Spain’s National Day Salutes Columbus With Little Opposition

A paratrooper carries a Spanish flag during a military parade to celebrate a holiday known as 'Dia de la Hispanidad' or Hispanic Day in Madrid, Spain, Tuesday, Oct. 12, 2021. Spain commemorates Christopher Columbus' arrival in the New World and also Spain's armed forces day. (AP Photo/Manu Fernandez)

(AP) — Spain has once again marked its national day with pomp, pageantry and a military parade that overshadowed protests against what some see as a misguided celebration of Spanish colonial history.

Cavalry members escorted King Felipe VI and Queen Letizia to a platform where the royal couple watched more than 2,600 troops march along a flag-lined Madrid boulevard on Tuesday.

The Día de la Fiesta Nacional marks explorer Christopher Columbus’ Oct. 12, 1492 sighting of land while traveling under Spanish royal sponsorship in search of what came to be known as the Americas. That event heralded centuries of colonization of the Americas by European nations while bringing violence, disease and death to indigenous people.


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