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Mieczyslaw Bortenstein (M. Casanova)

Spain Betrayed

How the Popular Front Opened the Gates to Franco

21. What else could have been done?

Could anything else have been done? To ask the question is to answer it. It is all the more urgently necessary to reply that the same policy, the Popular Front, is being carried out on an international scale where it can only have the same results, that is, new catastrophes. Could anything else have been done? That is to ask: “Could another policy other than that of the Popular Front have been applied in Spain?”

Opportunists, not only during 1939 but always, have the habit of justifying their policy, their crimes in other words, by the ‘objective conditions’. Objective conditions, you see, did not allow a revolutionary policy. No, gentlemen leaders of the Popular Front, you lie: you hide your betrayals behind the ‘objective conditions’.

If we listen to the explanations of the leaders of the Popular Front, including the Anarchists, and if we take these explanations seriously, all we can do is to despair of everything and lose hope in the revolutionary capacities of the proletariat, its future and even its historic mission. We do not wish to delude ourselves with illusions, and our duty is to see reality as it really is.

But what was tragic about the Spanish Revolution, was not the objective conditions, it was the stupid and criminal policy of those pretending to lead it and who, alas, were followed by the masses.

According to our petit-bourgeois Popular Front democrats, everything was inevitable. The Republicans and Socialists justified the defeat by the military superiority of the Fascists, and the Communists by the existence of a pro-Fascist bourgeoisie (a discovery, this!) which, by its policy of non-intervention, favoured Franco. They forgot to add that they supported the Blum government, which inaugurated this policy. The Anarchists justified their capitulations and repeated betrayals by the blackmail exercised by the Russians through the weapons that they were sending to the Republicans. As for the POUM, it too joined the fatalist chorus and said: “We were too weak, and we had to follow the others, and above all we could not break unity.” Thus everything was inevitable. What happened had to happen, and it was written in advance in the Koran ...

What happened had to happen, but it is your policy, gentlemen of the Popular Front, which made it possible. Marxist thought is not fatalist, it is determinist. In spite of the importance Marxists ascribe to economic factors, the policies and ideology of parties in struggle, which often lag behind the objective necessities of development, can prevent the forward march of society and the flourishing of a new economy.

In any case, in Spain in July 1936 all the objective conditions existed for the success of a proletarian revolution. Unlike Hitler or Mussolini, Franco had no powerful mass movement behind him. In spite of external appearances his movement had, and still has, an old style reactionary rather than a Fascist character. One of the currents that supported it, the Spanish Falange, resembled the German and Italian Fascist organisations. But the Spanish Falange was not a mass organisation. The main force upon which Franco relied was the old clerical and feudal reaction which was so hated by the people.

The country, the people, the workers, the peasants and the petit-bourgeoisie had risen up to end this medieval Spain. Only the curb of the Popular Front had prevented a proletarian revolution from preceding the Francoist coup d’état. Responding to the revolt of the generals, the workers and peasants rose to transform the country in accordance with their interests. The proletariat possessed a powerful ally in the countryside. It was precisely the backward character of the country that enabled an agrarian revolution in the countryside to be joined by a working class movement in the towns.

It possessed another ally in the Catalan, Basque and Galician national movements, and it could have won over the Moroccans by a policy of colonial liberation inspired by the example of the Russian Revolution.

Most of the state apparatus of the bourgeoisie went over to Franco, but within the Republican zone the workers had only to puff to destroy what remained of the capitalist state and take power. To start with the Republican zone extended over all the most important centres in the country. The anti-Fascists held the three great capitals, Madrid, Barcelona and Valencia, and the two most industrialised and decisive regions, Catalonia and the north. Millions of men had risen, and energy, initiative and enthusiasm were not lacking. Only the party of the revolution was lacking.

“But unity was necessary to struggle against Franco. It was necessary to find a broad formula that would group together all the anti-Fascists, even the most moderate. This formula was rightly the Popular Front.” So say the defenders of the greatest betrayal that history has yet known.

We have already explained that the ‘broad formula’ of the Popular Front satisfied nobody. Real unity could only come about on the basis of the dictatorship of the proletariat.

