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Spanish civil war

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Offline glennie

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« Reply #20 on: September 21, 2007, 12:05 PM »
Hello all,

The Must Read book of them all has got to be The Forging of a Rebel (a trilogy) by Arturo Barera. It's recently been replrinted in one volume by Granta.

Enjoy

Simon X

Will look out for that one. I think it's Barea.

Offline Technopat

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« Reply #21 on: September 21, 2007, 13:03 PM »
Greetings All,
Statistics are wonderful things and the fantastic things that can be done with 'em never cease to amaze me. Apart from university teachers in the cities and the numerous village schoolteachers - a whole "missing" generation of well-trained maestros under the Republic who were, at best, imprisoned as subversive elements, there were also several cases of "Red" priests taken for a ride in the middle of the night and whose bodies were found the next day. These of course ended up on the tally of the Church's martyrs. If the whole thing wasn't so grotesque, it would be funny. On the other hand it is always the civilian population that suffers most. And as Glennie pointed out, both sides in a war are guilty of atrocities, as war is about atrocities full stop

A personal anecdote re. priests from Mrs Technopat's wonderful late grandmother who always spoke of the priest in her village who literally interrogated everyone during confession - about themselves and what they knew of everyone else, and how she actually saw him, hidden behind the corner, point out on three separate occasions, left-leaning villagers - not even militant activists - to the Nationalist troops who controlled the area and who would appear in the evenings. The three guys were taken away in full view of everyone and never heard of again, not even many years after the war and she said many of the villagers would gladly have killed the priest if there had been any way of doing it without reprisals. But the guy never left the church and it was impossible to stage an accident along a lonely country road. And of course, after the war, anyone who had got married at a civil ceremony during the Republic had to get married in church. That's why she was so happy that Mrs T and I were able to get married in the ayuntamiento - the first civil wedding in the history of the village, after tremendous amount of red tape and veiled threats to appeal to the Constitutional Court - 16 years after Franco died. (The mayor, officially designated by the Ministry of Justice, didn't have what it takes to officiate and phoned in sick the day before, delegating in the Justice of the Peace, the semi-literate local butcher.) Living in Spain is NEVER boring  :dancing:

Regs.
Technopat
« Last Edit: September 21, 2007, 14:24 PM by Technopat »
Technopat's disclaimer: If this posting seems over the top and/or gets your goat (Sp. anyone?), please accept my apologies and don't take it personally - it's just my instinctive tendency to put my foot in it whenever/wherever possible. See also:
http://www.iberianatureforum.com/index.php/topic,266

Offline Technopat

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« Reply #22 on: September 21, 2007, 14:22 PM »
Greetings All,
For the benefit of those newish to Spain, and the recent history still haunting many, if not most, Spaniards, here is a summary of article in today's El País which carries the story of the petition (500 signatures) presented yesterday http://www.elpais.com/articulo/espana/caben/dilaciones/sociedad/victimas/pueden/esperar/elpepunac/20070921elpepinac_13/Tes by leading public figures demanding the government stop dithering and pass the bill giving (moral) compensation to the victims of Franco's repression which is still going through parliament. They accuse the government of bowing to pressure from the PP and also demand that a formal condemnation be made of Franco's dictatorship and that the summary trials and courts martial carried out be declared null and void.

As far as I could make out, neither ABC nor La Razón (digital versions) carried the story.

Technopat
Technopat's disclaimer: If this posting seems over the top and/or gets your goat (Sp. anyone?), please accept my apologies and don't take it personally - it's just my instinctive tendency to put my foot in it whenever/wherever possible. See also:
http://www.iberianatureforum.com/index.php/topic,266

Offline SueMac

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« Reply #23 on: September 21, 2007, 18:40 PM »
Dear all
This is one of the sections with an interactive account of the bombing of Gurnica on the  eitb24 website I found it fascinating effective and incredibly moving :
 http://www.eitb24.com/html/infografias/gernika2/index_en.htmlueMac
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Offline SueMac

