In a show of the absolute arbitrariness and plain autocratic idiocy that is the Kingdom of Spain (re-created by fascist-fundamentalist dictator Franco), the Spanish Supreme Court has declared that the new party formed by the Basque Nationalist Left, which strictly abode by the requirements of the Spanish Law of Parties, designed ad-hoc to destroy what was left of traditional Basque democracy, arguably the oldest of all Europe, is illegal and cannot exist nor take part in the upcoming municipal elections in May.
The formal reasons of the banishment, after the new party included in its statutes a very explicit rejection of ETA and of violence in general, and after ETA has been for months in a highly disciplined unilateral truce not corresponded at all by the imperial authorities of France nor Spain, are unclear at this moment. However the real reasons are clear: Spain wants to make sure that there is no democracy worth that name in the Southern Basque Country for a long time.
|Most Basques support the political rights of the Basque Nationalist Left|
Three particular votes were issued and Sortu can still appeal to the Constitutional Tribunal but I think that, with nearly all Spanish Nationalist politicians set against the legality of Sortu, the organization will be forbidden.
It is a major setback for any hope of peace. I do not think that the peace process can continue in the current circumstances. Maybe there is people in the Nationalist Left determined to turn all the weight into the political side of things but previous such attempts have been largely ignored by voters, who won't easily support anything that falls in the trap of attacking ETA, for many still a very legitimate military avant-guard.
The only option for such thing happening was that all the Nationalist Left did that jointly but that is precisely what the state attorney argued as evidence of not being a genuine rejection of ETA: that there was no split.
Damned if you do, damned if you don't. If they split, it is pointless because most voters will support the faction that stands, even if shyly, by ETA (which is the bearer of the legitimacy here - at least mostly so); and if they do not split and jointly reject ETA, then it's not good enough for the state.
It is clear that there is no way to satisfy the state, what adds legitimacy to ETA, not just to its goals but also to its means. After all the discourse of ETA has always been that this is no true democracy and therefore the only way is armed struggle.
Spain seems to agree. The Supreme Tribunal has vindicated the hardcore line of ETA.