In the days since Luis Conde de la Cruz was murdered by ETA various photographs from town halls of the brief ceremonies held in his memory have arrived in my in-box.
The Spanish habit of silence coupled with clapping at such solemn occasions or funerals sounds odd to the British ear but the sentiments we understand only too fully.
I am not sure how many victims have fallen to the terrorists with the brigadiers death, it certainly many hundreds, I am sure that ETA are keeping count.
ETA will claim that their victims are largely members of the security services or politicians. I am sorry that cuts no ice with me. They are people just like us, son and daughters, mothers and fathers, brothers and sisters.
I must admit that photographs I have seen of convicted ETA terrorist José Ignacio de Juana Chaos makes him look like somebody who would bite your kittens head off. But both the two ETA – Batasuna members arrested in France on Tuesday, who stole the vehicles to be used in terror attacks, look just like the boy and girl next door. I find that even more depressing.
As far as I am aware the vast number of people living in the Basque region want no part of ETA and Batasuna’s independent state. Even if they did it would not excuse the murderous campaign pursued by the terrorists.
I would certainly not want to be a member of any such nation – but then ETA probably wouldn’t want me as a citizen either.
(Clap Hands! Here Comes Charley! is a popular song, first published in 1925 and written by Billy Rose, Ballard MacDonald and Joseph Meyer, and recorded by several popular singers of the era. A version was recorded by Billy Murray in 1925, whose version has apparently entered the public domain. As with many other popular songs of the 20's, It's largely forgotten today.)