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‘… the best of all the contemporary accounts’ ‘Indispensable – a uniquely penetrating eye-witness view with a pulsing compassion at its core.’

O b s e rve r

Dai ly T e l e g r ap h

‘Wonderful.’ Pa u l P r e s t o n

‘Rich in colour and historical detail while retaining a deeply personal tone … one of the finest foreign journalists to write on Spain.’ S p e c tat o r

‘One of the best books ever written on the [Spanish Civil War] in any language.’ Helen Graham

H e n r y B u c k l e y was the Daily Telegraph’s correspondent in Spain during the Spanish Civil War. P a u l P r e s t o n is Professor of Contemporary Spanish Studies and Director of the Cañada Blanch Centre at LSE.

ISBN 978-1-78076-931-8

C o v e r p h o t o g r a p h:

Republican Soldiers at the Aragon Front. November 1938, Robert Capa © International Center of Photography

9 781780 769318 Introduct ion

by

Pa u l P r e sto n


‘For Hemingway, Hugh Thomas and others, [Henry Buckley] was a living archive of the [Spanish Civil] War. Fortunately for those who could not consult him personally, he left The Life and Death of the Spanish Republic, a worthy monument to a great correspondent.’ P a u l P r e s t o n , author of The Spanish Holocaust, from the Introduction to this book

‘Henry Buckley was one of the best of a top array of foreign correspondents of the 1930s and after, the only first-hand observer to write an account of the entire history of the Spanish Republic. The book is a classic, written with great personal honesty.’ S t a n l e y G . P a y n e,

author of The Spanish Civil War

‘A clear-headed, humane assessment – with an almost unbearable immediacy – of hopes raised and dashed. One of the best books ever written on the [Spanish Civil War] in any language.’ H e l e n G r a h a m,

author of The Spanish Civil War: A Very Short Introduction

‘The Life and Death of the Spanish Republic presents a clear, sharply defined first-hand portrait of this conflict. It is an exceptional testimony.’ J u l i á n C a s a n o v a , author of A Short History of the Spanish Civil War

‘Though always acknowledged by historians as one of the best books ever written on the Spanish Civil War, it is only now, with this first reprint, that the book has been given the chance to become a popular classic.’ Literary Review

‘An invaluable testament to truth, that infamous first casualty of war; a compassionate yet incisive eye-witness account of one of the twentieth century’s greatest tragedies.’ M i l i ta r y H i s t o r y M o n t h ly

n 1940, correspondent Henry Buckley published his eyewitness account of the Spanish Civil War. Copies of the book were destroyed during the Blitz and only a handful of copies survived. Now, 70 years later, this exceptional chronicle of the war is republished for the first time and with a new introduction by Paul Preston. Buckley combines personal recollections of meetings with the great politicians of the day with reports of the dramatic events he witnessed. He arrived in Spain prior to the outbreak of the war and was one of the few correspondents who had a real understanding of Spain – its people, politics and culture. As well as being well acquainted with the major protagonists of the conflict – including Juan Negrín, ‘La Pasionaria’ Dolores Ibárruri, Valentín González and Enrique Líster – Buckley was also a good friend of Ernest Hemingway and the renowned photographer Robert Capa. Providing a fascinating portrait of a crucial decade in Spanish history, and based on an abundance of observational material that only an assiduous journalist could collect, this book is essential reading for anyone interested in the Spanish Civil War. H e n r y B u c k l e y was the Daily Telegraph’s correspondent in Spain during the Spanish Civil War. He arrived in Spain in 1929, six years before the outbreak of the conflict, and left Spain with the remnants of the Republican forces that fled over the Pyrenees following their defeat by Franco in 1939. After covering the Second World War, during which he was wounded at Anzio, Buckley returned to Spain in 1949, living there until his death in 1972. P a u l P r e s t o n is Professor of Contemporary Spanish Studies and Director of the Cañada Blanch Centre for Contemporary Spanish Studies at LSE. He is one of the world’s leading historians of the Spanish Civil War and the author of The Spanish Civil War: Reaction, Revolution and Revenge; Comrades: Portraits from the Spanish Civil War; We Saw Spain Die: Foreign Correspondents in the Spanish Civil War; Franco: A Biography and, most recently, The Spanish Holocaust: Inquisition and Extermination in Twentieth Century Spain.