“But the masses were not ready, they were backward and saturated with democratic illusions”, say some of our left objectors. The masses really did have democratic illusions. It is on that account that they brought to power the leaders of the Popular Front. But even if they did not have a clear understanding of their own objectives, they showed instinctively that they had fewer illusions than many of the Communist and Anarchist leaders. They had no confidence in the rotten bourgeois republic and in men like Azaña, Companys, etc. ... They wanted the Communists and Anarchists in power. It took heavy and persistent efforts from their leaders, mainly the Communists, to regild the lily of the discredited democrats, in order to force the masses to swallow the maintenance in power of an Azaña or a Companys. When the masses wanted Caballero, Pasionaria and García Oliver in power, it was their way of saying that they wanted the proletarian revolution.

Moreover, the Popular Front did not exist in the first few months after 19 July. The men of the Esquerra did not even dare to show themselves in the street. By creating their own organisations of struggle, the committees, the masses were on the right track. It took several months of effort by the leaders of the Popular Front to turn the masses back from the revolutionary path and cause them to enter the orbit of democratic passivity again.

Here the left wing of the Popular Front, in other words the Anarchists and the POUM, will reply to us: “We were in a minority, we could not join battle with the whole world simultaneously”, that is, against the Fascists, the Republicans, the Socialists, and the Communists.

Obviously, you are not expected to do the impossible, only those things that are possible. Even though we are called terrible terrorists, in spite of the esteem and devotion we have for prison, we are not Blanquists. [172] To the extent to which the Anarchists and the POUM were in a minority among the masses, they could not take power. Long before 1936, Lenin had already shown the route that revolutionaries must follow in such cases – march separately, strike together. Fight side by side with other anti-Fascist forces against Franco, but keep your independence, tell the truth to the masses, at every stage denounce the hesitations and betrayals of your travelling companions, and in the process of common struggle and continual revolutionary criticism win over the majority of the working class and the general population, and take power.

But can you carry on two civil wars at the same time? To start with, you have no choice. However silent, however open, the war inside the ‘governmental camp’ was not an invention of the Trotskyists, nor was it the result of the machinations of Franco. This second civil war had its origins in the clash of interests within the Popular Front. This contradiction could only be suppressed if one party in the Popular Front took over from the other. The right wing of the Popular Front was not inhibited by this sentiment of unity. It carried on a civil war against the left wing, which it wanted to muzzle, and succeeded in doing so.

Secondly, to win the war against Franco it was necessary to end this second civil war, this war within the Popular Front, as soon as possible, and to end it to the advantage of the proletariat, which alone was capable of winning the anti-Fascist war.

The historians of the French Revolution agree that the struggle of the Jacobins against the Girondins increased the strength of France in its struggle against the allied kings. During the Russian Revolution the obstinate struggle of the Bolsheviks against the Russian Girondins, the Mensheviks and the Socialist Revolutionaries, strengthened the proletariat and made possible the victories of the Red Army over the White armies. But on account of their petit-bourgeois nature our democrats and their followers preferred the cosy unity of the Popular Front, which was really only a screen behind which everyone was fighting for their own interests.

“But Spain was not ripe for the Socialist Revolution, it was only ready for a democratic revolution”, intone the Stalinists, seconded by the Socialists. Thus, in an analogous situation the argument of the Mensheviks is dished up to us 20 years later. Was Russia less backward than Spain? All the same features also existed in Russia, such as being a colony of imperialism, foreign intervention, the backward character of agriculture and the remains of feudalism. Now can anybody explain to us how this “democratic revolution” can be accomplished within the confines of the capitalist system and in the imperialist epoch? We await these explanations in vain, and equally in vain we wait to see these democratic revolutions triumph and be completed. The smashing of the proletarian revolution in China resulted in the destruction of all the democratic gains, and in foreign domination. What had not ripened in Spain was the revolutionary party.

But you are completely forgetting that the international situation was unfavourable to the Spanish Revolution! In Russia it was easier. In 1917 the capitalists were fighting amongst themselves, and they could not hurl themselves against Bolshevism... Now Fascism reigns in several countries, in Germany, Italy, Portugal and the whole of Central Europe. And even the democracies were against us. In 1936-39 there was then no world war.

So reply those who wish to justify betrayal. And the Anarchists add: “We had Stalin against us as well.” Oh yes, all these facts are true. But revolutionaries do not fight in conditions created by themselves, they have to fight in the conditions imposed by circumstances. Revolutions do not take place by decree. Hence there can be no question of choosing particularly favourable conditions for making them, still less ideal conditions – an economically developed country, a perfect international climate, etc. ... That would be all very nice of course, but things do not happen like that. “Our road is not as straight as the Nevsky Prospekt.” Lenin taught us that revolution becomes possible in that country where the chain of imperialism is the weakest. This was so in Spain in 1936. It was necessary to break it.

