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This is the first account in any language of the civil wars in Europe during the era of the world wars, from 1905 to 1949. It treats the initial confrontations in the decade before World War I, the confusing concept of 'European civil war,' the impact of the world wars, the relation between revolution and civil war and all the individual cases of civil war, with special attention to Russia and Spain. The civil wars of this era are compared and contrasted with earlier internal conflicts, with particular attention to the factors that made this era a time of unusually violent domestic contests, as well as those that brought it to an end. The major political, ideological and social influences are all treated, with a special focus on violence against civilians.
This book focuses on the short but crucial period that led to the collapse of the Spanish Republic and set the stage for the ensuing civil war. Stanley G. Payne, an internationally known scholar of modern Spanish history, details the political shifts that occurred from 1933 to 1936 and examines the actions and inactions of key actors during these years. Using their own memoirs, speeches, and declarations, he challenges previous perceptions of various major players, including President Alcalá Zamora. The breakdown of political coalitions and the internal rifts between Spain's bourgeois and labor classes sparked many instances of violent dissent in the mid-1930s. The book addresses the election of 1933 and the destabilizing insurrection that followed, Alcalá Zamora's failed attempts to control the major parties, and the backlash that resulted. The alliances of the socialist left with communism and the right with fascism are also explored, as is the role of forces outside Spain in spurring the violence that eventually exploded into war.
This book presents an original new history of the most important conflict in European affairs during the 1930s, prior to the events that produced World War II - the Spanish Civil War. It describes the complex origins of the conflict, the collapse of the Spanish Republic, and the outbreak of the only mass worker revolution in the history of Western Europe. Stanley Payne explains the character of the Spanish revolution and the complex web of republican politics, while also examining in detail the development of Franco's counterrevolutionary dictatorship. Payne gives attention to the multiple meanings and interpretations of war and examines why the conflict provoked such strong reactions in its own time, and long after. The book also explains the military history of the war and its place in the history of military development, the non-intervention policy of the democracies, and the role of German, Italian, and Soviet intervention, concluding with an analysis of the place of the war in European affairs and in comparative perspective of revolutionary civil wars of the twentieth century.
In this compelling book Stanley G. Payne offers the first comprehensive narrative of Soviet and Communist intervention in the revolution and civil war in Spain. He documents in unprecedented detail Soviet strategies, Comintern activities, and the role of the Communist party in Spain from the early 1930s to the end of the civil war in 1939. Drawing on a very broad range of Soviet and Spanish primary sources, including many only recently available, Payne changes our understanding of Soviet and Communist intentions in Spain, of Stalin's decision to intervene in the Spanish war, of the widely accepted characterization of the conflict as the struggle of fascism against democracy, and of the claim that Spain's war constituted the opening round of World War II. The author arrives at a new view of the Spanish Civil War and concludes not only that the Democratic Republic had many undemocratic components but also that the position of the Communist party was by no means counterrevolutionary
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