La República Catalana

News Comment/COMENTARI AL DIA

Mass Murderer Franco/FRANCO, ASSASSÍ EN MASSA

Mass Murderer Franco

by Timothy Snyder

The Spanish Holocaust: Inquisition and Extermination in Twentieth-Century Spain in Catalan. Below: Timothy Snyder is Housum Professor of History at Yale University and the author of the award-winning Bloodlands: Europe Between Hitler and Stalin.

 

Father Fernando Huidobro dreamed of the redemption of Spain from the evils of its secular, redistributive Republic. A supporter of the military coup he discounted stories of mass murder of Spanish civilians. When he arrived on the battlefield he was confronted by two surprising realities. First, many of the soldiers were Muslims mercenaries from Spanish Morocco. Second, as he courageously wrote to Franco the war was “without prisoners or wounded,” because they were murdered. Father Fernando was shot in the back by his own men. This is but one of 200,000 murders.

 

Franco sought a long war for the “redemption” of Spanish society through the blood of the Spaniards he regarded as enemies. A longer campaign created the possibility of physically eliminating the groups seen as the bastions of the Republic. Since there were precious few Jews, Masons, or Bolsheviks in Spain, the notion of their conspiracy was an infinitely flexible one, applied simply to everyone who had supported the legal Republic. They were to be eliminated according to a prior plan of systematic mass murder. Investment in terror or mass killing was not only to win the war, but also to prepare for the dictatorship to follow. Franco’s idea of a “redemption” of the population through blood had a particular application to women. Women were subordinate. Thus “redemption” for them meant rape before murder, a double assertion of power. Franco’s African Army brought the practices of colonialism. They boasted that they treated conquered Spanish towns like they treated Moroccan ones. They killed the wounded and the prisoners and the local elites, so as not to leave any possibility for resistance in the rear, and to intimidate the surrounding countryside. Early-morning executions in Pamplona attracted large crowds, and with them sellers of hot chocolate. Expectant mothers in Toledo were taken away and shot. The mayor of Uncastillo was humiliated, tortured, and executed; his corpse was dismembered by an ax. A Republican pilot who crash-landed was murdered, his body cut into pieces, the pieces placed in a box, and the box dropped by parachute over Madrid with a threatening note. Landowners would force peasants to dig their own graves before shooting them, laughingly referring to this as “land reform.” Señoritos hunted for peasants on their polo ponies. One killed ten peasants for every bull of his taken and eaten. One priest shot a man who was seeking shelter in a confessional. Contemporary accounts of atrocities came from Madrid, where reporters and ambassadors could observe and criticize the actions of the Republic but not those of the rebels. Paul Preston shows in The Spanish Holocaust that 150,000 were murdered on territories controlled by the rebels, compared with 50,000 in the Republican zones. Preston is quite right to point to certain similarities between the Spanish and the Jewish experiences. Franco was an anti-Semite who had civilians murdered and he made much of supposed differences in blood.

(“Savagery,” by Timothy Snyder, The New Republic, 29 March 2012)

(The Spanish Holocaust: Inquisition and Extermination in Twentieth-Century Spain, by Paul Preston, 2012)

Franco, assassí en massa

per Timothy Snyder

Timothy Snyder es l’Housum professor d’història a Yale University i autor de la premiada Terres de sang: Europa entre Hitler i Stalin. Primera foto: L’holocaust espanyol. Odi i extermini durant la Guerra Civil i després.

El pare Fernando Huidobro era partidari de redimir Espanya dels mals de la República laica i redistributiva. Partidari del cop militar, no feia cas de les històries d’assassinats en massa de civils espanyols. Però quan arribar al front s’enfronta a dues realitats sorprenents. Primer veure que molts soldats eren mercenaris musulmans del Marroc espanyol. Segon, com ell escriu valent a Franco la guerra es feia “sin presos ni heridos”, pel fet que eren assassinats. El pare Fernando va morir d’un tret per l’esquena dels seus propis. Foun només un de 200.000 assassinats.

 

Franco buscava una guerra llarga per “redimir” la societat espanyola a través de la sang dels espanyols que ell considerava enemics. Una campanya llarga creava l’oportunitat d’eliminar físicament els grups vistos com suport de la República. Com que hi havia ben pocs jueus, maçons i bolxevics a Espanya, l’acusació de conspiració era infinitament flexible, aplicada en general a tots els que havien donat suport a la República legal. Havien de ser eliminats segons un pla previ d’assassinats en massa sistemàtics. Invertir en terror, els assassinats en massa, no era només per a guanyar la guerra, sinó també per a preparar la dictadura posterior. La idea de Franco de “redimir” la població a través de la sang tenia una aplicació particular a les dones. Les dones estaven en posició de subordinació, així que la “redempció” per a elles volia dir violació abans de l’assassinat, una doble afirmació de poder. L’exèrcit d’Àfrica de Franco va introduir les pràctiques del colonialisme. Es vantava de tractar les ciutats espanyoles conquerides igual com havia tractat les marroquines. Matava els ferits i els presoners i les èlits locals, per tal de no deixar cap possibilitat de resistència a la reraguarda, i per intimidar les comarques properes. A primera hora del matí les execucions a Pamplona atreien grans multituds, i amb elles els venedors de xocolata calenta. Dones embarassades de Toledo eren tretes del llit i afusellades. L’alcalde d’Uncastillo va ser humiliat, torturat i executat, i el seu cadàver, esquarterat amb una destral. Un pilot republicà  estavellat va ser assassinat, el seu cos tallat en trossos, les peces col·locades en una caixa, i la caixa llençada en paracaigudes sobre Madrid amb una nota d’amenaça. Els terratinents obligaven els pagesos a cavar les seves pròpies tombes abans d’afusellar-los, entre rialles referint-s’hi com “la reforma agrària.” Alguns senyorets caçaren camperols muntant els seus cavalls de polo. Un d’ells va matar deu camperols per cada toro robat i menjat. Un sacerdot va disparar sobre un home refugiat en un confessionari. Les notícies contemporànies d’atrocitats procedien de Madrid on periodistes i ambaixadors podien observar i criticar les accions de la República, però no les dels rebels. Paul Preston demostra a l’Holocaust Espanyol que 150.000 foren assassinats en territoris controlats pels rebels, comparat amb 50.000 a la zona republicana. Preston té raó en assenyalar certes similituds entre l’experiència espanyola i jueva. Franco era un antisemita que feia assassinar civils i que donava gran importància a suposades diferències de sang.

(“Savagery,” per Timothy Snyder, The New Republic, 29 març 2012)

(L’holocaust espanyol. Odi i extermini durant la Guerra Civil i després, per Paul Preston, 2012)

6 April 2012 - Posted by | Culture/Cultura, Politics/Política | ,

1 Comment »

  1. DIVENDRES SANT…

    Comment by Ed.Card. | 6 April 2012 | Reply


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