(navigation image)
Home American Libraries | Canadian Libraries | Universal Library | Community Texts | Project Gutenberg | Children's Library | Biodiversity Heritage Library | Additional Collections
Search: Advanced Search
Anonymous User (login or join us)
Upload
See other formats

Full text of "Next steps to win the war in Spain"

PUBLISHED BY WORKERS LIBRARY PUBLISHERS, INC. 
P. O. BOX 1487STATIOND" NEW YORK 
JANUARY, 1938 
.203 




J'RIMKD IN THE U.S.A. 



NEXT STEP 
TO WIN TH 
WAR IN SPAIN 

Address by Earl /Brow der, General Secretary of the 
Communist Party~oflbe United States of America, 
before a meeting of functionaries, December 9, 1937 . 

COMRADES: The purpose of this meeting tonight is to 
launch the campaign for 50,000 members of the Friends 
of the Abraham Lincoln Battalion, to provide the necessary 
minimum of support to our boys in Spain and to re-establish 
in their normal occupations, as nearly as possible, those who 
are returning. It is a central part of our whole great campaign 
in support of the Spanish republic against the invading armies 
of Hitler and Mussolini with their Moorish mercenaries* 

In order to understand fully the importance of this task, 
why it must be fully carried through at all costs, we must 
constantly keep before us the meaning of Spain in the world 
situation and in relation to our own country. We must con- 
stantly renew our understanding of this struggle in its latest 
developments. Tonight, therefore, let us honor our American 
boys who are serving in Spain, and the memory of our heroes 
who gave their lives there by speaking of the high and noble 
cause in which we are all enlisted with them. 

The war in Spain is a part of the worldwide offensive of 
fascism against all peace-loving and democratic peoples. It is 

81 3 



directly connected with the war in China, invaded by the 
Japanese fascist military clique in power. Both the Spanish 
and Chinese peoples are conducting a defensive war against 
aggressors. By their struggles they are defending the cause oj 
peace of the whole world against the violators of world peace 
-Germany, Italy and Japan. They are conducting a nattona- 
liberation war against foreign bandits. The Spanish people 
are fighting for their liberty, for their democratic republic, 
against foreign intervention. The Chinese people are fighting 
for the right to be masters of their own house, for the reor- 
ganization of the political order of China along democratic 
lines. 

Stop the Spread of Fascism! 
If German and Italian fascism are victorious in Spain, and 
Japan crushes China, this will surely only open up a series o 
wars of conquest and aggression on the part of the insolent 
fascist states ail over the world. Already they have invaded 
the Americas, have seized Brazil, have massacred 8,UUU 
Haitians right on our doorstep, are taking over China, and are 
preparing an armed insurrection in Mexico against the Car- 
denas republic. Their victory would mean an immediate Hitler 
attack against Austria, Czechoslovakia, Belgium and Den- 
mark; it would mean the fascist encirclement of France, and 
war against her; it would mean the further extension of 
Mussolini's rule in the Mediterranean, and his further 
penetration into Africa; it would mean converting China into 
a Japanese colony, and an immediate menace to French 
Indo-China, India, Australia, and the Philippines. It would 
mean a general war of the so-called "Anti-Communist 
Alliance for the redivision of the world. It would mean war 
against the Soviet Union— the bulwark of peace, liberty 
and socialism. It would mean the quick rise of a powerful 
fascist movement in the United States, with the force of 
Wall Street's money behind it. 
4 




These are the inevitable results of the fascist victory in 
Spain and China. Therefore the struggle against the German 
and Italian intervention in Spain, and the Japanese invasion 
of China, is a struggle for maintaining peace in the world ; 
it is a struggle for self defense of the peoples of every land 
in their own countries, it is a struggle to preserve the United 
States itself from the horrors of fascism and war. 

Therefore the people of the United States have not only 
the duty of human solidarity, but, more immediately, of self- 
interest, to do everything possible to bring about the victory 
of the Spanish Republic and of the Chinese people. Ail 
working class parties and organizations, all honest democrats, 
all lovers of peace and liberty, cannot help but want such a 
victory, cannot help but support it and organize it. And this 
is true, above all, for the Communists, 

Tonight I will concentrate my attention upon Spain, There 
is a danger of the news from China pushing Spain into die 
background. By helping to strike a telling blow against the 
fascists in Spain we will weaken not only Hitler, Mussolini 
and Franco, but at the same moment the Japanese militarists 
whose fortunes rise or fall with those of the European fascists. 
In Spain the necessity of our help is pressing and immediate,, 
and decisive in determining the outcome. 

