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Debate on UNIFIL raging in Spain / Arrecia el debate sobre la fuerza de paz en el Líbano

by Carrie Fri Sep 8th, 2006 at 07:47:59 AM EST

On September 7, the Spanish government requested parliamentary authorisation to deploy the troops it has pledged to UNIFIL. The Spanish right wing is trying to draw parallels between this deployment and Spain's participation in the occupation of Iraq as part of the Coalition of the Willing. To them, war is war is war, and Zapatero's willingness to commit troops to UNIFIL contradicts his opposition to the Iraqi deployment. The fact of the matter is that the opposition to taking part in the CoW not only of the Socialist Party but of up to 90% of the Spanish public had more to do with the illegality of the operation than with pacifism or isolationism. The fact that the Iraq invasion and the occupation were not authorised by the UN Security Council, while the strengthened UNIFIL was the result of a UNSC resolution is lost on the PP. This, of course, has nothing to do with the fact that former Prime Minister Aznar played an important role in trying to provide diplomatic cover for the Bush/Blair war of Iraq; or that Aznar and the PP had, like Bush and Blair, no interest in a ceasefire between Israel and Hezbollah, and would have liked Israel to be in NATO so Spain would have been forced to bomb Lebanon, too; or that a Spanish right-wing think tank has said that the only reason to support Spain's contribution to UNIFIL is their hope that lots of Spanish troops will die and bring down Zapatero's government. The Spanish right wing really has no shame.El 7 de septiembre el gobierno de España pidió autorización parlamentaria para desplegar las tropas que ha prometido contribuir a la misión de paz de la ONU en el Líbano. La derecha montaraz trata de establecer un paralelo entre este despliegue y la participación española en la ocupación de Irak bajo liderazgo de Estados Unidos.  Para ellos, la guerra es la guerra es la guerra, y la disposición de Zapatero a comprometer tropas para la misión en el Líbano contradice su oposicion al despliegue en Irak. El hecho es que la oposicion a la participación española en la ocupación de Irak, no sólo por parte del PSOE sino de hasta un 90% de la población tuvo más que ver con la ilegalidad de la operacion que con el pacifismo o el aislacionismo. El PP ignora el hecho de que la invasión y ocupación de Irak no tuvieron autorización de Naciones Unidas, mientras que el refuerzo de la misión de la ONU en el Líbano es resultado de una resolución del Consejo de Securidad de la ONU. Esto, claro está, no tiene nada que ver con el hecho de que Aznar jugara un papel importante en el intento de proporcionar cobertura diplomática para la guerra de Bush/Blair contra Irak; de que Aznar y el PP no tuvieran, como Bush y Blair, ningún interés en un alto el fuego entre Israel y Hezbolá, y que a Aznar le hubiese gustado que Israel estuviera en la OTAN para que así España se viera obligada a bombardear Líbano también; o que un think-tank conservador haya dicho que la unica razón para apoyar la contribución de España a la fuerza de la ONU en el Líbano sea la esperanza de que muera gran númeto de soldados españoles para que así caiga el gobierno de Zapatero. La derecha española es que no tiene vergüenza.

