Spain

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Overview
<p> &nbsp;The relationship between Spain and the United States began before there was even a United States of America. Christopher Columbus&rsquo; historic voyage that led to the discovery of America was financed by Queen Isabella of Spain. Relations between Spain and the US were cordial for the most part during the early years of U.S. independence; that is until the outbreak of the Spanish-American War of 1898, which the US won and as a result wound up controlling Cuba and the Philippines. Following the war, economic issues dominated relations between Spain and the US, as Spain sought to enhance its trading position by developing closer commercial ties with the US and Latin America. When civil war broke out in Spain in the 1930s, approximately 3,000 American citizens volunteered to serve in the Spanish Republican Army, although the United States government remained neutral during the conflict. Following the Nationalist victory, public opinion in the US condemned Francisco Franco&rsquo;s regime as a fascist dictatorship, but the United States government participated in various Allied agreements with Spain, aimed at ensuring that Franco would not permit the Iberian Peninsula to be used by Adolf Hitler against Allied forces.</p> <div> <b>&nbsp;</b></div> <p> Following the death of Franco in 1975, the US welcomed the liberalization of the Spanish regime under King Juan Carlos and sought to bring Spain further into Western military arrangements. In 1976 the bilateral agreement between Spain and the United States was transformed into a Treaty of Friendship and Cooperation. In addition to renewing United States basing rights in return for United States military and economic aid, this treaty provided for a United States-Spanish Council intended to serve as a bridge to eventual Spanish membership in NATO. Relations continued to be strong until 2004, when the government in Madrid withdrew its forces in Iraq and criticized the Bush administration&rsquo;s war in that country. Deep differences on Cuba also worked against a spirit of collaboration. It is expected now that the administration of Barack Obama is in charge, and the US role in Iraq gradually shrinks, that relations will improve between Washington and Madrid.</p>
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Basic Information
<p> &nbsp;<b>Lay of the Land</b>: Third-Largest country in Europe, occupying 85% of the Iberian Peninsula.&nbsp;It thrusts out from Europe toward Africa and the Americas, separated from France and Andorra in the northeast by the Pyrenees Mountains.&nbsp;Includes the Balearic Islands, the Canary Islands, and the tiny enclaves of Ceuta and Melilla in Morocco.&nbsp;The Strait of Gibraltar, 8.5 miles wide, makes Spain a natural bridge between Europe and Africa.&nbsp;Exceptionally mountainous, with the second-highest average elevation in Europe, its heartland is a great plateau, &ldquo;La Meseta&rdquo;.</p> <div> <b>&nbsp;</b></div> <div> <b>Population</b>: 40.5 Million (2008)</div> <div> <b>&nbsp;</b></div> <div> <b>Religions</b>: Roman Catholicism 79.1%, Protestantism 2.9%, Islam 2.3%, Non-religious 15.7% (2007).</div> <div> <b>&nbsp;</b></div> <div> <b>Ethnic Groups</b>: Spanish, Catalan, Galician, Basque.</div> <div> <b>&nbsp;</b></div> <div> <b>Languages</b>: Castellano (Spanish) 70.5%, Catalan 16%, Gallego 8%, Basque 1.5%, Extremaduran 0.5%, Asturian 0.3%, Calo 0.01%, Aragonese 0.001%, Aranese 0.001%, Fala 0.001% (1994).</div>
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History
<p> Spain was originally inhabited by Celts, Iberians, and Basques before becoming a part of the Roman Empire in 206 BC.</p> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> In 412 AD, Visigoth leader Ataulf crossed the Pyrenees and took control of Spain, first in the name of the Roman emperor and then independently. In 711, the Muslims under Tariq entered Spain from Africa and within a few years completely conquered the country. In 732, the Franks, led by Charles Martel, defeated the Muslims near Poitiers, thus preventing the further expansion of the Islamic Empire in southern Europe.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Aragon and Castile were the most important Spanish states from the 12th to the 15th century, consolidated by the marriage of Ferdinand II and Isabella I in 1469. In 1478, they established the Inquisition to root out heresy and uncover Jews and Muslims who had not converted to Christianity. The last Muslim stronghold, Granada, was captured in 1492, the same year that Roman Catholicism was established as the official state religion.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> In the era of exploration, discovery, and colonization, Spain amassed tremendous wealth and a vast colonial empire through the conquest of Mexico by Cort&eacute;s (1519&ndash;1521) and Peru by Pizarro (1532&ndash;1533). The Spanish Hapsburg monarchy became for a time the most powerful in the world. In 1588, Philip II sent the Spanish Armada to invade England, but its destruction cost Spain its supremacy on the seas and paved the way for England to colonize America.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Spain then sank rapidly to the status of a second-rate power under the rule of weak Hapsburg kings, and it never again played a major role in European politics. The War of the Spanish Succession (1701&ndash;1714) resulted in Spain&#39;s loss of Belgium, Luxembourg, Milan, Sardinia, and Naples. Its colonial empire in the Americas and the Philippines vanished in wars and revolutions during the 18th and 19th centuries.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> In World War I, Spain maintained a position of neutrality. In 1923, Gen. Miguel Primo de Rivera became dictator. In 1930, King Alfonso XIII revoked the dictatorship, but a strong antimonarchist and republican movement led to his leaving Spain in 1931. The new constitution declared Spain a workers&#39; republic, broke up the large estates, separated church and state, and secularized the schools. The elections held in 1936 returned a strong Popular Front majority, with Manuel Aza&ntilde;a as president.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> On July 18, 1936, a conservative army officer in Morocco, Francisco Franco Bahamonde, led a mutiny against the government. The civil war that followed lasted three years and cost the lives of nearly a million people. Franco was aided by Fascist Italy and Nazi Germany, while Soviet Russia helped the Loyalist side. Several hundred leftist Americans served in the Abraham Lincoln Brigade on the side of the republic. The war ended when Franco took Madrid on March 28, 1939. Franco became head of the state, national chief of the Falange Party (the governing party), and prime minister and caudillo (leader).</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> In a referendum in 1947, the Spanish people approved a Franco-drafted succession law declaring Spain a monarchy again. Franco, however, continued as chief of state. In 1969, Franco and the Cortes (&ldquo;states&rdquo;) designated Prince Juan Carlos Alfonso Victor Mar&iacute;a de Borb&oacute;n (who married Princess Sophia of Greece in 1962) to become king of Spain when the provisional government headed by Franco came to an end. Franco died on November 20, 1975, and Juan Carlos was proclaimed king on November 22.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Under pressure from Catalonian and Basque nationalists, Prime Minister Adolfo Su&aacute;rez granted home rule to these regions in 1979. But this did not stop Basque separatists from committing hundreds of terrorist bombings and kidnappings in an effort to achieve complete independence from Spain.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> In October 1982, Felipe Gonz&aacute;lez M&aacute;rquez and his Spanish Socialist Workers Party won a resounding victory in national elections. That same year, Spain entered NATO, and in 1986, it joined the European Economic Community (now the European Union).</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> General elections in March 1996 produced a victory for the conservative Popular Party, and its leader, Jos&eacute; Mar&iacute;a Aznar, became prime minister. He and his party easily won reelection in 2000.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> In August 2002, Batasuna, the political wing of the Basque terrorist organization ETA, was banned.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Aznar backed the US war in Iraq in 2003, a move that proved highly unpopular. (Spain sent no troops to Iraq but contributed 1,300 peacekeeping forces during the reconstruction period.) Yet Aznar&#39;s Popular Party did extremely well in municipal elections in May 2003. The country&#39;s relative prosperity and the prime minister&#39;s tough stance against the ETA were thought to be responsible for the strong showing.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> On March 11, 2004, Spain suffered one of its most horrific terrorist attacks, as 191 people were killed and 1,400 were injured in bombings at Madrid&#39;s railway station. The government at first blamed ETA, but soon evidence emerged that al-Qaeda was responsible. When record numbers of voters went to the polls days later, Aznar&#39;s Popular Party experienced a stinging defeat, and Jos&eacute; Luis Rodr&iacute;guez Zapatero of the Socialist Party became the new prime minister. Many Spaniards blamed Aznar&#39;s staunch support of the US and the war in Iraq for making Spain an al-Qaeda target. Others were angered by what they saw as the government&#39;s politically motivated position that ETA was to blame for the attacks at the same time that links to al-Qaeda were emerging. By April, a dozen suspects, most of them Moroccan, were arrested for the bombings. On April 4, several suspects blew themselves up during a police raid to avoid capture. In May, the new prime minister made good on his campaign promise, recalling Spain&#39;s 1,300 soldiers from Iraq, much to the displeasure of the United States, which said Spain was appeasing terrorists.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> In June 2005, despite strong opposition from the Catholic Church, Spain legalized gay marriage.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> After four decades of violence, the militant Basque separatist group ETA, responsible for more than 800 deaths and for terrorizing Spanish society with its bombings and other attacks, announced a permanent cease-fire on March 24, 2006. In June 2007, however, ETA renounced the cease-fire and vowed to begin a new offensive.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> In a June 2006 referendum, the region of Catalonia voted for greater autonomy from Spain.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> The government dissolved Parliament in January 2008 and called for new elections. In the March election, Zapatero was reelected, taking 43.7% of the vote. Mariano Rajoy of the Popular Party garnered 40.1%. On April 12, Zapatero announced his cabinet, which for the first time includes more women than men.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> A new citizenship law was passed in December 2008, allowing descendants of those exiled from Spain during the Spanish Civil War to lay claim to Spanish citizenship. The new law is part of the &quot;law of historical memory&quot; legislation that was passed the previous year.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> <a href="http://lcweb2.loc.gov/frd/cs/estoc.html"><font color="#0000ff">A Country Study: Spain</font></a> (Library of Congress)</div> <div> <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_Spain"><font color="#0000ff">History of Spain</font></a> (Wikipedia)</div> <div> <a href="http://www.historyworld.net/wrldhis/PlainTextHistories.asp?historyid=ab50"><font color="#0000ff">Spain History</font></a> (History World)</div>
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Spain's Newspapers
<p> <a href="http://www.onlinenewspapers.com/spain.htm"><font color="#0000ff">Spain&rsquo;s Newspapers</font></a></p>
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History of U.S. Relations with Spain
<p> &nbsp;The founding of America owes much to the early monarchy of Spain, as it was Queen Isabella who financed the explorations of Christopher Columbus and his discovery of territories in the Caribbean. Relations between the US and Spain were at their most fractious in the late 19th century, when the sinking of the USS Maine in Havana, Cuba ignited the Spanish-American War of 1989. As a result of the American victory, the US gained control of Cuba and the Philippines.</p> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> In the years following the Spanish-American War, economic issues dominated relations between Spain and the United States, as Spain sought to enhance its trading position by developing closer commercial ties with the US as well as with Latin America. A series of trade agreements signed between Spain and the US in 1902, 1906, and 1910 led to an increased exchange of manufactured goods and agricultural products that benefited Spain&#39;s domestic economy. Cultural contacts and tourism also increased.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> The outbreak of the Civil War in Spain profoundly stirred the emotions of the American public, and approximately 3,000 American citizens volunteered to serve in the Spanish Republican Army, although the United States government remained adamantly neutral. Following the Nationalist victory, much of public opinion in the United States condemned Franco&#39;s regime as a fascist dictatorship, but the United States government participated in various Allied agreements with Spain, aimed at ensuring that Franco would not permit the Iberian Peninsula to be used by Adolf Hitler against Allied forces.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> The 1953 Pact of Madrid between Spain and the United States provided for mutual defense as well as for US military aid, and it brought to an end Spain&#39;s postwar isolation. It did not end anti-Americanism in Spain, however. Francoist leaders resented having to accept what they considered to be insufficient military supplies in return for basing rights. They also chafed at US restrictions against the use of American equipment in defending Spain&#39;s North African territories in 1957. This anti-American sentiment was bipartisan in Spain. Whereas Francoists resented the United States for its democratic form of government, the opposition parties in Spain perceived the United States as the primary supporter of the Franco regime and therefore as a major obstacle to the democratization of Spain.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Following the death of Franco in 1975, the United States welcomed the liberalization of the Spanish regime under King Juan Carlos and sought to bring Spain further into Western military arrangements. In 1976 the bilateral agreement between Spain and the United States was transformed into a Treaty of Friendship and Cooperation. In addition to renewing United States basing rights in return for United States military and economic aid, this treaty provided for a United States-Spanish Council intended to serve as a bridge to eventual Spanish membership in NATO.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> When Calvo replaced Suarez as prime minister in 1981, he made vigorous efforts to gain approval for Spanish membership in NATO, and shortly after this was accomplished a new executive agreement on the use of bases in Spain was signed with the United States in July 1982. This agreement was one of a series of renewals of the basic 1953 arrangement, providing for United States use of strategic naval and air bases on Spanish soil in exchange for US military and economic assistance.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Many Spaniards resented the presence of these bases in Spain, recalling the widely publicized photograph of President Dwight D. Eisenhower throwing his arms around Franco when the first agreement on bases was signed. There were occasional popular protests against these reminders of US support for the dictatorship, including a demonstration during President Ronald Reagan&#39;s 1985 visit to Spain.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> The Socialists had consistently advocated a more neutralist, independent stance for Spain, and when they came to power in October 1982, Gonzalez pledged a close examination of the defense and cooperation agreements with the United States. A reduction in US military presence in Spain was one of the stipulations contained in the referendum, held in 1986, on continued NATO membership. In keeping with this, the prime minister announced in December 1987 that the United States would have to remove its seventy-two F-16 fighter-bombers from Spanish bases by mid-1991. Spain also had informed the United States in November that the bilateral defense agreement, which opinion polls indicated was rejected overwhelmingly by the Spanish population, would not be renewed. Nevertheless, in January 1988 Spain and the United States did reach agreement in principle on a new base agreement. The new military arrangements called for a marked reduction of the US presence in Spain and terminated the American military and economic aid that had been tied to the defense treaty.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> <a href="http://www.earlyamerica.com/review/2002_summer_fall/spain_english.htm"><font color="#0000ff">The Relations Between Spain and the United States, Louisiana and the Middle West Territory (1763 - 1795)</font></a> (EarlyAmerica.com)</div> <div> <a href="http://www.embusa.es/irc/50relations.pdf"><font color="#0000ff">50 Years of U. S. - Spain Relations</font></a> (US Embassy, Madrid) (PDF)</div> <div> &nbsp;</div>
