Bunk, Brian D., 1968-; Pack, Sasha D.; Scott, Carl-Gustaf (ed.) / Nation and conflict in modern Spain: essays in honor of Stanley G. Payne
Bunk, Brian D., 1968-
"A shape note of pugnacity" : conservative youth groups in Spain, 1914-1939, pp. 15-29 ff.
NATION AND CONFLICT IN MODERN SPAIN can, and must be prepared to finish off by whatever means a few dozen Marxist imposters."41 Later, as the Republican system grew increasingly polarized, Ledesma penned a tract that identified youth as the only force capable of creating a new and powerful Spain based on the principles of national socialism. He justified the use of violence by arguing that such actions constituted a moral force overthrowing false values and defending the nation against its en- emies.46 Although not initially very significant, the JONS probably represented the first true example of generic Fascism to emerge in Spain prior to the Civil War.47 Only after February 1934, when the group fused with the nascent Falange Espahol (FE), did it begin to play a significant role in political developments. The FE had been formed scarcely three months earlier in the fall of 1933 by Jose Antonio Primo de Rivera, son of the former dictator. From the beginning the organization received financial support from the most ardent monarchist groups including Calvo Sotelo's Renovacion Espafiol (RE).48 Along with personal connections, the two organizations shared a desire for both a moral and political change in Spain, followed by the creation of an author- itarian state. Unlike Ledesma, Jose Antonio and the FE never made youth a central focus of the party's ideological formation. To be sure the "vocabulary of mystical exaltation, sacrifice and violence, national mission and revolution" clearly resonated with young people and they formed the backbone of the organization's support.49 From the start the FE remained open to the possibility of using violence to effect political change. In his remarks at the founding of the FE in October 1933, Jose Antonio declared that violence was justified in defense of justice or the nation, and he famously spoke of the "dialectic of fists and pistols."50 Although FE never achieved any real position of political authority it proved influential in two important respects. To begin with, the rhetoric of violence made the FE the target of attacks by the increasingly radicalized socialist and communist youth groups, especially during the spring of 1936. The response of the FE, although muted at first, soon escalated into a series of street fights and shootings that left dozens of young people dead. The level of political violence gave the impression of a society on the brink of collapse, and as such contributed to the general climate of polarization that soon exploded into outright war.5' The FE also became the scaffolding upon which Franco constructed the political regime that emerged during the course of the Civil War. FE's original 27-point program (minus one) was soon promulgated as the movement's official ideology and important members of the organization continued to serve in the new administration. Perhaps the most prominent was Sancho Daivila, one of the closest allies of Jose Antonio from the start of the FE, who was named the first director of the Francoist Organizaciodn Juvenil (OJ) during the Civil War.52 Although the FE was probably the most famous youth group in Spain prior to the Civil War it was not the most successful or powerful. Instead the largest and most influential conservative youth organization of the Second Republic was the JAP.53 The party drew on previous conservative youth organizations for both its inspiration and its leadership. One scholar has called the JAP, the direct heirs to JM, especially concerning the emphasis on 22
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