What Justice? Spain’s Supreme Court Protects War Crimes

Las cosas de palacio van despacio…

As the old adage goes, palace business is slow, but eventually every man gets his day in court. Today was the turn of Baltasar “Judge Dredd” Garzón in the case (three cases, actually) that we covered extensively back when he was first forced to step down as judge about two years ago. Of the three cases, the most politically-charged one began today regarding Garzon’s decision to authorize the exhumation of mass graves with victims of post-Civil War repression in order to determine if their deaths constitute Crimes Against Humanity. For this he is being judged by the Supreme Court, which is considered the highest of all courts because the judges have a different colored neckpiece on their togas.

Grazón, left, listens to charges against him in supreme court

All Spain is holding its breath as this play unfolds, but for different reasons. It’s 1939 all over again; as The Boss sings “down here it’s just winners and losers and don’t get caught on the wrong side of that line”. Part of Spain badly wants to see Garzón stripped of his toga for having the audacity to open the graves and –temerity of temerities– even search for HIM, the homosexual poet that cut to the bone of the Spain that went on to shoot him like a dog and dump his corpse into a hidden grave at the start of the war. The search of García Lorca’s remains went off like a hand grenade in the ultra-right bunker, and led directly to the lawsuit currently underway.

The other part badly wants to know if the old regime diehards will actually have enough firepower to bring down Garzón for applying international law to dig up the undiggable and question the unquestionable. Hundreds of thousands of Spanish families have waited almost 80 years to recover and bury their relatives, and in 3 decades of democrazy only a small proportion have been able to do so. They understand that the war crimes part of the investigation is just a formality, since all the instigators and perps are dead; what is important to them is that the excavation and recovery of their family members in mass graves continue.

The case being presented against Garzón by the Supreme Court is, in strict legal parlance, a steaming crock of shit atop a shaky stool held by a steel wire wrapped around the scrotums of the presiding judges. The crock charges are that Grazón prevaricated when he ordered the uncovering of the mass graves because a Spanish 1977 amnesty law does not allow Spanish war crimes to be investigated. These charges were brought forward by two fringe right wingnut groups, and have been rejected by the prosecution since day one. Yes, that’s right: the prosecution has brought no charges and in fact insists the case be dismissed. You are allowed a WTF moment now. How is this possible? Better ask the blowhards passing as supreme justices, because they’re the ones breaking international law –and by extension Spanish law– in their last-ditch attempt to end Garzón’s career.

To pull out a 30-year old zombie law to lynch the only Spanish judge with the cojones to call war crimes by their name is a gambit that is not entirely risk-free. Remember the steel wire holding up the stool? This is a little detail about international law saying that crimes against humanity do not prescribe and must be persecuted universally. International law does not recognize amnesty laws written under coercion to protect tinpot dictators and their henchmen. By judging Garzón, the Supreme Court of Spain is knowingly breaking international law at several levels; one by prosecuting a judge for investigating war crimes, two by obstructing the investigation of war crimes and three by providing legal comfort to war criminals.

The Supreme Court of Spain –again, in strict legal parlance– is a corrupt whorehouse run by bought-and-sold regime blowhards that should be behind bars, not judging others. This statement, which may have seemed like radical crazy talk but a few years ago, is today displayed in all its ugliness for the entire world to see. And the world is watching, believe me, as the ghost of Franco marches triumphant down the sewers of “Spanish justice” touting the biggest oxymoron since military intelligence.

Regardless of what happens with Garzón, the institution has outed itself as what it is: an instrument of Spain’s fascist fifth column that has actively undermined Spanish democrazy since the day the dictator went to hell. There will be no justice in this land while the remains of over 100 thousand victims continue to lay in mass graves, and without justice there can be no peace. For the sake of this strife-torn peninsula, may the stool fall and the wire sever as a warning to friends of war criminals everywhere: palace business may be slow, but justice is eternal.

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