By Teresa Whitfield
The violent Basque separatist team ETA took form in Franco's Spain, but claimed the vast majority of its sufferers below democracy. for many Spaniards it grew to become an aberration, a felony and terrorist band whose patience defied rationalization. Others, frequently Basques (but just some Basques) understood ETA because the violent expression of a political clash that remained the incomplete enterprise of Spain's transition to democracy. Such changes hindered efforts to 'defeat' ETA's terrorism at the one hand and 'resolve the Basque clash' at the different for greater than 3 decades.
Endgame for ETA deals a compelling account of the lengthy route to ETA's assertion of a definitive finish to its armed task in October 2011. Its political surrogates stay as a part of a resurgence of nearby nationalism - within the Basque nation as in Catalonia - that's yet one component to a number of crises confronting Spain. The Basque case has been pointed out as an ex- plentiful of the perils of 'talking to terrorists'.
Drawing on large box examine, Teresa Whitfield argues that whereas negotiations didn't prosper, a sort of 'virtual peacemaking' was once a vital supplement to strong police motion and social condemnation. jointly they helped to deliver ETA's violence to an finish and go back its grievances to the channels of ordinary politics.
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Additional resources for Endgame for ETA: Elusive Peace in the Basque Country
November: Otegi introduces the Anoeta Proposal. December: Ibarretxe Plan narrowly approved by Basque Parliament. February: Ibarretxe Plan rejected by Spanish Parliament. April: ETA announces it is trying to open a peace process; Ibarretxe returned to office by Basque parliamentary elections; EHAK wins nine seats. May: Spanish Parliament passes resolution—opposed by the PP—supporting dialogue with ‘those who have decided to abandon violence’; Otegi is briefly imprisoned. June–July: Eguiguren and ETA hold talks in Geneva.
Instead, the years following Franco’s death were the bloodiest in ETA’s history. ETA’s long agony saw the organisation experience schisms and controversies, and introduce changes in both the targeting of its violence and the strategies it adopted towards negotiations. Its actions were met by the increasingly effective counter-terrorism of Spanish and French security forces. This included the capture of ETA’s leadership from a French farmhouse in Bidart in 1992; the robust application of Spanish criminal law, modified after September 2001 to facilitate the illegalisation of Batasuna and the prosecution of entities perceived to be linked to ETA’s terrorism; and contradictory forces within Basque society that included both a slow but powerful mobilisation against ETA’s violence and polarisation between Basque nationalists and pro-Spanish or ‘constitutionalist’ political forces.
15 Yet there are aspects of the Basque case that can be seen in other conflicts where negotiations have occurred, but were at first denied, just as there are others that are quite unique to it. â•… Such controversies fuel my interest in the Basque case and its implications for other situations in which terrorist violence may be equally loathed, but is no less likely to have originated in, and be motivated by, a ‘cause’, and negotiations or engagement of another kind may indeed occur, even if publicly denied.