Singling out victims: denunciation and collusion in the post-civil war Francoist repression in Spain, 1939–1945
This article considers the Franco regime in post civil warSpain to reveal how it was not only imposed on society but that its supporters at the grassroots played an important role in consolidating it from below. Although historians in recent years have done much valuable work to unearth the long hidden brutal Francoist repression it is clear that much remains to be learnt about the complicity that lay behind the mass killing and incarceration.
This study outlines farcical prosecutions in military tribunals and reveals how in a significant number of cases the authorities followed the lead of their civilian collaborators who singled out potential victims for them. Repression became so aggressive because both local officials and ‘ordinary’ Francoist inhabitants shared a deep ideological loathing for supporters of the Republic and worked easily and effectively together to pummel and destroy neighbours that they both detested. In this regard the scale of collaboration in some areas of Franco’s Spain surpassed that found in Nazi Germany.
**This article won the 2010 European History Quarterly prize for ‘Best content from young scholars**