Promoted by Colman


In 2003 Spain Chaired the UN Security Council, and used this position to assist the Bush/Blair effort to deceive the UN into authorising Bush' war of choice on Iraq. I got to follow the UN charade through the filter of the American press in January-March 2003, and the interesting thing was that Aznar was treated as a world leader as long as it looked like the UN had a snowflake's chance in Hell to provide a fig leaf to Bush's aggression, but was immediately ignored as soon as it looked like his services were no longer needed. This happened at the March 2003 summit at the Açores between Bush, Blair and Aznar hosted by our friend Barroso. The American press didn't even bother reporting on Aznar's words at the end-of-summit press conference.En 2003 España presidió el Consejo de Seguridad de la ONU, y usó esta posición para contribuir al intento de Bush y Blair de engañar a la ONU para que autorizase la guerra de Bush contra Irak. De enero a marzo de 2003 me tocó seguir la farsa en la ONU a través del filtro de la prensa estadounidense, y lo má interesante fue cómo trató a Aznar de líder mundial mientras hubo la mínima probabilidad de que la ONU le cubriera las espaldas a Bush, pero la prensa ignoró a Aznar inmediatamente en cuanto pareció que sus servicios ya no eran necesarios. Esto sucedió en la cumbre de las Azores en Marzo del 2003 entre Bush, Blair y Aznar, con el amigo Barroso haciendo de anfitrión. La prensa estadounidense ni se molestó en cubrir las declaraciones de Aznar en la rueda de prensa al final de la cumbre.
Here is an example of the press coverage prior to the summit:He aquí un ejemplo de la cobertura anterior a la cumbre por parte de la prensa:
Associated Press (via GlobalPolicy.org): Bush to Meet Blair, Aznar in Azores (March 14, 2003)Associated Press (en GlobalPolicy.org): Bush se reunirá con Blair y Aznar en las Azores (14 de marzo de 2003)
In a last-minute stab at diplomacy, President Bush, British Prime Minister Tony Blair and Spanish Prime Minister Jose Maria Aznar will search for a way to win U.N. backing for using force to disarm Iraq when they confer Sunday at a hurriedly arranged meeting on an Azores island in the eastern-Atlantic. White House spokesman Ari Fleischer described the talks as "an effort to pursue every last bit of diplomacy" in the face of fading hopes for approval of a U.N. war resolution. Bush will depart for the Azores Sunday morning. It will be a one-day trip, said Fleischer, who said U.S. officials still hope to pass a resolution demanding that Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein be disarmed.En un intento diplomático de última hora, el Presidente Bush, el primer ministro británico Tony Blair y el presidente del gobierno de España José María Aznar buscarán la manera de ganar el apoyo de la ONU para el uso de la fuerza para desarmar a Irak cuando se reúnan el domingo apresuradamente en las Azores en el este del Atlántico. El portavoz de la Casa Blanca Ari Fleischer describió las conversaciones como "un último intento de perseguir la diplomacia" mientras se desvanece la esperanza de aprobar una resolución de la ONU para la guerra. Bush partirá hacia las Azores el domingo por la mañana. Será un viaje de un día, dijo Fleischer, que dijo que las autoridades estadounidenses aún confían an que se apruebe una resolución exigiendo el desarme del leader iraquí Saddam Hussein.
......
France's veto threat was being taken seriously, and the administration may decide not to give France the chance by withdrawing the resolution, the senior administration official said, speaking on condition of anonymity. Bush was ready to drop the resolution, several aides said, if Blair didn't want it put to a vote. Whatever the decision, the United States will declare that Iraq has missed its final opportunity to disarm, the official said. Aides said the president has pushed for a U.N. vote thus far out of respect for Blair, whose support of Bush has drawn severe criticism in Britain.La amenaza de Francia de vetar la resolució se toma en serio, y la administración [de Bush] puede decidir retirar la resolución para no darle a Francia la oportunidad de vetarla, según un miembro de la administración que habló anónimamente. Bush está listo para retirar la resolución, según sus colaboradores, si Blair no quere someterla a votación. Se decida lo que se decida, los Estados Unidos declarará que Irak ha perdido su última oportunidad de desarmarse, según el miembro de la administración. Los colaboradores [de Bush] dijeron que el presidente [Bush] ha presionado para que haya una votación en la ONU por respeto a Blair, cuyo apoyo a Bush ha atraído críticas severas en Gran Bretaña.
