It's neither quick nor easy to create a new nation. Today, a majority of the members of the Catalan Parliament declared independence from Spain, making today the day that will be celebrated for generations to come. This follows a referendum vote nearly a month ago which was also overwhelmingly in favor of secession.
The Rajoy government of Spain promptly deposed Catalan President Carles Puigdemont and his cabinet and disbanded the Catalan Parliament. Madrid will seek to assert direct financial, civic, and law enforcement authority over the region.
Thus far the fledgling republic is on its own, with no recognition of statehood by any other nation. Germany, France, the UK, and the United States have all sided with Spain. The road ahead for Catalonia is fraught with peril, and the outcome far from certain, but I admire the courage of any people who are willing to "take this step on our feet, with our heads held high. Not on our knees like subjects, but as free people without fear."
Godspeed to the Catalans, for they will surely need it.