‘… a seminal eye-witness account of Spain’s civil war by one of the great war correspondents.’ Jimmy Burns

C o v e r d e s i g n:

Graham Robert Ward


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Henry Buckley was the Daily Telegraph’s correspondent in Spain during the Spanish Civil War. He arrived in Spain in 1929, six years before the outbreak of the conflict, and left Spain with the remnants of the Republican forces that fled over the Pyrenees following their defeat by Franco in 1939. After covering the Second World War, during which he was wounded at Anzio, Buckley returned to Spain in 1949, living there until his death in 1972.

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THE

LIFE A N D DEATH OF THE

SPANISH REPUBLIC A WITNESS TO THE SPANISH CIVIL WAR

HENRY BUCKLEY INTRODUCTION BY

PAUL PRESTON

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New edition published in 2013 by I.B.Tauris & Co Ltd 6 Salem Road, London W2 4BU 175 Fifth Avenue, New York NY 10010 www.ibtauris.com Distributed in the United States and Canada Exclusively by Palgrave Macmillan 175 Fifth Avenue, New York NY 10010 First published in 1940 by Hamish Hamilton c 2013 Patrick, Ramon ´ and George Buckley Copyright  The right of Henry Buckley to be identified as the author of this work has been asserted by the author in accordance with the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988. All rights reserved. Except for brief quotations in a review, this book, or any part thereof, may not be reproduced, stored in or introduced into a retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise, without the prior written permission of the publisher. ISBN: 978 1 78076 429 0 A full CIP record for this book is available from the British Library A full CIP record is available from the Library of Congress Library of Congress Catalog Card Number: available Printed and bound in Sweden by ScandBook AB

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CONTENTS chapter

page

List of Illustrations Introduction The Humane Observer: Henry Buckley Paul Preston Foreword

I II III IV V VI VII VIII IX X XI XII XIII XIV XV XVI XVII XVIII XIX XX XXI XXII XXIII XXIV

The Spain I Found Death of a Dictator Jaca—A Successful Failure Curtain to a R´egime A Republic is Born The King’s Record Trouble in the Republic Words—Not Deeds A Middle-Class Republic August Fireworks Bad Days for the Republic Vatican Policy in Spain Lerroux in Charge Semana Santa Juan March The Storm-Clouds Gather To Save the Republic No Dictatorship The Republic Marks Time Aza˜ na Has No Answer Victory Adrift After Victory Personal Reactions The Explosion

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1 10

13 22 28 34 40 50 63 69 81 88 93 106 115 117 119 124 140 161 166 182 186 195 207 211

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contents—continued chapter

XXV XXVI XXVII XXVIII XXIX XXX XXXI XXXII XXXIII XXXIV XXXV XXXVI XXXVII XXXVIII XXXIX XL XLI XLII XLIII XLIV XLV XLVI XLVII

page

Off to the Front Moors in Castile Franco Advances from the South Toledo in Peace and War The Telephone Building Madrid Is Saved A Count in Gaol Attempts to Surround Madrid The Battle of Guadalajara New Tactics Coronation Interlude Admiral Raeder Shells Almeria In Caux-sur-Montreux Prieto as War Minister Teruel for the Republic Franco Wins the Battle of Aragon Enrique Lister On Valencia, Journalism and Other Matters The Toll of Human Suffering Dr. Juan Negrin A Closed Frontier and a Crumbling Front Parliament in a Dungeon The End of a Republic

219 230 236 244 254 261 274 280 289 304 317 322 327 334 346 355 370

Index

425

374 386 396 404 414 420

13:52


‘For Hemingway, Hugh Thomas and others, [Henry Buckley] was a living archive of the [Spanish Civil] War. Fortunately for those who could not consult him personally, he left The Life and Death of the Spanish Republic, a worthy monument to a great correspondent.’ P a u l P r e s t o n , author of The Spanish Holocaust, from the Introduction to this book