But was the international situation in 1936 as hopeless for the Spanish proletariat as our Popular Front democrats and their Stalinist and Anarchist allies said? There was no world war, obviously. But must the proletariat wait for a new world war to make its revolution? That is one point of view, but it is not ours. According to us, the proletariat must do all it can to render this new slaughter impossible by pre-empting it with the liberating Socialist Revolution. Thus it will save millions of human lives, and even though we may be unscrupulous ‘terrorists’, that is important for us.

Franco enjoyed considerable international support. He was supported by three states and by powerful financial oligarchies. But could the proletariat find any support on an international scale? As a result of the policy of the Popular Front it received from outside the International Brigades, condensed milk and beans in limited quantities, and very expensive arms of mediocre quality in exchange for a policy of sabotaging the revolution, that was later to open the gates to Franco.

But if a revolutionary orientation had been adopted by the Spanish proletariat, it would then have been able to obtain powerful support from outside as well. To begin with, even after the strikes in France in June 1936 that were betrayed by the Stalinists, the proletariat still had strong positions in that country. A proletarian revolution in a capitalist country cannot but have repercussions in other countries. It does not always have the power to trigger off revolution in other countries if the conditions in them are not really ripe. But it always provokes currents of active solidarity that can paralyse the bourgeoisie of these countries and render their reactionary intervention impossible. And was it impossible to disintegrate the Francoist army? [173]

‘The Red Plague’ has powers of radiation and penetration. It only has to be genuine. Naturally the policy of ‘non-intervention’, in other words the international proletariat remaining passive instead of following the example of Fascism and actively intervening in the Spanish conflict, was a hard blow for the revolution. But this ‘non-intervention’ of the proletariat derived from the entire policy which the Popular Front pursued internationally. This non-intervention does not excuse the Spanish Popular Front, it only increases its responsibility for the crime. For it was not only the Spanish Popular Front because of its orientation that worked for Franco, it was the Popular Front in all countries, the “Popular Front in the whole world”, according to Dimitrov’s formula. Those responsible are not only Negrín and José Díaz, but Blum and Thorez and the latter’s master, Stalin, as well.

The French Popular Front, and the Communist Party in particular, demanded the withdrawal of foreign troops from Spain, and was satisfied with this platonic demand, but at the same time it enforced the unity of the French nation, in other words subordinated the French proletariat to the bourgeoisie. In this way it created a pro-Fascist climate in Europe.

But a revolutionary policy in Spain could have struck a tremendous blow at European reaction, and would have thrown into confusion the conservative leaders of the Popular Front in other countries. If the French workers had learned that the dictatorship of the proletariat had been installed in Barcelona and Madrid, in other words another and greater Commune, who can say that they would have remained passive during these years? Perhaps even Thorez and Costes [174] would have had some difficulty in ending the strikes! And would Fascist Italy and Hitlerite Germany have necessarily remained homogeneous and solid blocs at every test?

Even though the Stalinists, by preaching nationalism, did all they could to make the Fascist dictatorships more solid and to create a favourable climate around them, we do not think, as Göbbels claims, that Hitler’s regime will have an assured existence for a thousand years. Perhaps if the proletarian revolution had triumphed in Spain it would not have had a thousand days.

A decree by the proletarian government for the liberation of the protectorate, followed by revolutionary propaganda in Morocco, could have opened up a breach in North Africa and roused the Arab world against European imperialism. And if Spanish Morocco had been penetrated, French Morocco would have awakened. Have not the memories of “Abd el Krim’s freedom struggle survived? [175] Have we forgotten that struggle which threw the chancelleries of Europe into confusion?

Obviously, in order to implement such a policy inspired by the example of the great Russian Revolution, to the spirit of which the Fourth International remains faithful, we must not be afraid of annoying international capitalism and its creatures – Hitler, Mussolini, Chamberlain, Daladier and the Pope. We must not only be intent on annoying them, but also on overthrowing them.

“Perhaps you are right”, the Anarchist ministers might say, “but we had Stalin against us too, and he has the weapons that we lack.” It might be surmised that it is not our intention to defend Stalin’s blackmail in the matter of the sale of arms to Republican Spain. However, García Oliver is trying to justify his successive capitulations to Stalinist blackmail and thus evade his own responsibility.

