There’s not a lot left to say about the attacks on Spain. In short:
* They’re a terrible thing
* We’ll probably never know whether or not they were provoked/hastened by Spain’s support for the invasion of Iraq
* The government lost the election for some combination of four reasons: the bombing led to increased turnout (which generally favors leftwing parties, although poll data doesn’t necessarily support this in Spain); the government attempted to mislead the Spanish people that the attackers were ETA; people perceived that government support for the Iraq invasion drove the attack; and the Socialists were slightly ahead even before the bombings.
Anyway, enough of that. I’m going to focus on American writer Michael Morris, who is an idiot.
Mr Morris is upset because after September 11, some British people suggested that American foreign policy might have contributed to the attacks, and some British people pointed out that Americans might want to rethink their long-time support for the IRA. He thinks it’s most unfair that when the Spanish bombs went off, the British reaction was to support the Spanish wholeheartedly without raising such points.
However, he seems to miss the reasons for this: that (since the Americans took away all their colonies a hundred years ago) the Spanish don’t have a record of brutal and abusive foreign policy; and that rather than backing the IRA the Spanish have long suffered exactly the same problems from their homegrown regionalist terrorists.
(he also thinks it’s churlish of the British not to support the country which sacrificed to much to save us from the Nazis during WWII. I agree that Russia doesn’t get enough support or credit in the UK, but I don’t think this is his point…)