Thursday, July 28, 2011


Two of the people who had the greatest influence on teaching me the skill to communicate where both Jewish. One was from New York the other from North London. Same difference. What they both taught me was that it was vital to get your message across in the first few words as the majority of readers would not stay with you to the end. Of course such rules are made to be broken. This article is 779 long. Please bear with me.
For a number of years Peter was a close friend. He died a few years ago well in to his 80s. That means around a quarter of century divided us but as true connoisseurs of friendship will know age is not a factor.
Peter was Jewish and grew up in Germany during the 1930s. His parents decided to send his brother and himself to safety overseas, Peter working for a while in British colonial Africa before enlisting at the start of the war. Both of his parents and his family perished in the holocaust.
Peter’s brother became the headmaster of a minor English public school and anglicised his name. He, however, maintained his German identity and Jewish faith to the day he died. He was an artist, a number of his works adorn my walls. He resided in Spain from the 1960s, felt very at home in Gibraltar with its distinctive Jewish history and in 1996 appeared as the narrator in a play that I’d written for the drama festival.
We did discuss Nazi Germany but I never had the courage to raise the issue of his parents. However it was clear from his painful descriptions of his early life that he and his family became non-people in their native country – as the Jews did in Poland, Holland, Belgium, and France – wherever the Nazi jackboot descended. He was a proud Jew but not a supporter of Israel because he felt it had committed the same injustices on others as had been suffered by Jews for generations. He felt Israel had learnt nothing as the non-people of Gaza can attest.
This week I wrote about the former Israeli ambassador to Spain, Raphael Schultz, who has now returned to his country after a four-year term in office. On his departure he spoke of having had to live with the “hate and anti-Semitism that exists in Spanish society”.
Schultz spoke out in an article published on the Madrid Embassy’s own website to mark his leaving of his post. He even went on to say that since arriving in Spain in July 2007 he had experienced few happy moments.
I have to say that some of the ex-ambassador’s comments relate to protests against Israel’s actions rather than anti-Semitism per se. Yet you also have to recognize that in matters of anti-Semitism Spain has form, going back to the Reyes Católicos.
Now if a Jewish team of youngsters had turned up at a soccer tournament and were denied their birthright and identity – it would be condemned as anti-Semitism.
If Jewish sportsmen and women were continuously banned from raising their flag or telling people where they were from – it would be condemned as anti-Semitism.
If a Jewish community was denied a place at the table to discuss their own future – it would be condemned as anti-Semitism.
If Jewish people were said to have no right to determine their own future because they have no voice – it would be condemned as anti-Semitism.
Yet all the four examples I have given above are actively and continuously enacted against Gibraltarians yet little is said. No angry or indignant protests from the government – instead it is left to the opposition parties and the PDP to speak up for Gibraltar.
Shadow Minister for Sport Steven Linares said: “The Opposition considers that the treatment of our young sportsmen has been absolutely appalling and there can be no excuse for the pertinent authorities in Spain to have done this to schoolchildren.
“It is obvious that there are people in Spain who still have much to learn about democracy and about mutual respect. The incident in Benidorm shows that nothing has changed and that Gibraltar’s footballers and other sportsmen and women will continue to endure discriminatory treatment when they participate in sporting events in Spain.”
The key point here is that Gibraltarians should not be treated by Spain as Jews were by Nazi Germany before the holocaust. Gibraltarians are no more non-people than Jews were or are. All Gibraltarians, regardless of age or sex, are fully entitled to the same rights and levels of respect as any other people. It is shameful that Spain should believe otherwise. It is even more shameful that the Gibraltar Government has done nothing to protect or stand up for its own.

Thursday, July 21, 2011


The Partido Popular is whipping up a storm over the British Government’s decision to appeal the European Court’s decision to reject its original appeal against the EU’s decision to cede control in environmental matters to Spain over its waters.
Of course London isn’t totally innocent in this mess. Spain laid a claim to the waters before the EU. The British Government got its map co-ordinates wrong so asked to protect waters by all accounts off Algeria which isn’t even in the EU. As Britain made no claim over the Rock’s waters they were given to Spain.
This is God’s gift to Spain which doesn’t recognise Britain’s jurisdiction over the waters anyway although under international law Gibraltar has a three mile limit which could be extended to 12.
Sir Graham Watson, Gibraltar’s Lib Dem Euro MP, told PANORAMA: “The ECJ’s decision to reject the initial claim was down to a technicality. I’m pleased to see that the Foreign Secretary has announced the UK will be appealing the Court’s decision.
“Spain continues to be adventurous with regards to its actions relating to the Rock, and this is no exception.   Ultimately this case would not have occurred in the first place if Labour ministers had not been asleep on their watch.”

