BELGIAN PRESS ANALYSIS Respect for Historic Rights
In an article in the Belgian paper Metropole. a correspondent from San Sebastian gives an interesting analysis of the debated and criticised attitude of the Nationalists to the Basques„ quoting General Franco's own words.
It is a mistake to believe, the writer notes, that the movement desires to destroy the personality of the different regions of Spain. On this point the Nationalists have taken up the programme of the old Traditionalist Party.
Spanish traditionalism has always shown itself politically and doctrinally regionalist and opposed to the liberal nineteenth century implication of Spain by its administrative division into provinces.
The powers, delimitation and prerogative of the different regions should conform to history and modern needs.
Restoration of Rights For the Basques and Navarre the programme consists in the restoration of the ancient rights (or Fueros) suppressed for a century by liberal tendencies. The Fueros always worked within the unity of the whole country while allowing for administrative liberties. The Basques of the time were also free Spaniards, contributing largely to the development of Spain's Empire.
These ideals were expressed early on in the conflict by General Franco himself who proclaimed: " The personality of the Spanish local regions will be respected in their particular rights in accordance with the ancient national tradition in its times of greatest splendour, hut without allowing them to imply losses or , damages to the most absolute unity of the nation."