In Defense of Republican Spain 

The Spanish Republic is fully capable of settling accounts 
with Franco and the Spanish fascists in a few months, if the 
foreign armies are withdrawn and outside aid to Franco is 
stopped. The aim of our campaign is, therefore, to put a stop 
to the aid being given Franco; direct aid on the part of the 
fascist powers, and indirect aid on the parr of the non-fascist 
powers. 

This means we must demand and fight for the stoppage of 
military aid to Franco; withdrawal of the German and 

5 



Italian navies from Spanish waters, withdrawal of their armies 
from Spanish territory, putting an end to the piracy o* 
German and Italian submarines operating under Franco s flag, 
stopping the supply of arms, munitions, a.rp anes, etc Thu, 
means fhe stoppage of eco«om/c and finanoal mi; no loan, 
credits, or trade with Franco. This means the stoppage oi 
diplomatic aid to franco; no recognition of the Franco 
government, no sending of diplomatic representatives, no 
negotiations, no recognition of belligerent rights, toward 
which the British Tory government is moving, thus selling 
out the Spanish Republic in a horse-trade with the fascists. 
This means the stoppage of political aid: brand as treason 
to democracy and peace all defense of F^^g 
and in Congress, all justifying of Franco and all discrediting 
of Spain and its government. This means stopping a I 
indirect aid to Franco that results from the policy of neutral- 
ity" and "non-intervention," which in reality create a priv- 
ileged position for Franco, and lead to blockading republican 
Spain. This means to fight against anything winch directly 
or indirectly, lends strength to the German and Italian 
interventionists. This means giving up the splitting policy ot 
the Socialist Party and the Second International which helps 
Franco by its systematic refusal of unity of action and by 
its shelter of the Trotskyite-fascist "fifth column which stabs 
the Spanish Republic in the back. 

All of our practical work in behalf of republican Spain 
has the greater aim of arousing the American people to a 
realization of the horrible crimes being committed against 
peace and democracy by the fascists, to a realization that it 
the influence of the United States is not used to help stop 
these crimes quickly, then we may be suffering the same 
horrors before long. Our country is the most rich and power- 
ful in the world; it is intolerable that our peace-loving and 
democratic people should allow its influence to be on Francos 
side, directly or indirectly. 
6 



Smash the Defeatist Propaganda! 

American newspapers, notoriously reactionary, have in the 
past weeks been particularly vicious in their propaganda de- 
signed to convince their readers that republican Spain is 
doomed to defeat, and that therefore all help to Spain is use- 
less, and that it would be better to come to terms with Franco. 
This campaign of defeatism, conceived in Berlin and Rome, 
and carried out through London, has found willing helpers 
in the corrupt daily press of our country. It is so persistent 
and powerful that it sometimes even affects honest class-con- 
scious workers, makes them pessimistic and passive— which is 
exactly what its sponsors intended. 

In truth there is no reason for pessimism. One year ago the 
situation was indeed desperate. The Republic, without an 
army and with only the hastily-gathered and unorganized 
volunteers armed in the most haphazard fashion, stood with 
its back to the wall. Madrid had barely been saved by the 
timely appearance of the International Brigade. When our first 
contingent of American boys arrived in Spain, on Christmas 
Day last year, they still found chaos and confusion, with the 
organization of the regular army and the unified command, 
long fought for by the Spanish Communist Party, still to be 
achieved only six months later. The heroic stand at Jarama, 
the glonous victory at Guadalajara, in February and March, 
were still in the period when the Spanish People's Army was 
sti only in the making, and they were won largely by iron 
will and bare flesh. But last summer, the victory of Brunete 
was already the achievement of an organized and equipped 
army under a single command. The reorganization of the 
government in May was the turning point, with the establish- 
ment of the program for victory over fascism and the crushing 
of the reptile "fifth column" behind the fronts. Today the 
Republic has an army of half a million heroic Spaniards, 
lighting for liberty, officered by veterans, and, thanks to the 

7 



Soviet Union, no longer with empty hands. And not the leas 
element of strength of the Spanish Republic, the Communis 
Parry, has grown ro 350,000 members, rhe Socialist Party has 
also grown largely, and both parties are solidly united behind 
the government and moving toward amalgamation into a 

single party. r . , 

No, there is no reason for pessimism or defeatist moods. 
If we to America, and the workers in other capitalist lands 
but do our part, the Spanish Republic is equipped as never 
before for its glorious role of crushing the head ot the tas- 
cist cobra. 

