A romantic framing of foreign crises where self-determination is involved is a common trap. The imagery of “oppressors” vs “freedom fighters” is appealing and, to their credit, the leaders of Catalonia have been successful in promoting their agenda abroad in just such terms – sometimes going as far as referencing Nelson Mandela’s struggle against apartheid. […]
About Francisco de Borja Lasheras
Francisco de Borja Lasheras joined the European Council on Foreign Relations in September 2013 as Associate Director of the Madrid Office and Policy Fellow. Between 2007 and 2009 he worked for the Fundación Alternativas´ Observatory of Spanish Foreign Policy (Opex), as Coordinator on Security and Defence Policy, and taught comparative European politics at the George Washington University Madrid Study Center. After serving at the Spanish Permanent Representation to the OSCE, Borja spent several years in the Western Balkans, as Seconded National Expert to the OSCE Missions in Bosnia and Herzegovina, in the field, as human rights officer, and Albania, with the Head of Mission.