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Current U.S. Relations with Spain
<p> &nbsp;Relations between the US and Spain became quite cold after Madrid withdrew its forces in Iraq after the first election of Prime Minister Jos&eacute; Luis Rodr&iacute;guez Zapatero. Deep differences on Cuba also worked against a spirit of collaboration. Zapatero would not have been invited to Washington for the G20 meeting in November 2008 were it not for French President Nicolas Sarkozy, who lobbied on behalf of Spain.<br /> <br /> Despite problems between Washington and Madrid, the two countries maintained important day-to-day relations in regards to NATO, the maintenance of US military bases in Spain that have proven critical to the conduct of affairs in Iraq and Afghanistan, and levels of two-way direct foreign investment, particularly in financial services and energy.</p> <div> <br /> It is expected that prior difficulties will be minimized by the Obama administration. As the Iraq conflict winds down, that particular issue should fade. The new US administration may also soften Cuba policy, including restrictions on visits, remittances and exchanges, although the embargo, enshrined in US law, will likely remain for the foreseeable future.<br /> <br /> Contacts between the Zapatero government and the Obama administration were made at senior levels even before the inauguration, and a fresh start is on tap, particularly if Spain is forthcoming on additional troops for the NATO mission in Afghanistan. The United States could reciprocate by actively pushing for Spain to join the G8.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> A total of 78,000 peopled identified themselves as being of Spanish ancestry in the 2000 US census. The Spanish population has historically been concentrated in Florida and California.&nbsp;There has been a widespread movement back to Spain in recent decades, following the death of Franco and the country&rsquo;s economic rejuvenation.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> In 2006, 930,491 Americans visited Spain, a 5% increase on 2005.&nbsp;This increase represents a gentle fluctuation and not a trend&mdash;there were 940,054 American visits to Spain in 2002. Also in 2006, 424,224 Spaniards visited America, a 10% increase on the previous year and a 58% increase on the 269,520 trips made in 2002.</div> <div> <b>&nbsp;</b></div> <div> <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spain%E2%80%93United_States_relations"><font color="#0000ff">Spain-US Relations</font></a> (Wikipedia)</div> <div> <a href="http://www.americas-society.org/article.php?id=1427"><font color="#0000ff">The United States and Spain: Building Bridges across the Atlantic </font></a>(by Eric Farnsworth, AmericasSociety.org)</div>
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Where Does the Money Flow
<p> &nbsp;US imports from Spain have been steadily rising, from $6.6 billion in 2003 to $11 billion in 2008. The two top imports during this time period were medical, dental and pharmaceutical preparations, up from $604 million to $1.09 billion, and other petroleum products, climbing from $279 million to $1.56 billion.</p> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Other key imports included generators, transformers and accessories, up from $95 million to $873 million; vegetables and preparations, increasing from $278 million to $302 million; wine, up from $159 million to $287 million; industrial organic chemicals, rising from $204 million to $306 million; stone, sand, cement and lime, decreasing from $246 million to $194 million between 2007 and 2008; and other industrial machinery, up from $142 million in 2003 to $395 million in 2008.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Like imports, US exports to Spain also rose from 2003-2008, doubling from $5.9 billion to $12 billion. And like imports, the leading export was pharmaceutical preparations, rising from $279 million to $2.2 billion.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Other key American exports included sorghum, barley and oats, up from $43 million to $279 million; nuts, increasing from $230 million to $407 million; petroleum products, up from $79 million to $217 million; chemicals (organic), rising from $166 million to $487 million; logs and lumber, dropping from $185 million to $131 million; telecommunications equipment, jumping from $108 million to $249 million; medicinal equipment, leaping from $243 million to $409 million; and civilian aircraft, up from $144 million to $800 million.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> The US sold $1.1 billion of defense articles and services to Spain in 2007. From 1997 to 2000, Spain was the second largest recipient of US arms sales among European countries, buying approximately $1.3 billion.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> The US does not give foreign aid to Spain.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> <a href="http://www.census.gov/foreign-trade/statistics/product/enduse/imports/c4700.html"><font color="#0000ff">Imports from Spain</font></a></div> <div> <a href="http://www.census.gov/foreign-trade/statistics/product/enduse/exports/c4700.html"><font color="#0000ff">Exports to Spain</font></a></div> <div> <a href="http://www.state.gov/t/pm/64843.htm"><font color="#0000ff">Spain: Security Assistance</font></a></div> <div> <a href="http://fas.org/sgp/crs/weapons/RL33217.pdf"><font color="#0000ff">U.S. Arms Sales: Agreements with and Deliveries to Major Clients, 1997-2004</font></a> (by Richard Grimmett, Congressional Research Service)</div> <div> <b>&nbsp;</b></div>
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Controversies
<p> &nbsp;<b>Spanish Government Helped US with Renditions</b></p> <div> Allegations surfaced in December 2008 that the former conservative government of Spain gave permission to the United States to secretly fly terrorist suspects via Spain to the prison camp in Guant&aacute;namo, Cuba. Conservative leader Mariano Rajoy denied knowing anything about such flights, while the left-leaning daily <i>El Pais</i> reported that a 2002 Foreign Ministry document on the flights had mysteriously disappeared. The news resulted in former conservative foreign minister Josep Pique being booed by a group of students who slammed him as a &ldquo;war criminal,&rdquo; &ldquo;killer,&rdquo; &ldquo;fascist&rdquo; and &ldquo;torturer.&rdquo;</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> <i>El Pais</i> earlier claimed that the government of former conservative prime minister Jose Maria Aznar had given permission in 2002 to US planes taking Taliban and al-Qaeda prisoners from Afghanistan to Guantanamo to secretly make stopovers at two US military bases in Spain.</div> <div> The conservative opposition responded by claiming that nine out of 11 flights organized by the Central Intelligence Agency took place under Socialist Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero, who took office in 2004.</div> <div> <a href="http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/europe/spain/3538908/Spain-authorised-CIA-rendition-flights.html"><font color="#0000ff">Spain &#39;authorised&#39; CIA rendition flights</font></a> (by Fiona Govan, Telegraph)</div> <div> <a href="http://www.monstersandcritics.com/news/europe/news/article_1446380.php"><font color="#0000ff">Controversy continues in Spain over CIA flights </font></a>(Deutsche Presse-Agentur)</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> <b>US Upset over Spanish Arms Sales to Venezuela</b></div> <div> Spain announced in 2005 plans to sell arms to Venezuela, much to the displeasure of the Bush administration. US officials claimed that the exports might upset Latin American security. The military hardware included a dozen military transport aircraft and eight naval patrol vessels to Venezuela. Washington responded by claiming it had the right to nullify the sales to Venezuela because the planes contained US components. (US law requires foreign governments to obtain permission from Washington to export arms incorporating US technology or parts)</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> State Department spokesperson Sean McCormack criticized the Spanish arms package as &ldquo;not consistent with US foreign policy interests.&rdquo; The United States branded Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez as an undemocratic and volatile leader and charged that recent Venezuelan arms buys exceeded the country&rsquo;s defense needs. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld also criticized Spain&#39;s decision to sell military planes and boats to Venezuela. &quot;I personally think that Spain is making a mistake,&quot; Rumsfeld said. &quot;I guess time will tell. The problem is that, if one waits until time tells, it can be an unhappy story.&quot;</div> <div> <a href="http://www.iht.com/articles/2005/04/06/news/spain.php"><font color="#0000ff">U.S. Chides Spain on Arms Sales to Venezuela</font></a> (New York Times)</div> <div> <a href="http://www.armscontrol.org/act/2006_03/MARCH-LatinArms"><font color="#0000ff">Latin American Arms Sales Moving Forward</font></a> (by Wade Boese, Arms Control Association)</div>
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Human Rights
<p> &nbsp;In recent decades, Spain has generally not suffered from major human rights violations, although violations do occur on a case-by-case basis. Threats to human rights also come from the terrorist group Basque Fatherland and Liberty (ETA) and various societal problems, such as discrimination against minorities, domestic violence, and human trafficking.</p> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> <b>Civil Rights</b></div> <div> Spanish law provides for freedom of speech, freedom of assembly, and freedom of religion. There are no restrictions to free speech, the Internet, and other types of media, nor were there any complaints against violations of the freedom of assembly. While the government has generally respected the right for freedom of religion, the Roman Catholic Church has the benefit of a close relationship with the government. For example, the tax system allows for citizens, regardless of denomination, to choose to donate part of their taxes to the Roman Catholic Church. Schools run by the Church are also partly directly funded by the government. Other religious communities, such as the Jewish, Muslim, and Protestant communities, also enjoy tax benefits from having <i>notorio arraigo</i> (or &ldquo;deeply rooted&rdquo; traditional) status, and having individual agreements with the government, although not to the extent as that of the Catholic Church. As of December 2008, the parliament is considering opening up tax benefits to all religions achieving <i>notorio arraigo</i> status. Jewish and Muslim communities have also reported difficulty in obtaining permits, etc. to establish new places of worship due to societal prejudice against their religions.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> <b>Discrimination against Minorities </b></div> <div> An influx of immigrants has caused friction within Spanish society and a rise in prejudice against religious minorities, particularly Muslim and Jewish communities. This was usually manifested in graffiti and other vandalism on religious buildings, such as mosques and Jewish institutions. For example, no arrests have been made for the vandalism done to the Colon Park mosque in Corboba in 2006, the defacing on the Synagogue of Cordoba and the Casa Safarad (Sephardic House) with anti-Semitic and neo-Nazi graffiti and threats written in German in 2008, or the defacing of a statue of the renowned 12th century Sephardic rabbi, Maimonides in 2008. In February 2008, six people, all members of the &ldquo;Younger Workers Front,&rdquo; attacked immigrants in Catalonia. They were arrested, tried, and convicted.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Discrimination and violence against ethnic minorities have also been cited, but the Spanish government is putting in effort to solve this problem. Fundacion Secretariado Gitano (FSG), a domestic NGO, has reported that the Roma population in Spain continues &ldquo;to face discrimination in access to employment, housing, and education&rdquo; and that they &ldquo;experienced substantially higher rates of unemployment, poverty, and illiteracy than the general population.&rdquo;</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Gay marriage is legal in Spain.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> <b>Women&rsquo;s Rights</b></div> <div> Spanish law provides for the equal treatment of women and men. Societal violations against women&rsquo;s rights continue to be a problem, including the trafficking of women for sexual exploitation, domestic abuse and rape, sexual harassment, and female genital mutilation. Government institutions are in place to combat these problems.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> <b>Torture and Mistreatment of Prisoners</b></div> <div> The Spanish government prohibits the mistreatment and torture of prisoners and provides for a judiciary for fair public trials. While the government has generally abided by these laws, there have been reported cases of police mistreatment. One such case was reported in June 2007 by Amnesty International (AI). In Barcelona, a woman was arrested for trying to intervene with the violent arrest of another person. After handcuffing and putting her in a police station cell, four police officers beat her severely, which resulted in multiple bruises on her body. The next month, the woman was fined for resisting arrest. Other complaints of mistreatment and abuse have also been filed, including six complaints in 2006 and 2007 against Catalonian regional police officers for &ldquo;subjecting detainees to degrading treatment in Barcelona&rsquo;s main police station of Les Corts.&rdquo; In 2008, Council of Europe&#39;s Committee for the Prevention of Torture (CPT) released its annual report stating that 610 individuals in 2006 filed mistreatment complaints against security forces, 35 less than in 2005.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> <b>ETA</b></div> <div> In 2006, the ETA withdrew from its permanent ceasefire and recommenced terrorist attacks in Spain. In 2008, reports of ETA terrorist activity included a car bomb &ldquo;outside the civil guard headquarters in Durango, injuring two civil guards and causing significant property damage,&rdquo; and an attempt &ldquo;to kill the bodyguard of a Basque politician by planting a bomb on his car; the bodyguard escaped the burning car and survived.&rdquo;</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> In its annual report, Reporters without Borders criticized ETA &ldquo;for threatening journalists&rdquo; and citing &ldquo;several journalists in Spain required personal protection due to these threats.&rdquo;</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> <a href="http://www.state.gov/g/drl/rls/hrrpt/2007/100586.htm"><font color="#0000ff">U.S. State Department</font></a></div> <div> <a href="http://hrw.org/doc/?t=europe&amp;c=spain"><font color="#0000ff">Human Rights Watch</font></a></div> <div> <a href="http://www.amnesty.org/en/region/europe-and-central-asia/western-europe/spain"><font color="#0000ff">Amnesty International</font></a></div>
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Debate
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Past Ambassadors
