An Inalienable Inheritance? A securitization theory approach to the Western Sahara issue in Spain’s relations with Morocco
Sánchez Esquivel, Pablo
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In November 1975, authoritarianism came to an end in Spain. After Franco's death, political transition led to the birth of a democracy eager to distance itself from the dictatorial past and thus claim its place in Europe and in the world. However, a decision taken during the agony of the previous regime, motivated by pressing circumstances, conditions Spain’s policies and stains its democratic identity: Francoist abandonment of Western Sahara amid the Moroccan invasion known as the “Green March”. This Thesis employs a model of securitization theory divided into three phases -identification of the threat, mobilization against it and desecuritization/institutionalization- to explore the effect of political transition in a process of securitization through Spain’s case study. In Chapter I, this theoretical frame is explained and articulated. Then, in Chapter II, a display of the internal and external circumstances motivating the identification and mobilization of Francoism to securitize the Green March proceed. Finally, in Chapter III, a study of the evolution of the Spanish democratic identity in relation to the Western Sahara question in Spain’s affairs with Morocco concludes 6 the body of the work. An analysis of UN documents and resolutions on the issue, newspaper articles from a series of journals reflecting relevant events and statements, declassified CIA documents concerning important actor’s interests, public letters, decreets and court rulings shows that the core of the problematic relations between Spain and Morocco lies at the evolution of the priorities and values defended by the different securitizing actors of a dying dictatorship and those of a flourishing democracy.