As in his acclaimed Duende and Andalus, Jason Webster journeys across Spain, this time to explore the lasting effects of the Spanish Civil War. Could the divisions that led to the conflict still be simmering under the surface, and is it possible they could erupt again?
From the Hardcover edition.
Hand rained punches on to the top of his head. His teeth were clenched, spittle foaming from his mouth. The Valencian was turning red, his fingers clawing at the arm that was pressing the life out of him. Reaching for the mulatto’s fingers he gave a jerk, and suddenly the hold was loosened. He slipped out and head butted the other man as they both sat on their knees on the canvas. ‘Dale,’ shouted the little boy at the side of the ring. Behind him his mother was jumping up and down hysterically.
From rebutting Republican claims about the course of the war, to urging the rich to return their savings to the banks to ease the money flow, to calling on men to help fill the ranks of the Legión, or simply trying to scare people out of their wits. Always delivered in his macho street-talk style. ‘I hereby order that if you find any Nancy-boy or poof spreading alarmist lies or false rumours about our glorious Nationalist movement you must kill him like a dog.’ Or on another occasion: ‘Our.
Day almost every Spaniard was either del Madrid or del Barça. Whereas in the past the Spanish had fought battles over whether the country was a single nation or a collection of nations, now the ancient conflict was played out by twenty-two men manipulating a leather sphere with their feet. It wasn’t just a football match – the very tectonic plates that had moved under Spain throughout its history were at the heart of it. Real Madrid represented centralism, Barcelona the aspirations of the.
Franco’s men gave up their defence of the little Aragonese town and tried to break through the circle of besieging Republican forces and get back to Nationalist territory. Out of six hundred, only around two hundred made it; the others were hunted down in the bleak desert landscape. Belchite was one of the more visible remains of Spain’s fratricidal conflict, a reminder of the power of bullets, bombs and artillery against ancient stone and human life. The battle which had led to its destruction.
Increase to over twelve thousand. At its head, reporting directly to Franco alone, was General Hugo von Sperrle, and below him Colonel Wolfram von Richthofen, cousin of Manfred, the Red Baron. Sperrle had demanded high-performance aircraft from the Luftwaffe and was supplied with Heinkel He111s, Junkers Ju87s (Stukas) and Messerschmitt Bf109s. In contrast to the slow-paced, old-fashioned Spanish style of campaigning, Sperrle preferred swift, concentrated attacks with high firepower. Later he was.