José Ignacio Landaluce is the PP MP for Cádiz province who has always been a stern critic of Gibraltar but now as mayor of Algeciras has a key interest in what goes on in the waters of the bay. He has called on the Spanish Government to act with “major firmness” and to maintain and protect Spain’s own waters.
Landaluce has also weighed in on Caruana’s plan to create a coastguard agency which could have patrol boats and helicopters to protect the Rock’s waters. The PP, the party that the chief minister assures us he can do business with, says this is tantamount to Gibraltar creating borders. Landaluce talks of the “pretensions” of the chief minister in “creating a service of coastguards charged with defending and guarding the waters the colony defines as its own. Of course the Spanish mantra is not only does the Rock have no waters its only land mass is that agreed in the Treaty of Utrecht.
The mayor’s office in Algeciras sent PANORAMA a statement in which the MP declares:  A situation is continuing which could lead to another turn of the screw to the already insulting relations between Gibraltar and Spain, which could also lead to yet further clashes between the authorities of the colony and the Guardia Civil in these waters.”
The MP and Algeciras mayor is planning to ask a series of questions in Spain’s lower house of parliament, Congress, on the Spanish Government’s position with respect to the waters and coastguard issue.
The other issue here is does London approve of Gibraltar’s plan to have a coastguard agency? At present the protection of the waters around the Rock lies primarily with the Royal Navy. The waters are British Admiralty and hence it is an issue for London not No.6. The Foreign Office has made it clear it believes the present navy contingent is sufficient for the task and has resisted calls from Caruana to engage in gun boat diplomacy. The last thing London and Madrid wants is a shooting match between armed British and Spanish Naval vessels in the bay. However if Caruana is adamant in having his own air force and navy will that put him at odds with London?
Of course it could all be pre-election talk. The chief minister has spoken in the past about providing the Royal Gibraltar Police with larger patrol boats which have never materialised in the waters around the Rock but could have, of course, amongst the suds and rubber ducks of his bath! Let us not go there!

Thursday, July 14, 2011


It is clear to the impartial observer that the chief minister is loosing his cool in the summer heat over the pending challenge for his post coming from the joint opposition party leaders Fabian Picardo and Dr Joseph Garcia. However if he is worried about defeating the dynamic duo I have grave news for him – Muammar Gaddafi is also on his case.
The besieged Libyan leader, Muammar Gaddafi, has not named Gibraltar specifically but has set his sites on reclaiming Al Andalus for the Arab people. Apart from the Iberian Peninsula the Canary Islands, Sicily and other Mediterranean islands are all on his hit list.
A few years ago I wrote an article on the battle between La Línea and San Roque over their disputed boundary at La Alcaidesa. A reader wrote to me to say “for goodness sake can’t we move on that was 100 years ago”. Indeed many of you might nod your heads in agreement. If that is the case then what of the Treaty of Utrecht from 1713?
Well it is no good the chief minister travelling to the Libyan desert to sit in Muammar’s tent and chew sheep’s eyeballs with him whilst they ponder the clauses of the now largely defunct treaty and Gibraltarians rights to be Gibraltarians. If 100 year old agreements should be ignored and nearly 300 year old treaties consigned to the waste bin of history then what of the Arab claim to Al Andalus stemming from 711 to 1492 when the Moors were finally expelled. Ancient history indeed!
To those Arabs who want to re-conquer Al Andalus it is no good talking of an Iberian Peninsula divided between Gibraltar, Spain and Portugal – such national boundaries are not recognised by Gaddafi and his ilk. They will tell you that the “mountain of Tariq” was taken by the Berber Umayyad general Tariq ibn-Ziyad who led the initial incursion into Iberia in 711, so for the believers in the promised land of Al Andalus, it started right here.
You could dismiss Gaddafi’s claims as being the mad ranting of a despot in North Africa but remember Muammar also owns large chunks of land on Gibraltar’s doorstep in Benahavís, half of Pujerra and a third of Júzcar. Indeed he is even said to have properties in Sotogrande so when the chief minister leans over his garden fence whilst on his summer holidays at his Spanish home he needs to check who he is talking to. If there is a giant tent next door and a few roaming camels chances are it’s a member of the Gaddafi clan.
There is also a serious aspect to this as whilst Gaddafi’s claim may be dismissed because of his current situation back in Libya the desire to re-conquer Al Andalus is not his alone. True Arab leaders such as those in Morocco are more intent on taking back Ceuta and Melilla but for fundamentalists the claim to the old lands on the Iberian Peninsula are real enough.
It is those same fundamentalists who might well support Gaddafi’s “eye for an eye and tooth for a tooth” vengeance call over the NATO attacks on Libya. In an audio broadcast on Libyan State Television on Friday Gaddafi threatened to unleash a wave of suicide bombers declaring “Hundreds of Libyans will become martyrs in Europe.”
Gaddafi has form when it comes to bringing terror to Europe whether it be his alleged association with the downing of the Pan Am jet over Lockerbie or his support for the IRA. Indeed the explosives currently held by Republican dissident groups in North Ireland are probably from those same stocks. So when Gaddafi and his mob talk of retaking Al Andalus and terror bomb campaigns we just have to hope that the fundamentalists do not follow the same route as in 711 by attacking first the “mountain of Tariq”.