The Trotskyite Wreckers and The,r Protectors 
One important guarantee of victory of republican Spain is 
its firm hand in suppressing the Trotskyite-P.O lUJvl. agents 
of Franco, the most dangerous part of the infamous frith 
column" behind the republican lines. One year ago, they even 
had their representatives within the government and enjoyed 
full freedom of action for rheir treasonable and wrecking 
work. But when in May they resorted to armed insurrection 
against the Republic, and built barricades in the streets ot 
Barcelona, they revealed themselves once for all in their true 
role of agents and helpers of fascism. It was one ot 
Caballero's greatest crimes that, while Premier, he dallied 
with these criminals and even took them under his protection. 
But today they are officially recognized enemies of the Re- 
public and of the people. 

In the United States we have witnessed the shameful 
spectacle of Norman Thomas, head of the Socialist Party, 
rushing to the defense of the Trotskyite wreckers in Spam, 
the traitors who took up arms against the government headed 
by the Socialist Party of Spain. He sent his agent, a certain 
Mr. Sam Baron, from New York to Spain on a conspiratorial 
mission to the Trotskyites, equipped with secret codes and 
Other paraphernalia of espionage. And when Mr. Baron wan 
8 






very properly and promptly apprehended and locked up, 
Norman Thomas further disgraced the name of the Socialist 
Party by organizing public demonstrations against the Spanish 
Republic in defense of which Spanish Socialists are laying 
down their lives, together with our boys of the Lincoln 
Battalion, and the whole Spanish people. When Mr. Baron 
was expelled from Spain, his first act on arriving in France 
was to give the capitalist press a story predicting and threat- 
enings the downfall of the Spanish Republic. 

It should therefore not surprise us when we see Norman 
Thomas lined up with Hearst and the Catholic hierarchy, 
with the Trotskyites, Lovestoneites, and the Hitler-pacifists 
(those who echo Hitler that sanctions mean war) , in the most 
bitter denunciation against any attempt to bring the United 
States into concerted international efforts to maintain peace 
and defend democracy. When President Roosevelt made his 
famous Chicago speech, cutting loose from isolation and 
neutrality, and calling for concerted action to quarantine the 
aggressor powers, Norman Thomas stood in the front ranks 
with the worst reactionaries and the Trotskyites in denounc- 
ing this courageous peace policy as a policy of war. 

The Struggle for Spain Is a Struggle for Implementing 
Roosevelt's Chicago Speech 

Today everything we do in behalf of Spain becomes a part 
of the effort to organize the majority of the people to demand 
and secure the putting into effect of the policies laid down 
by the President in Chicago. 

Roosevelt's speech was in itself a powerful blow against 
the fascist war-makers. As witness to that fact we have the 
howls of hate and rage that came from Berlin, Rome and 
Tokio. As further witness, the joy with which the speech was 
received by the Spanish people and the Chinese people. And 
there is information that the Chicago speech, coming at the 
moment when the Polish fascists were pressing for complete 

9 



fascization of the Polish state and alignment with Hitler* 
heartened the Polish anti-fascists sufficiently to defeat at least 
for a time this conspiracy. Roosevelt has greatly encouraged 
and strengthened the embattled democratic forces of the 
world. For that he must be given full credit. 

But a speech is not enough. Its policy must be worked 
out in deeds, it must be implemented, it is not enough merely 
to be pronounced. And for this it must have behind it the 
conscious and organized support of the majority of the 
people, and through their influence, the majority of Congress. 

Above all the infamous Neutrality Law, and its applica- 
tion against republican Spain, must be fundamentally 
amended. A sharp distinction must be drawn between the 
aggressor and his victim, the aggressor must feel the full 
weight of American economic and moral influence turned 
against him, and the victim must be given the full economic 
and moral support of our country. 

This is the task of the day. And toward this are now turn- 
ing the great currents of popular thought and feeling, which 
must be organized and made effective. 

In Congress the most realistic grappling with this problem 
is the introduction by Representative Jerry J, 0*Connell of 
Montana of a "Peace Act," a revised version of the Neutral- 
ity Act which incorporates all the central features of Roose- 
velt's Chicago speech. There is also a resolution introduced 
by Representative Lewis of Maryland providing for an em- 
bargo on Japan. These two measures, supplementing one 
another, provide the legislative point to head up the mass 
campaign for an effective peace policy, which will be the 
most effective help to republican Spain and to China. 

