Saturday, April 28, 2012

75th anniversary of the bombing of Guernica

"Last Thursday marked the 75th anniversary of the bombing of the Spanish town of Guernica during the Spanish Civil War. The bombing was carried out by Nazi Germany’s Luftwaffe at the behest of general Francisco Franco. It is regarded as one of history’s first air raids on a defenceless civilian population. Guernica was far from a military target; it was a town of 5,000 civilians, attacked on market day, when the number of casualties would be highest. Franco hoped the attack would break the morale of his enemies, the Republicans. For Adolf Hitler, the bombing was a chance to test the capabilities of his Luftwaffe."


Rob Innis said...

In fact in the books I have read Franco denied giving the order for an air attack on Guernica - but I guess we will never know the truth. But it does seem to be a fact the Germans wanted to speed the victory up a bit.

Brett Hetherington said...

Thanks for the comment, Rob. History does tend to have some uncertainty about it, especially when military commands are often not put in writing. The most likely scenario is that Franco would have assented to the bombing of Guernica though, don't you think?