1980s >> 1987 >> no-990-february-1987

50 Years Ago: The Spanish 
Civil War

The agony of Spain is only a matter of concern for the capitalists of other nations if any of them have interests involved or if there is any prospect of gain by fishing in troubled waters. For the rest it is a matter of minor importance to them that thousands of Spanish workers are losing their lives just because landowners and the Catholic Church want to keep intact their privilege to rob the wealth-producer of the product of his toil.

One of the spokesmen of the Spanish Government recently said that over a million lives had already been lost in the present civil war. It is a sad thought that in spite of the many and bitter lessons during the last hundred years, in which millions of workers’ lives have been sacrificed, the mass of the workers of the world still fail to grasp the fact that capitalism offers nothing to them but toil and misery, and they still turn away from the Socialist message. Yet, in the advanced countries at any rate, the workers produce and distribute the wealth upon which all live. While the capitalists control this wealth they use their position to live in idleness and luxury. The workers can. and some day will, obtain control of the means of production. When they do so they can banish want and economic misery and the bestialities of the struggle between classes. The lesson is a simple one and so easy to learn if only workers would look facts in the face.

[From an article “Some Lessons from Spain” by G. McClatchie, Socialist Standard February 1937]