The New York Times
November 19, 1998

          New Mexico Courts Spain as Both Sides Hope to Profit

               MADRID -- Four hundred years after Spain conquered New Mexico, the state this week sent
                its first trade mission here, along with American Indian religious dancers, to show there are
          no hard feelings.

          In fact, ties between New Mexico and Spain have been on the mend since last April, when a
          Spanish official visited the state and met with American Indians whose ancestors suffered during the
          conquest by 500 Spaniards in 1598.

          Both sides sensed opportunity in the 400th anniversary, deciding it was time to set a new course
          between Spain and New Mexico, which belonged to the Spanish Crown until 1821 and which
          gained statehood in 1912.

          The 140-member trade and cultural delegation, among the largest ever sent by any American state to
          Spain, comes just months after the arrival of the new American Ambassador, Edward L. Romero, a
          Democrat and a New Mexico businessman who traces his lineage back four centuries to a village
          near Madrid.

          "If we're not able to make inroads into Spain with him being Ambassador, I don't know how we
          ever will," said New Mexico's Governor, Gary Johnson, a Republican.

          Spain has rolled out the red carpet for the New Mexico delegation, part of its plan to build ties with
          all of its former territories, whether in Latin America, which has long received Madrid's attention, or
          in certain parts of the United States, where Spain is taking a closer look at the Hispanic traditions.

          "Spain, at the end of the 20th century, with a bigger presence in the world, and more economic
          capacity and enthusiasm, wants to recuperate contact with those areas," said José Luis Solano, a
          Foreign Ministry spokesman.

          Spain has worked hard since last spring to gain the confidence of New Mexico's Indians. Projects
          under discussion include assisting in the restoration of Pueblo Indian villages or exchanging teachers.
          The effort seems to be paying off.

          "We cannot teach our children to hate. We have to establish a positive relationship for the next 400
          years," said Earl Salazar, Governor of the San Juan Pueblo, whose dancers will perform at a
          ceremony this week in Madrid and in the village of Ambassador Romero's ancestors to bless the
          new relationship with Spain.

          Madrid officials would like to be involved in New Mexico's $45 million Hispanic Cultural Center,
          which is scheduled to open in Albuquerque in December 1999. It will showcase Hispanic fine arts,
          literature and even cuisine.

          "We couldn't stay out of an international Hispanic Cultural Center, could we?" said María Bassols, a
          Spanish diplomat. But she added, "We don't want big cooperation projects that will fall to nothing.
          We want little things that will grow."

          Romero said Spain appeared to have a two-track approach with New Mexico, wooing the Indians
          and also the Hispanic residents in the state -- like him and his wife -- who have long been proud of
          their direct Spanish roots.

          "I think they're playing up to both cultures," Romero said. "But it's hard to separate Spanish history in
          New Mexico from Native American history. A lot of Spaniards married Native Americans."

          The state's population of 1.75 million is 40 percent Hispanic and 10 percent American Indian, and
          many of the latter have Spanish surnames.

          During the visit, New Mexico's Indians, including 19 Pueblo tribes, hope to sell to Spain's largest
          department store chain, El Corte Inglés, at least $600,000 of their hand-made jewelry, while also
          courting other retailers.