Tuesday, September 25, 2012

The Spanish Holocaust

Republican prisoners about to be shot by Nationalist firing squad
The Spanish Civil War; I continue to be amazed by the brutality that happened 75 years ago and how little is known about it by the general public, reverted to in politics and lessons not taken. 
I am half way, struggling through Paul Preston's new work "The Spanish Holocaust" and it doesn't make for pleasant reading, but is incredibly interesting and revealing.
Of course, the present-day Spanish right-wing press dismiss the work as biased and pro-Republican (what else could you be, if having to take sides?), but I am impressed with his research and extensive descriptions of atrocities committed by the Republican side, or better, in Republican held territory.
A highly recommended read! 


  1. You should also read other readings that are not from the prominent sympathetic writer of the republican and communist side. For example the "General Cause" which describes the tortures of the "chekas" and the execution of people only for going to mass committed by the Republicans.

    The photo he comments is not from the Spanish civil war. It was taken on January 1, 1936 and the war did not begin until July 18 of that same year, seven months later. On the contrary, in January the republican government was in full swing and the Falangists were being detained. .

    There was never such a Falangist uniform and neither in the Spanish army.

  2. I meant "just to go to the religious services, whose murders were committed by the Republicans"

  3. Read Stanley Payne, R.A.H. Robinson, and Burnett Bolloten. Professor Payne stated that Preston, “has become the leader of a school of interpretation that employs sometimes elaborate scholarship to reduce the history of the Republic and Civil War to a kind of fairy tale in which an idealistic and well-intentioned left, hampered by the excesses of anarchists and Communists, was blocked at every step of the way by a diabolically malign rightist foe, which inflicted on them the Civil War, dictatorship, and untold suffering.”

    Personal predilections often cloud our judgement to a book’s intellectual worth, and the Spanish Civil War is often taught with a romantic wistfulness reminiscent of the noble Lost Cause of the Confederacy of the American Civil War. Both are manufactured myths. Payne also stated that the Republican cause remains as one of the last remaining myths of the first half of the twentieth century.