Those who argued that the war against Franco was inseparable from the social revolution were falsely accused of sabotaging the war effort, of being Franco’s agents. A Stalinist cartoon depicted the POUM as a figure slipping off a mask marked with the hammer and sickle and revealing a hideous face marked with the swastika. From Russia and beyond came GPU murderers to silence the voice of freedom and social revolution in Santa Ursula and other Spanish gulags. Georg Scheyer, Moritz Bressler and Alfred Travaille were but a few of those at whose bloody hands thousands of militants were killed in cold blood. Hardly had the revolution been defeated when the USSR signed a pact with Nazi Germany under the terms of which anti-fascists were handed over to the Gestapo. And in the West, misguided fellow travellers and social democrats of the ilk of the Webbs hailed Stalin’s Russia as a new civilisation.
But the struggle for freedom against capitalism, fascism and Stalinism has continued and if this pamphlet helps speed the final triumph of that struggle then its publication will be more than worthwhile.