‘Henry Buckley was one of the best of a top array of foreign correspondents of the 1930s and after, the only first-hand observer to write an account of the entire history of the Spanish Republic. The book is a classic, written with great personal honesty.’ S t a n l e y G . P a y n e,

author of The Spanish Civil War

‘A clear-headed, humane assessment – with an almost unbearable immediacy – of hopes raised and dashed. One of the best books ever written on the [Spanish Civil War] in any language.’ H e l e n G r a h a m,

author of The Spanish Civil War: A Very Short Introduction

‘The Life and Death of the Spanish Republic presents a clear, sharply defined first-hand portrait of this conflict. It is an exceptional testimony.’ J u l i á n C a s a n o v a , author of A Short History of the Spanish Civil War

‘Though always acknowledged by historians as one of the best books ever written on the Spanish Civil War, it is only now, with this first reprint, that the book has been given the chance to become a popular classic.’ Literary Review

‘An invaluable testament to truth, that infamous first casualty of war; a compassionate yet incisive eye-witness account of one of the twentieth century’s greatest tragedies.’ M i l i ta r y H i s t o r y M o n t h ly

n 1940, correspondent Henry Buckley published his eyewitness account of the Spanish Civil War. Copies of the book were destroyed during the Blitz and only a handful of copies survived. Now, 70 years later, this exceptional chronicle of the war is republished for the first time and with a new introduction by Paul Preston. Buckley combines personal recollections of meetings with the great politicians of the day with reports of the dramatic events he witnessed. He arrived in Spain prior to the outbreak of the war and was one of the few correspondents who had a real understanding of Spain – its people, politics and culture. As well as being well acquainted with the major protagonists of the conflict – including Juan Negrín, ‘La Pasionaria’ Dolores Ibárruri, Valentín González and Enrique Líster – Buckley was also a good friend of Ernest Hemingway and the renowned photographer Robert Capa. Providing a fascinating portrait of a crucial decade in Spanish history, and based on an abundance of observational material that only an assiduous journalist could collect, this book is essential reading for anyone interested in the Spanish Civil War. H e n r y B u c k l e y was the Daily Telegraph’s correspondent in Spain during the Spanish Civil War. He arrived in Spain in 1929, six years before the outbreak of the conflict, and left Spain with the remnants of the Republican forces that fled over the Pyrenees following their defeat by Franco in 1939. After covering the Second World War, during which he was wounded at Anzio, Buckley returned to Spain in 1949, living there until his death in 1972. P a u l P r e s t o n is Professor of Contemporary Spanish Studies and Director of the Cañada Blanch Centre for Contemporary Spanish Studies at LSE. He is one of the world’s leading historians of the Spanish Civil War and the author of The Spanish Civil War: Reaction, Revolution and Revenge; Comrades: Portraits from the Spanish Civil War; We Saw Spain Die: Foreign Correspondents in the Spanish Civil War; Franco: A Biography and, most recently, The Spanish Holocaust: Inquisition and Extermination in Twentieth Century Spain.

‘… a seminal eye-witness account of Spain’s civil war by one of the great war correspondents.’ Jimmy Burns

C o v e r d e s i g n:

Graham Robert Ward


‘… the best of all the contemporary accounts’ ‘Indispensable – a uniquely penetrating eye-witness view with a pulsing compassion at its core.’

O b s e rve r

Dai ly T e l e g r ap h

‘Wonderful.’ Pa u l P r e s t o n

‘Rich in colour and historical detail while retaining a deeply personal tone … one of the finest foreign journalists to write on Spain.’ S p e c tat o r

‘One of the best books ever written on the [Spanish Civil War] in any language.’ Helen Graham

H e n r y B u c k l e y was the Daily Telegraph’s correspondent in Spain during the Spanish Civil War. P a u l P r e s t o n is Professor of Contemporary Spanish Studies and Director of the Cañada Blanch Centre at LSE.

ISBN 978-1-78076-931-8

C o v e r p h o t o g r a p h:

Republican Soldiers at the Aragon Front. November 1938, Robert Capa © International Center of Photography

9 781780 769318 Introduct ion

by

Pa u l P r e sto n


The Life and Death of the Spanish Republic: A Witness to the Spanish Civil War