The international bourgeoisie is not omnipotent, and it cannot always do what it wants. Neither is Stalin all-powerful. His plans can also be overturned. Until now they were generally overturned by the international bourgeoisie, but the plans of the ‘father of the peoples’ can be and also will be overturned in the future by the revolutionary proletariat. Just like the Pope and Chamberlain, Stalin could also be thrown into confusion by a triumphant proletarian revolution in Spain.

The essentially conservative Soviet bureaucracy has interests contrary to the international proletariat, but it nonetheless rests on the foundations of a workers’ state and a socialised economy. Its attitude also depends to a certain extent upon the opinion of the Russian proletariat, as well as the opinion of the international proletariat. Even if it always deceives its supporters, it still does not want to answer for it. In total, despite its betrayals, the Stalinist bureaucracy is not suspended in thin air, and it, too, feels the pressure of the international working class.

Would Stalin have sent weapons if ideological and police control had escaped him in Spain? It is not certain. In spite of his betrayals, Stalin does claim to be ‘the leader of the international proletariat’, and occasionally even ‘the leader of the international revolution’. If the Socialist revolution had triumphed in Spain, Stalin would have been forced to choose between it and Fascism. Considering the clientele upon which he depends, it would have been difficult for him to have chosen Fascism. The workers of Russia and the whole world would have found this incomprehensible. And in any case, the anti-statist García Oliver would have had in his hands a powerful card with which to expose him, rather more powerful than a theoretical article on the superiority of the doctrine of Bakunin over that of Marx.

“But in the meanwhile it was not a question of exposure, but of being able to oppose anti-Fascist tanks to the tanks of Franco”, the defenders of Anarcho-ministerialism will reply. That is true. So long as Anarchists, and revolutionaries generally, were not in control, and as long as they did not have power, they could not be opposed to the Republican government buying and receiving arms from Stalin, or even from the Devil and his grandmother, but they still had to maintain their independence, carry on revolutionary criticism (which is a powerful weapon in itself) and, thanks to it, take power and get hold of Stalin’s weapons at the same time.

During the May Days in Barcelona I saw several Anarchist militants using Russian weapons against the reactionary attack. When he sent them Stalin had simply not foreseen that his machine guns could change hands and be pointed in his direction. But if a revolutionary party had existed in Spain, it would have got hold of, not only the Russian machine guns, but all the weapons sent by Stalin as well as those sent by other foreign speculators.

“But if the anti-Stalinists were in power, whether they were of Anarchist, POUMist or Trotskyist hue, then Stalin would not send another bullet”, continues our objector, the defender of Anarcho-ministerialism.

Let us admit the worst eventuality. There would have been no more bullets from Stalin, Chamberlain would have been even more upset and even furious against our cause, whilst the Pope would have denounced us in a fresh Encyclical. This may be dreadfully sad, but we have to accept it if we seriously want to fight against capitalism and its favourite weapon, Fascism. If we make our activity dependent upon Stalin, Chamberlain, Pius XI or XII [176], we have to abandon all revolutionary intentions and accept the Popular Front, or something similar. But even if the Popular Front temporarily satisfies Stalin (and we do not know what turn he will make next), it would not satisfy Chamberlain at all, or the Pope, and, moreover, it demoralises the proletariat and opens the door to Fascism.

By committing itself to the revolutionary road, by destroying the capitalist state, by building a power base on the workers’ committees – a dictatorship of the proletariat – by solving all the burning problems of Spanish society by means of revolutionary reforms, by carrying out a total agrarian revolution, by freeing the oppressed nationalities, by liberating the colonies, and by basing the struggle against Franco upon the European and world Socialist revolution, the Spanish proletariat would have gained more powerful trump cards than Stalin’s tanks could ever be. [177]

But at this point the united choir of Negrín, Alvarez del Vayo, José Díaz and García Oliver replies: “There were too many obstacles to overcome, and too many enemies to defeat.” Clearly the Spanish Revolution did not lack enemies – and the most perfidious and dangerous of them were on the General Staff of the Republican Army and in ‘El Gobierno de la Victoria’.

We Marxists of the Fourth International can give no guarantees to the proletariat that our methods will guarantee easy victories. Such guarantees do not exist in a revolution, which is a gamble. But basing ourselves upon tragic experience we say this. The method of the Popular Front is driving you towards Fascism with implacable logic. Our road, which is that inspired by the example of the first victorious proletarian revolution, that of October 1917, is a hard road, a road of implacable struggle against all the enemies of Socialism. But it is the only road.