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« Reply #24 on: September 21, 2007, 18:41 PM »
..that is if you take the UEMAC off the end.....
SueMac

Now mainly blogging on www.suevista.blogspot.com Vistas from Afar - A European Garden Blog

Offline Technopat

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« Reply #25 on: September 21, 2007, 18:49 PM »
Greetings All,
As SueMac seems to have too much on her hand these days, I've taken the liberty of fixing it:

http://www.eitb24.com/html/infografias/gernika2/index_en.html
Regs.
Technopat
Technopat's disclaimer: If this posting seems over the top and/or gets your goat (Sp. anyone?), please accept my apologies and don't take it personally - it's just my instinctive tendency to put my foot in it whenever/wherever possible. See also:
http://www.iberianatureforum.com/index.php/topic,266

Simon

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« Reply #26 on: September 22, 2007, 19:16 PM »
Greetings TP, SueMac, Glennie, Jill et al,

This thread is truring out ot be brilliant. (Glennis, you're right, it is Barea. By the way, he's almost completelt unknown in Spain as although he wrote in Spanish the books were brillinatly translated by his Austrian wife and never published in Spanish. As an exile he worked for the BBC world service and broadcast to Latin America)

TP: many thanks for your very personal update on post war issues. Oe of thin thngs I feel morst strongly about are the examples of personal tragedy that I have ben privileged to be told by my neighbours and friends here. I've often thought about puting them up in a diary topic, byut somehow feel that I would be breaking a confidence - so am I just as guillty of the bg cover up as so many other people?

Over to you all and thanx once again!

Simon

PS not many posts as I'm partying until Teusday If you can't take the pace never come to www.santateclatarragona.cat

Offline Technopat

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« Reply #27 on: September 23, 2007, 02:34 AM »
Greetings Simon and All,
As always, Simon, you have an uncanny ability to bring ethical, etc. issues to the fore - as we all know - even those of us unfortunate enough not to share life with a psychologist :dancing: - not talking openly about important issues just leaves festering wounds and Spain has yet to come to terms with its recent past - possibly because many of its players are still alive, but am not sure if that is an acceptable "excuse".

Personal experiences told to a psychologist, lawyer or a priest (etc.?) are bound by formal rules - although they can be publicised as anonymous case studies -. The fact that someone chooses to talk about themselves to another who is not one of the above does not necessarily imply a pact of secrecy - in fact it could be considered a real desire to make public something that one does not dare speak about oneself. Over the years that I've lived here I have found that (some) people are less reluctant to talk to me about their beliefs - political or otherwise - i.e. to a foreigner, than they would to anyone other than an intimate friend. I'll have to remember to ask Mrs T whether the need to "come clean" - or what Cathoilics would call "confess" -  is a human instinct.

In the case of Mrs T's grandmother - the only person who initially accepted a foreigner into the family - she implored us to do everything possible to ensure that the tragedy she lived through not be repeated (she lost three sons - out of twelve), and sincerely believed that inter-racial/cultural breeding was the key to preventing further inter-ethnic bloodshed - a profound person. A deeply religious person, she didn't blame any particular banda - just the evilness of individual human beings who were allowed to do whatever they wanted by other people's passivity.

On the other hand, following the trend of this thread, have been in contact with a historian friend of mine who knows just about all there is to know 'bout Spain's history, literature, etc. - and continuously embarrasses me by feigning surprise when it's obvious that I haven't a clue what he's on about - who has promised to draw up a list of books and films related to this period and classified from all viewpoints.

He added - to my surprise, but given his indepth knowledge of the matter, I'm inclined to believe him - that while Gibson, Preston, Hughes and Gabriel Jackson all write from a "neutral" viewpoint - thus necessarily (deeply) critical of Franco's rebellion and subsequent dictatorship, their accounts are really those of politically conservative historians and tend to play down the social reality of Spain before, during and after the civil war. He did mention someone else - whose (Anglo-Saxon) name I just couldn't catch, even on the fifth attempt - as being more realistic in his analysis, but as he's preparing a written list, we'll just have to wait for that.

