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Because things do not simply just happen and the so-called police operations against the Catalan independence movement are, in most cases, an exaggeration or manipulation aimed at creating a false narrative, we must conclude, based on the data we have, that the arrests carried out on Monday by the Civil Guard under accusations of terrorism, rebellion and possession of explosives seek to intimidate and sow fear among its leaders and supporters. The numerous similar police operations that have been carried out in recent times in Catalonia, and that have ended up amounting to nothing, generate a high level of scepticism and should counsel great prudence and caution.

Coincidentally, on the day that the Spanish houses of parliament are dissolved, Pedro Sánchez emerges as the prime minister who is ready to step into the foreground and once again arrest supporters of the pro-independence CDR protest groups (Committees for the Defence of the Republic). Coincidentally, the false narrative on the arrests arrives in detailed form from Spain's interior ministry and simultaneously it hits the headlines in Spanish television stations and newspapers. Coincidentally, there is unanimity that the confiscated material includes Goma-2 explosive and bombs and this is propagated by several Catalan and Spanish political leaders in the unionist front. Coincidentally, the finger is pointed at Catalonia's president Torra as the person who asked the CDRs to press the Goma-2 detonator, all because he once encouraged the CDRs not to go soft. Coincidentally, an operation involving 500 Civil Guard officers is mounted and the Spanish government's own delegate in Catalonia later reduces the description of it to a "preventative operation". Coincidentally, this Civil Guard performance takes place just days before the second anniversary of the October 1st 2017 independence referendum and the announcement of the verdicts in the Supreme Court trial of the Catalan pro-independence leaders. Coincidentally, the court summary is confidential and videos filmed by the Civil Guard along with incriminating details about those under arrest have slipped out. And, coincidentally, Pedro Sánchez, in a letter addressed to the membership of his PSOE party said on Sunday that the reaction to the Supreme Court verdict was one of the "imminent threats" that Spain was facing.

For a long time, the Spanish state has been building a false narrative about Catalan independence in order to spread the idea that it is a violent movement. Ministers from both the two major parties, PP and PSOE, have tried this, as well as the Global Spain propaganda unit, the parties of the Spanish right and the media outlets that project their views. They have not won this battle in the international sphere, since the on-going evidence of an unmistakably peaceful movement is overwhelming. Catalonia simply can't be compared with the Basque Country when terrorism was taking place there and the CDRs are not the kale borroka who carried out low-level street violence in Euskera. It is a great lie and an insult to peaceful Catalan society to sustain that the opposite is true.

There is no violence in Catalonia and those who are behind the false narrative are being extremely frivolous. This discourse which the PSOE is now pushing, as before it was pushed by the PP and Cs, is the thing that does indeed fracture social harmony and stir up hatred towards a movement which does not aspire to anything other than for Catalonia to become an independent country if that is what its citizens desire.

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