, all my experiences have shown that European anger is directed towards American policy and not towards the American people.

i would disagree, americans often have the micky taken out of them.



It is amazing what can be accomplised when nobody takes the credit
User currently offlineSchoenorama From Spain, joined Apr 2001, 2440 posts, RR: 25
Reply 18, posted (11 years 6 months 1 day 2 hours ago) and read 2773 times:

To Alpha1:

"God, I get tired of that cop-out. If it's only the foreign policy they don't like, then let them march, peacefully, to the U.S. Embassy or the nearest U.S. Consulate. If it's not against the American people, then the people in Europe who are spitting on Americans, or giving them hell, need to stop, because when THAT happens, it IS directed at the American people."

As always, you are taking out a few incidents and making a major event out of it. Are you absolutely sure no French or German were treated the same way while they were on holiday or business-trip in the US?

Also, in the same way you suggested me not too long ago, how about sticking to this thread?






Utinam logica falsa tuam philosophiam totam suffodiant!
User currently offlineKrushny From Spain, joined Dec 2000, 776 posts, RR: 1
Reply 19, posted (11 years 6 months 1 day 2 hours ago) and read 2769 times:

Going back to the antisemitism topic, it cannot be said that Spain was a contributor to the sufferings of Jews in the last Century. As far as I know, there was no cooperation of Spain with the Nazis in the Holocaust. There was even a Spanish consul (in Budapest, I think) that at one moment gave away Spanish passports to Sephardic Jews (descendants of the ones expelled from Spain, some of which still keep Ladino, a kind of ancient Spanish language). Also Spanish antisemitism in the Middle Ages was mainly religious, rather than racial; a jew then could convert to Christianism and be accepted in the society. On the other hand, Nazi antisemitism was of a racial nature, which the Spanish could not accept; if today you start to make DNA analysis in this country, especially in the South and Mediterranean coast, you will find a lot of semitic content.
It also needs to be said that the propaganda of the Franco Regimen in its first years talked about the Judeomasonic conspiration to rule the world, which had originated all modern evils from Capitalism to Communism. But this did not last long, and the fact is that Franco shot many masons but no Jews.


User currently offlineAlpha 1 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 20, posted (11 years 6 months 1 day 2 hours ago) and read 2764 times:

Also, in the same way you suggested me not too long ago, how about sticking to this thread?

I beg your pardon, Schonerama, but why the hell am I NOT allowed to respond to something you said? YOU made that poiint, and I was responding to it. And this thread is about anti-Americanism, is it not? So why the hell am I not sticking to the thread. What arrogance on your part. Grow up, son.


User currently offlineRedAirForce From Ukraine, joined Aug 1999, 197 posts, RR: 0
Reply 21, posted (11 years 6 months 1 day 1 hour ago) and read 2742 times:

Re:original post

Though I don't agree with all of it, its well thought out and well written. Good job; nice to see this website has not totally been taken over by the whiners.


User currently offlineHole_courtney From United States of America, joined Jun 1999, 569 posts, RR: 1
Reply 22, posted (11 years 6 months 22 hours ago) and read 2714 times:

I stand by my statement.

There were anti-Semitic parties in Germany. You have to realise, though, that Hitler did not completely come to power because he hated the Jews. Hitler was a master politician, and did what was necessary to get elected. If anti-semitism worked in one part of the country (i.e. Munich) that's the rhetoric he used. If it didn't work (i.e. Hamburg) he focused on economic issues.

Most Germans were not opposed to the Jews. Much of German anti-semitism rose after 1933.

A lot of Germans thought that the Reichkristallnacht was wrong, because it was disorderly (again, contrary to popular belief.)

Other countries in Europe had far worse records on Anti-semitism than the Germans (France, UK, Poland, Lithuania, Russia, etc.)

I'm not saying it didn't exist in Germany, I'm just stating a fact that it was not as prevalent as everybody thinks. Yes, General Ludendoff joined Hitler's party in Munich (a popular figure.) Yes, many people were anti-Semitic in Germany. Even so, they were one of the least anti-Semitic countries in Europe.

I suggest you read "Ordinary Men" by Christopher Browning and "The Holocaust in History" by Michael Marrus to get a clearer picture of anti-semitism in Germany.

live forever and stay beautiful,
hole_courtney



"[He] knew everything about literature, except how to enjoy it." - Yossarian, Catch 22
User currently offlineKrushny From Spain, joined Dec 2000, 776 posts, RR: 1
Reply 23, posted (11 years 6 months 18 hours ago) and read 2689 times:

This would also imply that a majority of the Spanish people have a very good knowledge of history, something which in my opinion is, regretfully, not the case.

Right on the spot, Schoenorama...  Sad



User currently offlineSchoenorama From Spain, joined Apr 2001, 2440 posts, RR: 25
Reply 24, posted (11 years 6 months 17 hours ago) and read 2671 times:


To Alpha1:

"I beg your pardon, Schonerama, but why the hell am I NOT allowed to respond to something you said?

I didn't say you were NOT allowed. I SUGGESTED to stick to the thread. Being yourselve from an English speaking country, surely YOU should know the difference between NOT ALLOWING and SUGGESTING.

"YOU made that point, and I was responding to it. And this thread is about anti-Americanism, is it not? So why the hell am I not sticking to the thread. What arrogance on your part. Grow up, son."

The subject is anti-americanism in SPAIN. I gave my opinion about that.
What you are suggesting is that ALL OVER EUROPE, we, EUROPEANS, spit on Americans or giving them hell in any other way. Where did you get that nonsense? The National Enquirer?

PS Taking into account your age pa, is it really THAT hard for you to spell my name right?



Utinam logica falsa tuam philosophiam totam suffodiant!
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