Who Really Supports Democracy? 

Defense of republican Spain furnishes the acid test as to 
who really and seriously supports democracy, now when it is 
10 






threatened everywhere with destruction at the hands of 
fascism. 

All true democrats everywhere are giving all their strength 
to helping Spain and cutting off help to Hitler and Mussolini. 
Ask about every leader and every group, where they stand on 
the practical problems of Spain, and the answer infallibly 
gives their real character in relation to democracy. 

The Communists are everywhere steadfastly in the fore- 
front in the defense of Spain. This is a part of our whole 
line of defense of democracy and peace. It is applied to the 
defense of democracy in the United States. 

Only recently I had occasion to take note that President 
Roosevelt had expressed a fear that democracy may also be 
threatened from the side of the working class, as he expressed 
it, in some vague form of proletarian dictatorship. In the 
answer to that position, I summed up the Communist view 
in words I want to repeat here. I said: 

''The Communist Party repudiates now as in the past all 
theories and proposals looking toward a forcible imposition of 
socialism or any Utopia upon the majority of the people. We 
repudiate the 'reckless resolve to seize power' by any minority. 
If there should arise in America anything similar to the situation 
in Spain, where the democratic republic, while repulsing the 
fascist invasion, was stabbed in the back by the Uncontrollable 
extremists' (a minority of the Anarchists and the Trotskyite 
P.O.U.M.) then we, like our brothers of the Spanish Communist 
Party, would be in the forefront to suppress such 'extremists' 
who are really agents of fascism, and render them harmless. 

"The Communist Party represents a strong and growing force 
to support and help every progressive tendency in American 
political life, and in no case to distract the progressive Peopje's 
Front from its fight against the reactionaries and fascists." 

When the United States government, through its Congress, 
shamefully broke all its treaty obligations with the Spanish 
Republic and imposed a blockade against it, solely on the 

11 



ground that it was in trouble and suffering invasion, this was 
a demonstration that the U.S. Congress, in its present com- 
position, is a very unreliable support for democracy. 

When the British Tory government tries, as it is now 
doing, to force upon the Spanish government a compromise 
with Franco which would smash the national unity of Spam, 
only in order that the British may trade Spanish interests to 
Hitler and Mussolini to advance British interests, this only 
proves how the British Tory government is no support for 
democracy, but belongs in the enemy camp. 

When the British Labor Party drags along at the tail o: 
the Tory government, does nothing to rouse the country 
against it, and acquiesces in the betrayal of the Spanish 
Republic, this only proves that the leadership of the British 
Labor Party is no reliable support of democracy, but is rather 
betraying it to fascism. 

When Norman Thomas leads his Socialist Party to the 
defense of the P.O.U.M. insurrectionists, when he refuses to 
support Cabaliero when he headed the government for the 
Socialist Party, but rushes to the support of Cabaliero when 
he no longer represents the Socialist Party but a small it re- 
sponsible opposition to it, that only proves that Norman 
Thomas has abandoned the defense of democracy, which he 
formerly invoked so warmly against the supposedly "undemo- 
cratic" tendencies of the Communists. 

Everywhere, and at all times, the great mass of the working 
class and the majority of the middle classes support democ- 
racy and fight for it, with such effectiveness as the maturity 
of their organization and leadership makes possible. 

This is true whether the democracy is the incomplete, lim- 
ited "and fragmentary democracy of England, France and the 
United States under capitalism, or whether it is the more 
fundamental, far-reaching and profound democracy of so- 
cialism in the Soviet Union. Because the Soviet Union has 

12 



— Library 

University of Tews 
in 

achieved the greatest democracy of all history, there is found 
the surest support of those democracies that arc fighting for 
their life against fascist invasion. 

