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Go Back   Pollensa Forum > BACKGROUND INFORMATION > Art, Culture & History

Art, Culture & History Discuss Art (old & new), music, history etc.

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  #1  
Old 17-09-2012, 15:47
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Default Mallorca during the Spanish Civil War

The latest edition of Talk of the North has an article on Spanish history which states that during the Spanish Civil War the German Condor legion bombed Guernica from its base in Pollenca. I think this is incorrect in everyway. I thought that the Nationalist Airbase was at Puerto Alcudia on what used to be a golf course before the war, that it was the base for the Italian airforce supporting Franco and the targets were Mediterranean shipping supplying the Republic and the Ports of Barcelona and Taragona. The Condor legion that bombed Guernica were never based on Mallorca. Try as I might I cannot find any information on the web to confirm which is correct. Can anyone out there assist?
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Old 17-09-2012, 19:52
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I've read several books regarding the Spanish Civil War and also about Guernica.
Just had a quick look on the web and found this relating to flights around the time and place of the Guernica air raid:
"Carrying a load that disclosed the probable outcome of their mission, the 1st and 2nd Squadrons took off at about half past four in the afternoon. At 4.38 GMT the 3rd Squadron took off from Burgos. The German planes were escorted by the Fiat squadron from Vitoria and the Bf 109Bs of the Lutzow squadron on the Vitoria - Mount Oiz - Cantabrian Sea - Guernica - Mount Oiz - Vitoria route. In this wave, therefore, twenty-nine planes participated. Which, when added to those that had already intervened over Guernica, makes a total of forty".
Hope this is of use to you, I will delve a little further later! I doubt very much indeed that the attack was carried out from PP or even Mallorca for that matter (distance!!!)

Last edited by pescador2009; 17-09-2012 at 19:56.
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Old 17-09-2012, 21:52
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Deanscroft, I wrote the piece in Talk of the North. You are right in that there was an airstrip in Alcudia, but Pto Pollensa was a base for the Condor Legion. A plaque to their dead was removed a couple of years ago. If it was the case that the Condor in Pto Pollensa were not involved in Guernica, then I can only but apologise. It has been my understanding that it was.

As background, I quote a couple of Spanish sources:

"El alcalde de Pollença, Joan Cerdà (UM), aprovechará la visita de los mandos militares que cada verano pasan sus vacaciones en el aeródromo del Port de Pollença, conocido popularmente como la Base, para reclamar la retirada definitiva de un monolito situado en esta instalación militar que homenajea a los soldados nazis de la Legión Cóndor que murieron durante la Guerra Civil española."

"Lo que es cierto es que ella no hubiera podido ya hacer su añorado paseo por el Paseo de los Pinos, porque Ramón Franco Bahamonde, el hermano del dictador, consiguió que los terrenos entre el Hotel y el Faro fueran expropiados en 1937 para construir una Base Militar cuyos primeros inquilinos extranjeros nada gloriosos fueron la Legión Cóndor que bombardeó traidoramente Guernica. Al año siguiente, el propio Ramón Franco, que había sido capaz de llegar en un hidroavión hasta Buenos Aires, falleció en un extraño accidente al salir de la Base."
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Old 17-09-2012, 22:09
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Here is the Google translation of the pieces Andrew has quoted :-



"The mayor of Pollença, Joan Cerdà (UM), use the visit of the military who spend every summer holiday at the aerodrome of Port de Pollença, popularly known as the Base to demand the permanent withdrawal of a monolith located in this military installation that honors the Nazi soldiers who died Condor Legion during the Spanish Civil War. "

"What is certain is that she could not have missed and make your tour of the Paseo de los Pinos, because Ramon Franco Bahamonde, the dictator's brother, managed to land between the Hotel and the lighthouse were expropriated in 1937 to build a Military Base foreigners whose first tenants were nothing glorious Condor Legion bombed Guernica treacherously. following year, Ramón Franco himself, who had been able to get in a seaplane to Buenos Aires, died in a freak accident when leaving the base. '
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Old 18-09-2012, 16:32
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There was quite a fleet of bombers based in Mallorca during the Civil War. They belonged to the Italian Air Force and harried merchant shipping bringing supplies to the Republic, including British ships, a number of which they sank. They also bombed the mainland and inflicted a great deal of damage on Barcelona, the maximum intensity being in March 1938. The Condor Legion perpetrated its atrocity on Guernica from airfields in the north, mainly Burgos and Ávila.
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Old 18-09-2012, 16:35
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P.S. Mallorca was very much an Italian fiefdom during the Civil War, and the population suffered greatly at their hands.
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Old 19-09-2012, 10:21
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Yep, would have been better to say that Pto Pollensa was a base for the Condor and not The. It's got a bit wrapped in myth I suspect, the Guernica angle, so apologies once again.
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Old 27-09-2012, 14:14
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Sure i seen old footage of the Condor legions based in PP, think it was under "old films" on this website.
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