The President of the Government, Pedro Sánchez, declared himself a victim of lawfare this morning during an interview in La Ser, following the information published last Friday by La Vanguardia that the PP already used former commissioner José Manuel Villarejo in 2014 to spy on his father-in-law In addition, he has listed other people who have suffered similar situations in recent years such as Mònica Oltra, Irene Montero, Ada Colau, Nadia Calviño or Carmen Calvo. Below we explain what this term means:

When describing the term lawfare, there are, according to Jaume Castan, geopolitics expert and professor at the University of Southern Denmark, “discrepancies between social use and the academic definition” of the concept.

For Castan, the academy defines lawfare as the use of States to increase their power. In 2001, United States Air Force General Charles Dunlap defined the concept and established it as an instrument used in geopolitics. “Geopolitical lawfare is used by all states,” adds Castan, who assures that it is as “legitimate as the economy” because it is a “neutral” concept.

On the other hand, the social use of lawfare is the use “of legal instruments to achieve political ends.” This definition converts the term into ‘domestic lawfare’.

In this way, Castan affirms that a distinction must be made between ‘geopolitical lawfare’, “which all states use legitimately and in a geopolitical manner” and ‘domestic or social lawfare’, “which can have harmful consequences for democracy.” .

In politics, as Castan defines, the term ‘domestic lawfare’ is used, since it is denounced when it is believed that there is “an abuse of the instruments of the law for political purposes.” If lawfare exists in a State, it would represent “a direct problem against the democratic health” of that country.

In South America there are many politicians who have denounced the use of lawfare against them. Specifically, in Brazil it has been denounced by both the country’s president, Lula da Silva, and former president Jair Bolsonaro. In Ecuador, former President Rafael Correa also denounced lawfare by former President Lenin Moreno.

Within the ‘social lawfare’ that Castan describes, we also find a subcategory that differentiates the lawfare denounced by the pro-independence parties from that protested by Sánchez.

From Podemos to independence. In Spain, the independence movement has denounced having been a victim of the lawfare, starting with the process, in which they accuse the Supreme Court of having irregularly assumed the jurisdiction to judge a case and of feeding it with reports from the Civil Guard that they consider were prepared with the intention to fit the 1-0 in crimes of rebellion or sedition.

The opinion of the independentistas is not unanimous in cases that Junts continues to consider as lawfare, from the Pujol case – which they see as orchestrated by dark maneuvers of the patriotic police – to the awards at the hands of the former president of the Parliament Laura Borràs – who alleges that it was condemned for her ideology – or the money laundering from drug trafficking that is attributed to Gonzalo Boye, who maintains that he is being persecuted for being Carles Puigdemont’s lawyer.

The last supposed maneuver of lawfare denounced by independence is the decision of the judge of the Audiencia Nacional Manuel García Castellón to investigate Carles Puigdemont and the leader of the ERC Marta Rovira for a crime of terrorism for the protests of Democratic Tsunami, in the middle of negotiations of the Amnesty law.

According to Castan, the lawfare denounced by the independentists would be, if it existed, “territorial lawfare”, different from that to which Pedro Sánchez feels he is a victim, since its use would have as its objective “the territorial defense of the State.”

It is worth remembering that the agreement between the PSOE and Junts for the investiture of Pedro Sánchez provided for the creation of parliamentary investigation commissions to determine the cases in which justice has been instrumentalized to carry out political persecution, that is, lawfare. .

“They will be taken into account in the application of the amnesty law to the extent that situations included in the concept of lawfare or judicialization of politics may arise, with the consequences that, where appropriate, may give rise to liability actions or legislative modifications. “, stated the text.

In his appearance on the agreement with Junts, Santos Cerdán, number three of the PSOE, limited the lawfare cases to those that were related to the process.

Castan assures that detecting the use of lawfare, if any, “is very easy to conceptualize.” However, “it is very difficult to assess whether a caste constitutes lawfare or not, since the dimension of interpretation comes into play.