Now this is an ebook!
Spain in Our Hearts (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt) is a dynamic retelling of the Spanish Civil War. Adam Hochschild, lecturer at the Graduate School of Journalism, University of California–Berkeley, has woven diaries, letters, books, and news reports into a living account of combat, loves, tragedies and politics. Though almost all the participants are dead, they spring to life in Hochschild’s book. Spain in Our Hearts is written in the present, not in the past.
In 1936, right-wing elements of the army, led by General Francisco Franco, staged a coup to overthrow the Spanish Republic. Germany and Italy backed Franco, using the war to test the weapons and tactics they used in World War II. The United States, Britain and France stayed neutral. The Soviet Union aided the Republic. Thousands of volunteers from foreign countries fought for the Republic. By 1939, Franco’s Nationalists had won.
Several points in the book stand out:
- The American volunteers faced horrible conditions–inadequate training, inadequate arms, inadequate food. Always the underdog, they showed unsurpassed bravery.
- Texaco provided the Nationalists with oil and intelligence, resources even more important than arms.
- Famous journalists, including reporters from the New York Times, allowed their political views to compromise their objectivity.
On Christmas Day 2016, the Soviet Union will have been out of business for 25 years. Journalists and historians are finally free to write about Communism, without fear of retribution from the left.
Hochschild writes candidly of the war within a war, wherein Communists repressed and purged competing leftist elements in the Spanish Republic.
The treachery of the Soviet Union is exposed. The Soviet Union aided the Republic, just enough to divert German attention away from the Soviet Union, but not enough to bring victory for the Republic. The Republic’s massive gold reserves were shipped to the Soviet Union for safe keeping and payment for the military aid.
Spain in Our Hearts is a fast moving memoir. It is highly recommended to readers who like history, literature, and romance.