The Spanish Civil War – Victory and Defeat (6/6) 1

Spanish Republican refugeesThe fate of the Spanish Republic was sealed at the battle of the Rio Ebro, which was a battle not only for ground, but for time. If the Republic could hold out long enough it might be rescued by the anti-Fascist forces in a forseeable European war, but the appeasement of HItler at Munich in September of 1938 dashed those hopes.

The Battle of the Ebro was the most costly confrontation of the Civil War, doubly so for the Republicans, as it came on the heels of two years of bitter-but-unsuccessful fighting, The confrontation on the Ebro looked promising at the beginning, as the Republican troops succeeded in crossing the river and advancing 25 kilometers.

But a counter attack by the Franco forces converted the struggle into a static battle of attrition, in which the Republican forces were destined to lose to Franco’s professional army. More…

The Spanish Civil War – Inside the Revolution (5/6) Reply

Spanish Civil RevolutionAt the outbreak of the war the revolution burst out spontaneously in most of Republican Spain. But the Republican government was hopeless and would later face a confrontation with the revolution, to the detriment of both. In the first weeks of the war the militias offered the only real defense of the Republic.

Wildly optimistic and recklessly confident, they lacked however the coordination necessary for an army. Socialists, Communists, Anarchists and moderate Republicans all marched together in the beginning. Then relations deteriorated and each group went its own way. The Anarchists prevailed in Catalonia but their battle was debilitated insofar as it was not just against the army rebels, but against Capitalism itself. More…

The Spanish Civil War – Prelude to Tragedy (1/6) Reply

Español: Reemplazo de voluntarios del ejercito...Photo by Wikipedia–This is the first one-hour program of a six-part documentary series on the Spanish Civil War produced by British Granada Television in 1983. This series is required viewing for anyone who wants to know Spain better, as it touches upon issues and ideologies that are still current in Spain today. The Spanish Civil War uses film and eyewitness accounts from both sides of the conflict that divided Spain in the years leading up to World War II, also placing it in its international context. HIghlights include live commentary from some of the protagonists who were still alive in  1983 when the documentary was made: More…