The day when whole begun – Spain VS Catalonia

Along the way they found groups of people, entire families who had sought shelter under the trees. They were shipwrecked warriors who with questioning eyes seemed to ask, what had happened, why they were there, why they now slept in the open, why they had no food to give their children. Those who at one time thought they had the answers, now could not say when things began to twist, to the point of burning the earth and drown it in blood.

This is a small fragment of the last book I just published (Spanish and Catalan) dedicated to all those who lived the Spanish civil war live. Like my parents. They lived it from the back of the conflict. I have included it here because in recent times many people are asking just that “when things began to twist” I also

The conflict between Spain and Catalonia, order is not accidental, is very old. Along three hundred years this conflict has experienced ups and downs.

At the end of the civil war, my parents witnessed how Franco’s government completely tampered with any vestige of Catalanity. The public use of the Catalan was banned, the names of the streets and names of the people changed. That endless dictatorship endeavored to root out any outbreak of a reborn Catalan culture.

Later, when the dictator died, the fear of the extreme right, perpetuated over forty years in power at all levels, caused Spain to enter in democracy, bound and caught a foot, I say knowingly because I was old enough to capture the fear of the people, fear of an uncertain future that breathed in the streets.

For years, many have boasted of having opened bottles of champagne to the greater glory of the dead dictator, but on the Paseo de la Exposición 62, where I lived, there was no sound of any cork jumping through the air

Years passed and thanks to the more or less debatable complicity of the governments of Mr. Pujol, the Catalan problem was bypassing, we had a certain autonomy, we had lived moments of glory as the Olympic games and the Spanish extreme right was more or less contained in residual media. Or so it seemed.

Until March 11, 2004.


That day the terror fell with infinite crudity over innocent people.

At that moment Spain was about to face a general election, the first with Rajoy as PP candidate, and also in the PSOE whose candidate was José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero.

The polls did not give two cents for Zapatero and maybe that’s why he could afford to promise even what he could not promise. Among his promises was one that became very famous: I will support the statute approved by the Parlament of Catalonia.

Some advantage had to be, to be the loser horse.

On the other side of the ring, Mariano was comfortably installed under the protective wing of his predecessor Mr Jose Maria Aznar. Procer of the Spains for some, character of infamous memory for others.


Mariano prepared his assault to the Moncloa making Jose Mari’s great “achievements”, among them his crusade to the search of some arms that never existed. For Spain this meant, among other things, about two hundred dead and a scandalous number of wounded.

From the first moment nobody doubted that the author of the massacre was Alkaeda, nobody except the government that, until the last breath tried to adjudge the authorship to its eternal demon. ETA. However, ETA was not, although even today, some continue to maintain it

Some put the bombs, but the seed of hate was watered by them.

The election ended up winning a leader of debatable charisma. José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero, who suddenly found himself faced with a lot of difficult promises. However, what is promised is debt or at least so the Catalans thought, dealers by nature who had been working for some time in a new statute.

The drafting of this new statute was not exempt from controversy, also within Catalonia. Some argued for the moment, others called for a new economic agreement without entering into “delicate” issues (those who raise blisters in Spain) as the recognition of Catalonia as a nation.

As if from a race of obstacles was the new statute that was born short in size, with three fingers in each hand managed to reach Madrid and even, despite some problems in the form of members of the same party of Mr. Zapatero.

On Sunday, June 18, 2006, with a 49% participation, the statute was approved, totally democratic with 73.90% of the votes.

Was the new statute timely? Catalan aspirations were excessive? did that statute truly reflect these aspirations? Was the right time? Well the truth is that does not matter anymore. What counts is that a democratic parliament, whether you like it or not, drafted a statute, approved it, took it to Madrid and shaved it off. It was shaved off in Congress, and in the Constitutional Court.

For someone that was not enough,

From the first moment of its gestation, the PP was shown against this new statute of a form that was growing in harshness. An opposition that was based on well-known arguments: We do not form a nation of nations. There is only one nation the Spanish, said Mariano Rajoy, then in the opposition, on December 3rd at a demonstration in Madrid.

His mantra was and still is today that a few cannot decide things that affect everyone. Said so he could have some reason, but the subject is another. As a sample, it is as if to paint my living room in apple green I had to hold consultation with all the neighbors when the majority does not know who I am and have never been in my house, obviating the small detail of which I paid the painting of the stairs, they use the elevator for free while I have to pay toll.

Rajoy embarked on a wild campaign to collect signatures against the Catalan statute that took him to towns and cities where they invoked all the demons of Catalan nationalism, as if Spanish nationalism was another yardstick.

Overnight Catalans we became the bad of all the films and without any cost for the PP, because soon it was seen that the possible loss of the few votes that historically they had obtained in Catalonia gave and give enormous revenues in the rest of Spain.

Mariano finally got the picture he wanted. He and his 4 million signatures for the transfer, always according to the PP, 10 vans were needed.

A statement that I question. Assuming that each sheet included 10 signatures, not using double-sided paper (something very PP-style very wasteful) we would be talking about 400,000 sheets which means 800 packages of 500 sheets, like the one I have together to the printer. It measures 297x210mm like all DINA4 and almost 55mm thick. Putting a few numbers with the calculator and obviating that I get better letters. This gives me almost 2.75 m3. Then, you go to any page of vans rental and what do you find? Then, with this.


Why so much van? Why so empty box?

That’s the really worrying thing, I’ve done those calculations and I’m sure I’m not the only one, but how many people have not done it? How many people never hesitate? How many people  despite the 900 imputed by corruption continues to vote to pp? It is from there, from the manipulation, where the Popular Party feeds. They know which key to play and when to do it. Today I heard a survey, Despite the violence of October 1, despite being directly trampling on basic principles of democracy, despite hiding information to the majority of the population, despite the regrets or precisely because of that, in that survey raise the Popular Party; Ciudadanos and surprisingly also PSOE, the only one who loses is Podemos clearly positioned not so much for independence as for democracy.

Yes, it is true everyone could have done better, they all have their share of guilt, but some have used as a weapon, censorship, lies, and violence.

And so here we are today.

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