The Fight for Peace 

There are still pacifist ideas being broadcast, which say 
that the only way to have peace is to surrender to the univer- 
sal domination of the fascists. Since the fascists declare they 
will fight for rulership over the world, then the people, so say 
the pacifists, must declare that under no conditions will they 
fight. Or, at any rate, they insist that we shall be sure that if 
we fight we must on no account win. Such pacifists deplore the 
heroic battle of the Spanish people to maintain their Republic, 
They especially deplore the fact that 3,000 of our best boys 
from the U.S. and Canada are with the Spanish People's 
Army. They are now, among the students, hysterically calling 
for the sanctity of the so-called "Oxford Pledge" (which by 
the way never played much of a role in Oxford, or in all 
England for that matter) . They grow really apoplectic when 
they hear Communists say the time has long passed when it 
was proper to boycott military training camps, that it is neces- 
sary that the democratic people shall learn as much as possible 
about military science and not leave this a monopoly of the 
fascists and reactionaries. 

But today, as always in past history, the road to peace is 
not the road of pacifism and non-resistance. At least not the 
kind of peace that a free people has any use for at all. Free- 
dom and progress will continue only so long as the people 
are ready, when necessity arises, to defend it with their lives. 
The trials of the heroic Spanish people today may be ours 
tomorrow, unless we learn the lessons of their experience and 
apply them here in the U.S., preventing fascism from ever 
coming within striking distance of power, and unless we help 
more than ever the victory of the Spanish Republic. 

81 4 1J 



More Material Aid Needed for Spain 

All agencies that are organizing material help for republi- 
can Spain are more than ever needed today. They must re* 
vive and redouble their work. The second winter of war and 
a new wave of fascist intervention make this help more than 
ever important and necessary. Our defense lines before Madrid 
and in Aragon must not be allowed to falter for lack of our 
help. Otherwise those trenches may move across the Atlantic. 

The North American Committee for Aid to Spanish 
Democracy, the broadest united front of the friends of Spain, 
and the coordinating agency for the efforts of all the special 
groups, must be given new forces and attention to reorganize 
and strengthen its work, making it more effective and 
economical. 

The Medical Bureau, which has done such magnificent 
work in equipping and maintaining hospitals, ambulances, 
surgeons and nurses in Spain, is now called upon for greater 
efforts and achievements. It deserves a hundredfold more 
support than it is now receiving. 

The Friends of the Abraham Lincoln Battalion must be 
enabled to maintain and increase its supply of the small com- 
forts and necessities to the boys in Spain. 

And now of great importance is the Rehabilitation Fund of 
the Friends of the Abraham Lincoln Battalion. Since an in- 
creasing number of the boys are now returning from Spain, 
most of them after nearly a year of service on three or four 
fronts, and many of them with special problems of readjust- 
ment to work here, it is quite necessary that all forces be 
thrown behind its campaign for 50,000 individual members 
paying one dollar per year. This is absolutely required within 
the next three months to meet the minimum demands of 
this work. 

Maintain the Forces of the Lincoln Battalion 

Finally, and most important of all, we must understand 
14 




that the Lincoln and Washington Battalion and the Mac- 
Kenzie-Papineau Battalion are in the Spanish war until 
victory is won for the Republic. 

That means that a constant stream of reinforcements and 
replacements must continue, at least during this winter and 
spring, and possibly through next summer. 

The conditions for the International Brigade have much 
improved since the first 3,000 unhesitatingly answered the 
call and went to Spain. Then the boys were going into a com- 
pletely unorganized situation, the International Brigade had 
no recognized status, there were much confusion, delay and 
unnecessary hardships. 

Today they are going to join a strong Spanish People's 
Army, half a million strong, with a constantly more adequate 
equipment. They are joining an International Brigade which 
has won recognition and full status as a part of that People's 
Army. The conditions of the service, the rights and term of 
service, as well as the responsibilities, have been regularized. 
The confusions, delays and unnecessary difficulties have been 
reduced to a minimum. The main task, to hold back and 
smash the fascist offensive, can now be attacked much more 
directly and with greater guarantees of victory. 

Under these improved conditions, is it possible for us to do 
our part, together with all honest democrats, to maintain the 
historic Battalions that were created under such enormous 
difficulties, until victory is achieved? 

I feel that the answer to this question comes as a matter 
of course. Of course we can and we will. 

For us the slogan that rang out in Madrid only thirteen 
months ago, that was made a reality by the combineH forces 
of world democracy, is a part of our blood and bones, is 
woven into the very fabric of our lives* 

rr No pasaran!" 



