Al-Qaeda or ETA? An Alternative Take on the Terrorist Attacks in Madrid

The series of explosions that took place in Madrid on March 11, 2004 furnished food for the Spanish mind, giving rise to different theories, chief among which were those concerning the culprits responsible for that brutal crime. Following its investigation, the public prosecutor’s office declared Islamic jihadists to be the guilty party. At least two counter-narratives have arisen, however; in addition to the official version, there is an unofficial one that throws suspicion on the Basque terrorist organization, ETA. Such a version of events was seen as the most probable by the public prosecutor’s office at the outset of its inquiry. Denials by the Spanish government some years later have been interpreted as evidence of a lack of transparency in official proceedings and a form of political manipulation.