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The most serious political corruption scandals since the transition from Franco's dictatorship took place under the government of Partido Popular (PP). Under the PP public funds were allocated to organize a political police that destroyed evidence of corruption and pursued political opponents. Now, however, the revelations of Público about the connivance between the National Intelligence Center (CNI) with the imam of Ripoll until August 2017 attacks -16 dead and 152 wounded- reveal the most serious scandal of Spanish democracy.

The data provided by the research carried out by the admired colleague Carlos Enrique Bayo give rise to the worst possible suspicions, fueled by the attitude of the public authorities refusing to investigate the facts in depth as it has been done when there has been an attack of these characteristics in Spain (11-M) and outside of Spain (11-S, London, Paris, Nice, etc.). Citizens, however, victims above all, have the right to know the truth and to hide means concealing actions that may constitute a cover-up crime in the Criminal Code.

What is now known helps to give credit to the conspiracy theories about the worst suspicion. Did they know or did they not? But the only way to fade them would be that an independent investigation clarifies all the mysteries that surround this very dark issue. The State, the credibility of the State, is at stake.

In any case, with the objective information collected so far, the serious incompetence of the intelligence services of the State is indisputable, in the best of the hypotheses. Imam Abdelbaki es Satty's link with jihadist groups dismantled in Vilanova i la Geltrú is known. Even Belgian police had identified him as a suspect to the point of being  expelled from that country. In Spain he was sent to prison for a drug trafficking affair and received an expulsion order that was stopped with the approval of the State Counsel.

It is no longer clear whether it was the CNI infiltrating the jihadists or the other way round. In any democratic country, a disaster of these characteristics would have caused at least a government crisis, but here everybody is hiding their heads under the sand

Apparently, it is not that the CNI had infiltrated the jihadist cell, rather, it was the terrorists who infiltrated the CNI in order to achieve their goals more easily. That alone would require to identify those responsible and make them accountable for their actions instead of awarding the then chief of the CNI, General Felix Sanz Roldán with the distinction of the Gran Cruz al Mérito Militar.

It should be remembered that in August, intelligence services had landed in Catalonia for long precisely to find the thousands of ballot boxes that were spread all over Catalonia for the 1st October referendum. Maybe they were so obsessed with locating ballot boxes that they forgot that the level of terrorist alert at that time was 4 out of 5. And yet, they were unable to find any ballot box, which was the most awful international ridicule for an intelligence service and the key to the success of the consultation on sovereignty.

In any democratic country, a disaster of these characteristics would have caused at least a government crisis, but here everybody looked the other way. The PP and the PSOE closed ranks to veto an enquiry commission first proposed by Ciudadanos and later by ERC and the PDeCAT. Some of the main media that had uncovered the links between the CNI, the Civil Guard and the imam of Ripoll did not pursue the political importance of the matter further. Now, with all institutions, including the CNI, being at an interim stage and an acting government that, apparently, will last long, it is depressing to think that everyone will continue to bury their heads in the sand.

 

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