“It was the most important thing for peace”

Neither pardon, nor amnesty, nor anything like that. “The most important thing” to achieve peace in Catalonia, according to former Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy, was the application of Article 155 of the Constitution to suspend autonomy, as he said this afternoon in Madrid during an event to honor the short-lived book leader of Alianza Popular Antonio Hernández Mancha.

The one who was general secretary of the Popular Alliance for two years (1987-1989) – today PP – has written a book combining autobiography and political reflections on his two years in office and beyond, entitled Secrets of my party (ed. . Almuzara). This Tuesday afternoon, Rajoy and veteran journalist José María García were presented at the headquarters of Mutua Madrileña. The three spoke in a relaxed manner, especially Rajoy, who made the audience laugh several times.

“The book has a level, it's interesting, it's fun and easy to read,” he defended with his usual plethora of synonyms. Rajoy has amused himself by pointing out some anecdotes in the work that he finds funny, such as the fact that the author and Manuel Fraga once slept in the same room in a hotel “in separate beds, as is normal.” And when Mancha says that it cannot be said that “intelligent socialists” exist today, he does not dare to confirm it. “I have enough enemies,” he apologized theatrically. In both situations the laughter was general.

Rajoy, who was listened to by some ministers in his cabinets, such as María Dolores de Cospedal, Fátima Báñez or José Manuel Soria, has not said a word about political corruption and has opted for issues closer to his daily interests. For example, that you have to go to Congress 'with appropriate clothing' or with more or less chance of inclusive language, which he is not in favor of. Regarding the political situation, he has defended that “the extremes have infected the ruling party and that has led us to the greatest stage of division and polarization that has occurred in Spain since 1978”, and he agrees with Mancha's pro-European rack. to make progress in the integration of states, in particular in the area of ​​common security, but also in the area of ​​justice and home affairs. “It makes no sense for a Spanish court to decide what you know happened in Catalonia and for Belgians to arrive and say no,” he complained.

Although “someone boasts that they have pacified Catalonia,” this was fundamental, according to Rajoy, because “it became clear that Spanish democracy has tools to defend itself if attacked and that it uses them.”

“You go out into the street and see joy”

The author himself said that he viewed current events from a continental perspective, and has said that the “pre-war situation” that describes the “world of journalism and politicians” is not like that, as “one goes out into the streets and sees joy.” and waste.” According to him, if the far right makes progress in Europe, it will be a popular reaction that will sooner or later give way to the moderation of the electorate.

José María García also had a hand in the affability of the event, who was nostalgic for the old journalism, without the current economic hardships, and took the opportunity to dispel slander about Rajoy's news habits, according to which he only consumes sports press. “Someone else does, right?” he asked. The man questioned shook his head affirmatively.

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