'Under silence' is a documentary by Iñaki Arteta, dedicated to the victims of ETA terrorism. It has been screened in theaters in Getxo (Vizcaya), Vitoria, and other parts of Spain without incident, but the radical pro-independence left called for a boycott of its presentation in Tarrasa (Barcelona), this Monday. Finally, the act, organized by the Association for Tolerance and Catalan Civil Society (SCC) took place without incident but, faced with this attempt to curtail freedom of expression, Arteta criticizes: "the independence movement has dedicated itself to harassing and persecuting those who do not nationalists. In the Basque Country and now in Catalonia. Although not surprising, it is quite unpleasant.
In a conversation with ABC, the filmmaker emphasizes: "It cannot be that we limit the spaces of free expression in our country because some sheep think it is an invasion that a film is projected in their town."
Arteta is encouraged to denounce the accusation to avoid normalizing it. "I don't understand why this happens, especially in the face of the public, who refrain from going in the face of threats like this, and in the end you give the independentistas an advantage, and the boycotters in general."
Through social networks he has received threats. "Not deathly, but they did tell us that they intended to scare us, that we were left over there, and that the film is a Spanish one," he says, adding: "It is that threatening tone of nationalism, which wants to get rid of any dissident expression or that does not agree with yours, "he reproaches. A large part of the film is dedicated to investigating, "in the very voice of the terrorists who have been in jail", what the Basque Country is like today, after the cessation of ETA's terrorist activity.
“In the end, it is a mirror of the fanaticism that has led them to do what they have done for so long, and many pro-independence Catalans will be reflected there. There is nothing to justify what they have done, but there is a narcissistic, supremacist and violent impulse that is common in both cases, in the Catalan and the Basque. The Basques went further and left a trail of blood in our country, but deep down there is sympathy between the Basque nationalists and the Catalans », he points out. It is not the first time they have tried to intimidate Arteta. He himself remembers that 20 years ago, with the screening of his first film, a group of 20 people stood up in front of his town's cinema to try to boycott the act. «They were stories of Basque victims and persecuted. We stayed inside until the police saw fit to stand at the gates », he recalls.
The world of cinema has remained silent in the face of the new example of harassment by anti-system radicals against Arteta. With a good part of the sector involved in the open dispute with the Government of Pedro Sánchez –for the imminent approval of the Audiovisual Law that puts the survival of independent productions at risk–, and the rest of the industry decked out at the Cannes Festival, It seems that they have left aside a colleague who, once again, is attacked by groups of the extreme left.
The Film Academy, for its part, has preferred not to comment on the harassment suffered by the filmmaker. The institution is in a transition period until the elections on June 4 and did not issue any kind of statement yesterday.