Center for Basque Studies UV of Nevada, Reno
March 05, 2019
6.0 X 9.0 X 1.14 inches | 0.02 pounds
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About the Author
Queralt Solé works at the University of Barcelona, her area of expertise being contemporary history and the Spanish Civil War.
"During the course of the bombing of Gernika more than two thousand people lost their lives, most of them civilians, many of them children. Faced with the dimension that the terror bombing campaign was taking on and, in the face of the impossibility of protecting children from aerial bombings, the Basque government organized the massive evacuation abroad of Basque children. In May 1937, Bilbao, the main city of the Basques, took in 150,000 refugees that had fled zones occupied by the rebels, among them tens of thousands of children. Just three days after the bombing of Gernika the French prime minister, Léon Blum, and the minister of foreign affairs, Yvon Delbos, agreed to receive 100,000 Basque refugees, which goes to show that everyone took the threats of the rebel leadership and its terror strategy very seriously. Barely ten days after the bombing, the number of refugees in Bilbao had risen to 250,000 according to the American consul in Bilbao, William E. Chapman.2 In total, at least 32,000 children under the age of sixteen had to be evacuated between early May and mid-August 1937, in the face of the infant mortality that the terror bombing campaign was generating in the Basque Country. It was the largest evacuation of children in European history. They were called "the children of Gernika" and most of them would never return home." - Nazi Juggernaut in the Basque Country and Catalonia