<p> &nbsp;John Jay<br /> State of Residency: New York<br /> Title: Minister Plenipotentiary<br /> Appointment: Sep 29, 1779<br /> Note: Proceeded to post but was not formally received at court; left post about May 20, 1782.</p> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> William Carmichael<br /> Appointment: Apr 20, 1790<br /> Presentation of Credentials: [see note below]<br /> Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Sep 5, 1794<br /> Note: No report has been found concerning Carmichael&rsquo;s presentation of credentials as Charg&eacute; d&rsquo;Affaires en titre; he had already been received as Charg&eacute; d&rsquo;Affaires ad interim, Feb 20, 1783.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> William Short<br /> Appointment: May 28, 1794<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Sep 7, 1794<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Nov 1, 1795</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> David Humphreys<br /> Appointment: May 20, 1796<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Sep 10, 1797<br /> Termination of Mission: Probably presented recall soon after Dec 28, 1801</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Charles Pinckney<br /> Appointment: Jun 6, 1801<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Jan-Mar. 1802<br /> Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Oct 25, 1804<br /> Note: Commissioned during a recess of the Senate; recommissioned after confirmation on Jan 26, 1802.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Note: George W. Erving served as Charg&eacute; d&rsquo;Affaires ad interim, Oct 1805-Feb 1810.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> James Bowdoin<br /> Appointment: Nov 22, 1804<br /> Note: Did not proceed to post.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> George W. Erving<br /> Appointment: Aug 10, 1814<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Aug 24, 1816<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post May 15, 1819<br /> Note: Commissioned during a recess of the Senate. Nomination confirmed by the Senate, Oct 3, 1814; commission following confirmation not of record.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> John Forsyth<br /> Appointment: Feb 16, 1819<br /> Presentation of Credentials: May 18, 1819<br /> Termination of Mission: Had farewell audience, Mar 2, 1823</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Hugh Nelson<br /> Appointment: Jan 15, 1823<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Dec 4, 1823<br /> Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Jul 10, 1825</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Alexander Hill Everett<br /> Appointment: Mar 9, 1825<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Sep 4, 1825<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Aug 1, 1829</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Cornelius P. Van Ness<br /> Appointment: Jun 1, 1829<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Dec 9, 1829<br /> Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Dec 21, 1836<br /> Note: Commissioned during a recess of the Senate; recommissioned after confirmation on Feb 10, 1830.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> William T. Barry<br /> Appointment: Apr 10, 1835<br /> Note: Took oath of office, but died en route to post. Commissioned during a recess of the Senate.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> John H. Eaton<br /> Appointment: Mar 16, 1836<br /> Presentation of Credentials: [see note below]<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post May 1, 1840<br /> Note: No report has been found of presentation of credentials, which probably took place about Feb 1, 1837.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Aaron Vail<br /> Appointment: May 20, 1840<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Nov 5, 1840<br /> Termination of Mission: Superseded, Aug 1, 1842</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Washington Irving<br /> Appointment: Feb 10, 1842<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Aug 1, 1842<br /> Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Jul 29, 1846</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Romulus M. Saunders<br /> Appointment: Feb 25, 1846<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Jul 31, 1846<br /> Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Sep 24, 1849</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Daniel M. Barringer<br /> Appointment: Jun 18, 1849<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Oct 24, 1849<br /> Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Sep 4, 1853<br /> Note: Commissioned during a recess of the Senate; recommissioned after confirmation on Sep 28, 1850.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Pierre Soule<br /> Appointment: Apr 7, 1853<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Oct 24, 1853<br /> Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Feb 1, 1855</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> John C. Breckinridge<br /> Appointment: Jan 16, 1855<br /> Note: Declined appointment.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Augustus C. Dodge<br /> Appointment: Feb 9, 1855<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Jun 17, 1855<br /> Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Mar 12, 1859</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> William Preston<br /> Appointment: Dec 15, 1858<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Mar 12, 1859<br /> Termination of Mission: Presented recall, May 24, 1861</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Cassius M. Clay<br /> Appointment: Apr 14, 1861<br /> Note: Declined appointment.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Carl Schurz<br /> Appointment: Mar 28, 1861<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Jul 13, 1861<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Dec 18, 1861</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Gustavus Koerner<br /> Appointment: Jun 14, 1862<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Nov 4, 1862<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Jul 20, 1864</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> John P. Hale<br /> Appointment: Mar 10, 1865<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Sep 30, 1865<br /> Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Jul 29, 1869</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> William S. Rosecrans<br /> Note: Not commissioned; nomination tabled by the Senate.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Henry S. Sandford<br /> Note: Not commissioned; nomination tabled by the Senate.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Daniel E. Sickles<br /> Appointment: May 15, 1869<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Jul 29, 1869<br /> Termination of Mission: Presented new credentials on Feb 2, 1871, after change of government; transmitted recall by note Jan 31, 1874<br /> Note: Commissioned during a recess of the Senate; recommissioned after confirmation on Mar 16, 1870.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Caleb Cushing<br /> Appointment: Jan 6, 1874<br /> Presentation of Credentials: May 30, 1874<br /> Termination of Mission: Presented new credentials on Mar 10, 1875, after restoration of monarchy; left post Apr 9, 1877</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> James Russell Lowell<br /> Appointment: Jun 11, 1877<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Aug 18, 1877<br /> Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Mar 2, 1880<br /> Note: Commissioned during a recess of the Senate; recommissioned after confirmation on Oct 30, 1877.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Lucius Fairchild<br /> Appointment: Jan 26, 1880<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Mar 31, 1880<br /> Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Dec 20, 1881</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Hannibal Hamlin<br /> State of Residency: Maine<br /> Title: Envoy Extraordinary and Minister Plenipotentiary<br /> Appointment: Jun 30, 1881<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Dec 20, 1881<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Oct 17, 1882<br /> Note: Commissioned during a recess of the Senate; recommissioned after confirmation on Oct 13, 1881.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> John W. Foster<br /> Appointment: Feb 27, 1883<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Jun 16, 1883<br /> Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Aug 28, 1885</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Jabez L.M. Curry<br /> Appointment: Oct 7, 1885<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Dec 22, 1885<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Jul 5, 1888<br /> Note: Commissioned during a recess of the Senate; recommissioned after confirmation on Jan 13, 1886.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Perry Belmont<br /> Appointment: Nov 17, 1888<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Feb 13, 1889<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post May 1, 1889<br /> Note: Commissioned during a recess of the Senate; recommissioned after confirmation on Dec 13, 1888.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Thomas W. Palmer<br /> Appointment: Mar 12, 1889<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Jun 17, 1889<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Apr 19, 1890</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> E. Burd Grubb<br /> Appointment: Sep 27, 1890<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Dec 23, 1890<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post May 26, 1892</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> A. Loudon Snowden<br /> Appointment: Jul 22, 1892<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Oct 6, 1892<br /> Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Jun 3, 1893</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Hannis Taylor<br /> Appointment: Apr 8, 1893<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Jul 1, 1893<br /> Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Sep 13, 1897</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Stewart L. Woodford<br /> Appointment: Jun 19, 1897<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Sep 13, 1897<br /> Termination of Mission: Spain severed diplomatic relations with the U.S., Apr 21, 1898<br /> Note: Woodford left post Apr 21, 1898. The United States declared war on Spain as of that date by Act of Congress approved Apr 25, 1898.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Bellamy Storer<br /> Appointment: Apr 12, 1899<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Jun 16, 1899<br /> Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Dec 10, 1902<br /> Note: Commissioned during a recess of the Senate; recommissioned after confirmation on Dec 14, 1899.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Arthur S. Hardy<br /> Appointment: Sep 26, 1902<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Mar 2, 1903<br /> Termination of Mission: Presented recall, May 1, 1905<br /> Note: Commissioned during a recess of the Senate; recommissioned after confirmation on Dec 8, 1902.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> William Miller Collier<br /> Appointment: Mar 8, 1905<br /> Presentation of Credentials: May 15, 1905<br /> Termination of Mission: Superseded, Jun 9, 1909</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Henry Clay Ide<br /> Appointment: Apr 1, 1909<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Jun 9, 1909<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Jul 8, 1913</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Joseph E. Willard<br /> Appointment: Jul 28, 1913<br /> Note: Took oath of office, but did not proceed to post under this appointment.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Joseph E. Willard<br /> Appointment: Sep 10, 1913<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Oct 31, 1913<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Jul 7, 1921</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Cyrus E. Woods<br /> Appointment: Jun 24, 1921<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Oct 14, 1921<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Apr 18, 1923</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Alexander P. Moore<br /> Appointment: Mar 3, 1923<br /> Presentation of Credentials: May 16, 1923<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Dec 20, 1925</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Ogden H. Hammond<br /> Appointment: Dec 21, 1925<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Mar 26, 1926<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Oct 13, 1929</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Irwin B. Laughlin<br /> Appointment: Oct 16, 1929<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Dec 24, 1929<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Apr 12, 1933</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Claude G. Bowers<br /> Appointment: Apr 6, 1933<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Jun 1, 1933<br /> Termination of Mission: Had final interview, Feb 2, 1939<br /> Note: Bowers was resident during the last part of his Ambassadorship at St. Jean de Luz in France; he left that post Jun 14, 1939, his appointment having terminated May 14, 1939. The Embassy had meanwhile been re-established in Spain on Apr 13, 1939, when H. Freeman Matthews had been received at Burgos as Charg&eacute; d&rsquo;Affaires ad interim.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Alexander W. Weddell<br /> Appointment: May 3, 1939<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Jun 15, 1939<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Feb 7, 1942</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Carlton J. H. Hayes<br /> Appointment: May 2, 1942<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Jun 9, 1942<br /> Termination of Mission: Left Spain, Jan 18, 1945</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Norman Armour<br /> Appointment: Dec 15, 1944<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Mar 24, 1945<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Dec 1, 1945</div> <div> Note: During 1945-1951 the following officers served as Charg&eacute; d&rsquo;Affaires ad interim: Philip W. Bonsal (Mar 1946-Jun 1947) and Paul T. Culbertson (Jun 1947-Dec 1950).</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Stanton Griffis<br /> Appointment: Feb 1, 1951<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Mar 1, 1951<br /> Termination of Mission: Relinquished charge Jan 28, 1952</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Lincoln MacVeagh<br /> Appointment: Feb 21, 1952<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Mar 27, 1952<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Mar 4, 1953</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> James Clement Dunn<br /> Appointment: Feb 27, 1953<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Apr 9, 1953<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Feb 9, 1955</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> John Lodge<br /> Appointment: Jan 22, 1955<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Mar 24, 1955<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Apr 13, 1961</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Anthony J. Drexel Biddle, Jr.<br /> Appointment: Mar 29, 1961<br /> Presentation of Credentials: May 25, 1961<br /> Termination of Mission: Left Spain, Oct 12, 1961</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Ellis O. Briggs<br /> Note: Not commissioned; nomination withdrawn before the Senate acted upon it.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Robert F. Woodward<br /> Appointment: Apr 7, 1962<br /> Presentation of Credentials: May 10, 1962<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Feb 1, 1965</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Angier Biddle Duke<br /> Appointment: Mar 11, 1965<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Apr 1, 1965<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Mar 30, 1968</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Frank E. McKinney<br /> Appointment: May 11, 1968<br /> Note: Took oath of office, but did not proceed to post under this appointment.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Robert F. Wagner<br /> Appointment: Jun 24, 1968<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Jul 4, 1968<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Mar 7, 1969</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Robert C. Hill<br /> Appointment: May 1, 1969<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Jun 12, 1969<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Jan 12, 1972</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Horacio Rivero<br /> Appointment: Sep 11, 1972<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Oct 11, 1972<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Nov 26, 1974</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Peter M. Flanigan<br /> Note: Not commissioned; nomination of Sep 17, 1974 was not acted upon by the Senate.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Wells Stabler<br /> Appointment: Feb 20, 1975<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Mar 13, 1975<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post May 4, 1978</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Terence A. Todman<br /> Appointment: May 25, 1978<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Jul 20, 1978<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Aug 8, 1983</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Thomas Ostrom Enders<br /> Appointment: Aug 5, 1983<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Sep 15, 1983<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Jul 6, 1986</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Reginald Bartholomew<br /> Appointment: Aug 18, 1986<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Sep 17, 1986<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Mar 12, 1989</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Joseph Zappala<br /> Appointment: Oct 10, 1989<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Oct 16, 1989<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Jun 4, 1992</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Richard Goodwin Capen, Jr.<br /> Appointment: Jun 15, 1992<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Jul 8, 1992<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Feb 17, 1993</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Richard N. Gardner<br /> Appointment: Sep 16, 1993<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Nov 4, 1993<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Jul 12, 1997</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Edward L. Romero<br /> Appointment: Jun 29, 1998<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Jun 30, 1998<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Jun 1, 2001<br /> Note: Also accredited to Andorra; resident at Madrid.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> George L. Argyros, Sr.<br /> Appointment: Nov 20, 2001<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Dec 13, 2001<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Nov 21, 2004<br /> Note: Also accredited to Andorra; resident at Madrid.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Eduardo Aguirre<br /> Appointment: Jun 21, 2005<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Jun 29, 2005<br /> Termination of Mission: January 2009<br /> <b>Note: </b>Also accredited to Andorra; resident at Madrid.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <p> <a href="http://www.state.gov/r/pa/ho/po/com/11278.htm"><span><font color="#0000ff">Former U.S. Ambassadors to Spain</font></span></a></p>
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Spain's Ambassador to the U.S.
ambassador-image Gil-Casares, Ramón

