The Cibeles Square in Madrid has gathered today a crowd in defense of Spain, democracy and the Constitution and against the abuses of Pedro Sánchez.
The demonstrators, many of them carrying Spanish flags, have packed both the aforementioned square and its surroundings. The protest was called by Foro Libertad y Alternativa, Foro España Cívica, Unión 78, NEOS, Hablamos Español, Convivencia Cívica Catalana and dozens of other citizen platforms. In addition to many residents of Madrid, the call it has also been supported by many people who have moved from other parts of Spain.
— Foro Libertad y Alternativa L&A (@forolibertadal) January 21, 2023
You can see below some images of the protest released by Foro Libertad y Alternativa L&A, Rosa Díez and Vox.
Clamorous absences of leaders of the Popular Party and Ciudadanos
The demonstration was supported by the Popular Party, Vox and Ciudadanos, but the only national leader who attended was Santiago Abascal, president of Vox. Alberto Núñez Feijóo, president of the PP , and Patricia Guasp, new president of Ciudadanos, did not attend the protest. Yes, Rocío Monasterio, president of Vox in the Community of Madrid, has attended, but Isabel Díaz Ayuso, the president of the regional government of Madrid, has not attended.
On these lines we can see Santiago Abascal, president of Vox, among the protesters (photo: Vox).
The manifesto read during the demonstration
The conveners of the demonstration have read the following manifesto:
We have met today people with different sensitivities, but with common goals:
- Defend democracy,
- Defend the Constitution and
- Defend a united Spain of free citizens with equal rights.
We are moved by concern and rejection of the political drift that our country has taken. In recent times, we have witnessed a succession of actions that are extremely alarming:
We have seen how all steps have been taken to resolve the criminal horizon of those convicted linked to government partners:
- The rebels have been pardoned,
- ETA prisoners take to the streets through the back door and
- The Penal Code is amended according to the dictates of the transgressors themselves: the crime of sedition no longer exists in Spain and the penalties for embezzlement by politicians have been reduced to the ridiculous.
We have seen how institutions and corporations are massively colonized with sympathizers and members of the government party. Thus, the game of balances and counterweights necessary for the proper functioning of democracy is altered:
- State Attorney General is appointed a deputy and government minister, president of the Center for Sociological Research a member of the socialist executive or director of RTVE a person clearly affiliated with the party.
- Among many others, the general director of the CNI, the president of the EFE Agency, the head of the Madrid Civil Guard Command were dismissed or the resignation of the director of the National Institute of Statistics was forced for not yielding in the exercise of their functions to the interests of the Government.
- The list would be endless, but we must highlight here, due to its seriousness, the latest milestone in this partisan invasion of the institutions: the assault on the Constitutional Court: The Government has appointed a former minister and a CEO of your total confidence.
We have also seen how the functions are limited, pressure is exerted or the legitimization of institutions or organizations that must act independently and perform a moderating or counterbalancing function:
- From the Head of State to the Judiciary, passing through the Court of Accounts, the Bank of Spain, the CGPJ [General Council of the Judiciary] or the Constitutional Court.
We have seen how the government bloc and its partners close the circle undermining parliamentary control:
- The record has been broken in the use of the Royal Decree Law since it was approved by the Constitution,
- Urgency mechanisms are abused in the processing of laws,
- The usual route of the bill is avoided to circumvent the issuance of mandatory reports or
- It is intended to steal any debate on essential issues by introducing amendments totally unrelated to the purpose of the laws in which they are introduced.
This set of actions are neither isolated events nor can they be exclusively due to the simple purchase of parliamentary support:
- There are too many of them, too serious, they generate too much scandal and entail too much cost for the Government itself to be understood as mere political marketing.
All of these actions reveal something else. They reveal that we are dealing with something significantly more serious:
- A constitutional mutation plan that remains hidden from the eyes of the citizens.
- A constitutional mutation plan that is being agreed with the representatives of totalitarian populism , secessionist nationalisms and the heirs of ETA's discourse of terror.
What is intended is to change the Constitution
- Through their misrepresentation
- Through their ideological interpretation,
- Through pressure on the courts, partisan control of institutions, and de facto channels.
This plan is corroding our democracy, undermining our institutions and dividing the population. If it is not stopped, we will end up with a flawed and incomplete democracy and a discredited, decadent and diminished Spain.
We Spaniards have not voted for what is happening. The Socialist Party participated in the elections assuring that:
- I would not allow populists into the government,
- He made it very clear that he would never support governance in those from the Generalitat who had just articulated a coup.
- He promised to allow full compliance with the sentences of the seditious and not to agree with Bildu, direct heir to the political arm of ETA.
- He also promised to make the fight against corruption and for democratic regeneration two of his main objectives.
A majority of Spaniards gave their vote to the Socialist Party under these premises , not for it to do the exact opposite.
It is not about left, right or center.
- It is about not remaining impassive before the serious erosion of our institutions, before the deterioration of our democracy and before the weakening of our State.
- It is about defending democracy, the Constitution and the Spain that the majority of Spaniards want. Not the one that their enemies want.
Various examples throughout history and, currently, the Spanish-American experience, show us that a military or violent coup d'état is not necessary to turn our systems into a mere democratic formality, devoid of authentic content .
Democratic regimes can mutate without military uprisings to collectivist populisms in which the essence of liberal democracy is dismantled. Regimes in which the separation of powers, the rule of law, fundamental rights or the free enterprise become mere caricatures.
Democracy is not the natural state of society and it will not succeed if the societies that benefit from it do not articulate in its defense against the threats that threaten it.
For this reason, we make an appeal to civil society and the parties committed to the constitutional order and the indivisible sovereignty of the Nation, to unite in a clamor that shows that we reject the political drift that Spain has taken. A cry that shows that citizens are willing to democratically defend the values of the Constitution and national unity, guarantor of equal rights for all.
The Government and the Socialist Party must take note of the massive opposition to their pacts and policies that this act reflects. And all political forces and actors must be clear that citizens demand
- A united Spain of free citizens with equal rights.
- A strong democracy, with independent and prestigious institutions.
- A Spain with vigour, intelligence and energy to oppose its enemies and to advance resolutely towards a bright common future.
We hope that this massive act is the first step towards it. Thank you.
Long live the Constitution.
Long live the King.
Long live Spain.
Main photo: Foro Libertad y Alternativa L&A.
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