If I mention this summit it is because "the photo-op on the Açores" has entered the Spanish Political lexicon as a symbol of Aznar's submission of Spain's foreign policy to US interests. For example:Si menciono esta cumbre es porque "la foto de las Azores" ha entrado en el vocabulario político español como símbolo de la sumisión de la política exterior española a los intereses de Estados Unidos por parte de Aznar. Por ejemplo:
Europa Press (via Yahoo): [PSOE spokesman] Blanco: "Spain goes from the photo-op on the Açores to that of international legality" (29 August 2006)Europa Press (por Yahoo): Blanco: "España pasa de la foto de las Azores a la de la legalidad internacional" (29 de agosto de 2006)
PSOE's organisation secretary, José Blanco, rejected today the criticism by PP president Mariano Rajoy on the sending of troops to Lebanon and claimed that Spain "went from the photo-op on the Açores to the photo of international legality".El secretario de Organización del PSOE, José Blanco, rechazó hoy las críticas del presidente del PP, Mariano Rajoy, sobre el envío de tropas a Líbano y aseguró que España "pasó de la foto de las Azores a la foto de la legalidad internacional".
......
The socialist politician stressed that the UN presence in Lebanon "implies the end of the photo-op on the A¸ores, it implies putting an end to preemptive war and forming alliances, under UN cover, to achieve peace".El político socialista hizo hincapié en que la presencia de Naciones Unidas en el Líbano "supone poner fin a la foto de las Azores, supone poner fin a la guerra preventiva y aliarse, bajo el emparo de naciones unidas, para conseguir la paz".
From these premises, Blanco said he could not understand that Rajoy, whom he reminded of his support for a preemptive war "based on illegality", is not enthusiastic about a proposal to work for peace "under the cover of legality and the United Nations".Con estas premisas, Blanco dijo que no entiende que Rajoy, al que recordó que apoyó una guerra preventiva "basada en la ilegalidad", no sea un entusiasta a una propuesta de trabajar por la paz "bajo el amparo de la legalidad y las Naciones Unidas".
"Unless Mr. Rajoy misses the photo-op on the Açores, which wouldn't surprise me, his statements are incomprehensible", pointed Blanco, adding that Spain "went from the photo-op on the Açores to the photo of international legality and the United Nations, which is a great difference that the Spanish People can appreciate"."Salvo que el señor Rajoy añore la foto de las Azores, cosa que no me extrañaría, no son comprensibles sus declaraciones", apuntó Blanco, quien añadió que España "pasó de la foto de las Azores a la foto de la legalidad internacional y de Naciones Unidas, lo que supone una gran diferencia que sabrán apreciar los españoles".
Translating this I realise just how much politicians repeat themselves...Al traducir esto me doy cuenta de lo mucho que se repiten los políticos...
Ok, I freely admit it, I agree with the position of the Socialist Party and Zapatero's government 100%. But the thing is, it makes sense! It's according to international law! And Spain has been very active diplomatically in te Middle East lately. Spain's foreign minister and former EU envoy to the Middle East Moratinos was the first western minister to visit Syria in July, former PM Felipe González visited Tehran last week to mediate on the nuclear issue, and the Iranian negotiator and UN Secretary General Kofi Annan were both in Madrid today on diplomatic tours.Vale, lo admito, estoy de acuerdo al cien por cien con la postura del PSOE y del gobierno de Zapatero. Pero lo que pasa es que ¡tiene sentido! ¡Está de acuerdo con la legalidad internacional! Y últimamente Españ ha estado muy activa diplomáticamente en oriente medio. Moratinos, el ministro español de esteriores y antiguo representante de la UE para oriente medio, fue el primer ministro occidental en visitar Siria durante el mes de julio, el ex-presidente del gobierno Felipe González visitó Teherán la semana pasada para mediar en la cuestión nuclear, y el negociador iraní y el Secretario General de la ONU Kofi Annan coincidieron hoy en Madrid en medio de sus respectivas giras diplomáticas.
