THE SPANISH RIGHT’S RAISON D'ÊTRE
November 07, 2019
Whatever happens politically in the United Kingdom and in Spain may affect us directly for different reasons.
The general elections in the UK are still some weeks away so we have time to assess the UK situation and prepare ourselves for any outcome. Spanish elections, however, are almost on top of us now. Although we do have preferences both in the UK elections and in the Spanish ones, the latter produces greater concern because of the possibility of the right increasing its support, which is what we have been experiencing lately with the rise of VOX. But in Spain the right increases its support by feeding off conflicts especially in the Basque Country and Catalonia. They immediately project themselves as defenders of the sacred unity of the Spanish nation under threat by Basques terrorist or Catalans independents.
The present scramble in Catalonia gives the right an invaluable lifeline. It is, therefore, in their interest to keep the conflict alive, not to resolve it.
PP and VOX, and lately Ciudadanos, are considered the right. Though the latter do not quite know where in the political spectrum they fit, they continue with their Catalan bashing that gave them such good results, nationwide, after the Catalan referendum - a support they are now progressively shedding because they have lost the clear definition they once had and are seen in many cases as no different to the PP.
The Catalan referendum and conflict and the violent scenes in Catalonia, gave the right a degree of cohesion as saviours, as mentioned above, of the sacred unity of Spain and managed to pull such a huge number of nostalgic people behind their flag nationwide.
Of course, this sense of cohesion weakened immediately the election campaign started and each party begun looking after their own interests. Before the general elections were called, the three right wing parties paraded jointly in several events and even aided each other in securing local government. Now they do not want to be seen next to each other and are quite ready to phagocytize one another if the opportunity arises.
By looking at isolated events spread out over time, we do not begin to understand the raison d'être of this pernicious right. The right will attempt to create social situations that will give them votes. Once we understand this, we start deciphering the plot that may have its inception decades ago.
Their whys and wherefores will become clear to us. Their plot is indeed sinister. The pernicious right will not be stopped by qualms or morality. Their goal overrides everything.
They need power in order to control the purse strings; frequently as we have seen in Spain with the PP, for personal benefit. The myriad corruption cases testify to this.
If political parties can nominate judges to the different tribunals, judges who need the endorsement of these very politicians for promotions, and even the prosecutor general what can go wrong?
Sometimes things can and do go wrong. There are honest judges who can make the most carefully contrived plan go awry. It has happened and it will continue to happen. Spain should move away from a political judiciary.
Instead of finding solutions to the many problems, the PP particularly, and Ciudadanos too, will aggravate situations by having impromptu public meetings in territories where they are not wanted - protected by the Guardia Civil, of course.
Their suggested heavy-handedness, aided and abetted by a whole array of judges and prosecutors and tribunals, all rowing in the same direction as the right will ensure conflicts will endure during the next two hundred years. A so-called political judiciary that appears more vengeful than the right itself is part of the equation.
Keep the aggravation alive and create a need to carry on electing the pernicious right. Let us consider the following press report:
“The 2004 Spanish general election was held on Sunday, 14 March 2004, to elect the 8th Cortes Generales of the Kingdom of Spain. All 350 seats in the Congress of Deputies were up for election, as well as 208 of 259 seats in the Senate.
“The electoral outcome was heavily influenced by the aftermath of the Madrid train bombings on 11 March, as a result of which all parties suspended their electoral campaigns. For two days following the attacks, the People's Party (PP) government kept blaming the terrorist organization ETA for the bombings, even in spite of mounting evidence suggesting the involvement of Islamist groups.”
Aznar had just passed over the leadership of the Party to Mariano Rajoy but wanted his party, the PP, to win the elections, a win that would be guaranteed if he could convince people that the terrorist attack had been perpetrated by ETA. However, the Police were honest and did not play ball and accused and arrested the true perpetrators. The PP lost the elections.
Rajoy had learned a very important lesson, his party needed conflicts to win elections, preferably by people who questioned the political unity of Spain so that they would identify the PP as Champions of a united Spain.
Zapatero served as president of the Spanish government for two terms. He strove for social justice and peace and tranquillity. He gave the Catalans a new regional constitution approved by both the Spanish Congress and the Catalan people and they were quite happy.
Rajoy spent his time as opposition leader collecting signatures against the new statute of autonomy. There is a general dislike for Catalans in the rest of Spain like there is for Gibraltarians. He managed four million signatures which he submitted to the so-called Constitutional Tribunal that found that it was unconstitutional and deprived the Catalans of its statute. Rajoy would not have spent time collecting signatures unless he knew what the decision of the Tribunal was going to be.
The quest for independence for Catalonia rose exponentially. There were demonstrations and marches in what is called the process.
The right got what they wanted, the Catalans had been put in their place and there was plenty of unrest. There was now a need for the right to rule in order to put the perfidious Catalans in their place.
When the Catalans held their referendum, the Prosecutor General decided there had been rebellion and jailed a huge number of people. This was never a judicial problem but a political one. Once having declared for rebellion the case was transferred to Madrid, outside the control of Catalans. This had always been the objective. The prisoners were held without bail. Carles Puigdemont, the Catalan leader, left Barcelona for Brussels. He was probably right to do so. He knew what awaited him at the hands of the Castillian examining Judge Llarena who is still trying to extradite him. I hope he does not succeed.
This plot against the Catalans was started by Rajoy very soon after he lost the elections to Zapatero and it was controlled right up to sentencing stages by a political judiciary. The prisoners were not let out on bail because no one expected them to walk free, least of all the Tribunal Supremo and its president Marchena very much a PP man.
Judge Baltasar Garzon says: This is an example of what a court ruling can entail when mixed with a political conflict. The case of the process since its inception was affected by the political dye that permeated everything. It would be in September 2017 when the late Attorney General Maza would give instructions to trigger the judicial tsunami that on Monday met one of its main stages.” (The harsh sentences that have given rise to the present demonstrations.)The Judge continues: “Catalonia suited Rajoy by deflecting the view from the corruption that was settled in the courts and culminated in the Gürtel case with a clear sentence condemning the PP and his departure from the Government, following a motion of censure.”
Pedro Sanchez cannot afford to be seen to be in disagreement with the sentencing tribunal because this would be used as a weapon against him. The tribunal, nevertheless, must have known the conflict they were unleashing. Like Oriol Junqueras said, “This is not justice this is vengeance!”
Oriol Junqueras, the President of Esquerra Republicana, is now serving thirteen years in jail.