The new ambassador to the United States from Spain is a career diplomat who has previously served in the U.S. and whose career has been tied to the political fortunes of Spain’s right-of-center political party, the People’s Party (PP), which won Spain’s most recent national elections in 2011. Appointed to his post in Washington in April 2012, Ramón Gil-Casares Satrústegui, currently Spanish ambassador to Sudan and South Sudan, replaces Ambassador Jorge Dezcallar, who has held the post in Washington since July 2008.

 

Born in Madrid on October 26, 1953, Gil-Casares was the son of a Franco-era diplomat and a childhood friend of former Spanish Prime Minister José María Aznar, who was a classmate at the Colegio Santa María del Pilar, a private school in Madrid, until age 14. Gil-Casares earned an undergraduate degree in Philosophy and Law at the Universidad Complutense de Madrid in 1982.

 

Gil-Casares joined the Spanish Foreign Service in 1982, and had early career postings at the Spanish embassies in Equatorial Guinea, Uruguay and the Philippines. In 1990 he was appointed Deputy Director General of Cooperatives at the Spanish Institute for Development Cooperation, and later was deputy consul general of Spain in New York. In May 1996, he was named Director of the International Security Department in Prime Minister Aznar’s cabinet, and later also served as secretary of the Foreign Policy Council, a body formed in July 2000 to coordinate the activities of different ministries and agencies abroad. Gil-Casares became Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs in July 2002, serving until the April 19, 2004, election victory of the Spanish Socialist Workers’ Party, which ousted Aznar’s PP from power.

 

In July 2005, the new Spanish government sent Gil-Casares to serve as ambassador to South Africa, residing in Pretoria with concurrent accreditation to the Comoros, Mauritius, Madagascar and Lesotho. Gil-Casares stayed in Africa for his next posting as ambassador to Sudan, where he has served since March 25, 2011; he also became the first Spanish ambassador to South Sudan on January 20, 2012, although he remained based in Khartoum. Additionally, he served from October 2008 to March 2011 as an advisor to the Foreign Ministry’s Directorate General for Africa.

-Matt Bewig

 

Ramón Gil-Casares, embajador en EE. UU. (Heraldo)

Ramón Gil-Casares, nuevo embajador en Estados Unidos (by José Ángel Jarne Navalón, EPCPC)

Gil Casares será embajador en EE. UU. y Eduardo Gutiérrez, en el Vaticano (by Luis Ayllón, ABC.es)

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Spain's Embassy Web Site in the U.S.
<p> &nbsp;<a href="http://www.maec.es/Subwebs/Embajadas/Washington/en/Home/Paginas/Home.aspx"><font color="#0000ff">Spain&rsquo;s Embassy in the U.S.</font></a></p>
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Comments

Tom Martin, Albuquerque, NM 4 years ago
I am saddened to learn that in the face of a dwindling population in Spain that your leadership has opted to broaden the accessibility of abortions in your country. I shall be sure to avoid Spain and travel to Europe overall because you idiots are exterminating the rich cultures that brought us to the wondrous age in which we live. I cannot think of anywhere in Europe that respects life as taught by my Catholic Church. I pray that God has mercy on your immortal souls. Obama = death....

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U.S. Ambassador to Spain

Costos, James
ambassador-image

The bipartisan practice of rewarding major campaign donors with ambassadorships to favored destinations continues with President Barack Obama’s announcement that he will nominate James Costos, an HBO executive to be the next ambassador to Spain. Costos donated $5,000 to, and bundled donations of at least $500,000 for, Obama’s 2012 presidential run, If confirmed by the Senate, Costos would succeed Alan D. Solomont, who has served as Washington’s man in Madrid since December 2009.

 

Born circa 1963, Costos earned a B.A. in Political Science at the University of Massachusetts in 1985. Commencing his career as a fashion and retail executive in New York, Costos was vice president and director of retail for Tod’s of Italy from 1991 to 2001, and then for Hermes of Paris, for whom he was in charge of operations, marketing and brand development for the company’s U.S. stores from 2001 to 2002.

 

Costos migrated to film and television, working as a senior executive of Revolution Studios in charge of corporate partnerships and promotions from 2002 to 2004. He then founded Eight Cylinders Inc, an entertainment marketing firm. In July 2006, HBO hired Costos to head its new global licensing and marketing division.

 

A Democrat, Costos has donated heavily to Democratic candidates and organizations for the past several years, including $62,000 to the Democratic National Committee since 2009, $1,000 to Hillary Clinton in 2007, and $4,000 to former Vermont Gov. Howard Dean in 2003. He also donated $2,500 to Republican Sen. Susan Collins of Maine in 2012.

 

Costos is in a long-term relationship with interior designer Michael Smith, who was selected by Michelle Obama in 2009 to redecorate the residential quarters of the White House, and later designed a makeover of the Oval Office.

-Matt Bewig

 

To Learn More:

Obama to Name HBO Executive as Ambassador to Spain (by Tina Daunt, Hollywood Reporter)

Obama Nominates Two More Openly Gay Ambassadors (by Sunnivie Brydum, The Advocate)

Michael S. Smith’s Manhattan Penthouse (by Judith Thurman, Architectural Digest)

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Previous U.S. Ambassador to Spain

Aguirre, Eduardo
ambassador-image

A native of Cuba, Eduardo Aguirre, Jr. began serving as the US Ambassador to Spain and Andorra on June 24, 2005. He earned a Bachelor of Science degree form Louisiana State University and graduated from the American Bankers Association’s National Commercial Lending Graduate School.
 
Aguirre was president of Bank of America’s International Private Bank and worked there for 24 years. He then served as vice chairman, chief operating officer and acting chairman of the Export-Import Bank of the United States from 2001 to 2002. Aguirre served for two and a half years as the first director of the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), an under secretary rank position in the Department of Homeland Security, before being selected ambassador to Spain and Andorra.
 
He was appointed, by then Texas Governor George W. Bush, to the Board of Regents of the University of Houston System for a six-year term, serving from 1996-1998 as chairman. According to OpenSecrets.com, Aguirre donated $500 to Bush’s presidential campaign in 1999. In 2000, he donated $1,000 to the Republication National Committee, and in 2001, Aguirre donated $850 to the RNC/Republican National State Elections Committee.
 
Aguirre was also appointed to the National Commission for Employment Policy by President George H. W. Bush. The Supreme Court of Texas appointed him to the State Bar as a non-attorney director. Additionally, he has served on other public, professional and civic boards, including the Texas Children’s Hospital, Texas Bar Foundation, Operación Pedro Pan Foundation, Bankers Association for Finance and Trade, and the Houston chapters of the American Red Cross and the Salvation Army.
 
