Sunday, Febniary 8,1981
Juan Carlos* Popularity Soars AfterDdicate Tríp to Basque country
By Tom Burns
Special to The Washington Post
MADRID, Feb. 7 —The Spanish left used to cali him "Juan Carlos the Puppet." To the right he was "Juan Carlos íhe Fool." Even those who liked and súpported him wondered whether he would turn out to be "the Brief."
But after íhree days of seeing sepa-ratist problems and violence at cióse quarters this week and dealing with them adeptly ¡n the first royal visit to the Basque country. the kLng of Spain is now being acclaimed "Juan Carlos the Brave,"1 and crides and supporters alike acknowledge that his-popularity is at an alltime high.
After an indifferent beginning with scattered protests and a hostile de: monstration during a major speech at Guernica, Juan Carlos visit gathered momentum as he made clear his commitment to democracy, and it ended Thursday with the king and the leader of the autonomous Basque government embracing effusively as Juan Carlos left to return to Madrid.
In visiting the Basque country, Juan Carlos toured the región that has been the most destabilizing factor in the transition from Francoism´s dominant central government to the present policy of autonomy tor nationalist groups within a unifíéd Spain.
Political killings in the Basque country in 1980 stood at a record high oí" 110 with Basque separatista of the Marxist organization ETA claiming responsibility for about 80. Adolfo Suarez. who resigned as prime minis-ter last week. consistently had advised the king against such a tour for security reasons. Reliable sources said the trip was undertaken on the king´s own
Juan Carlos succeeded In driving a tcedge bettieen the modérale Basque nationt ´s and the extremists who 6a«-¡. terrorist methods and seek xecession oi the Basque country from the resí oi Spain.
At Guernira. the king spoke at length abotit the andent ties that the king» oí Spain had íorged irif/t the Basque people and how those ties u-ere strongest iihen Basque freedoms icere mosí ofewrtW b\ his roval ancestors.
initiative and organized directly with the autonomous Basque government.
In the Basque country Juan Carlos succeeded in driving a wedge between the modérate Basque nationalists that form the autonomous regional govern-
ment and the extremista who back the terrorist methods of ETA and seek se-cession of the Basque country from the rest of Spain. The extremist demonstration at Guemica outraged the modérales while the concUiating pitch
of the king s speech broke through the mutual suspicion that has dominated their a>ntacte with the central government.
The concluding impact of the first royal trip to the politically charged
Basque country of northem Spain has been an undoubtod personal triumph for the 43-year-oU Juan Cartee, who carne to the throne fíve years aga Ironically it was leftist extremists who made the triumph punible and, with
fortúnate timing, the king´s stock is «t its greatest when he needs it most — as he prepares to choose a successor to Suarez, architect of the Spanish transition.
The high point of the . sqw was the speech at Guemica, íhe spuifual capital of the fiercely indepen-t Basques. Guemica was blariket-bombed by the Germán Lufrwafte tn 1937 as Hitler backed Francise» Franco´s civü ;nr against the Spanéh repubuc.
Juan Carlos, with his wife Sofia. entered the ancient stone-walled assembly hall preceded by wigged mace bearers in livery and aeeompanied by thundering clarión calk \\Twn h» tum carne to address the assembly of Basque politicians, radical nationalist deputies leaped to thek feet, gave the denched ftst saiute and sang a Basque separatist anthem until they were forcibly ejected by Basque security agents. Juan Carlos bore out the pan" demonium with aplomb and when order was restored he restated his faith in democracy and his confidente ín the Basque people.
The king spoke at length about the ancient ties that the kings oi Spain had forged with the Basque peopie and htw those ties were strongest when Basque freedoms were most observed by his royal ancestors. Poütictans of all shades of opinión saw it as a speech of major political importance. Juan Carlos had committed the crown unequivocally to the post-Franco deroocratic process and especialry to the deücate policy of creating autonomous región* that wil] replace the previous
Sun>by. fetruorr 8,199;
THE WASHINGTON POST
México to Assíst Cubans Under Agreement
wjth technkal aasistance, an accord with the Mexical government is more favorabie and secura from Cuba´» point of view.
Whik the text of the agreement gives few financia! detáils, it says that México will supply "equipmient and malcriáis produced in México" on a basis oí "cost plus expenses" and will "iraké ¡te best eff>^ts" to help Havana acquire equipment in other cquntriee when necessary.
4ULS law bans sale of American goods to Cuba and U.S. offkials are said to be watching for evidence (hat México might act as an intermediary in fhanneling American oil machinery or raw mataríais to Havana.
México was the only Latin American nation not to break diplomatic relations with Cuba in the 1960s, but it tmptícitly supported the U.S.-initiated embargo imposed in 1964 by halting most of its trade with the island. However, 10 years ago it began improving political and commercial ties with Havana to the point where they are .very clobe now. Last year, President José López Portillo went to Cuba following an earlier vísit from President Fidel Castro here.
There has been widespread speculation as to Mexico´s motives for reaching the energy agreement with Cuba. Some analysts have suggested it is merely one additional way for México to assert its independence of Washington.
Others say the real reason is that it was prometed
by Pemex Chief Díaz Serrano as a way of furthering his domft,íic political career. Díaz Serrano, a cióse friend of López Portillo, is among severa! aspirante to become the next president of México. One of his handicaps, these analyste say, is his image of being too pro-Arnerican and too pro-business. Theae analysts suggest that his trip to Havana, where he delivered a strongly pro-Cuban speech, was an attempt to redress the balance.
The deal abo comes at a time when Pemex has been rapidly expanding its activities abroad It has bought the majority share in a refinery in the north of Spain and is studying joint ventures in severa! other nations. Pemex workers are expioring or providing technical aid in Panamá, Nicaragua and Costa Rica and are ateo to go to China and India
Basque Visit Boosts Spanish Monarcas Popularity
SPAIN, Prora A25
repressive centralism with a virtual federal state structure,
Juan Carlos retumed to Madrid to an enthusiastic welcome from crowds that were furious at the affront that he had undergone in Guernica and deíightfid that he had carried off the tense situation in a masterful manner. Newspaper headlines called him "Juan Carlos the Brave."
He aíso retumed to a political vacuwet.
tional role of naming a ¡lew prime minister after consultation with the political parties.
The king is awaiting the outo)me of the Majorca convention to ñame the suocessor to Suárez, the man he chose in 1976 to speed up the democratic process. In the meantime he is consulting with political leaders in an effort to assure his candidate for premier of a strong backing that will ensure a stable governmpnt ..r.r;t-------´
tradition of "givin}; and receivirsg advicc," Juan Cark»´ powers are in theory severeiy limited, but Ln practice they can be used with considerable músele. Spanish cominentators point out a key dilference from the British s>-stem: the íack in Spain of Consolidated democratic instiíutions with the cx)rresponding degree of iníluence that the monarch is expected to exert. Profound problems remaín unsolved
agaínst the king centered on the issue, Gíiraikoetxea, however, was the íirst to term the tour "a historie and poeitive" success. His effusive backslapping embrace, Spanish style, with the king as Juan Carlos left San Sebastian airport to return to Madrid, linked the chief of the Basque executive with the fortunes of the crown and by implication with the rest of Spain.
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