The official campaign period of the Catalan general election has just begun, with opinion polls indicating that pro-independence parties will win, that the governing party, CiU (Convergence and Union), which favours the creation of a Catalan state, may itself win an overall majority and that 57% of Catalans would vote for a Catalan state in a referendum.
Here is a loose translation of the message delivered by First Minister Mas in the Convergence and Union video:
Together we are setting out on a journey, choosing a way forward into the future, into uncharted territory. We know that it will not be an easy journey. But it is full of possibilities. We shall need all our strength for what lies ahead, because we can only move forward if we deploy that strength effectively, democratically, peacefully, calmly and always telling the truth, because it is your dreams that show us the way forward, the way forward for Catalonia: the will of a people.
As well as "make it possible" (shown above), a key phrase in the CiU campaign is evidently to be the last one enunciated in the video: "the will of a people", i.e. the will of the people of Catalonia in opposition to the Spanish constitution, which does not permit the will of the people to be expressed in a referendum deemed by the Spanish Constitutional Court to be secessionist. A key term is to be el camí, meaning path or, in this context, way forward. The CiU way forward, i.e. its election manifesto (in Catalan), can be consulted here. There follows a loose translation of a short extract from it:
"In Convergence and Union we believe that the construction of state institutions must take place within the European framework. The people of Catalonia have always looked to Europe in all spheres: economic, commercial, political and cultural.
And now, to begin this new era, our orientation is more European than ever. In Convergence and Union we have a very clear vision of the way forward, and this path is Europe. Europe is undergoing a crucial transformation resulting from the consequences of the economic crisis. With a view to confronting and rising to the challenges of future growth for Europe while preserving social cohesion, the European Council adopted on June 17th 2010 a road map for overcoming the crisis collectively by setting common objectives for all member states. These common goals are defined in what is known as the Europe 2020 strategy, which sets criteria which EU member states must meet by the year 2020 in order not only to ensure economic progress but to do so in a coordinated and sound manner.
Our national transition towards statehood necessarily involves remaining part of Europe, and the first step towards achieving this is to commit ourselves to fulfil, as Catalonia, all the obligations and guidelines established by the EU member states. These goals are not easy to achieve, particularly in the present circumstances, but we must be clear that, if we want to be part of the EU, we must be able to demonstrate that Catalonia is a serious, rigorous, credible and competitive country and that, above all, it has great potential for contributing to European integration."
For more on the CiU's brand of secessionist Euro-unionism click here.