When Pedro Sánchez asked the journalists who came to the Generalitat of Catalonia this Wednesday to limit themselves to interpreting his appointment with Pere Aragonès as a political gesture for history, he gave himself away, because that, the historical one, is the authentic value that he wanted to give to his inauguration of the ‘dialogue table’. Everything in this Prime Minister is oriented to the magnificence of his records. If the light goes up, he is the social vigilante who submits to the electricity companies to adjust the rate; if there is a pandemic, vaccination is better than in any country. And if a part of the nation wants to become independent from Spain, only he has the magic formula to redirect the challenge. From the words spoken this Wednesday by Sánchez, it can be inferred that his only interest is the aesthetic staging of what he once baptized as the “reunion agenda”, and to appear as the only president of our democracy capable of solving the secessionist blackmail since the dialogue. But for public purposes, everything is still a pantomime. Nobody really knows what they talked about, what real agenda they agreed on, or the times, or what agenda the next meeting will have, or when it will happen … Nothing.
The ‘dialogue table’ has only been the coverage of a propaganda act that hides from the Spaniards the authentic logbook that Sánchez and Aragonés have secretly agreed to support each other in power, one in Madrid and the other in Catalonia, without distorting the messages for their respective parishes, but at the same time without jeopardizing the alliance that the PSOE and ERC keep sealed. That is why Sánchez insisted, even with a visibly annoyed gesture, on demanding that no one ask him for a calendar to see results. “We will dialogue without haste, without pause and without deadlines,” he said verbatim. The conclusion is that, for the moment, Aragonès and Sánchez have agreed to buy time. And meanwhile, the Spaniards must be content to remain in the dark and on the sidelines of an opaque negotiation, but having to give value to the appointment, yes, for the mere fact that it was held.
If Sánchez insists, as he did again, that there cannot be a referendum on self-determination or an amnesty, and if Aragonès maintains just the opposite, logic says that the table should have been dissolved this Wednesday with a thunderous failure. And in the opposite direction, if the table and the dialogue are going to continue, and that is the express commitment of both, someone is lying. Aragonès’s call for “unity and perseverance” was very eloquent in that sense because Sánchez and the president of the Generalitat have made a common goal their own: to make profitable together the fracture of the independence movement for their own benefit. That is for the moment the only background of a negotiation in which Sánchez reserves the expansion of the El Prat airport as an ace up his sleeve, which remains stranded to the outrage of the Catalan business community and a large part of its citizens.
In the rest, the gesticulation of the appointment reveals much of how far Sánchez is really willing to give up. He participated in a scenography in which there were two heads of government as equals, he did so in the Palau de la Generalitat bowing before the flag of the autonomous community as if it were that of another nation, and spoke of “two presidents”, as if it were two instances at the same level. In short, a theatricality worthy of the umpteenth presidential photocall with which the Government tells Spaniards that they are a mere troupe and that, whatever Sánchez does, we must trust him because that is the only thing that is profitable for Spain.