The Superior General of the Priestly Fraternity of Saint Pius X (FSSPX / SSPX), Bishop Bernard Fellay, granted today an interview to Gino Driussi, of RTSI (the Italian-language Swiss public radio), providing some very enlightening answers:Fr. Zuhlsdorf, "Bp. Fellay interview by Radio Svizzera: didn’t totally reject the Conditions" (WDTPRS, June 28, 2008):[17:45] [Fellay:] Perhaps it is false to say, in such a way, directly, that I reject, that I propose a total rejection [of the conditions], that is not true. Rather, I see in this ultimatum a very vague, confused thing. But, in fact, I have already written a response and we will see how Rome will react.
... I think the usual media suspects are somewhat misreading the situation.[Hat tip to Syriacus via Rorate Caeli; and Fr. Zuhlsdorf]
... That is to say, though [Fellay et al] are afraid to cause a split in the SSPX were they to sign off on those conditions openly, perhaps they could skirt the issue by saying they wouldn’t accept the premise of the conditions but then begin to modify their style a bit anyway.
... The bottom line:
The leadership of the SSPX are afraid of an internal rupture more than anything else. They can’t explicitly reject the Conditions offered by the Holy See. Therefore they are trying to steer a middle course by rejecting a seconday premise of the conditions which was explicitly state (Don’t speak disrespectfully about the Pope and put on airs about their own "magisterium") without rejecting the true premise underlying them (Who is the Bishop of Rome and who are you without him?).
The code language to listen for in future comments by the leadership of the SSPX will be things like "the conditions don’t make sense – we do have dialogue even though it is slow – what’s the hurry".