• Spain's news in English

Spain's royals outraged by 'fictional' history book

AFP · 4 Apr 2014, 11:43

Published: 04 Apr 2014 11:43 GMT+02:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

The palace rejected claims by popular historian Pilar Urbano that the king conspired to oust Suarez as prime minister and unwittingly set the scene for an attempted military coup in 1981.

Crowds of mourners lined the streets last month to honour Suarez, credited with steering Spain to democracy alongside Juan Carlos after the death of the dictator Franco.

SEE ALSO: Six reasons Adolfo Suarez is Spain's best-loved Prime Minister

Among a flood of homages, Juan Carlos called him a "loyal friend".

But Urbano said the king had turned on his political ally and tried to remove Suarez — without force — after bowing to pressure from disgruntled military officers.

Juan Carlos has long been credited with defusing the coup by armed guards who took lawmakers hostage in February 1981.

But Urbano said in her book "The Great Forgetfulness" that Juan Carlos had earlier connived with those same officers in a scheme to replace Suarez peacefully, dubbed "Operation Armada".

Eventually displeased with the king's choice of leader to replace Suarez, the same officers went a step further and launched a full-blown coup attempt, she said, citing various testimonies.

"One operation led to the other, but the coup happened without the king intending it," Urbano said at the book's launch in Madrid on Thursday.

"After the coup, Suarez thought the king had betrayed him and called him a traitor."

A palace spokesman rejected the allegations, describing evidence cited in Urbano's book as "pure fiction, impossible to believe".

"The palace wishes to highlight the impeccable manner in which his majesty the king has always fulfilled his institutional obligations," the spokesman said.

Story continues below…

It "roundly denies that he had any involvement in the so-called Operation Armada," he added.

Several people quoted in the book published an editorial in the conservative newspaper ABC denouncing the book as an attempt to "destabilize" the state.

Suarez's son, Adolfo Suarez Illana, demanded the book be withdrawn, accusing Urbano of the unauthorized use of a photograph in a book that "violates the honour" of his father.

Don't miss stories about Spain, join us on Facebook and Twitter.   

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
Brit paedo held on Costa del Sol after Most Wanted appeal

One of Britain’s most wanted fugitives was arrested on the Costa Del Sol following a tip-off from an expat just hours after his face appeared on a public appeal.

'Cubism and War' show opens at Barcelona Picasso Museum
Pablo Picasso Harlequin and Woman with a Necklace. Photo: MP

Barcelona's Picasso Museum unveiled an exhibition on "Cubism and War" on Thursday depicting how one of the most influential artistic styles of the 20th century survived the First World War.

Why this bionic limb pioneer doesn't believe in disability
Hugh Herr has been award Spain's top science prize. Photo: FPA

The Local speaks to Hugh Herr on winning Spain's top science prize and how being an amputee doesn't make him disabled.

Dine in the buff at Spain's first nudist restaurant
A buffet of organic food will be served on "human tables". Photo: Innato / Facebook

Spain's first naked dining experience is to arrive on the island of Tenerife following the success of a similar venture in London.

Spain's top court overturns bullfighting ban in Catalonia
Photo: AFP

Spain's Constitutional Court on Thursday cancelled a bullfighting ban in Catalonia in what is likely to exacerbate tensions between Madrid and the separatist region, and between animal activists and fans of the tradition.

Out of the dark: Five years on from Eta ceasefire
Eta members made a ceasefire declaration in January, 2011. Photo: Gara / AFP

Five years after armed separatist group Eta declared a permanent ceasefire, Basque journalist Alberto Letona is still wondering when the dialogue will begin.

Hunt for ten most wanted Brit fugitives hiding out in Spain
Call Crimestoppers if you recognize these faces.

These fugitives from British justice are thought to be hiding out in Spain. Do you recognize anyone?

Eta 'not dead' but Spain focus moves onto jihadism
Archive photo of a pro-mural in the Basque Country. Photo: AFP

Five years after Eta quit violence, the Basque separatist group has yet to dissolve but it poses little threat and authorities have shifted their focus to fight jihadists, says Spain's chief anti-terrorism prosecutor.

Brazilian suspect in grisly Madrid murder turns self in
Marcos Campos Nogueira is the chief suspect in the murder of a married couple and their two children. Photo: Guardia Civil/Twitter

A Brazilian teenager suspected of dismembering his uncle and aunt and killing their two young sons in a grisly crime that shocked Spain has turned himself in to police.

Spain approves equal parental leave for fathers
Photo: Rietje Swart / Flickr

Fathers will now be allowed the same parental leave as new mothers, under measures agreed by Spain’s parliament.

Sponsored Article
How to vote absentee from abroad in the US elections
Celebrate expat life at Madrid’s THRIVE convention
Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
Disney announces plans for Don Quixote action movie
Activist tells 8-yr-old matador wannabe with cancer 'just die'
Sponsored Article
How to vote absentee from abroad in the US elections
King to make last minute push to avoid third vote in Spain
Amazing photos of Catalonia's 'human tower' contest
What's on in Spain: October 2016
'No way, Jose! You'll never get your hands on our Rock'
Recipe: How to make a classic Spanish tortilla de patatas
Chorizo in paella? Go back to cooking school Jamie Oliver
Spain in eye of a perfect storm after 10 months without govt
Thousands share clips of life for 'Spain in a Day' film
Ten incredible Spain locations for Game of Thrones season 7
Analysis & Opinion
Why moving to Spain could be the best decision of your life
Seven reasons why autumn is the very best season in Spain
Spanish study finds four types of personality. Which are you?
New search underway for civil war grave of poet Lorca
Bison found decapitated on Valencia nature reserve
Forgotten Voices: What Brits in Spain think about Brexit
One dead and 14 injured in blast at Spanish resort
Game of Thrones want extras 'with muscles' to film in Spain
Thousands march in Madrid to push for bullfighting ban
Spanish team invents hands-free 'penis bidet'
In pics: Devastation caused by Costa Blanca wildfires
jobs available