With the decision given in favour of developers to build a hotel and housing complex on UNESCO protected land beside Playa de Valdevaqueros, Costa de la Luz, Andalucia, some protesters have taken up residence on the land in a bid to stop the building work going ahead in what some might call ‘Occupy Valdevaqueros”.
Although it’s very early days and the decision hasn’t been given at government level, the protesters are installing themselves in their camper vans to keep ahead of the construction companies who will undoubtedly give little consideration to the environment with their heavy lorries transporting materials, industrial machinery, cranes and volume of noise.
Unfortunately some very biased media outlets are using the occupation of Valdevaqueros as a way to sway public opinion in favour of the hotel complex by reporting that the protesters are ruining the landscape and if the hotel complex isn’t built there will be an unwanted influx of traveller types and transients who do not contribute to the economy.
Their reports are of course wide of the mark but this kind of propaganda is to be expected in modern times when so many wars are fought and won through the media.
As with any ‘occupy’ movement there will be unwanted elements and ‘cointelpro’ agents; people who are on the payroll of interested parties whose sole aim is to cause divides in the protest movements and discredit them by making them look like hooligans or worse.
The saying goes that the path to hell is paved with good intentions but in this case, even though premature, the occupation of Valdevaqueros is a valid one provided the participants respect the land they are trying to protect.
It’s going to be a long battle and the PP Mayor of Tarifa, Juan Andres Gil, is not backing down from his position, stating that the proposed hotel complex at Valdevaqueros will create sustainable jobs and a better taxable income for the local economy. Construction jobs are never sustainable and when the complex is finished the work ends.
The ‘occupiers’ will have to be extremely careful in their conduct. Their cause is a valid one and hopes are that they are successful with their protests. Time will tell.
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