Let Us Prepare For Our Revenge

Resulta impossible concebir lo que España ha realizado si no se cuenta como elemento fundamental de la Victoria la decidida proteccion del cielo. (Heraldo de Aragon, 2 April 1939)
(It is impossible to understand what Spain has achieved unless you reckon with the help of Heaven as a fundamental element of victory.)

This work had yet to come back from the printer and see the light of day when the last act of the Civil War was on the point of being unfolded before our eyes. As we foresaw a month ago, the government of the Miaja-Casado Junta had only a short-term character. All it did was to hand over power to Franco. A month ago we wrote (see the chapter The Miaja-Casado Pronunciamento):

García Oliver was never rewarded for his betrayal in May, no more than Comorera and Negrín. The fate of Miaja-Casado and their allies will be no better. But as for the proletariat, it has no choice. Even in the event of a total defeat, it is only to the extent to which it resists and makes Franco pay dearly for his successes that it can regroup its forces afterwards and prepare its revenge.

Our accuracy has been confirmed yet again. Miaja, Casado and Besteiro, followed by certain CNTers and some Caballerists, hoped – or at any rate, pretended to hope – for an ‘honourable peace’ and for clemency on the part of Franco. Some voices had been raised abroad on the far left that supported, however openly, however timidly, the Miaja-Casado Junta, and saw in its orientation an attempt to ‘save human lives’.

Now the whole of Central Spain and Madrid have been handed over to Franco. In its turn the brave proletariat of Madrid and Valencia has suffered the fate of the Catalan proletariat. White terror reigns. The execution squads function unceasingly. The concentration camps are filled with thousands of proletarians. Even Besteiro, the traitor Besteiro, was arrested. “He will get no reward”, we wrote, and he did not. [178]

Social Democracy gave a vote of confidence to the Führer after Hitler’s seizure of power in Germany in 1933, and certain trade union bosses imagined that they could integrate the free trade unions into the Fascist regime. But some weeks later Hitler dissolved the free trade unions. Six years afterwards the same phenomenon reproduced itself in Spain with those who hoped to obtain an amnesty from Franco. And this entire constellation of reformists treated the revolutionary Marxists, supporters of the Fourth International, as utopians!

It was not to grant an amnesty that Franco, the instrument of feudal and capitalist reaction, carried on an unlimited war against the proletariat, but to massacre its vanguard. Those who talked about ‘saving human lives’ by helping the Miaja-Casado Junta did not understand the nature of Fascism. POUMist, Anarchist and Communist militants as well as Socialists and Republicans are being massacred. In Central Spain few anti-Fascists were able to get away, as the democracies washed their hands of them and refused to use their ships. Obviously Miaja, Casado, Val, etc., were able to escape by aeroplane, as nowadays aeroplanes are always available for fleeing governments.

Yet once more: the Miaja-Casado Pronunciamento was a crime, a crime against the proletariat and the Republic, a crime that will be paid for one day. Miaja-Casado massacred Communist workers and thus began the work finished by the master hangman Franco. A thousand-fold shame to those involved in this crime!

“The war has ended”, announces the Francoist General Staff. ‘The Red Plague’ has been crushed. The bourgeoisie of Spain and of the whole world can breathe again. Now with greater ease they can launch millions of proletarians into the imperialist slaughter.

Order reigns in Spain. The best of the best among the fighters of the proletariat are being killed and tortured. The Anarchist journalist Mauro Bajatierra [179] was killed in his house after having used his last bullet. Now many Mauro Bajatierras were there in Spain? Several thousand, obviously.

Franco has won. The capitalist, the landed proprietor, the noble and the marquis have again entered into the fullness of their rights. The reign of the priest and the Civil Guard [180] begins again. The churches will be rebuilt, the priests will stroll around on the Puerta del Sol, and the devout will kiss their hands.

The Non-Intervention Committee has finished its work and discharged its personnel. The new ‘anti-Fascist’ Pope has congratulated Franco. Hitler and Mussolini have done the same. Chamberlain is relieved of one worry: the civil war in Spain had made him uneasy. The democratic ambassadors bow before the new master.

