More on Friedman (moron Friedman)

I just returned from Spain, and was there through the Madrid bombings and the electoral aftermath. Let me say in no uncertain terms that the idiot pundits who are accusing Spain's voters of caving to al-Qaeda should go and fuck themselves until they're raw and bloody. Public sentiment in the country is palpable. Every shop in every city has black ribbons on its windows. As a public show of grief and resoluteness, it feels exactly like the American Flags that went up all over New York right after 9/11. (And, yes, I was in Manhattan then, too.) More importantly, though, every square in every city that I visited is filled with candle memorials to the dead. These memorials are plastered with printouts with messages like: "no to terror, no to war;" "no to al-Qaeda, no to ETA;" and my personal favorite "Aznar, it was your war, but they're our dead."

Immediately after the bombings, there were spontaneous anti-ETA protests. Two days later, when the al-Qaeda connection became known, that anti-ETA sentiment was redirected at Aznar's government for their continued efforts to pin the blame on the wrong group. In this sense, it was a perfect reflection of the Bush administration's bait-and-switch by connecting Iraq with 9/11. Unlike the American public, however, the Spanish didn't take the bait.

So, rather than caving to the terrorists, Spaniards are actually steeled to fight terrorism--and are under no illusions that Iraq had anything to do with that fight. Anyone who says otherwise is dead wrong.

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