In English Voices From Spain

Historic Ridiculous

Originally published in Spanish. “Un ridículo histórico”. Joaquim Coll. Crónica Global.

Distracted with the little details of current affairs, we are in risk of not being aware of the huge dimension of what has happened in Catalonia in the last few weeks. Separatism not only has failed in its political goals, but also it has buried five years of “process” with an inescapable ridiculous. Its narrative has collapsed in every front, from the painless character of the secessionist attempt for the economy, to the belief in international mediation once consummated the October 1st, or the diplomatic recognition following the UDI. And in the case that the exogenous elements were not enough, it turns out that the separatist did not prepared —as the CUP openly recriminates now— the state structures and the mechanisms to occupy the territory to make effective the unilaterality after the birth of the Catalan Republic.

The damage caused by the separatist leaders to the whole Catalan society is unprecedented in democracy, and the deceit to their voters has been massive. In the extensive catalogue of lies and failures, we should insist multiple times before December 21st that the “process” leaders competing in the regional election must be held accountable. Particularly, Oriol Junqueras, the main contender, according to polls, to be president of the Generalitat. Just yesterday, he wrote an op-ed in La Vanguardia, explaining his work during these 21 months as head of the Economy Department. Well, now results that neither independence nor anything related to the “process” were among his goals when he was the Catalan government’s deputy. Unbelievable! The question now is if his voters, apart from the servant officers from ERC, will keep this on mind or they will vote for him just because melancholy.

Not only the pro-independence narrative has collapsed, but also their leaders have ended up starring a shameful end that should bury their political careers forever (pending what justice determines in some cases regarding potential crimes). The secretly voted UDI was a farce, an attempt to give some satisfaction to their constituency and the activists in the streets to hide an unquestionable defeat and disguise the evidence of a very deep internal division. In the Parliament, Puigdemont, Junqueras and Forcadell’s faces were revealing of the sad deceit. Over the weekend, the sacked members of the Catalan government were basically in hiding, while the defence committees of the Republic were awaiting instructions to carry out the resistance. On Saturday noon, Carles Puigdemont issued an unsubstantial statement playing as usually to mislead. Now we know that he was finishing details for his “flight” to Belgium along some of his sacked ministers.

On Monday early morning, only Josep Rull, who wants to head the PDeCAT’s list competing with the moderate Santi Vila, took a selfie in his office, where he furtively acceded, only to abandon it immediately after the alert by the Mossos that he was in risk to further criminal charges. There was neither an act of disobedience in the Generalitat, nor any trace of the crowds that would congregate outside the regional ministries to prevent the materialization of Article 155. And in Monday noon, soon after the complaint by the Attorney General of State made public, came the disclosure of Puigdemont’s secret trip to seek asylum, the ridiculous reached the category of grotesque and almost seemed to emulate the pathetic escape by the Catalan government minister Josep Dencàs through the Palau of Generalitat’s sewers in October of 1934.

Yesterday, Puigdemont tried to repair the shameful scene justifying his presence in Brussels alleging security reasons, stating that the “chaos” was installed in Catalonia since the October 1st due to the Spanish government’s “repressive” action, what was ostensibly denied by the reporters covering the press conference. The sacked president did not clarify if he had intention to return to Spain, and denied to be trying to request political asylum; most likely, though, is that he will try after the European order to arrest and surrender, to which purpose a specialized Belgian lawyer has been hired. He appeared as head of a government in exile (with a website usurping Generalitat’s official logos and corporative design), while at the same time he endorsed the strategy of the pro-independence parties to stand for the regional election called on by the Spanish government, so they can turn it into plebiscitary election. In his constant headlong rush, now to avoid prison, they are people incapable of reflect upon their unescapable ridiculous.

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