By D. P. Stephens
A Memoir of the Spanish Civil conflict is one man's bittersweet account of battling with the foreign Brigades opposed to the forces of normal Francisco Franco in Spain from 1936 to 1939. Douglas Patrick (Pat) Stephens was once born in Armenia in 1910 and emigrated together with his relatives to Canada in 1926. Like numerous others, his dream of discovering a brand new and extra wealthy existence used to be seriously shaken through the onset of the good melancholy, and he grew to become to the Communist celebration of Canada in an try and wrestle the political and financial deterioration which had gripped a lot of the area. Franco's try to overthrow through army strength the republican executive of Spain looked as if it would Pat Stephens the fitting chance to place his political convictions into motion. via his connections within the Communist social gathering, he turned one among a few 1400 Canadians, and 40,000 foreign Volunteers in all, who went to Spain. some of the volunteers, together with the Canadians, went to Spain opposed to the legislation and the desires in their governments. lots of them by no means got here again. Stephens' memoir, dictated to his spouse Phyllis Stephens almost immediately prior to his loss of life in 1987, places a really human face in this unusual and complicated conflict. it's a portrait of political and ethical conviction tinged by way of creeping disillusionment. it's also a compelling depiction of the power, frailty, doubt, and braveness that can end result from the occasionally incongruous intersection of the non-public and the political. A Memoir of the Spanish Civil conflict is a invaluable contribution to our realizing of the clash which right away preceded international struggle II, and of Canada's function in that clash.
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Extra info for A Memoir of the Spanish Civil War: An Armenian-Canadian in the Lincoln Battalion
We were assigned quarters directly off the huge courtyard. We made beds from a pile of fresh straw mattresses. Then we were called to the parade ground for a short pep talk, and told to parade to the dining room for lunch. When we got back to our barracks, the Albanian comrade was waiting for us. He told us to get all our civilian clothes together and follow him to a warehouse. Here we discarded our last ties to civilian life. We were now soldiers in the International Brigade. I hated to part with my new suit and overcoat.
I asked Hemingway how our war compared with his experience in Italy during the war. His replied that he couldn't really answer that because he really hadn't been away from Madrid long enough to formulate an opinion. He said, however, that from what he had seen in Madrid and his short visits with Spanish units at the front, the Spanish war seemed to be a more cruel war. We took our leave from the reporters, and went for a sightseeing walk around Madrid. It was exhilarating to walk upright and not be dodging bullets cracking overhead.
The brandy really revived them. Who was it that said alcohol was not a stimulant but a sedative? In this case it certainly acted like a stimulant. The bright warm sun was out that morning, in sympathy with us. Fires were lit in the rear of our lines. The boys drifted down from the trenches to dry their clothes and get warmed up. The lines were defended by skeleton crews only. Most of the boys left the lines and drifted to the kitchen and to safe areas. 9 9 Stephens never gives his full name, but this was almost certainly Dr.
A Memoir of the Spanish Civil War: An Armenian-Canadian in the Lincoln Battalion by D. P. Stephens