Analysis FAES The normalization of the coup d’état

Pedro Sánchez and the government he presides over –the government of Spain– have crossed a border that no ruler had crossed even in the worst moments of our democratic history. He has left behind forty years of Constitution, of the rule of law, of Spaniards’ national unity in freedom and equality and has entered the dark territory of the Catalan ethnicist supremacism personified in his partner Quim Torra to normalize the coup d'état that secessionists perpetrated a year ago and for which those responsible are going to be judged by the Supreme Court.

Sánchez has consented to the foreignization of the Spanish Government in Catalonia. Firstly, with the decision to hold a Council of Ministers in Barcelona for which he considered it necessary to displace thousands of agents of the National Police because, apparently, the 17,000 mossos d´esquadra were not reliable to guarantee the security of the meeting. Then, forcing the deployment of a security device that, as expected, the Generalitat has used to accentuate the disruption of citizen life to remind Barcelona the consequences of having the Government of Spain in the city. Third –and this is the most serious–, by taking on the staging of a bilateral summit, a meeting from government to government, including the issuing of a joint communiqué, which is an international practice par excellence.

What this obscene "joint communiqué" says is, unfortunately, revealing of the attitude and disposition with which the President of the Government has gone to Barcelona. Paradoxically, what its editors have wanted to hide is what stands out most in a piece that traps Sánchez, the Government and the Spanish Socialist Workers Party in the weakness of their opportunism and in their surrendered appeasement. Sharing with a contrasting racist xenophobe like Torra that the problem now is to "un-Francoise" is a grotesque sarcasm. What the communiqué says and what it omits indicates where things are going. To begin with, the pressure on the Supreme Court, a pressure that members of the government and other socialist leaders have not stopped exerting, including Sánchez, who as president does not see the crime of rebellion that he did see with meridian clarity as a leader in the opposition. And on the above, a media and academic strategy to convince us that self-determination, some kind of self-determination, does fit in the Constitution.

According to what Torra and Sánchez agreed, what is happening in Catalonia is a political conflict over its future in which the Spanish Constitution does not exist and which should not be "judicialized." The problem is not the exclusion of non-nationalists, the breakdown of legality or the breakdown of Catalan society but the search for a so-called "broadly supported political proposal." With all this, Sanchez, the Government and the Spanish Socialist Workers Party have given their political absolution to the coup and accept –no matter what they say– the non-existent right to self-determination, in the absence of finding a formula to give it to the nationalists. Not a word for the Catalonia that took to the streets in defence of its civic rights and its Catalan and Spanish identity. And of course, not even the slightest communication with the constitutionalist parties, which continue to be the first party in parliamentary representation at the national level (PP) and the first party in Catalonia (Ciudadanos). A lot of ode to dialogue, but only with those who a year ago ran over the political representation of the Catalans in the ignominious session of 6 and 7 September to, from there, enter into a coup strategy that has not stopped.

The memory of a Socialist Party that had to dismiss Sánchez because the party refused to let Sánchez do what he is doing now is still very much alive. It was a time when the PSOE maintained springs of democratic health and self-esteem as a governing party for many years in Spain. That is why it disqualified its secretary general for wanting to form a "Frankenstein government" with those who "wanted to break Spain". That's where he is, but now it's not just about the intentions of a Sánchez who ended up being dismissed, but also about the politics of his Government and his Party. No matter how much the socialist barons insist on whitewashing Sánchez –after the Andalusian elections showed them what could happen to them, of course– there is little room for their rhetoric. The Socialists are fooled if they believe that these images of the President of the Government and Torra has been dissolved in the Christmas atmosphere. They deceive themselves if they believe that the vast majority of Spaniards, when the time comes, are going to be indifferent towards the future of their unity and their citizenship. And the constitutional forces would be mistaken if they believe that their future objective is other than to favour and articulate a political change that remedies the denial of the nation of free and equal citizens and the derailment of the State.

And finally, now that they have decided to change the name of El Prat airport to Josep Tarradellas, it must be remembered that neither Sánchez is Suárez nor Torra is Tarradellas. Tarradellas returned to Spain and presided over the Generalitat precisely so that the coup plotters would not return to power in Catalonia, and so that people like Quim Torra would be locked up in that past that Tarradellas knew very well and fought so that it would not be repeated, with the Constitution and the Statute.

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