27 NOVEMBER 1959, Page 12

The BBC's Yugoslav Service tranco's Spain James Welsh. nrIumy Luttrell

Qaz.i m Kastrati, 'N. N.'

A Place in the Sun M. fogananthan The Off-White Highlands T. R. M. Creighton Again Ben-Gurion M. Harris Master in his House Hansgeorg Schrader TV 'rubes P.O. Wymer Civilisation Bar Grace Scott Fr Hiss to Van Doren John Irwin Growth of a Legend George Edinger Telling the Patient Rev. James A. Gardiner World Refugee Year Mrs. Margaret Clark FRANCO'S SPAIN

SIR,—In deference to my many Spanish friends, might I suggest that Mr.: Gilmour's article published on November 13 would read better under the caption— 'Spain through English Eyes.' Indeed, it would be as well to add that either America or Russia seen through Spanish eyes would look little better. I do not mention England in that as a Scot I am regarded by my Spanish friends as a kindred race.

Apart from Mat Gilmour's viewpoint, it is unfor- tunate that he sees only subjects to condemn and none to commend. After all, the regime which he condemns has not prevented Spain from providing world-famous figures in medicine and art and while Britain can boast only one new hospital since the war, Spain can show many new hospitals and clinics which are the envy of my wife and other visiting medicals.

Unfortunate also is his tendency to accept sources of information without deeper inquiry. The figures he quotes as average professional incomes are all too easily obtained and though they would also be truly representative of returns for tax purposes, a little further inquiry into the Spanish system of taxation and its defects would have shown just how far they fall short of true earnings. On the other hand, those who know Spain would confirm that professors and teachers, particularly of economics and engineering, have other part-time employment but they would not overlook that the demand by banks, finance houses and commercial undertakings for the services of such experts in this country is even greater.

It is not my purpose, however, to deal with the whole article; that I must leave to someone with more time and paper, though I doubt if a balanced appre- ciation of the position would carry the same com- mercial value. The purpose of my letter is to ask for a better understanding of. the Spanish people among whom I have already spent and hope to spend many happy days.

To appreciate the Spanish, one must remember that the great ma:arity of them (unlike ourselves) still measure their lives by moral rather than material values and though they, like us, blame the Govern- ment for all its shortcomings and a great deal more, only a few of them are really interested in politics and even fewer really know what democracy means.

Most important of all, they arc a courteous but proud and sensitive people whose intense patriotism makes each in turn the jealous defender of 'the Spanish way of life.' Great changes can already be seen in Spain but these must come from within as advice from abroad has cost Spain dear in the past and must therefore be suspect. For them to criticise Franco is one thing, for the foreigner another. He is a Spaniard, and an all-out attack on one of their number tends in the main to close their ranks in his defence. After all, the greatest defect which they see in Don Juan is that he is too English !—Yours faith- fully,


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