Essay on The Spanish Civil War: Soviet Intervention in the Defense of Madrid

Essay on The Spanish Civil War: Soviet Intervention in the Defense of Madrid

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On July 17th, 1936, a conspired military revolt broke out in the Spanish colony of Morocco. Within a month, the rebellion spread to mainland Spain and over the next three years, Spain became the center of a war between fascism and communism. With Nazi Germany and fascist Italy supporting the rightest Nationalists, and the Union of Soviet Socialist Republic (Soviet Union) supporting the leftist Republic, this conflict encompassed all of Western Europe. When on the subject of foreign intervention in the Spanish Civil War, the major powers of Hitler, Mussolini, and Stalin come to mind as the key contributors. Yet, the importance of the Soviet Union is often underestimated. Alongside the Loyalists, the Soviets supported the Republican government in defending Spain against the revolting military Fascists. In particular, the Soviet Union played a crucial role in the defense of Madrid. First, the Soviet sent many advisors and specialists to provide advice, strategic military intelligence, and mental support for the Loyalists. These Soviet men eventually took command of Madrid forces and became the backbone of Madrid operations. Second the Soviets provided material aid in the form of tanks, planes, and weapons. These supplies gave the Loyalists within Madrid the fire power to resist the rebelling Nationalists. Lastly, the Soviets were responsible for the creation of the International Brigades (IB) who were the key forces in defending the three bridges leading into Madrid. The intervention of the Soviet Union in Spain during the Spanish Civil War, particularly their role in the Battle of Madrid, provided the most essential support to the Republican forces in Madrid, allowing the Loyalists to withhold the Nationalist siege.
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...Web. 18 May 2014.
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"Spanish Civil War." UXL Encyclopedia of U.S. History. Sonia Benson, Daniel E. Brannen, Jr., and Rebecca Valentine. Vol. 7. Detroit: UXL, 2009. 1455-1456. Gale Virtual Reference Library. Web. 29 Apr. 2014.
Stalin, Joseph. "Madrid." Letter to The Central Committee of the C.P. of Spain. 16 Oct. 1936. MS. Revolutionary Democracy Journal, Moscow.
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Whealey, Robert. "How Franco Financed His War - Reconsidered." Journal of Contemporary History. Sage Publications. 133-52. JSTOR. Web. 5 May 2014.

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