Update from Spain, post-nap, tranquilizer, and a few spliffs. Interior Minister Angel Acebes is still certain this is the work of ETA, but he stated that other hypotheses are being investigated. Somebody sent an e-mail to an Arabic-language newspaper claiming responsibility in the name of Al Qaeda. Also, a van which had been stolen at the end of February was found in Alcala de Henares with six detonators and, among a pile of other things including various cassette tapes, a tape with verses from the Koran.
This is pretty flimsy ground to base a conspiracy theory on, but it's already happening. Investigations eavesdropping at the local bars determined just minutes ago that for male Spaniards who hang out in crappy bars in Barcelona, 100% are convinced of the ETA-Al Qaeda-PP-Aznar-Bush-Illuminati conspiracy to do dirt to the world in general and themselves in particular. The "Aznar fucked up and got us on America's side and now Al Qaeda has bombed us and it's America's fault" theme is rather a constant.
I understand that most Barcelonese not under the influence of what we call vino peleon around here are likely to have somewhat calmer heads.
Here's the paranoid conspiracy theory that is cropping up in my mind. ETA plants the bombs, and this was clearly an ETA-style job, but tries to make it look like Al Qaeda, or at least bring up the suspicion as best they can--and note that the first person to link the alleged "Arab resistance" group and the massacre in Madrid was none other than ETA mouthpiece Arnaldo Otegui. Their strategy: Piss off the people against Aznar and the PP, their sworn enemies, for getting us in the sights of Al Qaeda. That's a terribly narrow and selfish attitude to have--"Aznar and Bush got these people killed" for daring to use force to stop terrorism. Enough people might have that very attitude, though, that there's a backlash at the polls on Sunday against the PP and they lose the election. That's something ETA would very much like to see.
I remain convinced that ETA carried out these bombings.