 
 

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Overview
<p> &nbsp;The relationship between Spain and the United States began before there was even a United States of America. Christopher Columbus&rsquo; historic voyage that led to the discovery of America was financed by Queen Isabella of Spain. Relations between Spain and the US were cordial for the most part during the early years of U.S. independence; that is until the outbreak of the Spanish-American War of 1898, which the US won and as a result wound up controlling Cuba and the Philippines. Following the war, economic issues dominated relations between Spain and the US, as Spain sought to enhance its trading position by developing closer commercial ties with the US and Latin America. When civil war broke out in Spain in the 1930s, approximately 3,000 American citizens volunteered to serve in the Spanish Republican Army, although the United States government remained neutral during the conflict. Following the Nationalist victory, public opinion in the US condemned Francisco Franco&rsquo;s regime as a fascist dictatorship, but the United States government participated in various Allied agreements with Spain, aimed at ensuring that Franco would not permit the Iberian Peninsula to be used by Adolf Hitler against Allied forces.</p> <div> <b>&nbsp;</b></div> <p> Following the death of Franco in 1975, the US welcomed the liberalization of the Spanish regime under King Juan Carlos and sought to bring Spain further into Western military arrangements. In 1976 the bilateral agreement between Spain and the United States was transformed into a Treaty of Friendship and Cooperation. In addition to renewing United States basing rights in return for United States military and economic aid, this treaty provided for a United States-Spanish Council intended to serve as a bridge to eventual Spanish membership in NATO. Relations continued to be strong until 2004, when the government in Madrid withdrew its forces in Iraq and criticized the Bush administration&rsquo;s war in that country. Deep differences on Cuba also worked against a spirit of collaboration. It is expected now that the administration of Barack Obama is in charge, and the US role in Iraq gradually shrinks, that relations will improve between Washington and Madrid.</p>
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Basic Information
<p> &nbsp;<b>Lay of the Land</b>: Third-Largest country in Europe, occupying 85% of the Iberian Peninsula.&nbsp;It thrusts out from Europe toward Africa and the Americas, separated from France and Andorra in the northeast by the Pyrenees Mountains.&nbsp;Includes the Balearic Islands, the Canary Islands, and the tiny enclaves of Ceuta and Melilla in Morocco.&nbsp;The Strait of Gibraltar, 8.5 miles wide, makes Spain a natural bridge between Europe and Africa.&nbsp;Exceptionally mountainous, with the second-highest average elevation in Europe, its heartland is a great plateau, &ldquo;La Meseta&rdquo;.</p> <div> <b>&nbsp;</b></div> <div> <b>Population</b>: 40.5 Million (2008)</div> <div> <b>&nbsp;</b></div> <div> <b>Religions</b>: Roman Catholicism 79.1%, Protestantism 2.9%, Islam 2.3%, Non-religious 15.7% (2007).</div> <div> <b>&nbsp;</b></div> <div> <b>Ethnic Groups</b>: Spanish, Catalan, Galician, Basque.</div> <div> <b>&nbsp;</b></div> <div> <b>Languages</b>: Castellano (Spanish) 70.5%, Catalan 16%, Gallego 8%, Basque 1.5%, Extremaduran 0.5%, Asturian 0.3%, Calo 0.01%, Aragonese 0.001%, Aranese 0.001%, Fala 0.001% (1994).</div>
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History
<p> Spain was originally inhabited by Celts, Iberians, and Basques before becoming a part of the Roman Empire in 206 BC.</p> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> In 412 AD, Visigoth leader Ataulf crossed the Pyrenees and took control of Spain, first in the name of the Roman emperor and then independently. In 711, the Muslims under Tariq entered Spain from Africa and within a few years completely conquered the country. In 732, the Franks, led by Charles Martel, defeated the Muslims near Poitiers, thus preventing the further expansion of the Islamic Empire in southern Europe.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Aragon and Castile were the most important Spanish states from the 12th to the 15th century, consolidated by the marriage of Ferdinand II and Isabella I in 1469. In 1478, they established the Inquisition to root out heresy and uncover Jews and Muslims who had not converted to Christianity. The last Muslim stronghold, Granada, was captured in 1492, the same year that Roman Catholicism was established as the official state religion.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> In the era of exploration, discovery, and colonization, Spain amassed tremendous wealth and a vast colonial empire through the conquest of Mexico by Cort&eacute;s (1519&ndash;1521) and Peru by Pizarro (1532&ndash;1533). The Spanish Hapsburg monarchy became for a time the most powerful in the world. In 1588, Philip II sent the Spanish Armada to invade England, but its destruction cost Spain its supremacy on the seas and paved the way for England to colonize America.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Spain then sank rapidly to the status of a second-rate power under the rule of weak Hapsburg kings, and it never again played a major role in European politics. The War of the Spanish Succession (1701&ndash;1714) resulted in Spain&#39;s loss of Belgium, Luxembourg, Milan, Sardinia, and Naples. Its colonial empire in the Americas and the Philippines vanished in wars and revolutions during the 18th and 19th centuries.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> In World War I, Spain maintained a position of neutrality. In 1923, Gen. Miguel Primo de Rivera became dictator. In 1930, King Alfonso XIII revoked the dictatorship, but a strong antimonarchist and republican movement led to his leaving Spain in 1931. The new constitution declared Spain a workers&#39; republic, broke up the large estates, separated church and state, and secularized the schools. The elections held in 1936 returned a strong Popular Front majority, with Manuel Aza&ntilde;a as president.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> On July 18, 1936, a conservative army officer in Morocco, Francisco Franco Bahamonde, led a mutiny against the government. The civil war that followed lasted three years and cost the lives of nearly a million people. Franco was aided by Fascist Italy and Nazi Germany, while Soviet Russia helped the Loyalist side. Several hundred leftist Americans served in the Abraham Lincoln Brigade on the side of the republic. The war ended when Franco took Madrid on March 28, 1939. Franco became head of the state, national chief of the Falange Party (the governing party), and prime minister and caudillo (leader).</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> In a referendum in 1947, the Spanish people approved a Franco-drafted succession law declaring Spain a monarchy again. Franco, however, continued as chief of state. In 1969, Franco and the Cortes (&ldquo;states&rdquo;) designated Prince Juan Carlos Alfonso Victor Mar&iacute;a de Borb&oacute;n (who married Princess Sophia of Greece in 1962) to become king of Spain when the provisional government headed by Franco came to an end. Franco died on November 20, 1975, and Juan Carlos was proclaimed king on November 22.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Under pressure from Catalonian and Basque nationalists, Prime Minister Adolfo Su&aacute;rez granted home rule to these regions in 1979. But this did not stop Basque separatists from committing hundreds of terrorist bombings and kidnappings in an effort to achieve complete independence from Spain.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> In October 1982, Felipe Gonz&aacute;lez M&aacute;rquez and his Spanish Socialist Workers Party won a resounding victory in national elections. That same year, Spain entered NATO, and in 1986, it joined the European Economic Community (now the European Union).</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> General elections in March 1996 produced a victory for the conservative Popular Party, and its leader, Jos&eacute; Mar&iacute;a Aznar, became prime minister. He and his party easily won reelection in 2000.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> In August 2002, Batasuna, the political wing of the Basque terrorist organization ETA, was banned.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Aznar backed the US war in Iraq in 2003, a move that proved highly unpopular. (Spain sent no troops to Iraq but contributed 1,300 peacekeeping forces during the reconstruction period.) Yet Aznar&#39;s Popular Party did extremely well in municipal elections in May 2003. The country&#39;s relative prosperity and the prime minister&#39;s tough stance against the ETA were thought to be responsible for the strong showing.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> On March 11, 2004, Spain suffered one of its most horrific terrorist attacks, as 191 people were killed and 1,400 were injured in bombings at Madrid&#39;s railway station. The government at first blamed ETA, but soon evidence emerged that al-Qaeda was responsible. When record numbers of voters went to the polls days later, Aznar&#39;s Popular Party experienced a stinging defeat, and Jos&eacute; Luis Rodr&iacute;guez Zapatero of the Socialist Party became the new prime minister. Many Spaniards blamed Aznar&#39;s staunch support of the US and the war in Iraq for making Spain an al-Qaeda target. Others were angered by what they saw as the government&#39;s politically motivated position that ETA was to blame for the attacks at the same time that links to al-Qaeda were emerging. By April, a dozen suspects, most of them Moroccan, were arrested for the bombings. On April 4, several suspects blew themselves up during a police raid to avoid capture. In May, the new prime minister made good on his campaign promise, recalling Spain&#39;s 1,300 soldiers from Iraq, much to the displeasure of the United States, which said Spain was appeasing terrorists.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> In June 2005, despite strong opposition from the Catholic Church, Spain legalized gay marriage.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> After four decades of violence, the militant Basque separatist group ETA, responsible for more than 800 deaths and for terrorizing Spanish society with its bombings and other attacks, announced a permanent cease-fire on March 24, 2006. In June 2007, however, ETA renounced the cease-fire and vowed to begin a new offensive.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> In a June 2006 referendum, the region of Catalonia voted for greater autonomy from Spain.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> The government dissolved Parliament in January 2008 and called for new elections. In the March election, Zapatero was reelected, taking 43.7% of the vote. Mariano Rajoy of the Popular Party garnered 40.1%. On April 12, Zapatero announced his cabinet, which for the first time includes more women than men.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> A new citizenship law was passed in December 2008, allowing descendants of those exiled from Spain during the Spanish Civil War to lay claim to Spanish citizenship. The new law is part of the &quot;law of historical memory&quot; legislation that was passed the previous year.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> <a href="http://lcweb2.loc.gov/frd/cs/estoc.html"><font color="#0000ff">A Country Study: Spain</font></a> (Library of Congress)</div> <div> <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_Spain"><font color="#0000ff">History of Spain</font></a> (Wikipedia)</div> <div> <a href="http://www.historyworld.net/wrldhis/PlainTextHistories.asp?historyid=ab50"><font color="#0000ff">Spain History</font></a> (History World)</div>
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Spain's Newspapers
<p> <a href="http://www.onlinenewspapers.com/spain.htm"><font color="#0000ff">Spain&rsquo;s Newspapers</font></a></p>
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History of U.S. Relations with Spain
<p> &nbsp;The founding of America owes much to the early monarchy of Spain, as it was Queen Isabella who financed the explorations of Christopher Columbus and his discovery of territories in the Caribbean. Relations between the US and Spain were at their most fractious in the late 19th century, when the sinking of the USS Maine in Havana, Cuba ignited the Spanish-American War of 1989. As a result of the American victory, the US gained control of Cuba and the Philippines.</p> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> In the years following the Spanish-American War, economic issues dominated relations between Spain and the United States, as Spain sought to enhance its trading position by developing closer commercial ties with the US as well as with Latin America. A series of trade agreements signed between Spain and the US in 1902, 1906, and 1910 led to an increased exchange of manufactured goods and agricultural products that benefited Spain&#39;s domestic economy. Cultural contacts and tourism also increased.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> The outbreak of the Civil War in Spain profoundly stirred the emotions of the American public, and approximately 3,000 American citizens volunteered to serve in the Spanish Republican Army, although the United States government remained adamantly neutral. Following the Nationalist victory, much of public opinion in the United States condemned Franco&#39;s regime as a fascist dictatorship, but the United States government participated in various Allied agreements with Spain, aimed at ensuring that Franco would not permit the Iberian Peninsula to be used by Adolf Hitler against Allied forces.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> The 1953 Pact of Madrid between Spain and the United States provided for mutual defense as well as for US military aid, and it brought to an end Spain&#39;s postwar isolation. It did not end anti-Americanism in Spain, however. Francoist leaders resented having to accept what they considered to be insufficient military supplies in return for basing rights. They also chafed at US restrictions against the use of American equipment in defending Spain&#39;s North African territories in 1957. This anti-American sentiment was bipartisan in Spain. Whereas Francoists resented the United States for its democratic form of government, the opposition parties in Spain perceived the United States as the primary supporter of the Franco regime and therefore as a major obstacle to the democratization of Spain.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Following the death of Franco in 1975, the United States welcomed the liberalization of the Spanish regime under King Juan Carlos and sought to bring Spain further into Western military arrangements. In 1976 the bilateral agreement between Spain and the United States was transformed into a Treaty of Friendship and Cooperation. In addition to renewing United States basing rights in return for United States military and economic aid, this treaty provided for a United States-Spanish Council intended to serve as a bridge to eventual Spanish membership in NATO.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> When Calvo replaced Suarez as prime minister in 1981, he made vigorous efforts to gain approval for Spanish membership in NATO, and shortly after this was accomplished a new executive agreement on the use of bases in Spain was signed with the United States in July 1982. This agreement was one of a series of renewals of the basic 1953 arrangement, providing for United States use of strategic naval and air bases on Spanish soil in exchange for US military and economic assistance.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Many Spaniards resented the presence of these bases in Spain, recalling the widely publicized photograph of President Dwight D. Eisenhower throwing his arms around Franco when the first agreement on bases was signed. There were occasional popular protests against these reminders of US support for the dictatorship, including a demonstration during President Ronald Reagan&#39;s 1985 visit to Spain.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> The Socialists had consistently advocated a more neutralist, independent stance for Spain, and when they came to power in October 1982, Gonzalez pledged a close examination of the defense and cooperation agreements with the United States. A reduction in US military presence in Spain was one of the stipulations contained in the referendum, held in 1986, on continued NATO membership. In keeping with this, the prime minister announced in December 1987 that the United States would have to remove its seventy-two F-16 fighter-bombers from Spanish bases by mid-1991. Spain also had informed the United States in November that the bilateral defense agreement, which opinion polls indicated was rejected overwhelmingly by the Spanish population, would not be renewed. Nevertheless, in January 1988 Spain and the United States did reach agreement in principle on a new base agreement. The new military arrangements called for a marked reduction of the US presence in Spain and terminated the American military and economic aid that had been tied to the defense treaty.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> <a href="http://www.earlyamerica.com/review/2002_summer_fall/spain_english.htm"><font color="#0000ff">The Relations Between Spain and the United States, Louisiana and the Middle West Territory (1763 - 1795)</font></a> (EarlyAmerica.com)</div> <div> <a href="http://www.embusa.es/irc/50relations.pdf"><font color="#0000ff">50 Years of U. S. - Spain Relations</font></a> (US Embassy, Madrid) (PDF)</div> <div> &nbsp;</div>