This guy is also a real cinófilo and has films (and No-Dos) you only find mentioned in the most scholarly works.

Likewise, he mentioned - but to be confirmed - that there were some 3,000 (give or take statistically possible duplications) priests, nuns and other people related to the church asesinados - his word - (murdered) during the initial period of the war but that these were more the result of personal vendettas than of any institutional organisation - and were specifically prohibited very early on by the (Anarchist) minister, whereas many of the extra-judicial killings carried out by the Nationalists were following specific orders to eliminate subversive elements. He was referring strictly to the period of the war - the postwar repression and retaliation is worse. He added that the worst cases of "organised" atrocities were the murders - particularily when Madrid was under seige - of imprisoned Nationalist officers who refused to acknowledge the legitimacy of the Republican government. This is also related to the Paracuellos massacre.

Not sure how far this particular thread should continue - it is after all only loosely related to nature, albeit human (?). If the Powers-that-b. lodge a formal complaint, maybe those iberianatureforumers interested in the matter can communicate over the PMS, or is there the possibility of a sub-channel?

Not-very-cheerful regs.,
Technopat
« Last Edit: September 23, 2007, 02:38 AM by Technopat »
Technopat's disclaimer: If this posting seems over the top and/or gets your goat (Sp. anyone?), please accept my apologies and don't take it personally - it's just my instinctive tendency to put my foot in it whenever/wherever possible. See also:
http://www.iberianatureforum.com/index.php/topic,266

Offline lucy

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« Reply #28 on: September 23, 2007, 10:53 AM »
You're right, Technopat, that people often confide in you when you're a foreigner.  I've been taken aside by people who were quite happy to live under Franco, and who were anxious to let me, an outsider, know their point of view, as here in Catalunya they are in a minority. There are so many stories to be told.

This tendency can have its downside, however, such as when you're stuck in a small train wagon, bleary-eyed after an all night journey, and at 7.00am the man opposite wants you to understand exactly why the Socialist government is so bad for Barcelona, and Spain in general. 

Offline glennie

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« Reply #29 on: September 23, 2007, 22:59 PM »
Likewise, he mentioned - but to be confirmed - that there were some 3,000 (give or take statistically possible duplications) priests, nuns and other people related to the church asesinados - his word - (murdered) during the initial period of the war but that these were more the result of personal vendettas than of any institutional organisation - and were specifically prohibited very early on by the (Anarchist) minister, whereas many of the extra-judicial killings carried out by the Nationalists were following specific orders to eliminate subversive elements.
Not-very-cheerful regs.,
Technopat

Sorry to take this even further from Spanish nature, but this difference between state-sponsored terror and 'spontaneous' terror can be made forcibly when comparing Serb and HVO (Sarajevo-loyal) actions respectively in the all too recent war in Bosnia. Pretending that this difference did not exist enabled the EU to stand back, watch the genocide, and allege that one side was just as bad as the other. For more on this war, see the absolutely unputdownable My War Gone By, I Miss It So, by Anthony Loyd.
« Last Edit: September 23, 2007, 23:01 PM by glennie »

Simon

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« Reply #30 on: September 24, 2007, 11:55 AM »
Hi all,

Just taking a breather from the party and also advantage of the fact that my mate Ivan, who is a Celtic Warrior has left me my pit study free for half an hour!

