The Spanish Civil War- Militarism and the Axis

Romero, Langenheim, Graña, and Romero

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The Spanish Civil War- Militarism and the Axis by Mind Map: The Spanish Civil War- Militarism and the Axis

1. The Spanish Civil War

1.1. about the war

1.1.1. The Spanish Civil War started in 1936 and ended in 1939, it was between the Republican government and the right-wing rebels lead by General Franco.The Nationalists won the war and ruled until Franco died in 1975.

1.2. international interference

1.2.1. Non-Intervention policy On the 19th of July 1936, the Spanish prime minister asked France for aircrafts and armaments. When they decided to help the British foregin secretary, Anthony Eden warned the French goverment that their help will encourage Hitler and Mussolini to aid the nationalist, and they had better armaments. The French suspended all arm sales. There were 27 countries who signed it, including Britain, France, the USSR, Germany and Italy. The first meeting of its commite was on September 9th 1936. One day after signing the threaty, Germany gave substantial aid to General Franco and gave aircrafts and pilots. With the help from Mussolini, they also helped transporting the right-wing forces from North-Africa to Spain. The USSR (during Stalin's rule) helped the Republican army with aircrafts, pilots and weapons. The Soviets expected the Spanish to pay in gold, causing the shipping of 2/3 of the Spanish gold to the Soviet Union. France, though had also agreed not to intervene, supported Republicans with weapons and aircrafts. Britain had threatened France not to intervene since if she did and cause a war with Germany, they would not help.

1.2.2. USA did not sign the policy but remained neutral in the conflict. The government took measures restricting its citizens from selling and weapons to people who participated in the war. However, some Americans did take part in the fighting, the Abraham Lincoln Battalion was formed for those who wanted to fight for the Republic.

1.2.3. People from about fifty countries joined International Brigades in support.

1.2.4. GERMANY'S INTERVENTION Immediately after the war started, Nationalists asked Hitler for help. After an initial rejection by the German foreign minister, Hitler (who was in disagreement with the minister) told Franco that we would support his rebellion. He justified it saying he was helping stop communism. He did it to have an important ally for his fight against France and Britain and as a why of obtaining iron, copper, mercury and pyrites from Spain for his armament industry. Though he aided them in September 1936, he signed the non-intervention agreement, yet continued to help them more secretly, using Portugal as a recevier for the assistance material. Walther Warlimont of the German General Staff arrived as the German commander and military adviser to General Franco in September 1936. He suggested that the German Condor Legion should be formed to fight in the civil war, and after the arrival of Soviet troops to Madrid, Hitler agreed. Throughout the war, they sent numerous tank, aircrafts, bombers, troops etc. In total 19,000 German soldiers fought in the war and around 170 were killed by the enemy, some more were lost and other died from accidents or illnesses

1.2.5. ITALY'S INTERVENTION In 1934 Mussolini promised to the Nationalist that if any conflict was to arise, he would immediatly aid them with armament. But, when the Spanish Civil War outbroke, he broke his promise, and only sent armament after a week of negotiations. In September 1936 Italy signed the Non-intervention Agreement but continued to aid Franco's army. On November, the Italian government signed a treaty with the Nationalists, where if a war broke out with France, they would let him establish bases in Spain. A lot of Italian civilians and militars from the Italian army participated in the war: 80,000. Great amounts of cannons mortars, machine guns, motor vehicules, tanks, bombers, assault planes and fighters were sent too.

1.3. Britain and France incompetence: "the Appeasament Policy"

1.3.1. The rise of fascism and Nazism had placed the United Kingdom and France in a delicate position to take sides without further traumatisms. They held an analogous strategy: prevent the Spanish civil war from crossing the borders and becoming a European major fighting, as well as avoid the bolshevist communism spread into Spain and into their own countries. The reasons for this were based on a total absence of means and resources as a result of economic problems and the lack of US support. Spain was the most important commercial client of Great Britain absorbing 25 percent of its exports, providing 10 percent of its imports, and the British capital accounted 40 percent of foreign investments in the country. France depended on the Iberian Peninsula for minerals and food supplies. Spain was the world’s leading producer of pyrites, a basic component in the manufacture of explosives. Spain becoming a hostile country would mean for France to enlarge the sea lines of communications with its North-African colonies. In the 1930's, Britain and France established the "appeasement policy” towards those rising and potential transgressor states. This policy was an emergency diplomatic strategy intended to avoid a new war through explicit negotiations of the changes in the territorial status quo that satisfied the German-Italian revisionist demands without putting in danger the Franco-British vital interests.

1.3.2. French strategic approach Prime minister Blum initially decided secretly to accept the demand for Spanish republican aid with the acquiescence of socialists and communists, as well as sectors of the radical party. France turned a blind eye to let the soviet military assets enter the peninsula through the Pyrenees. And the French Communist Party (FCP) organized International Brigades. The political right, Catholic public opinion and the Army strongly rejected the idea of sending any aid to the Spanish Republic, postulating neutrality in fear of an unleashed European war This idea won and they did not send any aid to the Republicans

1.3.3. British strategic approach It was fully aligned and consistent with the appeasement policy pursued during the interwar period and was consistent with the pressure put on France to keep a neutral stance that gave rise to the permanent Non-Intervention Committee. The rejection of the Republican fleet in Gibraltar, which was neutralised for the rest of the war. The imposition of a secret embargo on arms to the Republic although it was the only side who could legally buy arms in the British market until the formal proclamation of neutrality; Pressure on the French government in order to prevent it giving any help to the Republic The avoidance of any confrontation with Germany and Italy over their military support for Franco

1.4. Causes

1.4.1. A chaotic security situation across the country where the anarchy, chaos and confusion took possession of the day-to-day life.

1.4.2. A long-standing social injustice bearing deep inequalities owing to the failure of the political class to improve the living conditions of workers and peasants

1.4.3. A revolutionary process instilled by hard-liner Socialists, communists and anarchists conducting a harsh anticlericalism against the traditional conservative Spanish families under the framework of a repressive official policy versus the Catholic institutions

1.4.4. The radicalization of the Basque and Catalan nationalism in the quest for independence

1.4.5. The resentment towards militaries as responsible for the last North-African colonial adventures and its support to the former monarchic regime.

1.5. consequences

1.5.1. Gave combat experience to the German and Italian forces. This strengthened bonds between Mussolini and Hitler.

1.5.2. Since Britain did not interfere, it convinced Hitler that he could form an alliance with Britain or even to persuade them and France not to take action in any future war.

1.5.3. Chamberlain and others thought that the war had to be avoided at all costs because of the impact of modern weapons.

1.5.4. Encouraged Hitler to reverse the Treaty of Versailles.

1.5.5. USSR became very suspicious of Britain and France since they did not participate in opposing fascism.

2. Militarism and the Axis

2.1. The Axis' countries and their military situations

2.1.1. Mussolini (Italy) had triumphed in Abyssinia and was trying to assert authority in the Mediterranean and North Africa.

2.1.2. Japan was under the control of nationalists like General Tojo, also supported by business leaders. They were trying to extend Japan towards Asia to compete with other powers, therefore invaded China.

2.1.3. Germany was under the control of Hitler and the Nazis, who were discovering how much they had in common with Musollini and the military-dictatorship of Japan. He showed that his armed forces were effective and ready to be used.

2.2. Alliance terms and aim

2.2.1. In 1936 Germany and Japan signed an Anti-Comintern Pact to oppose to Communism, since the USSR had Comintern as a way to spread it. In 1937 Italy joined and the new alliance was formed under the name of the Axis-Alliance