Spanish Civil War

Spanish refugees interned at Argelès-sur-Mer, February 8th, 1939

Franco’s 1939 victory in the Spanish Civil War saw half a million refugees head north to France. They would be followed by many more in a decade of disaster, writes Larry Hannant.

The neglected life of a political idealist, whose 30-year ordeal, hidden from the world, spans a period of momentous change in Spain. 

Only in Spain did Anarchism become a true mass movement, sinking deep roots into the world of industrial labour and rural poverty. During the Spanish Civil War, writes George Woodcock, its great trade union, the CNT, had a membership of two million workers.

On both sides, writes David Mitchell, during three years of conflict, political passions ran high.

In the autumn of 1936, on Communist inspiration, a shock force was internationally recruited to assist the Republican Army in the Spanish Civil War. Where did the Brigades come from and why? By Hugh Thomas.

After reading an article first published in History Today in 2004, Jeremy Treglown is struck by how much more complex our view of the Spanish Civil War has become in just a decade. 

The relationship between an ‘unquiet past’ and the concerns of the present has been a key feature of recent engagements with the Spanish Civil War.

The British Battalion of the International Brigades, formed to defend the Spanish Republic against the forces of General Franco, first went into battle at Jarama in February 1937. It was the beginning of a bruising, often dispiriting campaign.

In the mid-1930s many millions of British people voted overwhelmingly against any return to conflict. But events in Spain changed public opinion and by 1939 it was widely accepted that fascism could only be opposed successfully through military action, writes Richard Overy.

Julius Ruiz evaluates Franco’s role during the conflict.