El Pais: Zapatero and Annan see a "peace opportunity" in the Near East (07-09-2006)El Pais: Zapatero y Annan ven una "oportunidad de paz" en Oriente Próximo (07-09-2006)
Zapatero defends that Spain "is where it has to be" and that it will go to this country [Lebanon] "on a peace mission"Zapatero defiende que España "está donde tiene que estar" y que irá a este país "en misión de paz"
The PM has met the Secretary General of the UN at [his official residence in] the Palace of la Moncloa to tackle the Iran crisis and Spain's participation in UNIFIL. After the meeting, Kofi Annan has tranked Spain for its commitment to peace and especially to the situation in the Near East, as well as its "effort" and "leadership". The PM stressed that Spain will "play the international role it must play" if Parliament approves the sending of [the Spanish] military to Lebanon.El presidente del Gobierno se ha reunido hoy en el palacio de la Moncloa con el secretario general de la ONU para abordar la crisis de Irán y la participación española en la misión de Naciones Unidas en Líbano. Tras la reunión, Kofi Annan ha agradecido el compromiso español con la paz y especialmente con la situación en Oriente Próximo, así como su "esfuerzo" y "liderazgo". El presidente del Gobierno ha destacado que España "jugará el papel internacional que le corresponde" si el Parlamento aprueba el envío de militares a Líbano.
......
"We are going to turn the ceasefire into a peace situation. And the [Spanish] contingent is going to run the risks that are incurred in these kinds of situations", he clarified. In addition, the PM has Offered the military base at Manises (Valencia) for the UN to direct the peacekeeping operations in the area, as confirmed by Annan himself, who said the candidacy will be considered and it won't take long to reach a decision."Vamos convertir un alto el fuego en una situación de paz. Y el contingente va a correr los riesgos que se sufren en este tipo de operaciones", ha aclarado. Además, el presidente ha ofrecido la base militar de Manises (Valencia) para que Naciones Unidas dirija las operaciones de mantenimiento de la paz en la zona, según ha confirmado el propio Annan, quien ha dicho que barajará la candidatura y no tardará mucho en llegar a una decisión.
......
Another international figure who is now in Madrid and met this morning with PM Zapatero and the foreign minister, Miguel Ángel Moratinos, is the main Iranian negotiator on the nuclear issue, Ali Lariyaní. The PM has transmitted to him Spain's position, "which basically coincides with the European one": "We are firmly in favour of no nuclear development in Iran, but we believe that dialogue is the way to understanding".Otra figura internacional que se encuentra en Madrid y que esta mañana se ha reunido con el presidente Zapatero y el ministro de Exteriores, Miguel Ángel Moratinos, es el principal negociador de la posición nuclear iraní, Ali Lariyaní. El presidente le ha transmitido la posición española sobre la crisis iraní, "que básicamente coincide con la europea": "Somos firmes partidarios de que no haya ningún desarrollo nuclear en Irán, pero creemos que el diálogo es el camino del entendimiento".
In the interview, Zapatero has asked Lariyaní to follow the steps marked to him by the EU's foreign policy official, Javier Solana, in the meeting that they will hold two days from now in an unspecified location.En la entrevista, Zapatero ha pedido a Lariyaní que siga los pasos que le marcará el responsable de política exterior de la UE, Javier Solana, en la reunión que van a mantener dentro de dos días en un lugar no especificado.
Curiously, Lariyaní is staying at the Ritz, the same hotel in which the UN secretary General slept. This morning, as Lariyaní left the hotel to begin the day's meetings, Kofi Annan held a meeting at the Ritz with former Spanish PM Felipe González, who has acquired a certain relevance lately after visiting Irán last week with the goal of mediating in the conflict.Curiosamente, Lariyaní se encuentra alojado en el Ritz, el mismo hotel en el que ha dormido el secretario general de las Naciones Unidas. Esta mañana, a la misma hora en que Lariyaní abandonaba el hotel para comenzar la jornada de reuniones, Kofi Annan mantenía un encuentro en el Ritz con el ex presidente del Gobierno Felipe González, que ha adquirido bastante relevancia en los últimos días por haber visitado Irán durante la pasada semana con el objetivo de mediar en el conflicto.
