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Remembering the Spanish Revolution

The Spanish Revolution (1936-1939) broke out on the 18th July, 1936 in response to a fascist coup attempt under General Franco. The war lasted for three years and ended with Franco's victory, aided by fascist Italy and Nazi Germany. The revolution saw huge swathes of Spanish industry and agriculture socialised and run collectively by the workers and peasants

The coup was only smashed by the activity of the working class. The fascists made some headway in parts of the country but in Catalonia CNT (Anarcho-Syndicalist union) showed how to fight. They declared a general strike and took to the streets looking for arms which the government refused to give them. In the end they stormed the barracks, and took what they needed.

Militias were formed and these became units of a revolutionary army. This was no ordinary army. This was a revolutionary army with revolutionary principles. The militias liberated towns and villages which became under the control of those who worked the land and toiled in the factories.

After three long years of fighting fascists and dealing with the betrayals of the Stalinists the war ended leaving the fascists victorious and the working class defeated and the CNT smashed.

Spain showed us that freedom from capitalist exploitation is possible and the working class needs no state or bosses to free itself from slavery.

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