The Spanish Civil War
What caused the Civil War?
In the 1930’s Spain was divided into two parties, the Right-Wing ( Nationalists) and the Left-Wing (Republicans). Economically, Spain was struggling from the depression caused by the Wall Street crash and because of this in 1929 the military dictatorship that ruled Spain collapsed. In 1931 the Republicans came into power after the King abdicated and on the 17th of July 1936 the Spanish army started the Civil War by rebelling against the second republic. The goal was to destroy the Left- Wing, bringing economic and political isolation for Spain.
The Republicans received aid from the Soviet Union and European democracies, whilst the Nationalists were given aid by the Fascist governments of Germany and Italy. Both Fascist powers (Germany and Italy) had the same desire of seeing Spain fall into the power of the Nationalists. If Spain were to fall into the Right-Wing (Republicans) , it would then become an important ally. However Britain and France didn’t want to see Spain falling into the Left-wing as it would strengthen the Fascist alliance of Germany and Italy. Due to this France and Britain agreed to a mutual policy that stopped aid reaching Spain and therefore the Republicans would have to rely on charity and aid from Stalin’s Russia. Between 1936 and 1939 over 50,000 people were killed in the Spanish Civil War.
What was the outcome?
In 1939 Madrid was captured and in result the Nationalist party won the war. Hitler Germany was now strengthened after General Franco became a potential ally in the Right-Wing of Spain. The participation and co-operation in the Spanish war from Germany and Italy strengthened the bond between both countries and as a result the Rome-Berlin Axis was formed. Germany and Italy were now firm allies.