Belchite- Ghostly reminder of the Spanish Civil War

Discussion in 'Between the wars 1918-1939' started by evangilder, Jan 16, 2011.

  1. evangilder

    evangilder "Shooter"
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    Full blog with lots of pictures at the link below:
    Kuriositas: Belchite – Ghostly Reminder of the Spanish Civil War
     
  2. gekho

    gekho Active Member

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    Belchite is one of best-known ghost towns of Spain. I was there a coule of years ago and believe me, it´s scary. The city was completely devastated and many people died there. This is a short story of what happened there:

    Today the village is amde up of two parts, the new village Nuevo Belchite, and the old village which has been left undisturbed as a set of ruins from the Spanish civil war. The old village was ruined by the intense fighting between the Nationalist (Facist) and Republican (Communist) forces in the last week of August and 1st week of September 1937 (24/08 - 7/09). 1937 had seen the Nationalist forces mount a campaign to conquer the northern provinces which was fiercely resisted by the republicans. As part of that resistance the Republicans lauched a series of harrying counter attacks along areas of the Nationalist front line in Aragon where individual villages and towns were known to be weakly defended. Belchite was one such town.

    Quickly occupied by the republicans the village of Belchite was held throughout the Nationalist counter attacks although at the cost of having the village reduced to ruins. The strategic value as a potential jumping off point for a future attack on Zaragoza (never materialised) was not lost on Republican commanders and whilst surrounding villages fell to the Nationalist forces Belchite wasn't captured until later that year. After the civil war there were a few inhabitants in the ruins however Franco wanted to send a message to ex republicans and decided that a new village be constructed next door and the village preserved as a monument to the irresistibility of the Nationalist forces. Thats to say that although the village was held for so long by the republicans it eventually fell to the "superiority" of the nationalist ideology.
     
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