Socialism and War: The Spanish Socialist Party in Power and by Helen Graham

By Helen Graham

This booklet recovers the misplaced heritage of Spanish socialism in the course of the turbulent years of the Civil battle (1936-39). simply because the strength of the socialist flow had sustained the pre-war moment Republic as an test in reform, so too it underwrote the Republican warfare attempt within the an important years of the clash which might verify Spain's long term destiny. top Socialist occasion (PSOE) cadres shaped the bedrock of the govt, whereas millions of social gathering and union militants helped endure the super weight of the conflict attempt. The position of the PSOE within the development of Republican political cohesion through the Civil struggle used to be pivotal. but, satirically, past money owed of wartime Republican politics have nearly written the PSOE out of the script by way of concentrating completely at the fierce ideological dispute among anarchists and communists. however the key problems with revolution and kingdom strength marked the entire forces in Republican Spain, none extra so than the Socialist stream. because the conventional get together of the operating category and the one mass occasion in Spain as overdue as 1931, PSOE militants have been to be came upon on each side of the revolutionary/reformist divide which cut up fatally the Republican forces throughout the Civil conflict. The PSOE's disintegration used to be a functionality of that of the Republic itself; however the opposite used to be no much less real. The ebook investigates the responses of organised socialism to the complicated matters raised by means of the clash, because it charts the PSOE's devastating adventure of political strength and determined hindrance in a struggle it might now not win.

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Nevertheless, the fact that the PSOE representatives on the national committee of the Popular Front, Ramon Lamoneda and Manuel Gordero, were identified with the reformist wing of the PSOE, tended to increase the Caballeristas' suspicions of the motives behind its decisions. e. reformist) socialists. 32 This was to comprise two representatives from each of the groups which had subscribed to the Popular Front pact. The ostensible function of the committee was as an extra-parliamentary pressure group to ensure the enactment of the reformist legislation which had been the raison d'etre of the electoral coalition.

25 Largo, however, was never to return to the post, maintaining his previously expressed view that the executive needed to be unanimous, as the 'homogenous organ of an iron leadership'. This unsatisfactory state of affairs would only be resolved when, in May 1936, the PSOE national committee officially recognised the resignations of Largo Caballero's three lieutenants from December 1935 and proceeded to new elections for the vacant posts on the national executive committee. 26 23 24 Socialism and war The series of tactical manoeuvres employed by both sides in January 1936 provided a foretaste of how the internal party dispute was to be waged in the future.

The reformists were clearly counting on the left's overriding commitment to party unity, believing that it would be virtually impossible for the Caballeristas to set themselves against the resolution of a national congress. Prieto was motivated in all this by the desire to establish an unambiguous line on party policy so as not to waste the opportunity provided by the Popular Front electoral victory. Internal divisions in the Spanish socialist movement 1934-1936 The socialist left very quickly identified the double danger inherent in the Asturian congress proposal.

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