15 



DEMOCRACY'S STAKE 
IN SPAIN 



BY BILL LAWRENCE 

Until Recently Political Commissar of the Military Base 
at Albacete, Spain 



RETURNING from Spain, one frequently hears the 
t question, "Well, how does it look in Spain? Are we 
going to win?" or "How long will the war in Spain last?" 
The answer to these questions, comrades, rests on: 

1. The absolute unity of all anti-fascist forces of Spain. 

2. The help the Spanish people will get from the interna- 
tional working class, 

3. The help the Loyalist government receives from the 
democratic countries, in the struggle for world democracy, 

Spain no longer is fighting a civil war. It is a war with the 
Spanish people on one side and two fascist states on the 
other. It is a known fact today that the war in Spain was 
planned, organized and premeditated by the German and 
Italian fascist governments, in their endeavors to get posses- 
sion oi Spanish steel, ore and mines, as well as control over 
the Mediterranean. 

Let it be said here and now, in refutation not only of the 
fascists, but also of the so-called friends of the Spanish 
people who try to utilize some differences among the Spanish 
people as an indication of their dissatisfaction with the gov- 

16 






ernment, that had it not been for the Spanish people them- 
selves and the support they themselves give to dun 
government, the war would have been lost long ago. 

Of course, there isn't sufficient homogeneous unity as yet. 
The representatives of the "fifth column," the Trotskyites, 
while fishing in troubled waters, use the little influence they 
have (and it is mighty little) to weaken the process of unifi- 
cation. Unfortunately, some Anarchist leaders as well as 
former Premier Largo Caballero permitted themselves at times 
to form an unprincipled alliance with enemies of the People's 
Republic, thereby obstructing the road to unity. 

The lark of unity is the principal cause today for some of 
the weaknesses in the Spanish situation, for some of the mili- 
tary defeats, for the insufficient clean-up of the rear guard, for 
the slow purging of the army and the weeding out of treacher- 
ous commanders, and for the slow organization of the war 
industry. 

The Communist Party of Spain, starting from the premise 
that the main issue before the Spanish people is to win the 
war, realizing that unity is the prerequisite for victory over 
fascism, guides its work and formulates its policies continu- 
ously and consistently along the path of endeavor to unify 
ail anti-fascist forces of Spain. 

In its famous manifesto of September 15, the Party Cen- 
tral Committee declared: 

"Our Party would commit a grave error if it believed that it 
alone, with its own forces, could solve the serious problems be- 
fore the Spanish people. The victory over fascism ought to be 
a victory of all the Spanish people. All anti-fascist forces ought 
to collaborate to obtain it. In the unity of all these forces 
resides precisely the supreme guarantee of our triumph." 

Logically continuing this policy, the Party directs the com- 
rades who are in military or political command to: 

w . . . accentuate the relationships of comradeship find 

17 



fraternity with commanders of other parties and organizations," 

The Spanish Communist Party directs its comrade com- 
manders not to try to prove a point or polemize, but to re- 
memBer the main issue — Unity and Win the War. 

This approach to unity is not limited to the working class 
organizations but to all antifascists who are willing to fight 
for the freedom and democracy of the Spanish people. 

While calling and working for unity, the Party members 
always give the example of heroic deeds and self-sacrifice. Our 
Party comrades are the sources of enthusiasm, courage, and 
determination in the most severe battles in the struggle for 
the Republic and the People's Front Government. Some of 
the best comrades of the Spanish Communist Party and trie 
Young Communist League are in the front lines leading the 
fight. Today more than one hundred thousand Party and 
Y*CL. comrades are in the armed forces of Spain, the bulk 
of whom are in the thick of the fight at various fronts. Many 
of our very finest Spanish comrades have given their lives 
and in doing so knew what they were fighting for. 

I shall never forget the day, while in a field hospital on the 
Cordoba Front, during an offensive, while doctors were try- 
ing to save the lives of those who required immediate opera- 
tions, a battalion political commissar was brought in. He was 
wounded in the head. His face was beyond recognition of 
human features. Blood was streaming from his eyes, ears and 
head. He could hardly breathe. The doctor looked at him 
and turned away. Suddenly, while a group of us was attend- 
ing to the other wounded lying beside him, we heard "Viva 
Partida Comunista!" We all turned. We were stunned to 
realize the voice was coming from the lips of our dying 
Spanish comrade. We didn't look at each other— we didn't 
have to — but each of us knew we were all crying. 

Because of its policies and heroic deeds, the Communist 
Party is beloved by the Spanish people. Its influence is erow- 

18 




■ 



ing hourly. From a party of 20,000 at the outbreak of the 
insurrection, the Communist Party of Spain has grown until 
it numbers today half a million fighters in its ranks. 