So just a few points until next week, probably:

1) back to Jill/Xöe's original request: you should check out Martha Gelhorn for her reports on Spain both during and after the war, plus her opinion of Hemmingway, even allowing for the fact that she was Mrs H for a time her views are valid and extremely well put I have her twin volume collections: ‘The Face of War’ (1959) and The View from the Ground’ (1989) published by Granta books (1998) – these are some of the best books I’ve ever read, a most wonderful writer and journalist. :booklook:

2) on to TP and Glennie: I think this thread is very relevant to Spanish nature as I see a direct connection between some of the environmental management concerns we have shared and the historical antecedents of use/abuse of power at local level, most obviously speculation and corruption in local government. But more subtly the notorious unwillingness to make complaints or ‘denuncios’. I need to justify this view properly and I will do so next week after I’ve had my rest cure in the mountains! :clapping:

3) the ethics of confession: I disagree with Techno here, I don’t think that information given to professionals or the clergy is as strictly ‘confidential’ as you suggest although it’s true that there is an etiquette about anonymity for publication. Professionals have t use various forms of supervision, ongoing training in order to work, so clients/patients should expect their information to be shared in a strictly controlled way, although it’s certainly the case that this is rarely explained to them. There is also the big dilemma of what you do with info pertaining to issues such as child abuse, which in my humble opinion should transcend the Catholic confessional. :booklook:

4) I have grave doubts about the ethics/value of ‘coming clean’ and reliving memories. Again, this is a big subject and I need to discuss it more fully. Talking of coming clean, however, I should point out to Techno that if you think it’s bad being married to a psychologist you should try looking at one every time you take a shave!  ;D

More later folks!

Simon

Offline Technopat

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« Reply #31 on: September 24, 2007, 18:36 PM »
Greetings Simon and All,
This 'ere thread developing at the speed of light - much too fast for the likes of me. Stop the world, I need to get off!
Agree fully with your direct connection re. historical (and why not historic?, and while we're at it, contemporary) use/abuse of power at local level.
Re. ethics of confession - am slightly perplexed as to what you disagree with as I don't think I said anything too far removed from what you mention, although you take it a step further.
Re. reliving memories is indeed too big a subject for a layperson like wot I is, but happy to discuss it superficially with y'all.

Regs.,
Technopat
Resisting temptation to read between lines - one usually ends up reaching warped conclusions
Technopat's disclaimer: If this posting seems over the top and/or gets your goat (Sp. anyone?), please accept my apologies and don't take it personally - it's just my instinctive tendency to put my foot in it whenever/wherever possible. See also:
http://www.iberianatureforum.com/index.php/topic,266

Offline SueMac

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« Reply #32 on: September 24, 2007, 20:18 PM »
Dear Peeps
 I am finding this forum or at least off shoots of it extremely interesting and this slow process of coming clean ourselves ie  psychologists, partners of psychologists, therapists, I 'm guessing a fair sprinkling of academics. Different philosophical political historical viewpoints. I actually dont think there is a great deal of difference around just different ways of expressing ourselves. We share a love of the natural world and I think it is teresting to think about our collective life experiences which brought me and you here.

Now I need to go and eat my peasant food but not before I state my viewn that I have a long list of things that I will not be quiet about.   It doesnt mean you have to break confidences but silence is massively damaging. I will return....  :booklook: SueMac
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Offline Technopat

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« Reply #33 on: September 24, 2007, 23:42 PM »
Greetings All,
Not sure if anyone's already mentioned Gerald Brenan, who I haven't actually read anything by, but who, according to my Sp. historian friend, was the least conservative of the Anglo-Saxon historians (Preston, Hughes, Jackson, etc.).

Although Hughes' book on the Spanish Civil War (1961) was prohibited in Spain (but published in Spanish by a French-based Communist publishing company), he was of course director - for more than 10 years - of the Centre for Policy Studies, Thatcher's personal think tank.

Regs.,
Technopat






Technopat's disclaimer: If this posting seems over the top and/or gets your goat (Sp. anyone?), please accept my apologies and don't take it personally - it's just my instinctive tendency to put my foot in it whenever/wherever possible. See also:
http://www.iberianatureforum.com/index.php/topic,266

Offline lucy

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« Reply #34 on: September 25, 2007, 00:37 AM »
Another interesting book is "Only for three months", written by a friend of mine, Adrian Bell, about the Basque children who were taken in (begrudgingly) by the UK and ended up staying.   Adrian sought them out and interviewed them about their experiences.