As a consequence of Aznar sending troops to Iraq without debate in the Parliament, Zapatero introduced legislation to make parliamentary approval a requirement for any deployment abroad, namely the Organic Law on the National Defence [Spanish link] enacted on November 17, 2005. In keeping with this law, the UNIFIL commitment was brought before parliament today.Como consecuencia del envío de tropas a Irak por parte de Aznar sin debate parlamentario, Zapatero introdujo este requisito en la Ley Orgánica 5/2005, de 17 de noviembre, de la Defensa Nacional. De acuerdo con la ley, la participación española en el Líbano se sometió a debate en el congreso hoy.
El Pais: Zapatero accuses the PP of trying to "justify" its errors on Iraq with the Lebanon mission (07-09-2006)El Pais: Zapatero acusa al PP de intentar "justificar" sus errores en Irak con la misión a Líbano (07-09-2006)
The Congress [of Deputies, the lower House] authorises the sending of 1.100 soldiers [to Lebanon] with unanimous support.—Rajoy says that his party wanted peace in Iraq like it wants it now in the near EastEl Congreso autoriza el envío de 1.100 soldados con apoyo unánime.—Rajoy dice que su partido quiso la paz en Irak como la quiere ahora en Oriente Próximo
The PM, José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero, accused this afternoon the PP leader, Mariano Rajoy, of trying to "justify its very serious past errors" with his attacks on the Executive for the sending of troops to Lebanon, but has admonished him that it is a "vain, almost pathetic" attempt. These statements were made shortly before the Congress gave a gren light to the sending of 1.100 soldiers to the UN mission with the unanimous support of all [parliamentary] groups. Specifically, 306 votes in favour and two abstentions were registered.El presidente del Gobierno, José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero, ha acusado esta tarde al líder del PP, Mariano Rajoy, de tratar de "justificar sus gravísimos errores del pasado" con sus ataques al Ejecutivo por el envío de tropas a Líbano, pero le ha advirtido de que es un intento "vano, casi patético". Estas declaraciones han sido efectuadas poco antes de que el Congreso diera luz verde al envío de 1.100 soldados a la misión de la ONU con el apoyo unánime de todos los grupos. En concreto, en la votación se han registrado 306 votos a favor y dos abstenciones.
All the parliamentary groups, including the PP which accused the Government of not telling the truth on a "war mission" have lent their support to the sending of troops to make part of the UN Interim Force In Lebanon (UNIFIL).Todos los grupos parelamentarios, incluido el PP que acusó al Gobierno de no decir la verdad sobre una "misión de guerra" han dado su apoyo al envío de soldados para formar parte de la Fuerza Interina de Naciones Unidas en Líbano (FINUL).
How can a force be "interim" for 24 years? Anyway, Rajoy's position really is pathetic, sorry for agreeing with Zapatero again. A "war mission"? just for kicks (and to practice embedding youtube videos) let's recall our elder stateman and Rajoy's godfather Aznar's stellar interview on the BBC in which he advocated NATO strikes on Lebanon...¿Como puede una fuerza ser "interina" durante 24 años? En fin, la posicion de Rajoy es realmente patética, perdóon por estar de acuerdo con Zapatero de nuevo. ¿"Misión de guerra"? Para divertirnos (y practicar la inserción de vídeos de youtube) recordemos la intervención estelar de Aznar, estadista y patrón de Rajoy, en la BBC en la que defiende que la OTAN bombardeara el Líbano...
(Kudos to Escolar and friends)(Gracias a Escolar y compañía)
As a final piece of evidence that the Spanish right has totally lost it, here's this recent piece by a Spanish conservative think-tank.Como última prueba de que la derecha española ha perdido los papeles por completo, he aquí un reciente artículo de un think-tank conservador.
