Vargas Llosa, Aguirre y Rojas presentan hoy <i>Pasión por la libertad</i>

06/05/2011

http://assets.fundacionfaes.org/Home+FAES/2011/05/COSIDO_BR_D.jpg Jaime Mayor Oreja: The European Union and its institutions were for us a benchmark and a target to be achieved in our fight against ETA. We wanted them to help and share our ideas in the fight against terrorism. If anything has been proved over the years is that the strength of Spain weakens ETA, and that ETA becomes stronger when Spain is weak. Therefore, strengthening Spain is the only way to defeat ETA. There have been, and there are now, two ways of trying to put an end to ETA. There are those who fight against it only with the Rule of Law and the strength of Spain. And those who are always looking for shortcuts, either with instruments outside the law or with covert negotiations. The right policy, the fight with all the power of the Rule of Law, put an end to myths. We put an end to the myth that the terrorists' environment was untouchable and we made Batasuna illegal. We put an end to the myth that only the cells were ETA, the environment is also a part of ETA. We put an end to the myth that ETA was only a criminal organization when it is also a political organization. And we put an end to the myth that it was unbeatable. It can and must be defeated. The policy of shortcuts, and now we are seeing this, either leads to suicide or to a labyrinth. Illegalizing an option such as Bildu is precisely that. We would be allowing ETA to be legalized or legitimized without having disappeared Henry Patterson: A society that has refused to be a prisoner of violence is not going to resign itself to be hostage to a peace made to suit the terrorists. The violent will not administer the peace to their will. By insisting that ETA go beyond simply stopping killings to disarming and dismantling its apparatus of street violence, intimidation and extortion, Aznar, prevented the sort of peace which is polluted by the terrorists using the threat of a return to violence to extract concessions from the state and the democratic parties. Another key feature of the anti-terrorist strategy was its global focus: it was not simply a question of arresting ETA gunmen but striking at the roots of the broader network of support on which ETA relied: its political parties, youth and student organisations, its businesses and network of financial support. The denial of the "oxygen of publicity" to parties that support or justify terrorism was something that was used by the Irish government during the Troubles but only briefly by the UK government in the late 1980s. This book shows how important such measures can be. The feature of the Spanish anti-terrorist strategy which most contrasted with the Irish experience was the central role of civil society mobilisations and organisations of victims of terrorism. The chapter on victims is perhaps, for me at least, the most powerful in the book. The dimensions of the problem were horrific- not simply the almost 800 people who had died at the hands of ETA by 1996 but the way that their families had suffered "civic death"- ignored, marginalised and even subjection to the insults and threats of the murderers and their supporters. Then there were the 200,000 Basques forced into exile by the terrorists and the 1000-1500 people - politicians, journalists, politicians and trade unionist who could only live with the protection of body-guards. In response we have the declaration by Jaime Mayor Oreja, 'Las victimas siempre tienen razon"- "The victims are always right". Antonio Lopez Isturiz: Between the desperation of the search for shortcuts and the negotiating euphoria that accompany and accompanied socialist policies, was another policy: the effective policy of the governments of Jos? Mar?a Aznar. The European institutions do not exist to give shelter to any franchise of ETA. Ignacio Cosid?: In 1996 Europe had in an idyllic image of ETA. Changing that perception and succeeding in gaining the cooperation of the European Governments and institutions in the fight against ETA was one of the great achievements of the Governments of the Partido Popular. The European Court of Human Rights gave the most important legal backing to the Parties Act, which is a fundamental instrument for the defeat of ETA. Because today we are living the paradox of the end of ETA without it having been defeated. It must be defeated and there must be winners and losers. Oscar Elia: A country that respects itself can never lose the fight against its enemies for not having fought the battle. Since 1996, a Spain that believes in itself begins to fight against its enemies with all material and human resources, with the strength of the Rule of Law and with the full and complete rehabilitation of the victims.