Last week, the New York Times editorialized about the electoral results in the Canadian province of Quebec: Separatist Victory, but Not Separation (Sept. 9th 2012). For the author of that text, Quebequois are «distinct people with a distinct history, and have every right to assert their language and identity in federal forums. But it’s best for all Canadians that the contentious and bitter battles over separation are not on the agenda this time around, and may be off it for good.».
This statement is a very strong position from a newspaper like the NYTimes, and since the author also mentioned the Catalan case in the text, I sent a letter to the editor expressing my surprise about it.
Don’t forget your history
Re “Separatist Victory, but Not Separation” (Editorial, Sept. 10):
I’m still astonished about the editorial position of the NYTimes about the self-determination of the nations.
I agree with the author in rejecting any type of violence to defense an idea in today’s developed world. However, as the allies of World War II signed in 1941 in the Atlantic Charter, self-determination is a principle of International Law that recognizes the nations’ right to freely choose their sovereignty and international political status without any external compulsion or interference. So, the people of Quebec, Catalonia, or Scotland have the right to express their desire of freedom and, if the majority of their population wants so, pursue the peaceful path to their own state. This is exactly what the U.S. did in 1776.
Washington, D.C., Sept. 10, 2012
The writer, a journalist, is the Washington correspondent for RAC1 and a Communication Consultant.