14 de November de 1963 - Entrevista de Le Monde al abad Escarré: “el régimen se llama cristiano, pero…” (447)

José Antonio Novais Le régime se dit chrétien mais n’obéit pas aux principes de base du christianisme, Le Monde 14/11/1963

Spain, and this is the great problem, continues to be divided in two parts. We do not have twenty-five years of peace behind us, but rather twenty-five years of victory… This represents one of the most regrettable failures of a regime that calls itself Christian, but one in which the state does not obey the basic principles of Christianity.

The majority of its leaders are honorable and are well-meaning Catholics, but they do not see clearly what it is to be Christian in regard to political principles… [I]n the light of [the 1963 papal encyclical Pacem in Terris] the primary subversion that exists in Spain is its government.

The people must be able to choose their government and be able to change it if they wish … Freedom of the press, a sincere freedom of information, is needed…

I have taken a great interest … in the political prisoners, whose existence constitutes one of the most embarrassing aspects of the regime… For the moment what is most worrying is those nonbelieving prisoners in the penitentiary at Burgos, who are in solitary confinement for having followed their consciences, refusing to attend mass…

Catalonia is one of the typical examples that can illustrate the encyclical in regard to its references to ethnic minorities. The state must favor these minorities and their cultural life. The regime is hampering the development of Catalan culture. Using the legally recognized right of petition, I myself, with one hundred other persons, wrote a letter a few months ago to the vice president of the government, Captain General Muñoz Grandes, asking him for full liberty for Catalan culture. We still have not received any reply.

[To speak the Catalan language] has until now been our right as Catalans… To defend one’s language is not only a duty but a necessity; when the language is lost, religion has a tendency to be lost as well. This has happened in other places…

The great majority of Catalans are not separatists. Catalonia is one nation among the nationalities of Spain. We have a right, like any other minority, to our culture, to our history, to our customs, which have their own personality within Spain. We are Spaniards, not Castilians.


The government’s legislation is, in general, proper, but the government does not execute the law. The standard of living has improved, but not the level of culture and education, nor the sense of mutual respect. The lack of social justice is frightening. I have recently been in Andalusia, and I have been able to see this for myself…


, Modern Spain: a documentary history (2003).


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