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You have created a sanctuary of a sectarian Catalanity, which can never aspire to collective triumph because it responds to an essentialist vision. The Herderian vision that Pujol cultivated and that you shared from a very young age.

Antoni Puigverd ,10 July 2023

Carles Puigdemont   Yves Herman / Reuters

Dear Carlos,

It’s been a long time since we last spoke. You wrote me a very tough letter in 2018. I didn’t sleep for two nights in a row, but I didn’t answer it. You wrote it from prison in Germany. You told of your difficulties and fears. You blamed me. You imagined a personal future full of worries, far from your daughters. You told me that perhaps you would end up in a Spanish prison, while I would have a life as a gift and would be walking with my grandchildren in the Empordà. You accused me, above all, of having dehumanised you in my articles. You closed “the drawer of our friendship”.

I understood your contempt. And I understand it even more today. You have had a hard time for many years. You don’t know how bad it is for me. I know that the Waterloo villa will never be a home of your own. Instead of the gift of life described by those who hate you, you have punished yourself with an estrangement – I will never call it exile – which, in psychological terms, is as hard or harder than a prison; and, moreover, from what you can see, there will be no end to it. You are in a strange land, without protection, and you receive many threats.

I understand that your chalet is not the palace of a profiteer, as they call you, but a symbolic space from which you wanted to imitate President Tarradellas and the post-war exile. In fact, you have created a sanctuary of a sectarian Catalanity, which can never aspire to collective triumph because it responds to an essentialist vision. The Herderian vision that Pujol cultivated and that you shared from a very young age.

A vision that was already opposed to the complexity of the country. An abstract vision. Many believed it would come true. They had illusions; now they live in despair. Now they believe that Catalan language is dying and that the country is dying too. The danger is resentment, a very powerful but bitter and sterile political fuel, which becomes a vicious circle. More than one and more than two will embrace the Ripoll mutation.

All Catalans, not just you, are in the pit of irrelevance.

When I was young and you were riding a motorbike, we used to argue cordially on a corner of Carrer Maragall. I used to tell you that the country was ready to synthesise the cultures of those who welcomed and those who were welcome; that the social pact in Catalonia could favour a new Catalanness and that this pact was a life insurance for the language. But what I was saying did not interest you; you were worried about the fact that in Europe they knew nothing about Catalonia.

Our paths ran parallel for a few years, when you were only a journalist. I missed a professional opportunity, which you, on the other hand, were able to try out thanks to your proximity to the local Convergencia power. Chance led you to the mayoralty of Girona and the presidency of the Generalitat, goals you did not seek. A nationalist at heart, you never aspired to any office. Now you are the martyr of an abstraction.

Many of those who enthroned you have given up. Others have grown tired. Some feel cheated and are rabid against you. I am very fond of you, but I disagree with everything you have done. I asked you not to lead the people to the slaughter. You have not only deceived your people; you have burned the Catalan cause. Like solipsistic teenagers, you played a role-playing game, which turned out to be deadly for the country.

It is not only you who have lost. All of Catalonia has lost. Didn’t you know what power and politics are? The deception has also hurt you intimately. Your life is acid and exhausting. While you dreamed of an abstract country, the real country has slipped through our fingers like water. All of us, not only you, are stuck in the pit of irrelevance.

https://www.lavanguardia.com/encatala/20230710/9097778/benvolgut-carles.html

OpenKat

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