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Current U.S. Relations with Spain
<p> &nbsp;Relations between the US and Spain became quite cold after Madrid withdrew its forces in Iraq after the first election of Prime Minister Jos&eacute; Luis Rodr&iacute;guez Zapatero. Deep differences on Cuba also worked against a spirit of collaboration. Zapatero would not have been invited to Washington for the G20 meeting in November 2008 were it not for French President Nicolas Sarkozy, who lobbied on behalf of Spain.<br /> <br /> Despite problems between Washington and Madrid, the two countries maintained important day-to-day relations in regards to NATO, the maintenance of US military bases in Spain that have proven critical to the conduct of affairs in Iraq and Afghanistan, and levels of two-way direct foreign investment, particularly in financial services and energy.</p> <div> <br /> It is expected that prior difficulties will be minimized by the Obama administration. As the Iraq conflict winds down, that particular issue should fade. The new US administration may also soften Cuba policy, including restrictions on visits, remittances and exchanges, although the embargo, enshrined in US law, will likely remain for the foreseeable future.<br /> <br /> Contacts between the Zapatero government and the Obama administration were made at senior levels even before the inauguration, and a fresh start is on tap, particularly if Spain is forthcoming on additional troops for the NATO mission in Afghanistan. The United States could reciprocate by actively pushing for Spain to join the G8.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> A total of 78,000 peopled identified themselves as being of Spanish ancestry in the 2000 US census. The Spanish population has historically been concentrated in Florida and California.&nbsp;There has been a widespread movement back to Spain in recent decades, following the death of Franco and the country&rsquo;s economic rejuvenation.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> In 2006, 930,491 Americans visited Spain, a 5% increase on 2005.&nbsp;This increase represents a gentle fluctuation and not a trend&mdash;there were 940,054 American visits to Spain in 2002. Also in 2006, 424,224 Spaniards visited America, a 10% increase on the previous year and a 58% increase on the 269,520 trips made in 2002.</div> <div> <b>&nbsp;</b></div> <div> <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spain%E2%80%93United_States_relations"><font color="#0000ff">Spain-US Relations</font></a> (Wikipedia)</div> <div> <a href="http://www.americas-society.org/article.php?id=1427"><font color="#0000ff">The United States and Spain: Building Bridges across the Atlantic </font></a>(by Eric Farnsworth, AmericasSociety.org)</div>
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Where Does the Money Flow
<p> &nbsp;US imports from Spain have been steadily rising, from $6.6 billion in 2003 to $11 billion in 2008. The two top imports during this time period were medical, dental and pharmaceutical preparations, up from $604 million to $1.09 billion, and other petroleum products, climbing from $279 million to $1.56 billion.</p> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Other key imports included generators, transformers and accessories, up from $95 million to $873 million; vegetables and preparations, increasing from $278 million to $302 million; wine, up from $159 million to $287 million; industrial organic chemicals, rising from $204 million to $306 million; stone, sand, cement and lime, decreasing from $246 million to $194 million between 2007 and 2008; and other industrial machinery, up from $142 million in 2003 to $395 million in 2008.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Like imports, US exports to Spain also rose from 2003-2008, doubling from $5.9 billion to $12 billion. And like imports, the leading export was pharmaceutical preparations, rising from $279 million to $2.2 billion.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Other key American exports included sorghum, barley and oats, up from $43 million to $279 million; nuts, increasing from $230 million to $407 million; petroleum products, up from $79 million to $217 million; chemicals (organic), rising from $166 million to $487 million; logs and lumber, dropping from $185 million to $131 million; telecommunications equipment, jumping from $108 million to $249 million; medicinal equipment, leaping from $243 million to $409 million; and civilian aircraft, up from $144 million to $800 million.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> The US sold $1.1 billion of defense articles and services to Spain in 2007. From 1997 to 2000, Spain was the second largest recipient of US arms sales among European countries, buying approximately $1.3 billion.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> The US does not give foreign aid to Spain.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> <a href="http://www.census.gov/foreign-trade/statistics/product/enduse/imports/c4700.html"><font color="#0000ff">Imports from Spain</font></a></div> <div> <a href="http://www.census.gov/foreign-trade/statistics/product/enduse/exports/c4700.html"><font color="#0000ff">Exports to Spain</font></a></div> <div> <a href="http://www.state.gov/t/pm/64843.htm"><font color="#0000ff">Spain: Security Assistance</font></a></div> <div> <a href="http://fas.org/sgp/crs/weapons/RL33217.pdf"><font color="#0000ff">U.S. Arms Sales: Agreements with and Deliveries to Major Clients, 1997-2004</font></a> (by Richard Grimmett, Congressional Research Service)</div> <div> <b>&nbsp;</b></div>
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Controversies
<p> &nbsp;<b>Spanish Government Helped US with Renditions</b></p> <div> Allegations surfaced in December 2008 that the former conservative government of Spain gave permission to the United States to secretly fly terrorist suspects via Spain to the prison camp in Guant&aacute;namo, Cuba. Conservative leader Mariano Rajoy denied knowing anything about such flights, while the left-leaning daily <i>El Pais</i> reported that a 2002 Foreign Ministry document on the flights had mysteriously disappeared. The news resulted in former conservative foreign minister Josep Pique being booed by a group of students who slammed him as a &ldquo;war criminal,&rdquo; &ldquo;killer,&rdquo; &ldquo;fascist&rdquo; and &ldquo;torturer.&rdquo;</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> <i>El Pais</i> earlier claimed that the government of former conservative prime minister Jose Maria Aznar had given permission in 2002 to US planes taking Taliban and al-Qaeda prisoners from Afghanistan to Guantanamo to secretly make stopovers at two US military bases in Spain.</div> <div> The conservative opposition responded by claiming that nine out of 11 flights organized by the Central Intelligence Agency took place under Socialist Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero, who took office in 2004.</div> <div> <a href="http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/europe/spain/3538908/Spain-authorised-CIA-rendition-flights.html"><font color="#0000ff">Spain &#39;authorised&#39; CIA rendition flights</font></a> (by Fiona Govan, Telegraph)</div> <div> <a href="http://www.monstersandcritics.com/news/europe/news/article_1446380.php"><font color="#0000ff">Controversy continues in Spain over CIA flights </font></a>(Deutsche Presse-Agentur)</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> <b>US Upset over Spanish Arms Sales to Venezuela</b></div> <div> Spain announced in 2005 plans to sell arms to Venezuela, much to the displeasure of the Bush administration. US officials claimed that the exports might upset Latin American security. The military hardware included a dozen military transport aircraft and eight naval patrol vessels to Venezuela. Washington responded by claiming it had the right to nullify the sales to Venezuela because the planes contained US components. (US law requires foreign governments to obtain permission from Washington to export arms incorporating US technology or parts)</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> State Department spokesperson Sean McCormack criticized the Spanish arms package as &ldquo;not consistent with US foreign policy interests.&rdquo; The United States branded Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez as an undemocratic and volatile leader and charged that recent Venezuelan arms buys exceeded the country&rsquo;s defense needs. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld also criticized Spain&#39;s decision to sell military planes and boats to Venezuela. &quot;I personally think that Spain is making a mistake,&quot; Rumsfeld said. &quot;I guess time will tell. The problem is that, if one waits until time tells, it can be an unhappy story.&quot;</div> <div> <a href="http://www.iht.com/articles/2005/04/06/news/spain.php"><font color="#0000ff">U.S. Chides Spain on Arms Sales to Venezuela</font></a> (New York Times)</div> <div> <a href="http://www.armscontrol.org/act/2006_03/MARCH-LatinArms"><font color="#0000ff">Latin American Arms Sales Moving Forward</font></a> (by Wade Boese, Arms Control Association)</div>
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Human Rights
<p> &nbsp;In recent decades, Spain has generally not suffered from major human rights violations, although violations do occur on a case-by-case basis. Threats to human rights also come from the terrorist group Basque Fatherland and Liberty (ETA) and various societal problems, such as discrimination against minorities, domestic violence, and human trafficking.</p> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> <b>Civil Rights</b></div> <div> Spanish law provides for freedom of speech, freedom of assembly, and freedom of religion. There are no restrictions to free speech, the Internet, and other types of media, nor were there any complaints against violations of the freedom of assembly. While the government has generally respected the right for freedom of religion, the Roman Catholic Church has the benefit of a close relationship with the government. For example, the tax system allows for citizens, regardless of denomination, to choose to donate part of their taxes to the Roman Catholic Church. Schools run by the Church are also partly directly funded by the government. Other religious communities, such as the Jewish, Muslim, and Protestant communities, also enjoy tax benefits from having <i>notorio arraigo</i> (or &ldquo;deeply rooted&rdquo; traditional) status, and having individual agreements with the government, although not to the extent as that of the Catholic Church. As of December 2008, the parliament is considering opening up tax benefits to all religions achieving <i>notorio arraigo</i> status. Jewish and Muslim communities have also reported difficulty in obtaining permits, etc. to establish new places of worship due to societal prejudice against their religions.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> <b>Discrimination against Minorities </b></div> <div> An influx of immigrants has caused friction within Spanish society and a rise in prejudice against religious minorities, particularly Muslim and Jewish communities. This was usually manifested in graffiti and other vandalism on religious buildings, such as mosques and Jewish institutions. For example, no arrests have been made for the vandalism done to the Colon Park mosque in Corboba in 2006, the defacing on the Synagogue of Cordoba and the Casa Safarad (Sephardic House) with anti-Semitic and neo-Nazi graffiti and threats written in German in 2008, or the defacing of a statue of the renowned 12th century Sephardic rabbi, Maimonides in 2008. In February 2008, six people, all members of the &ldquo;Younger Workers Front,&rdquo; attacked immigrants in Catalonia. They were arrested, tried, and convicted.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Discrimination and violence against ethnic minorities have also been cited, but the Spanish government is putting in effort to solve this problem. Fundacion Secretariado Gitano (FSG), a domestic NGO, has reported that the Roma population in Spain continues &ldquo;to face discrimination in access to employment, housing, and education&rdquo; and that they &ldquo;experienced substantially higher rates of unemployment, poverty, and illiteracy than the general population.&rdquo;</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Gay marriage is legal in Spain.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> <b>Women&rsquo;s Rights</b></div> <div> Spanish law provides for the equal treatment of women and men. Societal violations against women&rsquo;s rights continue to be a problem, including the trafficking of women for sexual exploitation, domestic abuse and rape, sexual harassment, and female genital mutilation. Government institutions are in place to combat these problems.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> <b>Torture and Mistreatment of Prisoners</b></div> <div> The Spanish government prohibits the mistreatment and torture of prisoners and provides for a judiciary for fair public trials. While the government has generally abided by these laws, there have been reported cases of police mistreatment. One such case was reported in June 2007 by Amnesty International (AI). In Barcelona, a woman was arrested for trying to intervene with the violent arrest of another person. After handcuffing and putting her in a police station cell, four police officers beat her severely, which resulted in multiple bruises on her body. The next month, the woman was fined for resisting arrest. Other complaints of mistreatment and abuse have also been filed, including six complaints in 2006 and 2007 against Catalonian regional police officers for &ldquo;subjecting detainees to degrading treatment in Barcelona&rsquo;s main police station of Les Corts.&rdquo; In 2008, Council of Europe&#39;s Committee for the Prevention of Torture (CPT) released its annual report stating that 610 individuals in 2006 filed mistreatment complaints against security forces, 35 less than in 2005.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> <b>ETA</b></div> <div> In 2006, the ETA withdrew from its permanent ceasefire and recommenced terrorist attacks in Spain. In 2008, reports of ETA terrorist activity included a car bomb &ldquo;outside the civil guard headquarters in Durango, injuring two civil guards and causing significant property damage,&rdquo; and an attempt &ldquo;to kill the bodyguard of a Basque politician by planting a bomb on his car; the bodyguard escaped the burning car and survived.&rdquo;</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> In its annual report, Reporters without Borders criticized ETA &ldquo;for threatening journalists&rdquo; and citing &ldquo;several journalists in Spain required personal protection due to these threats.&rdquo;</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> <a href="http://www.state.gov/g/drl/rls/hrrpt/2007/100586.htm"><font color="#0000ff">U.S. State Department</font></a></div> <div> <a href="http://hrw.org/doc/?t=europe&amp;c=spain"><font color="#0000ff">Human Rights Watch</font></a></div> <div> <a href="http://www.amnesty.org/en/region/europe-and-central-asia/western-europe/spain"><font color="#0000ff">Amnesty International</font></a></div>
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Debate
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Past Ambassadors
