WHY CATALANS HAVE REACHED THIS STAGE? 10 MOMENTS THAT EXPLAIN THE OCTOBER 1ST INDEPENDENCE REFERENDUM MOMENT 1

Catalan MonitorNews Roundup, Special Report

10 MOMENTS THAT EXPLAIN THE OCTOBER 1ST INDEPENDENCE REFERENDUM

BY BLANCA AND EVA SERRA

 

THINGS STARTED UP WAY BACK DOWN THE LINE

 

It is true that for the movement of national emancipation of Catalonia – and of the Catalan Countries – by far the most important date is 1714, with the so-called “War of Succession” and the well-known New Status Decree (Decret de Nova Planta), which sought to erase from the map the political and economic institutions and social policies of Catalonia, the Valencian Country and the Balearic Islands and Pitiüses.

It is also true that this political project of the new Bourbons monarchy, through wars, dictatorships, coups and monarchical restorations has failed to create a consolidated and respected Spanish state as far as Catalans are concerned. The movement of emancipation and national liberation of the Catalan people has always been alive and operative with more or less force since the defeat and occupation of the years 1707-1716. At first, a project was proposed that sought to achieve an improved Spanish state, of a multinational nature, open to the diverse needs of this plurality, openly republican and anti-Bourbon. Movements which participated in the creation of the short-lived 1st Spanish Republic (February 1873- December 1874) and 2nd Spanish Republic (April 1931- April 1939). This project aimed at achieving the regeneration of the Spanish State by the Catalans has completely failed and little by little another alternative project has been formed in the so-called “Spain of the Autonomies”. That of a project to build an Independent Catalan Republic.

The “Goodbye, Spain” concept, last two lines of a famous poem by well-known poet Joan Maragall (1860-1911) has been translated, right now, into a powerful political movement, which works clearly for independence and for the national and social emancipation. This movement, on October 1, 2017, is to democratically ask the citizens of Catalonia if they want “Catalonia to be an independent state in the form of a republic.” The Spanish State and its PP government do not even want the question to be asked, nor that the Catalans exercise their right to self-determination.

 

10 MOMENTS THAT EXPLAIN THE CURRENT SITUATION

 

To understand the corrent situation, we must go back a dozen years and place ourselves in the year 2005 in which the political crisis of the Spanish autonomous and constitutional System becomes evident. It must be remembered that the Spnish 1978 Constitution was severely reinterpreted in a restrictive way only three years after after the military coup of 1981, the parenthood of which was never officially certified).

 

MOMENT  1.- The years 2005-2006

 

These are the years when the Catalan autonomous Parliament, with the new tripartite government of PSOE-PSC, ERC and ICV-EUA, chaired by Pasqual Maragall (grandson of the poet mentioned above) reached a consensus for a new more ambitious text of the Statute of Autonomy voted by 120 MPs against 15 of 135 MPs. The text is quickly rejected in the Spanish Parliament and, while political parties (such as the CiU coalition) attempt an agreement with the Spanish government of the Socialist Rodríguez Zapatero, Catalan civil society begins to organize on its own the rejection of the cut statute and a NO vote in the referendum that needed passing: the Platform for the Right to Decide (PDD) called a demonstration on February 18, 2006 with the motto “We are a nation and we have the right to decide”. Although not supported by political parties and major entities such as Òmnium Cultural (OC), -only ERC joined the march at the last moment- the event was an extraordinary success of popular participation with more than 150,000 people. It is clear, then, that the new mamed statute will not count in the referendum with great sympathy.

 

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