GEES: Lebanon: Zapatero's tomb? (22 August 2006)GEES: Líbano: ¿La tumba de Zapatero? (22 de agosto de 2006)
If ZP, beatific and peaceful supporter of the UN has 50 or 300 body bags sent home full of young Spaniards it would be his political end, for having put their lives at risk in a useless mission in which Spanish participation was designed to his greater glory and personal photogeny. With Spanish dead and the PP acting as the PSOE did when it was in opposition, it would be enough to spell his end. It is clear that the PP is not like the PSOE nor can it be and instead of blaming ZP, as he for instance did after the 11 March attacks, would join the government for the good of Spain and in defence of her servicemembers.Si a ZP el beatífico y pacífico soporte de las Naciones Unidas le envían a casa 50 o 300 bolsas con otros tantos cadáveres de jóvenes españoles sería su final político, por haber arriesgado sus vidas en una misión inútil en la que la participación española estaba diseñada para su mayor gloria y fotogenia personal. Con muertos españoles y el PP actuando como el PSOE, cuando éste estaba en la oposición, bastaría para ser su final. Claro que el PP no es como el PSOE ni lo puede ser y en lugar de culpar a ZP, como éste hizo por ejemplo tras el 11-M con Aznar, se uniría en una piña con el gobierno por el bien de España y en defensa de sus militares.
(I was originally alerted to this op-ed by escolar.net)(Fue Escolar quien primero me llamó la atención sobre este artículo)
This paragraph is rich. First of all, it recalls the so-called Yak-42 incident [Spanish Wikipedia]. In 2003 a Yakovlev transport plane returning troops to Spain from Afghanistan crashed in Turkey killing all the occupants. Wishing to have this story disappear from the headlines as soon as possible, Aznar's government forced the Turkish authorities to rush the identification of the corpses, resulting in a large number of misidentifications. The families protested and this became one of the biggest scandals of the later part of Aznar's tenure. The PP line was and is that this tragedy was manipulated by the PSOE for political purposes. This is my reading "the PP acting as the PSOE did when it was in opposition". Then there is the bitterness over the March 11 attacks and the March 14 elections. As for the PP teaming up with the government for the good of Spain and its military, after 2 1/2 years we are yet to see one issue where the PP doesn't take a contrarian and alarmist position, be it terrorism, foreign policy, territorial policy, constutional issues...Este párrafo se las trae. En primer lugar, insinúa similitudes con el caso del Yak-42. En 2003 un avión de ttransporte Yakovlev que traía tropas de vuelta a Españ'a desde Afganistán se estrelló en Turquía matando a todos sus ocupantes. Para que el esunto desapareciera de los titulares lo antes posible, el gobierno de Aznar obligó a Turquía a acelerar la identificación de los caáveres con el resultado de varias identificaciones equivocadas. Las familias protestaron y estto se convirtió en uno de los mayores escándalos del final de la era Aznar. La consigna del PP fue y es que esta tragedia la manipuló el PSOE para sacar tajada políticammente. Así interpreto la frase "el PP actuando como el PSOE, cuando éste estaba en la oposición". Luego está la amargura por el 11-M y las elecciones del 14-M. En cuanto a la idea del PP haciendo una piña con el gobierno por el bien de Españ y de las fuerzas armadas, en dos añ y medio no ha habido ocasió que el PP no aprovechara para tomar una posició alarmista y totalmente opuesta al gobierno, sea terrorismo, política exterior o territorial, la constitución...
It is worrisome that this op-ed by GEES, a group close to the PP,, was published in Libertad Digital, the most important online publication of the Spanish right wing and directed by Federico Jiménez Losantos, the Spanish Russ Limbaugh. The PP has surely taken note of its marching orders on the issue of Spain's participation in UNIFIL.Es preocupante que este artículo del GEES, un grupo afín al PP, se publicara en Libertad Digital, la publicación online más importante de la derecha española y dirigida por Federico Jiménez Losantos, el Russ Limbaugh español. El PP habrá tomado nota de las instrucciones sobre cómo gestionar la participación española en la FINUL.

