Topics: Spain, Francisco Franco, Spanish Civil War Pages: 2 (726 words) Published: January 24, 2014
Franco came from a military background. He became a highly decorated soldier and won rapid promotions in the army. He rose to prominence during the 1920s as a commander in the Spanish Legion and became the youngest general in Europe.[1] He was then appointed in charge of Academia General Militar, Spain's main military academy at Zaragoza. However, with the fall of the Spanish monarchy and the establishment of the Second Republic in 1931, Franco, as a conservative and monarchist officer, was marginalized from power by the Republican government. Franco managed to return to prominence with the electoral victory of the conservatives in 1933. He was appointed Chief of Staff of the military and suppressed the anarchist uprising of 1934. In 1936, Franco and a group of Spanish military leaders conspired to overthrow the Popular Front–led Republican government. The rebellion was only half successful and evolved into a civil war, during which Franco emerged as the leader of the Nationalists. He was able to secure the support of Italy and Germany while integrating the many heterogeneous rebel factions into the semi-fascist Movimiento Nacional. After winning the civil war, Franco had the Spanish Parliament dissolved. He then established a dictatorship and was de facto regent of the nominally restored Kingdom of Spain. His official posts were that of Head of State and Head of Government as the Caudillo (The Leader) and Prime Minister respectively. Franco went on to rule Spain for nearly forty years.[2] He was able to hold on to power by playing off the diverse political factions of the state against one another and through his control over the armed forces while firmly repressing enemies. This included the systematic suppression of dissident views through censorship and coercion, the imprisonment of ideological enemies in concentration camps, the implementation of forced labour in prisons, and the use of the death penalty and heavy prison sentences as deterrents for the...
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