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The Spanish Civil War The story so far… 9th March 1935:Goring reveals the existence of the air force. 16th March 1935:Hitler reveals the intention to reintroduce.

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Presentation on theme: "The Spanish Civil War The story so far… 9th March 1935:Goring reveals the existence of the air force. 16th March 1935:Hitler reveals the intention to reintroduce."— Presentation transcript:

1 The Spanish Civil War The story so far… 9th March 1935:Goring reveals the existence of the air force. 16th March 1935:Hitler reveals the intention to reintroduce conscription. 14th April 1935:Stresa Front formed to put pressure on Germany. 10th October 1935:Italian troops invade Abyssinia. League of Nations apply sanctions. 7th March 1936:Rhineland Crisis By April 1936:Italy had won the war in Abyssinia.

2 The Spanish Civil War The Spanish Civil War 17 th July 1936 to 30 th March 1939

3 The Spanish Civil War The Spanish Context Azana, leader of the Republican Government reformed Spain by introducing: Land reform to redistribute land to tenant farmers and labourers. Trade Unions with real rights. A more efficient army as there were too many officers. A loosening of Church control of state schools.

4 The Spanish Civil War The Nationalist Movement was made up of landowners, businessmen, army leaders and Church leaders: Land owners wanted to halt the redistribution of their land. Businessmen feared they’d loose control of their factories and profits. Church wanted to keep its grip on Spanish society. Army officers did not want to loose their position. General Franco headed a military coup from Morocco on 17th July th July 1936

5 The Spanish Civil War 27 th July 1936 On 27th July 1936 the Nationalists sent a telegram asking for Fascist and Nazi aid. Nazi Germany sent 6000 men, transport planes, Condor Legion, military advisors. Fascist Italy sent 70,000men many with battle experience in Abyssinia, tanks and some planes. Italian aeroplanes, December 1937

6 The Spanish Civil War 9 th September 1936 Non-Intervention Committee 9th September 1936: Formation of Non- Intervention Committee 27 countries including Britain, France, Germany, Italy and Russia took part. Agreement to strict neutrality in the Spanish Civil War. Sending of troops and war materials was prohibited

7 The Spanish Civil War International Brigades International Brigades on the western outskirts of Madrid (1936). About 2,300 from Britain joined the International Brigades. These were politically minded left- wing people who volunteered to fight on behalf of the Republicans against the advancement of Fascism / Nazisim.

8 The Spanish Civil War 26 th April th April 1937:Aerial bombing of Guernica in the Basque region of Spain by Nationalist forces.

9 The Spanish Civil War Guernica by Picasso

10 The Spanish Civil War The German Condor Legion organised and carried out the attack on Guernica. Hermann Goring honoured the Legion, probably with the Spanish Cross, in April 1939.

11 The Spanish Civil War Key Dates 14th September 1937:Nyon Agreement 20th February 1938:Anthony Eden resigns as Foreign Secretary. Wanted action to be taken in Spain. 22nd September 1938:International Brigades withdraw on a League initiative, hoping that Germany and Italy would follow.

12 The Spanish Civil War Why did the British Government follow non-Intervention during the Spanish Civil War?

13 The Spanish Civil War There was a reasonable belief within the British Cabinet that: Little need to be worried over the Spanish crisis A Franco victory was expected Nazis and Fascists would withdraw Little desire to cause antagonism. Stanley Baldwin Prime Minister until May 1937 However, Anthony Eden as Foreign Secretary said in January 1937that “if we did not stand up to the dictator powers now it would bring war nearer…”

14 The Spanish Civil War There was a belief within the British Cabinet that Franco could be trusted: Neville Chamberlain, as Chancellor of the Exchequer said in 1936: “I think we should be able to establish an excellent relationship to Franco.” Neville Chamberlain Chancellor of the Exchequer

15 The Spanish Civil War The British were military unprepared: 1936: Chamberlain gave RAF £59 million instead of £97 million asked for. ‘Cheap’ fighters built instead of bombers. Admiral Chatfield said “the Admiralty had no policy…” for intervention. 1937: Military chiefs reported that British defences were hopelessly inadequate. Spitfire

16 The Spanish Civil War The League of Nations was considered weak. The confidence of the British public in the League was weakened after the Abyssinian crisis of No British Government had no firm allies British government made it clear to the French that French aid to Republicans would stop Britain honouring Locarno. French backed down. The USA was neutral. The USSR was communist. The Empire were unwilling to commit The 1937 Conference of Imperial Prime Ministers reached the conclusion that the Empire Nations were unwilling to offer a firm commitment to Britain to resist Hitler. Public opinion was divided. No widespread desire within the British public for involvement in the Spanish Civil War but issue was debated.