Poll
I read / He leído
. The English half / La mitad inglesa 50%
. The Spanish half / La mitad castellana 0%
. Both halves / Las dos mitades 50%
. Neither half / Ninguna de las dos mitades 0%

Votes: 6
Results | Other Polls
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Isn't this the first totally bilingual diary? And the first to embed a YouTube link...

Great work, Mig! (I'll get back to the subject matter later...)

by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Fri Sep 8th, 2006 at 02:47:15 AM EST
No, it is the second totally bilingual diary (see Arde Galicia/Galicia Burns)

It is the first to embed a youtube video, as far as I know.

Nothing is 'mere'. — Richard P. Feynman

by Carrie (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Fri Sep 8th, 2006 at 05:01:45 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Aaargh! How could I forget? (I did...) Great work anyway.
by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Fri Sep 8th, 2006 at 09:58:35 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Ritter did it months ago.

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.
by DoDo on Fri Sep 8th, 2006 at 06:14:22 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Link?

Nothing is 'mere'. — Richard P. Feynman
by Carrie (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Fri Sep 8th, 2006 at 06:18:20 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Hmmmmm, I can't find it. Maybe it was a comment not a diary. (I recall that after I saw it, I experimented with the code myself, with little success...)

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.
by DoDo on Fri Sep 8th, 2006 at 06:38:46 PM EST
[ Parent ]
These bilingual diaries are a whole lotta work.

Nothing is 'mere'. — Richard P. Feynman
by Carrie (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Fri Sep 8th, 2006 at 05:02:30 AM EST
This is a great diary, it is great to have the origial availabel. Thanks for extra work!!!
by Fran on Fri Sep 8th, 2006 at 08:33:59 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I think the side by side format is a real breakthrough.
I hope others will consider using it in the future.

Good work!

(You might want to explain what formatting you used so others can follow your pattern.)

Policies not Politics
---- Daily Landscape

by rdf (robert.feinman@gmail.com) on Fri Sep 8th, 2006 at 09:36:05 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Explained here after my previous bilingual diary.

Other people have been using the format in comments, in French and German.

There was another comment somewhere on the fine points of interacting with the ET auto-format parser. Maybe afew can find that comment thread and link to it?

Nothing is 'mere'. — Richard P. Feynman

by Carrie (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Fri Sep 8th, 2006 at 09:44:53 AM EST
[ Parent ]
There were several discussions, but this one is probably the most informative.

Briefly: usually we type comments in the Post Comment window and leave the drop-down box between the Preview and Post buttons at its default position, Auto Format. The Scoop HTML parser then adds stuff we don't need to bother about, like line-breaks, paragraphs, etc.

If we use table tags to produce the two columns, the Scoop parser (why I don't know) adds blank lines at the top and buggers things up. So we have to choose HTML Formatted instead of Auto Format. The whitespace then disappears.

I must write this up, collating the experience of those who've done the bilingual columns, and put it in the User Guide.

by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Fri Sep 8th, 2006 at 10:14:06 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I think the reason is that at the top of the table there is
<table>
<tr>
<td>
Text

which the parser turns into three line breaks.

Nothing is 'mere'. — Richard P. Feynman

by Carrie (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Fri Sep 8th, 2006 at 10:27:22 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Perhaps, but if you do < table >< tr >< td >blabla< /td>< /tr > etc (on the same line), you get the same result, I found.
by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Fri Sep 8th, 2006 at 11:50:20 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Well, that's exactly what I do in my comments.

Nothing is 'mere'. — Richard P. Feynman
by Carrie (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Fri Sep 8th, 2006 at 12:35:15 PM EST
[ Parent ]
BTW, the Firefox live bookmark with the RSS feed ignores this diary, as does the list available at Feedburner if you click on the icon at foot of page. The feed doesn't seem to take promoted diaries into account.
by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Fri Sep 8th, 2006 at 11:54:38 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I was rather hoping the feedburner feed would fix that. It's one of those things that is beyond my powers as it depends on stuff I can't get at.
by Colman (colman at eurotrib.com) on Fri Sep 8th, 2006 at 11:59:03 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Diary now completed.

Nothing is 'mere'. — Richard P. Feynman
by Carrie (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Fri Sep 8th, 2006 at 05:50:06 PM EST
[ Parent ]
With poll!