<p> &nbsp;John Jay<br /> State of Residency: New York<br /> Title: Minister Plenipotentiary<br /> Appointment: Sep 29, 1779<br /> Note: Proceeded to post but was not formally received at court; left post about May 20, 1782.</p> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> William Carmichael<br /> Appointment: Apr 20, 1790<br /> Presentation of Credentials: [see note below]<br /> Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Sep 5, 1794<br /> Note: No report has been found concerning Carmichael&rsquo;s presentation of credentials as Charg&eacute; d&rsquo;Affaires en titre; he had already been received as Charg&eacute; d&rsquo;Affaires ad interim, Feb 20, 1783.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> William Short<br /> Appointment: May 28, 1794<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Sep 7, 1794<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Nov 1, 1795</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> David Humphreys<br /> Appointment: May 20, 1796<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Sep 10, 1797<br /> Termination of Mission: Probably presented recall soon after Dec 28, 1801</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Charles Pinckney<br /> Appointment: Jun 6, 1801<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Jan-Mar. 1802<br /> Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Oct 25, 1804<br /> Note: Commissioned during a recess of the Senate; recommissioned after confirmation on Jan 26, 1802.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Note: George W. Erving served as Charg&eacute; d&rsquo;Affaires ad interim, Oct 1805-Feb 1810.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> James Bowdoin<br /> Appointment: Nov 22, 1804<br /> Note: Did not proceed to post.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> George W. Erving<br /> Appointment: Aug 10, 1814<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Aug 24, 1816<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post May 15, 1819<br /> Note: Commissioned during a recess of the Senate. Nomination confirmed by the Senate, Oct 3, 1814; commission following confirmation not of record.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> John Forsyth<br /> Appointment: Feb 16, 1819<br /> Presentation of Credentials: May 18, 1819<br /> Termination of Mission: Had farewell audience, Mar 2, 1823</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Hugh Nelson<br /> Appointment: Jan 15, 1823<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Dec 4, 1823<br /> Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Jul 10, 1825</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Alexander Hill Everett<br /> Appointment: Mar 9, 1825<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Sep 4, 1825<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Aug 1, 1829</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Cornelius P. Van Ness<br /> Appointment: Jun 1, 1829<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Dec 9, 1829<br /> Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Dec 21, 1836<br /> Note: Commissioned during a recess of the Senate; recommissioned after confirmation on Feb 10, 1830.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> William T. Barry<br /> Appointment: Apr 10, 1835<br /> Note: Took oath of office, but died en route to post. Commissioned during a recess of the Senate.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> John H. Eaton<br /> Appointment: Mar 16, 1836<br /> Presentation of Credentials: [see note below]<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post May 1, 1840<br /> Note: No report has been found of presentation of credentials, which probably took place about Feb 1, 1837.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Aaron Vail<br /> Appointment: May 20, 1840<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Nov 5, 1840<br /> Termination of Mission: Superseded, Aug 1, 1842</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Washington Irving<br /> Appointment: Feb 10, 1842<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Aug 1, 1842<br /> Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Jul 29, 1846</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Romulus M. Saunders<br /> Appointment: Feb 25, 1846<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Jul 31, 1846<br /> Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Sep 24, 1849</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Daniel M. Barringer<br /> Appointment: Jun 18, 1849<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Oct 24, 1849<br /> Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Sep 4, 1853<br /> Note: Commissioned during a recess of the Senate; recommissioned after confirmation on Sep 28, 1850.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Pierre Soule<br /> Appointment: Apr 7, 1853<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Oct 24, 1853<br /> Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Feb 1, 1855</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> John C. Breckinridge<br /> Appointment: Jan 16, 1855<br /> Note: Declined appointment.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Augustus C. Dodge<br /> Appointment: Feb 9, 1855<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Jun 17, 1855<br /> Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Mar 12, 1859</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> William Preston<br /> Appointment: Dec 15, 1858<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Mar 12, 1859<br /> Termination of Mission: Presented recall, May 24, 1861</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Cassius M. Clay<br /> Appointment: Apr 14, 1861<br /> Note: Declined appointment.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Carl Schurz<br /> Appointment: Mar 28, 1861<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Jul 13, 1861<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Dec 18, 1861</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Gustavus Koerner<br /> Appointment: Jun 14, 1862<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Nov 4, 1862<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Jul 20, 1864</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> John P. Hale<br /> Appointment: Mar 10, 1865<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Sep 30, 1865<br /> Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Jul 29, 1869</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> William S. Rosecrans<br /> Note: Not commissioned; nomination tabled by the Senate.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Henry S. Sandford<br /> Note: Not commissioned; nomination tabled by the Senate.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Daniel E. Sickles<br /> Appointment: May 15, 1869<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Jul 29, 1869<br /> Termination of Mission: Presented new credentials on Feb 2, 1871, after change of government; transmitted recall by note Jan 31, 1874<br /> Note: Commissioned during a recess of the Senate; recommissioned after confirmation on Mar 16, 1870.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Caleb Cushing<br /> Appointment: Jan 6, 1874<br /> Presentation of Credentials: May 30, 1874<br /> Termination of Mission: Presented new credentials on Mar 10, 1875, after restoration of monarchy; left post Apr 9, 1877</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> James Russell Lowell<br /> Appointment: Jun 11, 1877<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Aug 18, 1877<br /> Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Mar 2, 1880<br /> Note: Commissioned during a recess of the Senate; recommissioned after confirmation on Oct 30, 1877.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Lucius Fairchild<br /> Appointment: Jan 26, 1880<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Mar 31, 1880<br /> Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Dec 20, 1881</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Hannibal Hamlin<br /> State of Residency: Maine<br /> Title: Envoy Extraordinary and Minister Plenipotentiary<br /> Appointment: Jun 30, 1881<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Dec 20, 1881<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Oct 17, 1882<br /> Note: Commissioned during a recess of the Senate; recommissioned after confirmation on Oct 13, 1881.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> John W. Foster<br /> Appointment: Feb 27, 1883<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Jun 16, 1883<br /> Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Aug 28, 1885</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Jabez L.M. Curry<br /> Appointment: Oct 7, 1885<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Dec 22, 1885<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Jul 5, 1888<br /> Note: Commissioned during a recess of the Senate; recommissioned after confirmation on Jan 13, 1886.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Perry Belmont<br /> Appointment: Nov 17, 1888<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Feb 13, 1889<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post May 1, 1889<br /> Note: Commissioned during a recess of the Senate; recommissioned after confirmation on Dec 13, 1888.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Thomas W. Palmer<br /> Appointment: Mar 12, 1889<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Jun 17, 1889<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Apr 19, 1890</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> E. Burd Grubb<br /> Appointment: Sep 27, 1890<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Dec 23, 1890<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post May 26, 1892</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> A. Loudon Snowden<br /> Appointment: Jul 22, 1892<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Oct 6, 1892<br /> Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Jun 3, 1893</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Hannis Taylor<br /> Appointment: Apr 8, 1893<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Jul 1, 1893<br /> Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Sep 13, 1897</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Stewart L. Woodford<br /> Appointment: Jun 19, 1897<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Sep 13, 1897<br /> Termination of Mission: Spain severed diplomatic relations with the U.S., Apr 21, 1898<br /> Note: Woodford left post Apr 21, 1898. The United States declared war on Spain as of that date by Act of Congress approved Apr 25, 1898.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Bellamy Storer<br /> Appointment: Apr 12, 1899<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Jun 16, 1899<br /> Termination of Mission: Presented recall, Dec 10, 1902<br /> Note: Commissioned during a recess of the Senate; recommissioned after confirmation on Dec 14, 1899.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Arthur S. Hardy<br /> Appointment: Sep 26, 1902<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Mar 2, 1903<br /> Termination of Mission: Presented recall, May 1, 1905<br /> Note: Commissioned during a recess of the Senate; recommissioned after confirmation on Dec 8, 1902.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> William Miller Collier<br /> Appointment: Mar 8, 1905<br /> Presentation of Credentials: May 15, 1905<br /> Termination of Mission: Superseded, Jun 9, 1909</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Henry Clay Ide<br /> Appointment: Apr 1, 1909<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Jun 9, 1909<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Jul 8, 1913</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Joseph E. Willard<br /> Appointment: Jul 28, 1913<br /> Note: Took oath of office, but did not proceed to post under this appointment.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Joseph E. Willard<br /> Appointment: Sep 10, 1913<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Oct 31, 1913<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Jul 7, 1921</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Cyrus E. Woods<br /> Appointment: Jun 24, 1921<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Oct 14, 1921<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Apr 18, 1923</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Alexander P. Moore<br /> Appointment: Mar 3, 1923<br /> Presentation of Credentials: May 16, 1923<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Dec 20, 1925</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Ogden H. Hammond<br /> Appointment: Dec 21, 1925<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Mar 26, 1926<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Oct 13, 1929</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Irwin B. Laughlin<br /> Appointment: Oct 16, 1929<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Dec 24, 1929<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Apr 12, 1933</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Claude G. Bowers<br /> Appointment: Apr 6, 1933<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Jun 1, 1933<br /> Termination of Mission: Had final interview, Feb 2, 1939<br /> Note: Bowers was resident during the last part of his Ambassadorship at St. Jean de Luz in France; he left that post Jun 14, 1939, his appointment having terminated May 14, 1939. The Embassy had meanwhile been re-established in Spain on Apr 13, 1939, when H. Freeman Matthews had been received at Burgos as Charg&eacute; d&rsquo;Affaires ad interim.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Alexander W. Weddell<br /> Appointment: May 3, 1939<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Jun 15, 1939<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Feb 7, 1942</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Carlton J. H. Hayes<br /> Appointment: May 2, 1942<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Jun 9, 1942<br /> Termination of Mission: Left Spain, Jan 18, 1945</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Norman Armour<br /> Appointment: Dec 15, 1944<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Mar 24, 1945<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Dec 1, 1945</div> <div> Note: During 1945-1951 the following officers served as Charg&eacute; d&rsquo;Affaires ad interim: Philip W. Bonsal (Mar 1946-Jun 1947) and Paul T. Culbertson (Jun 1947-Dec 1950).</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Stanton Griffis<br /> Appointment: Feb 1, 1951<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Mar 1, 1951<br /> Termination of Mission: Relinquished charge Jan 28, 1952</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Lincoln MacVeagh<br /> Appointment: Feb 21, 1952<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Mar 27, 1952<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Mar 4, 1953</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> James Clement Dunn<br /> Appointment: Feb 27, 1953<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Apr 9, 1953<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Feb 9, 1955</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> John Lodge<br /> Appointment: Jan 22, 1955<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Mar 24, 1955<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Apr 13, 1961</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Anthony J. Drexel Biddle, Jr.<br /> Appointment: Mar 29, 1961<br /> Presentation of Credentials: May 25, 1961<br /> Termination of Mission: Left Spain, Oct 12, 1961</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Ellis O. Briggs<br /> Note: Not commissioned; nomination withdrawn before the Senate acted upon it.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Robert F. Woodward<br /> Appointment: Apr 7, 1962<br /> Presentation of Credentials: May 10, 1962<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Feb 1, 1965</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Angier Biddle Duke<br /> Appointment: Mar 11, 1965<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Apr 1, 1965<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Mar 30, 1968</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Frank E. McKinney<br /> Appointment: May 11, 1968<br /> Note: Took oath of office, but did not proceed to post under this appointment.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Robert F. Wagner<br /> Appointment: Jun 24, 1968<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Jul 4, 1968<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Mar 7, 1969</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Robert C. Hill<br /> Appointment: May 1, 1969<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Jun 12, 1969<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Jan 12, 1972</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Horacio Rivero<br /> Appointment: Sep 11, 1972<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Oct 11, 1972<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Nov 26, 1974</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Peter M. Flanigan<br /> Note: Not commissioned; nomination of Sep 17, 1974 was not acted upon by the Senate.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Wells Stabler<br /> Appointment: Feb 20, 1975<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Mar 13, 1975<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post May 4, 1978</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Terence A. Todman<br /> Appointment: May 25, 1978<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Jul 20, 1978<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Aug 8, 1983</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Thomas Ostrom Enders<br /> Appointment: Aug 5, 1983<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Sep 15, 1983<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Jul 6, 1986</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Reginald Bartholomew<br /> Appointment: Aug 18, 1986<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Sep 17, 1986<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Mar 12, 1989</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Joseph Zappala<br /> Appointment: Oct 10, 1989<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Oct 16, 1989<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Jun 4, 1992</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Richard Goodwin Capen, Jr.<br /> Appointment: Jun 15, 1992<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Jul 8, 1992<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Feb 17, 1993</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Richard N. Gardner<br /> Appointment: Sep 16, 1993<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Nov 4, 1993<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Jul 12, 1997</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Edward L. Romero<br /> Appointment: Jun 29, 1998<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Jun 30, 1998<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Jun 1, 2001<br /> Note: Also accredited to Andorra; resident at Madrid.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> George L. Argyros, Sr.<br /> Appointment: Nov 20, 2001<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Dec 13, 2001<br /> Termination of Mission: Left post Nov 21, 2004<br /> Note: Also accredited to Andorra; resident at Madrid.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> Eduardo Aguirre<br /> Appointment: Jun 21, 2005<br /> Presentation of Credentials: Jun 29, 2005<br /> Termination of Mission: January 2009<br /> <b>Note: </b>Also accredited to Andorra; resident at Madrid.</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <div> &nbsp;</div> <p> <a href="http://www.state.gov/r/pa/ho/po/com/11278.htm"><span><font color="#0000ff">Former U.S. Ambassadors to Spain</font></span></a></p>
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Spain's Ambassador to the U.S.
ambassador-image Gil-Casares, Ramón

