why did george orwell fight in the spanish civil war
';0�@��sv�y�`e� �B*˓˥*�J����P*U�J K&UH�Re������������6�ëe2TK��f�[�nM����:�����b�r5bm� ��l"�G"�<>�Mq3j�3�@������������}D� ���AAniɁ(g���f#ܙ,��. How right they are to realize that the belly comes before the soul, not in the scale of values but in point of time! George Orwell, whose book Homage to Catalonia became a celebrated account of fighting in the civil war, and his wife Eileen were spied on in Barcelona at the time of a vicious internal conflict on the Republican side of the war in May 1937. © 2020 Guardian News & Media Limited or its affiliated companies. I know that some were committed by the Republicans, and far more (they are still continuing) by the Fascists. Before your bones were dry, He was affiliated to the English Labour Party, and for him fascism was "the enemy", so to speak. The wretched boy allowed himself to be led off to the guardroom to be searched. There must be a quite large number of people, a sort of central core of the intelligentsia, who approved the ‘King and Country’ declaration in 1935, shouted for a’ firm line against Germany’ in 1937, supported the People's Convention in 1940, and are demanding a Second Front now. As far as the mass of the people go, the extraordinary swings of opinion which occur nowadays, the emotions which can be turned on and off like a tap, are the result of newspaper and radio hypnosis. But it is worth comparing the duration of the slave empires of antiquity with that of any modern state. All the considerations are likely to make one falter — the siren voices of a Petain or of a Gandhi, the inescapable fact that in order to fight one has to degrade oneself, the equivocal moral position of Britain, with its democratic phrases and its coolie empire, the sinister development of Soviet Russia, the squalid farce of left-wing politics — all this fades away and one sees only the struggle of the gradually awakening common people against the lords of property and their hired liars and bumsuckers. Prior to writing the novel, Orwell had watched the communist revolution in Russia and volunteered to fight against the Fascist government in the Spanish Civil War. In Spain, for a while, people were acting consciously, moving towards a goal which they wanted to reach and believed they could reach. He symbolizes for me the flower of the European working class, harried by the police of all countries, the people who fill the mass graves of the Spanish battlefields and are now, to the tune of several millions, rotting in forced-labour camps. On one side were the forces of the slightly left-of-center elected Spanish government, on the other, the hard-right fascists rebels of general Francisco Franco. The Fascists won because they were the stronger; they had modern arms and the others hadn't. But as for the Fascists and their backers, how could they come even as near to the truth as that? So the Spanish Republic perished, having’ gained what no republic missed’. What would the world give back to you? In essence it was a class war. I name those particular men because I remember the faces of all of them. They show the level of paranoia among a hard core of Stalinists in both the Republican army and the International Brigades. The volume of testimony is enormous, and a respectable proportion of it comes from the German press and radio. Consider for instance the re-institution of slavery. In 1936 it was clear to everyone that if Britain would only help the Spanish Government, even to the extent of a few million pounds’ worth of arms, Franco would collapse and German strategy would be severely dislocated. They must do so, because in their own bodies they always discover that the promises of Fascism cannot be fulfilled. Purer than any woman's! The other is that so long as some parts of the earth remain unconquered, the liberal tradition can be kept alive. Where would you hide your head? The hatred which the Spanish Republic excited in millionaires, dukes, cardinals, play-boys, Blimps, and what-not would in itself be enough to show one how the land lay. There may have been a handful of airmen and other technicians, a few hundred at the most, but an army there was not. This isn't a bourgeois army. Nazi theory indeed specifically denies that such a thing as ‘the truth’ exists. The pious ones, from the Pope to the yogis of California, are great on the’ change of heart’, much more reassuring from their point of view than a change in the economic system. Significantly, and I should have made more onit, he spoke a lot about the failed policy of appeasement. To meet within the sound of guns, What was most painful of all was that he seemed no less ashamed after his innocence had been established. ____BD____ It is just this common basis of agreement, with its implication that human beings are all one species of animal, that totalitarianism destroys. No political strategy could offset that. Because the bulk of the British and American intelligentsia were manifestly unaware of it then, and are now. Also, although it has ceased to be fashionable to say so, there is little question that what one may roughly call the ‘whites’ commit far more and worse atrocities than the ‘reds’.


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