To what extent was a Nationalist victory in the Spanish civil war inevitable? The Spanish civil war broke out in 1936 due to many factors. The Nationalist were likely to win the war due to Franco, as he was able to resolve the tension among the factions on the Nationalist side and also they he the support of the ruling elites, such as the Church. On the other hand Franco did not become a clear leader until later on the war as the Republicans captured Madrid and the Army of Africa were stranded In Morocco. The Nationalist also failed due to many other factors. At the start of the war it did not become clear that the Nationalist victory in the Spanish civil war was inevitable.
A Nationalist victory in the Spanish Civil war could have be said to have seemed inevitable at the start of the war due to the support and the organisation. On the Nationalist side, Franco led the Spain’s most elite army, the army of Africa. This was a great start for the Nationalist to come closer to winning the war due to the fact that he fought many wars before which led him to gain military skills and many different tactics and he carried his duties impeccably due to his past experiences in war. Even though Franco lacked vision and dynamism. During his time fighting in different battles he gained much respect from the Nationalist and others. Franco dealt ruthlessly with his opposition and established a firmly controlled corporative state. Which he used to his great advantage. Also Franco successfully was able to acquire from abroad, this had a good impact on the Nationalist as they had elite leaders who had great access to weaponry. Franco was also a shrewd politician. He used to this to great advantage especially when Primo de Rivera was executed by the Republicans.
He was able to merge the Carlist party and The Falage in one single movement. This had a great start to come closer in winning the war due to the fact that they had a strong coalition major contributing factor to the conquest of the Nationalists also due to the fact that Republicans had many divisions that made them quite weak. Franco was in luck as he received effective foreign aid from countries such as Germany and Italy Even though the French and British signed the Non-Intervention Pact in September 1936; Franco used this to his great advantage and saw this Britain and the French weak so therefore he made a stronger alliance with Germany and Italy. This made Hitler and Mussolini bolder. Both Hitler and Mussolini increased amount of equipment’s they sent Franco. They also sent troops to help and fight alongside the Nationalist. Due to the alliance the Nationalist had control of the air, even though the Republicans had planes they did not have the range to fly to the northern territories.
Also the Nationalist navy blockaded the northern shores, ensuring that no supplies could reach the north by sea. Due to this the Republic’s northern outpost was cut off from the rest of its territory and therefore they has no direct support from the rest of the Republic so this meant that they didn’t get any aid what so ever and did not know what was happening on the other side, there was no communication so therefore this made them unknown what was happening on the other side. This was good for the Nationalist as they had more time to plan and create new tactics. Overall the Nationalist had the foreign aid and Franco, Who had good traditional military skills which benefited them as the Republicans had none of the above. Due to this the Nationalist victory may have seemed inventible.
On the other hand, it could be said that the Republicans were in a strong position at the start of the war. The Republicans had loyal support such as the in the urban areas due to the fact that the workers supported the government’s progressive labour reforms. The support that the Republicans received was very important as the unions quickly organised the workers to resist the army’s rebellion. Religion was also important, in area where anti- clericalism was strong, the people supported the Republicans. This included Catalonia. This was crucial as the Republicans needed as much support they can get so that they have more people joining the Republicans to fight against the Nationalist as they did not have the army’s help. In the mainland Spain, The trained military and police forces were split, 17of the army’s top 21 generals remained loyal to the Republic. Equally the air force and the navy supported the Republicans.
This was a great advantage for the Republicans as they had some military support and there were some skills of military involved. So therefore the Republicans had some form of idea had to fight against the Nationalist. In addition the Republic did show some military strength and ability. The Republicans were successful at countering the initial coup. The government was able to capitalise on the loyalty of the navy and therefore was able to organise a blockade, which left the Army of Africa started in North Africa, The rebels succeeded in capturing almost half of Spain. Since the most elite army in Spain was stuck in Morocco, the Republicans had more time to plan and strategies.
The Republican’s also had defence of Madrid as they remained loyal to the government and therefore they were able to quickly restore control of Spain’s Communications network. The urban industrialised centres also remain loyal so therefore they ensured that they could produce arms more effectively than the rebels. Therefore they had a vast amount of supplies of weaponry to use against the Nationalist. The Republicans also gained foreign aid from Russia, Stalin sent humanitarian aid. The aid came from people and also the Russian government sent military assistance so therefore the Republican sent in more help to fight alongside the Nationalist. The Side of the Republicans increased vastly. This was significant as the Russian planes out-performed German and Italian fighters and while Russian equipment’s were studier than the Italian models.
In conclusion it did not seem the Nationalist victory in the Spain civil was inevitable due to the fact Franco’s leadership and goals did not clear until later on the war and as the fact that the Republicans were able to capture more land than the Nationalist even with the help from Franco.