The new ambassador to the United States from Spain is a career diplomat who has previously served in the U.S. and whose career has been tied to the political fortunes of Spain’s right-of-center political party, the People’s Party (PP), which won Spain’s most recent national elections in 2011. Appointed to his post in Washington in April 2012, Ramón Gil-Casares Satrústegui, currently Spanish ambassador to Sudan and South Sudan, replaces Ambassador Jorge Dezcallar, who has held the post in Washington since July 2008.

 

Born in Madrid on October 26, 1953, Gil-Casares was the son of a Franco-era diplomat and a childhood friend of former Spanish Prime Minister José María Aznar, who was a classmate at the Colegio Santa María del Pilar, a private school in Madrid, until age 14. Gil-Casares earned an undergraduate degree in Philosophy and Law at the Universidad Complutense de Madrid in 1982.

 

Gil-Casares joined the Spanish Foreign Service in 1982, and had early career postings at the Spanish embassies in Equatorial Guinea, Uruguay and the Philippines. In 1990 he was appointed Deputy Director General of Cooperatives at the Spanish Institute for Development Cooperation, and later was deputy consul general of Spain in New York. In May 1996, he was named Director of the International Security Department in Prime Minister Aznar’s cabinet, and later also served as secretary of the Foreign Policy Council, a body formed in July 2000 to coordinate the activities of different ministries and agencies abroad. Gil-Casares became Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs in July 2002, serving until the April 19, 2004, election victory of the Spanish Socialist Workers’ Party, which ousted Aznar’s PP from power.

 

In July 2005, the new Spanish government sent Gil-Casares to serve as ambassador to South Africa, residing in Pretoria with concurrent accreditation to the Comoros, Mauritius, Madagascar and Lesotho. Gil-Casares stayed in Africa for his next posting as ambassador to Sudan, where he has served since March 25, 2011; he also became the first Spanish ambassador to South Sudan on January 20, 2012, although he remained based in Khartoum. Additionally, he served from October 2008 to March 2011 as an advisor to the Foreign Ministry’s Directorate General for Africa.

-Matt Bewig

 

Ramón Gil-Casares, embajador en EE. UU. (Heraldo)

Ramón Gil-Casares, nuevo embajador en Estados Unidos (by José Ángel Jarne Navalón, EPCPC)

Gil Casares será embajador en EE. UU. y Eduardo Gutiérrez, en el Vaticano (by Luis Ayllón, ABC.es)

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Spain's Embassy Web Site in the U.S.
<p> &nbsp;<a href="http://www.maec.es/Subwebs/Embajadas/Washington/en/Home/Paginas/Home.aspx"><font color="#0000ff">Spain&rsquo;s Embassy in the U.S.</font></a></p>
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Comments

Tom Martin, Albuquerque, NM 4 years ago
I am saddened to learn that in the face of a dwindling population in Spain that your leadership has opted to broaden the accessibility of abortions in your country. I shall be sure to avoid Spain and travel to Europe overall because you idiots are exterminating the rich cultures that brought us to the wondrous age in which we live. I cannot think of anywhere in Europe that respects life as taught by my Catholic Church. I pray that God has mercy on your immortal souls. Obama = death....

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U.S. Ambassador to Spain

Costos, James
ambassador-image

The bipartisan practice of rewarding major campaign donors with ambassadorships to favored destinations continues with President Barack Obama’s announcement that he will nominate James Costos, an HBO executive to be the next ambassador to Spain. Costos donated $5,000 to, and bundled donations of at least $500,000 for, Obama’s 2012 presidential run, If confirmed by the Senate, Costos would succeed Alan D. Solomont, who has served as Washington’s man in Madrid since December 2009.

 

Born circa 1963, Costos earned a B.A. in Political Science at the University of Massachusetts in 1985. Commencing his career as a fashion and retail executive in New York, Costos was vice president and director of retail for Tod’s of Italy from 1991 to 2001, and then for Hermes of Paris, for whom he was in charge of operations, marketing and brand development for the company’s U.S. stores from 2001 to 2002.

 

Costos migrated to film and television, working as a senior executive of Revolution Studios in charge of corporate partnerships and promotions from 2002 to 2004. He then founded Eight Cylinders Inc, an entertainment marketing firm. In July 2006, HBO hired Costos to head its new global licensing and marketing division.

 

A Democrat, Costos has donated heavily to Democratic candidates and organizations for the past several years, including $62,000 to the Democratic National Committee since 2009, $1,000 to Hillary Clinton in 2007, and $4,000 to former Vermont Gov. Howard Dean in 2003. He also donated $2,500 to Republican Sen. Susan Collins of Maine in 2012.

 

Costos is in a long-term relationship with interior designer Michael Smith, who was selected by Michelle Obama in 2009 to redecorate the residential quarters of the White House, and later designed a makeover of the Oval Office.

-Matt Bewig

 

To Learn More:

Obama to Name HBO Executive as Ambassador to Spain (by Tina Daunt, Hollywood Reporter)

Obama Nominates Two More Openly Gay Ambassadors (by Sunnivie Brydum, The Advocate)

Michael S. Smith’s Manhattan Penthouse (by Judith Thurman, Architectural Digest)

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Previous U.S. Ambassador to Spain

Aguirre, Eduardo
ambassador-image

A native of Cuba, Eduardo Aguirre, Jr. began serving as the US Ambassador to Spain and Andorra on June 24, 2005. He earned a Bachelor of Science degree form Louisiana State University and graduated from the American Bankers Association’s National Commercial Lending Graduate School.
 
Aguirre was president of Bank of America’s International Private Bank and worked there for 24 years. He then served as vice chairman, chief operating officer and acting chairman of the Export-Import Bank of the United States from 2001 to 2002. Aguirre served for two and a half years as the first director of the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), an under secretary rank position in the Department of Homeland Security, before being selected ambassador to Spain and Andorra.
 
He was appointed, by then Texas Governor George W. Bush, to the Board of Regents of the University of Houston System for a six-year term, serving from 1996-1998 as chairman. According to OpenSecrets.com, Aguirre donated $500 to Bush’s presidential campaign in 1999. In 2000, he donated $1,000 to the Republication National Committee, and in 2001, Aguirre donated $850 to the RNC/Republican National State Elections Committee.
 
Aguirre was also appointed to the National Commission for Employment Policy by President George H. W. Bush. The Supreme Court of Texas appointed him to the State Bar as a non-attorney director. Additionally, he has served on other public, professional and civic boards, including the Texas Children’s Hospital, Texas Bar Foundation, Operación Pedro Pan Foundation, Bankers Association for Finance and Trade, and the Houston chapters of the American Red Cross and the Salvation Army.
 
 
 

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