The Face of Spain by Brenan gives a clear idea of Spain just after the civil war.  His book about the Alpujarras, set before the war, is great.  There is a particularly good story about a visiting friend, tall, thin, pallid and blonde, who is mistaken for a bogy man called a "Mantequero" (who was supposed to kill people and live off human fat) by a couple of gypsies, who capture him, tie him up and take him to the police station.

Offline Technopat

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« Reply #35 on: September 25, 2007, 08:28 AM »
Greetings Lucy,
Thanx for that - your reference to El Mantequero struck a chord 'cos my father-in-l. (Andaluz) is always telling stories 'bout his postwar childhood and this bogeyman, together with other horror stories from a society pushed to the limits, crops up often. Maybe I should start paying attention to the guy when he starts rambling and jot down some of the stuff he comes out with.
Regs.,
Technopat
Technopat's disclaimer: If this posting seems over the top and/or gets your goat (Sp. anyone?), please accept my apologies and don't take it personally - it's just my instinctive tendency to put my foot in it whenever/wherever possible. See also:
http://www.iberianatureforum.com/index.php/topic,266

Offline SueMac

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« Reply #36 on: September 25, 2007, 10:09 AM »
Dear lucy and TP
I was frightened of the Spanish police as a child living in England..
SueMac
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Offline lucy

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« Reply #37 on: September 25, 2007, 13:03 PM »
Hi TP and SueMac,
Yes, the Mantequero seems to be a species of southern Spanish bogeyman – no Catalan I’ve asked had heard of him.  As for the other sort of bogeyman, my partner was taken to Benidorm as a child, and his two strongest memories are drinking orange juice for the first time (wow – compare UK supermarkets of 1970 and now), and the machine gun toting men wearing sinister plastic hats at the airport.  Machine guns at airports – that’s another thing that’s become quite normal.

Simon

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« Reply #38 on: September 25, 2007, 13:09 PM »
Hi,

Sorry TP, I was distracted and didn't finish; I was going to go on and say that as these confidences were made without clarifying thier level of confidentiality I will think 'fail safe'. I also can't find a way to anonymise in such a small community as mine, which is clearly identified through the link to our web site.

To my disgrace I've never eread anythig by Gerald B, just never got my hands on the book. But thanks for the briefing Lucy. And another thing Lucy: I think your bumpy ride on the local 'wagons' is turning you into a Catalan by a process of psychic osmosis best described by Myles n'a Gopaleen! It happens to me to, I never seem to earn money these days, just gain it from time to time!

Hi SueMac, glad to see you on board!

One of those Basque refugee children went to school with my mother!
Ciao!

Simon

Offline Technopat

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« Reply #39 on: September 25, 2007, 14:09 PM »
Greetings All,
SueMac - how did you manage to get over your irrational fear of Spanish police? I've been a sententious sentient grown-up for many years now and have been unable to overcome my irr. fear. (In fact, as a kid I distinctly remember looking up to the local copper (did anyone back in the LOG ever refer to 'em as "bobbies"?) as an amiable chap cum sort of hero figure ... ).

Simon - takes me way back to one summer in the mid-70s when, at my old man's instigation(?), there wasn't a waking moment that I didn't have either one of Myles na gCopaleen's books in me hands or one of Flann O'Brien's. As for money - have you ever tried putting it on?

Lucy - not sure if I should mention this on a public forum, but on my last, recent trip to the LOG, I was pleasantly surprised that there were no toters (in sight) in the places we've unfortunately come to expect - as always, these things are relative.

Regs.,
Technopat

PS.
Simon, I wasn't trying to incite you to giving away trade secrets over the internet. Maybe we can bide our time and drag 'em out of elicit 'em you at the summit - over a couple of bottles of Morlanda :technodevil:
Technopat's disclaimer: If this posting seems over the top and/or gets your goat (Sp. anyone?), please accept my apologies and don't take it personally - it's just my instinctive tendency to put my foot in it whenever/wherever possible. See also:
http://www.iberianatureforum.com/index.php/topic,266