Category Archives: Blog

GoodBye, Buenos Aires Herald

Era por los años setenta y yo comenzaba a ejercer  de principiante en la sede Londinense de agencia de noticias Interpress  cuando entro en mi oficina un barbudo vestido de abrigo de trinchera y cara de luto. Se me presentó como Andrew Graham-Yooll, periodista anglo-argentino , recién llegado de Buenos Aires, habiendo recibido una amenaza  de muerta por parte del régimen militar. A partir de ese momento me unio  una amistad para la vida con Andrew, gran persona, y el desarrollo de una relación profesional con el diario para el …

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Brexit-the Banquet’s Uninvited guest

In an evening marked by customary tradition, hospitality, and good cheer, the comment by the London’s Lord Mayor Andrew Parmley that ” Britain, Spain,  Europe are the essence of what we are” resonated across the banquet room of the Guildhall last night It drew spontaneous applause from the more than  700 guests- City of London councillors and officials, businessmen ,  ambassadors , and a representative sample of the Spanish diaspora from journalists, actors and academics, to scientists, retailers,  and bankers. Noting that the magnificent  hall where the guests were gathered …

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Diary of a Royal Love In-Day One

  It’s coming up to midday and a stationary Guards band along the Mall is playing the James Bond  007 tune, presumably to remind the world that however diminished the UK may seem, no one does it better than the MI6 legend, the world’s most popular spy. The film music is  a  sufficiently familiar theme  for nearby  tourists to break into applause. Such recognition does not  initially appear to extend to the State visit to the UK of the King  Felipe and Queen Letizia  Spain. The most public part of …

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A Vital European Bridge

  A true story I owe to my late Spanish mother, a post-war immigrant to the UK , involves  a state visit of the the Emperor of Ethiopia, Haile Selassie, to the UK in October 1954. I was a young child then and with one my first life-time  passions that of watching the Changing of the Guard at Buckingham Palace. The precision of the proud British soldiers in red coats  and the uplifting music of their band stirred my imagination, making me feel one of them, as if I’ve stepped into …

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Anglo-Spanish Royals

The Spanish Royal visit to the UK An Enduring  Relationship Revived   Ask your average English schoolboy what he knows about the relations  between the Spanish and British Royal families, and the likelihood is that he will mention Spain’s Philip 11nd, and the heroic defeat  of his Armada by Queen Elizabeth Ist. A less selective and superficial history will show that relations between British and Spanish royals  have been mutually respectful, if not immune to occasional crisis, for over five  centuries. As the recent biography of Spain’s great Queen Isabella …

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Time for Uk to win back hearts and minds

The United  Kingdom has hardly found the world at its feet this last year. The Brexit vote last summer, which was supported by over half of the population, but not by me and the rest of the population,  left not only the UK’s  European partners, but most of its democratic and accountable allies wondering just what kind of madness had gripped the English  and Welsh (for the Scots voted against) who by a slim majority had voted to leave the European Union without really thinking how this could be done …

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A Spanish hero in London: Ignacio Echeverria

A Spanish hero in London: Ignacio Echeverria As part of a former imperial power that has punched above its weight for most of its history, there are some British who do not easily look outside their own people for heroes. Ask your average Anglo-Saxon English primary school pupil about iconic heroes they have heard about and they are likely to mention two warrior Queens-Boadicea and Elizabeth I -, two warrior prime-ministers Winston Churchill and Margaret Thatcher, among an assortment of military icons from Wellington and Nelson to Montgomery, and James …

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Remembering Hugh Thomas

  Hugh Thomas, who has died aged 85,was a historian with an enduring interest in and passion for the Hispanic world straddling epochs, continents and empires. He also played an active part as a policy adviser to Margaret Thatcher, and in his later years served in the House of Lords as a life peer, never seeing this as place of  patronage  let alone retirement but as an integral part of an effective and accountable  parliamentary democracy. .. He had developed an interest in Spain after a first visit in the …

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Messi’s Number 10

Of the several images of a memorable El Clasico last Sunday few will endure with such iconographic intensity as that of Lionel Messi, holding up his number 10 Barca shirt to the Bernabeu stadium after scoring the defining goal against Real Madrid in the last minute of extra time. Real Madrid fans who occupied the bulk of the stadium are an exacting crowd. They expect and demand the best from their star players as they do in the city’s nearby bullring of the country’s best matadors, not least in the …

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The Genius of Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo

  What separates genius from the good and even brilliant is the ability of a person to evolve with the passing of time, not just to mature, but to create anew,  and still be inspirational,to remain  a  clear cut above the rest. In top flight football , as in other elite sports, the threatening awareness of mortality, the ease with which a player can go from his peak to a swift decline, from valued asset to beyond sell-by date, is only too common, sometimes with tragic consequences on the personal …

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