It’s been 85 years since the day when the Spanish, German, and Italian fascists carried out the attack on Guernica, causing more than 2,000 deaths and the almost complete destruction of the holy, and martyr, city.
We’ve written a great deal about this tragedy, which was the world’s first look at what was to come. We believe we’ve said all that can be said about what happened, especially about the lies, fabrications, and calumnies that have surrounded all those who try to deny or downplay that war crime which, we repeat, caused 2,000 deaths. Not 12, not 150, not 300, no. More than 2,000.
At the end of the article, we bring you a list of all the articles which analyze the bombing and some of the people who played leading roles in the story. We pay special attention to those to spread the truth about what happened, and those who, impacted by the tragedy, took on the role of supporting the Basques, helping to save many lives.
This year, we’d like to focus on the two aspects we mentioned in the article’s title.
The first: totalitarianism carries in its DNA the way of acting that destroyed Guernica.
We verified this, and continue to do so, with what’s happening in Ukraine. The country’s president, Volodimir Zelenskiy, gave an online speech to the Spanish Parliament, telling of the suffering of the Ukrainian people, under the attack of an enemy that’s far superior in strength, and completely free of piety and honor; just like what happened in Guernica and in many corners of our country.
The parallelisms didn’t stop with the destruction of cities, or the systematic massacre of the civilian population. They also include the denial by the intellectual and material authors of the massacres of their responsibility for the same.
And that brings us to the second verification: totalitarianisms not only kill, but also lie, and even try to make all believe that the victim is to blame.
This is what we have lived through, and are living through, with Guernica. We’ve gone through all the phases, from “there was no bombing; the Reds burned it down” to “it wasn’t that bad; they’re lying”
And now, with Ukraine, we’re again seeing the aggressors, and their friends, claim such Kafkaesque things as “the Ukrainians are at fault for defending themselves.” It sounds just like when abusers claim that the women they beat “provoke them.”
Against all this, there is only one path: to never cease to repeat, as often as necessary, as often as possible, everything that happened. Fight the lies with more truth.
It’s taken the Government of Spain 85 years to condemn the Bombing of Guernica. This condemnation carries great weight, because, let’s not forget, Spain is a kingdom, and the king was put in place by the dictator Franco. Today, on the 85th anniversary of the bombing, the Sanchez government attacked the “indiscriminate attack on the civilian population” and has stated for the record that Guernica has become “an international symbol against the barbarism” of “the bombing of defenseless people.” “We recognize the victims, and the Spanish Government, for the first time, expressly condemns the bombing of Guernica,” in a statement which also highlighted the “principles of truth, justice, and reparations” that are the “guarantees for it to not be repeated.”
There is a saying that it’s never too late to mend, and we believe that it applies here very well.
Now, we must also be aware that we’re now going to have to deal with all those who deny or downplay the bombing, and who will be condemning the statement, and also trying to downplay the statement itself.
We’ll leave you with the statement from the Government of Spain as published in Deia.
We’ll also leave you with the article that historian Xabier Irujo (a regular here on the blog) has published in the same newspaper on the use by the nazis and fascists of our towns as training grounds to improve their bombing techniques in preparing for the war they were planning on starting.
Deia – 26/4/2022 – Euskadi
El Gobierno español condena el bombardeo de Gernika
La invasión de Rusia contra Ucrania y los paralelismos que ha trazado el presidente Zelenski con el sufrimiento de Gernika durante la guerra civil han abocado este martes al Gobierno español a realizar gestos inéditos con la villa, en el 85 aniversario de la masacre perpetrada contra la población civil por las aviaciones nazi e italiana a las órdenes de Franco. El Consejo de Ministros ha aprobado una declaración que “condena” lo sucedido y alude de manera expresa a las aviaciones nazi e italiana.
Deia – 26/4/2022 – Euskadi
Experimentos de guerra en Euskadi
Según el informe elaborado por Joachim von Richthofen el 28 de mayo de 1937 sobre el efecto de los bombardeos en las ciudades vascas, en el transcurso de las cuatro semanas de abril “los ataques aéreos se repetían varias veces al día y se lanzaban proyectiles de diversos tipos y potencia” para calcular su capacidad y medir sus efectos. Wolfram von Richthofen, jefe de estado mayor de la Legión Cóndor, visitaba a diario las localidades bombardeadas tras su captura para observar los resultados y mejorar las técnicas de bombardeo. La campaña de bombardeos de la primavera de 1937 fue, en su conjunto, un inmenso experimento de guerra conducente a desarrollar “el bombardeo perfecto”.