Make no mistake about it people, Catalonia will likely vote for its independence. What happens from that point on will define what Scotland and the UK does.
If Catalonia votes for independence, the only way it will be able to become fully independent is if the United Nations recognises it as a separate country.
Now whether or not this happens will likely define what the UK and Scotland do regards Indyref2.
If in the event that the United Nations recognises the legitimacy of the Catalonia Referendum and the result of said referendum, Catalonia will become the newest nation on Earth. This will, in the eyes of the UK be a potential headache as it effectively clears the way for Nicola Sturgeon to call a referendum in Scotland when she feels the appetite is there without expressed permission from Westminster in the form of a Section 30 order.
Now I know that Brexit is precedent to holding an advisory referendum and respecting the will of the people, but if Catalonia votes Yes, gains United Nations recognition and the EU follow through with respecting the will of the Catalonian people to gain EU membership, it makes the job far easier for the people of Scotland to understand that if we vote Yes, we will too be recognised by the EU and United Nations and gain entry into the EU.
The stumbling block with this that I see is that if Catalonia goes down this route and it all ends well, I cannot say whether Nicola Sturgeon and the Scottish Parliament would ‘want’ to hold what is seen as an ‘undemocratic’ vote by not getting Westminster’s permission.
The issue here is that Westminster will do everything in their power to not give that permission.
Firstly they will strip Devolution. They must not allow the Scottish Parliament to have competency in any way to call Indyref2. This is the angle they are taking and it’s the angle they want to force Nicola Sturgeon down. The issue here is timing. It always has been and always will be.
My opinion is that we must hold Indyref2 prior to March 2019. Anything after that and its goodbye to the Scottish Parliaments competency to manage anything other than that of a glorified local council.
Now if the United Nations do not recognise Catalonia’s will to self-determination, it creates a quagmire of problems. Not just for Catalonia, Spain and the United Nations but also for Scotland and the UK.
The UK will see this as a form of ‘breathing space’ as it may deter the Scottish Parliament in following suit with Catalonia and holding Indyref2 prior to March 2019, but in Scotland it will, in my opinion, only intensify the people’s desire of the right to self-determination as it may remove hope of independence when permission of self-expression to hold a ballot is refused by the over-arching state. I know this sounds counter intuitive but strange things happen when hope is lost, such as rekindling that hope and driving forward and growing it.
If Catalonia does not get recognition, you can bet your bottom Euro that the Spanish Government will assume complete control of Catalonia and its parliament will be disbanded. This could spark civil unrest in Spain, and literally tear the country apart – something that the Catalonian people must avert at all costs.
Scotland must watch what it is doing here and we must show solidarity with Catalonia. It is refreshing to see that the SNP have written to the European Commission and the United Nations on this issue as I suspect they see the potential similarities as the routes unfold that may become available to Scotland.
Let’s just hope that the route that opens up is with recognition of Catalonia at the United Nations as a nation and the door staying open for their EU membership.
If this is what happens (and I dearly hope it is), The UK will have another potential headache to deal with. The concern is that Devolution will be the target.
People need to join the dots here and see how this relates to Scotland and the ‘West’. What happens here will set a precedent going forward that could end up reshaping Europe and the countries of the ‘West’.
The map my children look at when they have children may be very different to the map I look at today.
First Catalonia, Second Scotland…