17 The Spanish Civil War The British Government feared the spread of Communism. Samuel Hoare, First Lord of the Admiralty, said in Cabinet “…on no account must we do anything to bolster up Communism in Spain… Some members of the Cabinet were very anxious that the Soviets [Communists] shouldn’t win in Spain.” Samuel Hoare First Lord of the Admiralty

18 The Spanish Civil War There were concerns about the British economy is traded stopped with Spain: British companies were the biggest foreign investor in Spain, did not want to threaten trade relations with either side. Spain was the biggest European customer for British arms industry. Loosing such contracts would lead to people in Britain loosing their jobs. The British feared war Anthony Eden, Foreign Secretary said on 12 th April 1937: Non-Intervention has “…greatly reduced the risk of a general war.”

19 The Spanish Civil War Criticisms of Government Policy On 20th February 1938 Anthony Eden resigned due to the governments’ policy towards Non-Intervention. Azana – Leader of Republican Government said “our greatest enemy so far has been the British Government”. Rodriguez – Minister in Franco’s Government said “the fundamental cause of us winning the war was the English.” resigned

20 The Spanish Civil War What did Hitler and the Nazis gain from involvement in the Spanish Civil War? Gained Spain as a potential ally. Hitler and Mussolini seemed firmer in their ties. Had defied the policy of Non-Intervention without repercussions. Provided a testing ground for new weapons and tactics. Knew of the British fear of “the bomber will always get through.” Major splits emerged about how to deal with Fascist powers. Franco kept Spain neutral during WWII. Mystery submarine incident showed a tough line with dictators was effective. Ability of aerial bombardment to destroy civilian morale was overestimated. Ideological war did not spill over into other nations.

21 The Spanish Civil War How useful is the following source for investigating attitudes towards the Spanish Civil War?

22 The Spanish Civil War Think about the usefulness of this source in terms of: Origin Possible Purpose Content Context of the source Balance ”Seeing Red," by David Low London Evening Standard 21 August, 1936 [R Cameron, p45] Origin Published 4 weeks after outbreak of conflict, 3 weeks after suggestion of Non- Intervention, 2 weeks before agreement. David Low, cartoonist, New Zealander but famously based in London. Known anti-appeaser, Government critic. Daily newspaper of major city, read by public and politicians.

23 The Spanish Civil War ”Seeing Red," by David Low London Evening Standard 21 August, 1936 [R Cameron, p45] Possible Purpose To inform and influence the readership about the bias of the British public and Government towards events in Spain. To highlight the actual political make up of the Government and public. To influence British politicians to take more account of the make up of the Spanish Government

24 The Spanish Civil War ”Seeing Red," by David Low London Evening Standard 21 August, 1936 [R Cameron, p45] Content British fear of Communism highlighted. Public believe that all Spanish Republicans are Communist [Red]. Stress placed on ‘democratic’ nature of Spanish Government. British living in Spain protesting at terror ‘tales’

25 The Spanish Civil War ”Seeing Red," by David Low London Evening Standard 21 August, 1936 [R Cameron, p45] Context Spanish Government elected in Feb 1936 nationalists Socialists and Communist. Views of International Brigade volunteers. “ no account must we do anything to bolster Communism in Spain” Hoare. Non-Intervention Committee to meet in Sept 1936.

26 The Spanish Civil War ”Seeing Red," by David Low London Evening Standard 21 August, 1936 [R Cameron, p45] Balance This should focus on the reasons why the British Government chose to follow appeasement - reasons other than Fear of Communism.


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