An article by former IWA secretariat Pierre Besnard about avoiding the mistakes of the CNT during the Spanish Civil War.
Theses on the Spanish Civil War and the revolutionary situation created on July 19, 1936 - BALANCE (Agustín Guillamón)
A 2001 text summarizing the results of the research carried out by Agustín Guillamón for the Spanish journal, BALANCE, concerning the lessons of the Spanish Civil War in Catalonia, denying the existence of “dual power” in Catalonia in 1936, discussing the struggles of the CNT rank and file against militarization and in favor of socialization, emphasizing the revolutionary potential of the ubiquitous committees and their neutralization and eventual destruction due to a lack of coordination and centralization, and claiming that the proletarian revolution requires the destruction of the capitalist state and the creation of a centralized workers power based on workers councils.
In this 2009 interview originally published in Spanish, Noam Chomsky answers questions about military options and international factors in the Spanish Civil War, the role of the Stalinists in suppressing the revolution in Spain, the attitudes of intellectuals with regard to the revolution and their historical role more generally, and the chances for another libertarian revolution.
In this article published in June 1937 in the journal, Rätekorrespondenz, the Group of International Communists of Holland harshly criticize the CNT and FAI in the wake of the May Events in Barcelona, condemning the anarchosyndicalist leadership for its collaboration with the government, ideological confusions regarding trade union control of the economy, illusions regarding antifascist unity and the pact with the UGT.
A complete transcript of a 1977 interview with José Peirats, in which the Spanish historian and former militant of the CNT and FAI reminisces about his youth and discusses many of the controversies that plagued the CNT before as well as during the civil war, including the impact of the Russian Revolution, Angel Pestaña’s mission to Russia in 1920, the Asturian insurrection of October 1934, the CNT’s policy of collaboration with the government during the war, and the role of the Stalinists in the Republican coalition government’s counterrevolution against the anarchist revolutionary achievements of July 1936.
A short article summarizing the history and transformation of the CNT’s Defense Committees in Barcelona during the 1930s from their origins as street fighting units to their reorganization as integrated combat/intelligence formations, to their suppression by the Republic after the working class defeat of May 1937.
An interview on the Spanish civil war and revolution conducted in 2001 with Abel Paz, former militant of the CNT, resistance fighter and the author of Durruti: The People Armed, in which he discusses, among other things, the collectives, the Moroccan question and technical innovation under self-management in industry under wartime conditions.
Barricades in Barcelona: The CNT from the victory of July 1936 to the necessary defeat of May 1937 - Agustín Guillamón
First published in 2006, this book, focusing on Barcelona in 1936-1937, provides an account of the street battles and victory of July 1936, examines the defense and neighborhood committees that defeated the uprising in the city, and addresses the issue of the decision of the CNT-FAI superior committees to collaborate with counterrevolutionary parties and social groups to preserve anti-fascist unity at any price and how this decision culminated in May 1937 in the defeat of the revolution, with special emphasis on the emerging discontent among the anarchosyndicalist rank and file and the role of The Friends of Durruti Group in crystallizing opposition to official CNT policies.
The Spanish revolution, past and future: grandeur and poverty of anarchism; how the working class takes over (or doesn't), then and now - Loren Goldner
“Solidaridad Obrera” (Workers’ Solidarity), founded in Barcelona in 1907, is the voice of Spain’s Anarcho-syndicalist Confederacion Nacional del Trabajo (CNT: National Confederation of Labour). The following essays were issued to celebrate the hundredth anniversary of “Soli” and together they illustrate the changing fortunes of the Anarcho-syndicalist movement, and its enduring attempt to communicate the anarchist idea. Translated by Paul Sharkey.