I wish I had the time to elaborate on the work of our Party 
in Spain. What valuable lessons we can draw and learn in 
working for the People's Front in America! 

Despite all difficulties offered by war conditions, despite 
continuous attacks on the Party by irresponsible people and 
counter-revolutionary Trotskyites, yes, in spite of the assas- 
sinations of some of our leading comrades in Catalonia, the 
Communist Party of Spain refuses to be provoked, and con- 
tinues to follow the road of unity of all anti-fascist forces, 
because therein lies the key to victory, and victory over fascism 
is the prime concern of the Communist Party of Spain. 

While it is correct to emphasize the unity of the Spanish 
people as the solution to the Spanish war, one must not 
underestimate the imperative need for aid from the interna- 
tional working class and democratic governments. 

Of course when we speak of international help, the Soviet 
Union stands out as an example. Here, too, time does not 
permit my going into details. All I can say is that the aid given 
by the Soviet Union to Spain is substantial, material and 
effective. The Spanish people are aware of this and so are the 
fascist pilots. It is sufficient to mention that even the degen- 
erate, pro-fascist Trotskyites don't dare today to openly at- 
tack the Soviet Union for fear of being lynched by the 
Spanish people. Let no one worry about the headlines in the 
capitalist press that the Soviet Union will withdraw its aid 
from Spain. I think we can safely leave it to the Soviet Union 
to determine its course of action. 

Let us rather see what the Americans are doing in Spain 
and what we can do here to help defeat Hitler, Mussolini 
and Franco on Spanish soil. 

Much has been said and written about the American boys 
in Spain. I am sure that when the final word is said and 

19 



history is written the Americans will -occupy a prominent and 
conspicuous place. 

Endless stories can be told of the heroic work of our 
American comrades in Spain, stories of self-sacrifice and 
courage unknown in the World War. American comrades 
have stayed in the trenches for months, endured almost in- 
human difficulties of warfare, have seen some of their pals fall 
by their side, have seen some of their comrades torn by ex- 
plosive bullets, but have carried on because they knew what 
they were fighting for. 

Courage alone is not sufficient, comrades. An ordinary 
soldier, too, may be courageous. In the International Brigade 
the relation of man to man is not that found in the ordinary 
army. Comrades of one company or battalion may have known 
each other for years, have worked together in the movement 
for a long time, have been on picket lines together, and de- 
veloped a real mutual comradeship. To see a comrade like 
that fall by your side is not an easy task; but the conviction, 
the anti-fascist spirit that permeates the International 
Brigade, the realization of the just cause we are fighting for, 
make our comrades carry on. 

War is not a pretty sight for many reasons. One must 
undergo all sorts of difficulties: at times difficulties which arise 
from the very nature of the Spanish struggle and political 
complications which exist there; difficulties arising from all 
conditions. Our American comrades have withstood those 
difficulties and carried on like veterans and true anti-fascists 
because of their political vision and understanding. 

Every American comrade in Spain is a hero in his own way. 
Names like Oliver Law, Harry Hines, Rudolf Tieger, Steve 
Nelson, Bob Merriman, Joe Dallet, and Milton Herndon and 
scores of others will never be forgotten in the history of 
the struggle for democracy. 

Men who were hardly known to us in the States, quiet, 
modest, timid men you could hardly hear when they talked, 

20 




men who never boasted of their ability, knowledge, or ex- 
perience, have come forward as leaders and staunch fighters. 
They performed super-human deeds. Only men who know 
what they are fighting for, men whose enthusiasm and con 
viction for an ideal are greater than life itself, are capable of 
deeds exceeding all historic examples of human struggles for 
liberation. 

Take the case of Rudolf Tieger. Living in the trenches for 
weeks he was an example of courage and loyalty to the cause 
for which he died. Not sparing himself for a moment, he was 
always on the spot where he was needed. Disregarding per- 
sonal danger, he went out of his way to make others feel 
good. Ignoring his own safety, he accommodated others. He 
never missed an opportunity to advance his ideas, to imbue 
people with enthusiasm, in the most difficult moments, making 
people forget their surroundings when surroundings were 
rather unpleasant. 

