I want to follow up on my last post about the Catalan situation.
It’s not very clear what is happening. It’s one of those moments in history when you imagine there is lots of activity behind the scenes which it’s impossible for the interested observer to know about.
However, there is plenty to think about.
Yesterday in the end President Puigdemont (I continue to call him this as he was never thrown out by the voting public and has now been voted back in even though he has not been able to take office), in the end he didn’t arrive by boat nor plane nor parachute. He is still in Belgium.
The President of the Parliament (that is confusing I know but this position is held by Roger Torrent and is like our Speaker, sort of)…… he decided to postpone the investiture of the Catalan President as it wasn’t possible to guarantee it would happen in a normal fashion.
All the people who were ready to protect the parliament from the streets and with peaceful protest and vocal support, eventually went back home.
I felt somehow enraged at the delay. It seemed yet another twist in this complicated story and it was hard to see how it would solve anything.
Was it a decision from timidity? To avoid having to confront the wrath of the Spanish Government yet again. They had gone to the courts and found they were unable legally to ban Puigdemont from taking office but they were also told they could take action afterwards and declare it illegal.
Or was it more of a betrayal? There are two parties – Puigdemont is from Junts per Catalunya (JuntsxSi) and Torrent is from Esquerra Republicana (ERC) What power battles might be playing out here. What deals, or threats?
This is what I mean when I say it’s difficult to know what is happening. It is like a scene from Alice in Wonderland – strange, nonsensical, dark and rather menacing.
Then a Spanish TV station reported some private messages that Puigdemont sent to his colleague Toni Comin. Apparently he said, ” “El pla de Moncloa triomfa. Això s’ha acabat. Els nostres ens han sacrificat, almenys a mi”.
“The Moncloa plan is triumphant. It’s over. Our people have sacrificed us, or at least me”
A later statement from Puigdemont said this: ‘Sóc periodista i sempre he entès que hi ha límits, com la privacitat, que mai s’han de violar. Sóc humà i hi ha moments que també jo dubto. També sóc el President i no m’arronsaré ni em faré enrere, per respecte, agraïment i compromís amb els ciutadans i el país. Seguim!
“I am a journalist and I have always understood that there are limits, such as privacy, which should never be violated. I am human and there are times that I also doubt. I am also the President and I will not cower or go backwards, because of my respect, gratitude and commitment to the citizens and the country. We continue!”
So the Spanish media as well as the government and the courts are determined to annihilate Puigdemont and the independent parties. They are willing to cross a border here of respect for privacy and stalk people with long lensed cameras to grab images from their mobile phones.
Even if the TV company was condemned for reporting information stolen in this way, you can’t stop the message going out. The war of information is very savage. How would it be if these same TV stations decided to attack the Spanish ruling party the PP who are immersed in several serious trials for corruption? But they wouldn’t would they? I imagine they receive good payment for what they do report.
I don’t have a problem with presidents or any politicans or other human beings having doubts. Quite the contrary. Yesterday when I heard the inauguration was postponed I too thought, they are abandonning him.
I’m not sure who ‘they’ are, though.
What will happen next?
I really have no idea.
I wish for surprises. How wonderful if the Spanish Left started to organise against the ruling PP. What a relief if someone big in Europe started to speak out, to actually put pressure on Rajoy to resolve this. To let the prisoners return home and the exiles come back. What I dread is that patience will run out, that someone will get hurt, that people will just have had enough of the endless attempts to humiliate them.
But what I dread most is that people give up, go home, get back to shopping and shrugging their shoulders with the feeling that ‘what can you do? nothing changes’
And so I end with this, some responses on Twitter to Puigdemont’s statement on his determination to continue. In the end Presidents and politicians, journalists or lawyers will not matter. If the people of Catalunya remain firm and stay together in this battle then nothing will stop them from success.
Translated from Catalan on Twitter
“With you more than ever President”
“You are human, it is understandable that you have doubts, we all make mistakes. But I also know that you are the First President of the Republic who is willing to go right to the end in the promise to create an independent state and it is a shame that this isn’t understood by all. You are my President!”
“He is obeying the mandate of the ballot box, we are 2,200,000 Catalans who want to be independent and stop being a colony. If we have stayed with Spain it is from the use of the force that they have been doing for centuries … but it is enough. No more. Will they come this to kill us all?”
“It is normal Mr President, the situation is frustrating and very difficult. We have all lost hope at some point, but if we work well and stay united we will leave sooner or later. Awesome and Strong !!!
“We are with you” “We are with you” ‘We are with you”