Thursday, July 7, 2011


Caruana is a common enough name in Gibraltar but few Caruanas that I have met are common. Certainly not the late lamented Bishop Caruana nor is the distinguished Joe Caruana MBE. He is a fine artist of exceptional talent, was a minister in the Government of Gibraltar from 1969 to 1972 in the Integration with Britain Party (IWBP) and the positive social impact he has made on Gibraltarian life over the years is immense.
Recently Joe Caruana wrote to the editor of Panorama about an article I had written, which is also on this blog. He sent a copy to me and I am happy to give my column over to him today. Since I started writing on a weekly basis about Gibraltar in 1993, long before the other Caruana, Peter, became chief minister, I have always been happy to stand aside and let my readers have their say, whether they agreed with me or not. Today I continue that tradition.
Joe Caruana wrote: “As usual David Eade’s column of the June 16 makes interesting reading, because David has hit the nail on the head. It in fact exposes the threat that is Peter Caruana to British Gibraltar because he unveils what I have always said about the CM’s repeated utterances on Andorra, he brought this out in 2002, 2008 and 2010.
“The 2008 mention of Andorra was in an interview in the Gibraltar Chronicle with the well-known Paco Oliva who needs no introduction as to his leanings. The CM said at the end of that interview the Andorra not for now, but for the future”. And how many times have we heard the CM saying that the future status of Gibraltar is up to future generations?
“Now David Eade says:
 “Peter Caruana is an intelligent and ambitious man, a person who has a clear vision of where he wants Gibraltar to go – and he will not be satisfied till he has achieved that objective. Hence his final term could be the most dangerous for Gibraltar for what is equally certain is that the Rock isn’t where he wants it to be.”
“What makes Peter Caruana’s final term ‘the most dangerous for Gibraltar for what is equally certain is that the Rock isn’t where he wants it to be”?
“Those who remember the PAG’s (Party for the Autonomy of Gibraltar) or the DOVE’S policy for Gibraltar’s future status will see that the 1993 Andorra Constitution is precisely the mirror image of the DOVE’S solution for Gibraltar.
“This solution proposed that Gibraltar, the Gibraltarians, negotiated its future, independent of Britain, with both Britain and Spain and that both of these, would guarantee, or be ‘Guarantors’ of the ‘New Status of Gibraltar’. The argument that Sovereignty rested in the People and not the territory implied that the concession for Spain to accept this proposal would be that the Sovereignty of the Rock would pass to Spain as Token Sovereignty, and that the people of the Rock would retain their British Nationality. This was also the PAG’s core principle that Peter Caruana supported when he was Election Agent for the PAG the last time this Party contested a local Election.
“In a nutshell the PAG’S plans were almost like the Andorra proposal that the CM keeps harping upon even today it also implies that the CM has not stopped silently advancing the PAG’s policies.
“David Eade writes
 “So when I hear new whispers this time from Spain that there are done deals or deals in the offing on joint sovereignty and the waters once Gibraltar has been to the polls and Caruana returned with the PP installed in Madrid – are they true or false? I have no idea.”
“I know a lot of people who have been suspecting this of the CM ever since he came into power, one person quoted that “a leopard does not change his spots”, since ambitious and clever politicians will take advantage of an honest electorate and using double-talk continue to attempt to achieve their goals.
“David Eade is right when he exposes the danger of voting for Peter Caruana at the next elections; I tend to agree with him because the tone of my opposition to this GSD’s policy has been precisely because I suspected the CM’s DOVISH leanings. Remember Peter Montegriffo is professed Concessionist and so was Mr. Peter Cummings.  Need I say more?”
As I sat in Gibraltar’s parliament yesterday afternoon listening to the chief minister give his rebuttal to the opposition Budget speeches I was stunned to hear him say if the pensioners of Gibraltar are now counting their pennies at the end of each week under the GSD under the GSLP they were counting their pounds.
Think about it – the chief minister obviously didn’t.