One day the order was given to go over the top. Rudolf 
Tieger was the first to go. He was wounded. Comrades urged 
him to get back into the trenches. He refused. When he 
finally did get back, lying there and bleeding, he remembered 
two of his comrades wounded, lying in no man's land, ex- 
posed to the fire of the fascists. Slowly, with blood streaming 
from his head, disregarding the fire of the enemy, he crawled 
out on his belly, brought one of the comrades into the 
trenches, Leaving him there, he came out again, moved to the 
second comrade, and as he brought him close to the trenches* 
Tieger was riddled with machine gun bullets. 

Or take the case of Harry Hines. He was fatally wounded. 
As he and a group of others were being brought down on 
stretchers, an appeal was made to those who were lightly 
wounded to walk to the first aid station so that the stretchers 
might be used for those who could not walk. Harry Hines, 
the seaman, heard the appeal. He raised his head and offered 

21 



his stretcher. That very moment he died from the wound he 
had received. 

Many more stories could be related where our men volun- 
teered for jobs knowing that death awaited them, yet gladly 
volunteered because they realized that the success of the 
operation would mean a defeat for the fascists* We have in- 
deed reason to be proud of the work of our comrades in 
Spain. On more than one occasion, military and political 
authorities referred to the Americans as "that excellent sec- 
tion of the International Brigade." We can point to positive 
military achievements of the Americans in Spain. The role 
the Americans played in the February Jarama battles helping 
to save Madrid, the Brunete offensive in July in which the 
Americans played a leading part, and the capture of Quinto 
and Belchite in which the Americans figured prominently, 
place the Americans in the position of having made definite 
military contributions in the battle for Spanish democracy. 

Our Party, though making terrific sacrifices, is at the same 
time gaining rich experiences and developing marvelous 
cadres. 

We must pause here to pay tribute to the fine work done 
by the American Hospital in Spain, and its ambulance crews 
and field hospitals of various sorts. The high professional 
standards, the skill and courage and tireless enthusiasm of 
these American doctors and nurses have saved many and many 
a life — lives of American boys and lives of boys of the other 
nations. 

The work of Doctor Edward Barsky, Dr. Irving 
Busch, Dr. Donald Pitts, Dr. Arnold B. Donawa, Chief 
Nurse Fredericka Martin, and scores of other doctors and 
nurses too numerous to mention has been complimented in 
the highest terms by the military and medical authorities of 
the Spanish government and by international professional 
medical experts. Every support should be given the Medical 

22 



Bureau in sending more and more of such fine medical equip- 
ment and such good personnel to operate it. 

The role of the International Brigade is not yet over. 
Today more than ever, new international men are needed to 
help defeat the fascists. The Spanish war is a bitter struggle 
and will not be over in the next few months. We must guard 
ourselves against the tendency of becoming pessimistic about 
the outcome of the war when the northern front is lost, and 
becoming over-optimistic when Belchite is taken by the Loyal- 
ist forces. Neither our pessimism nor our over-optimism help 
the Spanish people. And our help is needed badly. 

Fascism is determined to conquer Spain. The international 
working class must be in the vanguard to meet that challenge. 
Here in America we must revive the Spanish campaign first 
of all against the Neutrality Act, we must not permit the 
American people to forget the struggle for world democracy 
that is being fought out on Spanish soil. 

Through the initiative of our Party, we must draw in every 
anti-fascist to the movement for the amendment of the Neu- 
trality Act. We must demand that America with its democratic 
traditions does not desert a bleeding nation, struggling for 
liberty and independence. We must intensify our efforts to 
draw the Socialist Party into a movement for Spain. The 
Gus Tylers and Zams are not the Socialist Party of America 
nor do they represent the sentiments of the Socialist Party 
members. An indication of that are the few Socialists who 
today in Spain fight side by side with our comrades against 
fascism. 

Some of our men must come home — others must take 
their places. We must go back to our units and mass organ- 
izations and with the same spirit that prevails among our com- 
rades in Spain, with the same determination and enthusiasm, 
we, here in America, must become the initiators of a new flow 
of men into Spain and help deliver the death blow to world 
fascism. 

23 



EfiH R LIBERTY BELL! 



loin the 

FRIENDS OF THE 
ABRAHAM LINCOLN BRIGADE 

Help send cigarettes, 
coffee, cccnned food, 
woolen sweaters, etc., to 
Spain, 

Help care for the wounded 
Americans returning trom 
Spain. One hundred and 
sixty are already here — 
more are returning. 

DUES $1.00 PER YEAR 



FRIENDS OF THE ABRAHAM LINCOLN BRIGADE 



125 West 45th Street 
New York City