February 23, 1981: Where Were You?

Well, where were you?  If you didn’t live in Spain, I bet you have no idea, and if you did and were older than five, I would put my money on it that you can tell when exactly what time you brushed your teeth.

            You see tomorrow is the 30th anniversary of famous coup d’etat attempt by formers supporters (what I am I saying?) then supporters of the former Franco dictatorship and by parts of the Spanish military who had clearly missed the good old days when they were pretty much in charge.  Up until this date, the transition towards a democratic nation had gone fairly smoothly, especially considering the hard feelings and tearful memories that each side held…in particular the losing side.   When Franco died on November 20th, 1975, things could have gotten ugly, but you have to give credit to this nation: it certainly knew how to keep its cool for the most part.

            Where things started getting touchy was in Cataluña and the Basque Country, and in Galicia to a lesser extent, which had strong independence movements which only became more virulent and bolder as the authoritative grip held on them began to ease up.  The Basques and ETA were especially violent in their reactions.  These were some of the bloodiest years for the terrorist group.   So, naturally, some people felt that the tight control the government once had on society keeping “undesirables” out of the way, was beginning to slip away and that Spain was spinning out of control.  The same way many felt on the eve of the Spanish Civil War in 1936.

            (Hold on to your seats…to be continued)

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