The Spanish Civil War
How General Franco rose from being a cautious conspirator in 1936 to fusing together the conflicting ideologies of the Nationalists and becoming Europe's longest-ruling dictator of the twentieth century.
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
The Franco insurrection in July 1936 came against a background of several months of strikes, expropriations, and battles between peasants and Civil Guards. The left-wing Socialist leader Largo Caballero had demanded in June that the workers be armed, but was refused by Manuel Azana. When the coup came, the Republican government was paralyzed. Workers armed themselves in Madrid and Barcelona, robbing government armories and even ships in the harbor, and put down the insurrection while the government vacillated, torn between the twin dangers of submitting to Franco and arming the working classes. In large areas of Spain effective authority passed into the hands of the anarchist and socialist workers who played a substantial, generally dominant role in putting down the insurrection.