Nothing is 'mere'. — Richard P. Feynman
by Carrie (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Fri Sep 8th, 2006 at 05:50:23 PM EST
[ Parent ]
"These bilingual diaries are a whole lotta work."

Man, I can imagine!  My wife (an educated native Spanish speaker) translates, usually English to Spanish but occasionally the other way. Her English vocabulary is better than mine and she sweats some pieces.  Is there a really good reason to translate on an English language site.  I understand there are nuances and maybe a wider audience issue, but a steady diet of translating would drive most people (me for one)insane.


I can swear there ain't no heaven but I pray there ain't no hell. _ Blood Sweat & Tears

by Gringo (stargazing camel at aoldotcom) on Sat Sep 9th, 2006 at 12:00:14 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Sh*t, I was writing you a log reply and lost it...

Anyway, just survey the Coments,  and Diaries  on multilingualism [starting with this excellent summary by DoDo from 3 months ago].

You don't see it, but a lot of the content here is translated (and, I would guess, about half is digested) from non-English sources. We have had bilingual comments, especially since I introduced the two-column format, and diaries in other languages (these with little success except for one by Afew that sparked one of the epic ET pie fights). Disclaimer: I am one of the big pushers for a multilingual ET.

Also have a look at the Eurobarometer: Europeans and their Languages to get an idea of how being an English-only site limits our reach and our potential to be the pan-European blog.

Spaniards are not far ahead of Mexicans in our ability to speak or write English, or any other languages, and diaries like this are an attempt at drawing in a crowd of Spaniards with good passive English skills.

Nothing is 'mere'. — Richard P. Feynman

by Carrie (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Sat Sep 9th, 2006 at 04:04:58 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Well, you've convinced me.  I just thought the pain would be too much and didnn't consider all the benefits.  Your bilingual skills are exceptional, but I know translating technical material still takes a lot of patience.  So, my hat's off to you and many thanks for what you and others are doing.  I never even thought about all the hidden work already being done when material is translated from Spanish (or another language) into English without the side by sides.  My Spanish is still bad after almost 40 years of marriage  (a few courses), and numerous long visits to Spanish speaking countries.  Political commentary in Spanish is particularly difficult for me though I am making some progress now that we are spending more time in Mexico. Your side by sides may also become a factor in improving my Spanish skills as well as those of others (as you note).

I can swear there ain't no heaven but I pray there ain't no hell. _ Blood Sweat & Tears
by Gringo (stargazing camel at aoldotcom) on Sat Sep 9th, 2006 at 10:56:20 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Interesting articles also.  Looks like Europeans as a group are becoming more multilingual, particularly in certain second languages.  I would guess the same trend may occurring in the US with large scale immigration from various places, but I doubt much of that trend can be attributed to families that do not include at least one immigrant member.  Americans as a whole, I believe, still tend to be rather insular in their thinking.  

I can swear there ain't no heaven but I pray there ain't no hell. _ Blood Sweat & Tears
by Gringo (stargazing camel at aoldotcom) on Sat Sep 9th, 2006 at 11:25:05 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The Spanish right wing really has no shame.

I am starting to wonder, if there is any right-wing party in any country of this world that has a sense of shame.

by Fran on Fri Sep 8th, 2006 at 08:32:42 AM EST
The PP is frighteningly slimy. Do you still think (as you and kcurie have said in the past) that the left holds all the strong cards against it? In other words, has anything happened to change that judgement?
by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Fri Sep 8th, 2006 at 10:20:47 AM EST
Wait till you see the bit I added at the end about GEES.

Nothing is 'mere'. — Richard P. Feynman
by Carrie (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Fri Sep 8th, 2006 at 05:50:49 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I think as long as the Socialist voters stay mobilised, the PP cannot win an election.

Nothing is 'mere'. — Richard P. Feynman
by Carrie (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Fri Sep 8th, 2006 at 06:34:34 PM EST
[ Parent ]


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