“31st January 1968, Barcelona. Anarchists blow up and destroy the monument to the Condor Air Legion – responsible for the bombardment of Guernica in 1937.
The air raid on the Basque market town lasted for four hours, killing hundreds of people and wounding hundreds more – deliberately choosing a Monday, which was a busy market day, in order to kill as many civilians as possible.
Hitler lent the Condor Legion, a unit of the German Luftwaffe, to Franco’s nationalist forces to help them repress the republican cause and to quell the threat of communism and a potential anarchist revolution.
The loan also allowed the Nazis to practise their blitzkrieg tactics, later used in the second world war – but at this point in history, Franco enjoyed the support of the anti-communist British establishment, the governments of Germany, Italy – and to a lesser extent Portugal – contributed money, munitions, manpower and support to Nationalist forces.
The Vatican, not only funded Franco’s fascism, but described the conflict in Spain as a ‘Crusade against the enemies of God and the Church’.
And of course, the USA, which went on to support the ruthless dictatorship of Franco as an ally against the Soviet Union and to use Spain as an airbase. Automakers Ford, Studebaker, and General Motors sold a total of 12,000 trucks to the Nationalists.
The American-owned Vacuum Oil Company in Tangier refused to sell to Republican ships and at the outbreak of the war, the Texas Oil Company rerouted oil tankers headed for the republic to the Nationalist controlled port of Tenerife, and supplied gasoline on credit to Franco.
War, what is is good for? It’s good for profit, right-wing ideology and keeping power in the hands of the few.” – Dave Downes