“Madrid, which was to be the tomb of Fascism, will be the tomb of Bolshevism”, proclaimed Mussolini. A victory parade is being prepared in Madrid. You Fascist dictators, Hitler, Mussolini and Franco, creators of new empires, torturers and ridiculous megalomaniacs, you are the dwarves and pygmies of history! You are the by-products of an age of decadence, a doomed system! In spite of your victories, your road has no future, and it is leading you towards the abyss!

The proletarian revolution is otherwise: its resources are inexhaustible. As far as you defenders of a rotten system are concerned Socialism, and Bolshevism, its modern expression, are like the mythological monster: when one head is cut off a dozen spring up in its place. The resources of the proletarian revolution lie in the unavoidable development of the forces of production, and in the unavoidable and ever-growing contradictions of the capitalist system.

The strength of Fascism starts from the fact that for the moment the proletariat is without a revolutionary leadership. “Franco has won the war!” In the same sense as Marty can be said to have fought in Madrid. The Francoist journalists have listed the names of the battalions that have entered Madrid, and published the photos of the glorious generals. For centuries Spain was the country where there were generals who never won or directed any battle. And so it is still.

Barcelona and Madrid were not conquered by you, Franco and Quiepo de Llano, you bloodthirsty but ridiculous clowns! Barcelona and Madrid were betrayed by the leaders of the Popular Front. Despite the aid you received from your Italian and German patrons, despite the hundreds of aeroplanes and war material in abundance, despite the aid you received from the democracies who followed the policy of non-intervention, despite the blockade that was imposed on the Spanish proletariat, despite the greatest and most effective assistance you received from the leaders of the Popular Front, it took you 34 months to beat the Spanish proletariat, and even then only thanks to the supreme betrayal of Miaja-Casado. In spite of your victories, Fascists, you are impotent!

It was not the help of heaven that enabled you to win but a more material force – Stalin, the great organiser of defeats, with his allies in the Popular Front. He it was who murdered the Bolshevik Old Guard in the cellars of the Lubianka, who helped destroy the Chinese Revolution by his criminal policy in 1927, who helped Hitler in 1933, and who, along with his allies in the Popular Front, opened the gates to Franco in 1939.

But these 34 months have not passed without leaving any trace. The Spanish workers learned, and learned well, how to use weapons, and they also learned how to use them against their class enemies. They were not beaten but deceived, betrayed and handed over. They are going to ponder the reasons for their defeat. The Franco regime will only bring them increased misery, slavery and terror, but Franco cannot solve the burning problems of Spanish society. The Andalusian peasant wants land. The Catalan worker knows that he can run the factories without the capitalist. Even if he was betrayed and deceived by the leaders of the Popular Front he has learned much. The lessons of the ‘Bienno Rojo’ (the Two Red Years) that so frighten you Fascist gentlemen, even while you prepare your ‘victory parade’, are alive and in the consciousness of every one of the exploited of Spain. These lessons will take on more substance each day.

The Spanish proletariat will prepare a great revenge. The Fourth International, which knows how to draw the lessons from the defeat will help it, and will formulate the programme of the future proletarian revolution in Spain.



172. Blanquists are so called after Louis Auguste Blanqui (1805-1881), a French revolutionary who believed in the seizure of power by a small conspiratorial party on behalf of the working class, a plan he attempted to realise in 1839. He was also the first to use the concept of the Dictatorship of the Proletariat. Blanquism is the name generally given to those who believe in a left wing coup d’état rather than a broad working class insurrection.

173. Cf. the chapter Can the Francoist Army Be Disintegrated?. [Author’s note]

174. Alfred Marie Irenée Costes was a French Stalinist parliamentarian and leader of the Engineering Union of the CGT who played a prominent part in breaking the strike movement of 1936 in France.

175. Muhammed ’Abd al-Karim al-Khattabi (1881-1963) was the Moroccan nationalist rebel in the Rif who masterminded the rout of the Spanish army at Anual in 1921. As a young officer, Franco made his reputation fighting in the rearguard there.

176. Pope Pius XII (1939-1958), Eugenio Pacelli.

177. Moreover, tanks as well as munitions in general can be produced in Spain itself. Cf. the chapter War Industry. [Author’s note]

178. Besteiro was sentenced to 30 years in jail. He died in prison from neglect in 1940.

179 Mauro Bajatierra (  -1939) was an Anarchist poet and writer who was first arrested in 1921 for the murder of Dato. When the authorities went to arrest him in April 1939, he defended himself to the end in his house in Madrid.

180. The Guardia Civil was the old monarchist paramilitary police force charged with maintaining ‘public order’.

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