NEWS FROM SPAIN….Jose of News from Spain ? a really terrific looking blog that I, unfortunately, can’t read a word of ? writes to comment on the crowd count from Madrid and Barcelona:
Madrid had a turnout of 1.700.000-2.000.000 people. Why the difference from the “official” 600.000 and Barcelona’s 1.300.000? The comment author at Atrios’ page didn’t realize that Madrid’s count came from central government sources (conservative, pro-Bush), whilst Barcelona’s came from the city council (socialist). In fact, Madrid’s underground and train stations collapsed.
Most media here take the 1.7 million and 1.3 million counts as the most reliable. Really, these were the biggest demonstrations ever seen in Spanish democracy history. Even bigger than the ones taken after 1981-Feb-23 coup d’etat and after the 1997-July-2 Basque councillor kidnapping and shooting.
In my opinion, the Rome, London and Madrid protests were even more crowded than in Paris or Berlin because their/our government’s position is near Bush’s ones. About 75% of their citizenship is opposed to the conflict and so were pretty encouraged to shout against Berlusconi, Blair and Aznar.
Crowd counting is notoriously subjective, but even so I thought this was an interesting comment. And considering that the population of Spain is around 40 million, this means that about 10% of the country turned out to protest the war.
Now that’s impressive.