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In 1937 a group of idealistic British volunteers sailed from England to fight the dark threat of dictatorship in Spain. In the olive groves of Jarama they achieved the first victory against Franco’s army. It was Fascism’s first defeat. Hardly remembered today, it was possibly the crucial military turning point of the 20th century. For the first time, Ben Hughes reconstructs the battle in a vivid blow-by-blow account, and considers its fascinating aftermath. This near forgotten struggle, which took place in February 1937 south of Madrid, proved for the first time that fascism and its ilk, which up until then had steamrollered all opposition from the Rhineland to Addis Ababa, could in fact be stopped.
Although the Spanish Republicans would eventually lose the Civil War, their efforts, and those of the International Brigades who fought alongside them, paved the way for the more celebrated victories that followed. Without them, 20th century history would have followed a very different course. This lively account from the author of Conquer or Die! is sure to interest any reader wishing to learn more about this tumultuous period in world history.