Sunday, July 24, 2011
Life under Generalissimo Francisco Franco Bahamonde ...
This month marks the 75th anniversary of the beginning of Spain’s Civil War. As many of you readers know, we lived under General Franco’s dictatorial rule from 1959 to 1975, when he died after ruling Spain for 40 years. During the first 11 years, we were forced to lead a double life because we were among the thousands of part-time volunteers secretly holding meetings to explain what the Bible really teaches—an activity that Franco did his best to exterminate.
So, on this anniversary, I’ve been asked what I think about life under Franco.
“Compared to what?” is my answer. “If compared to modern day Spain, I’ll choose Franco any day of the week!”
True, when Franco first won the war, the suppression of his enemies was brutal, especially of the Basques. On the other hand, Franco not only refused to join Hitler in World War II, he refused to allow Hitler’s trains to pass through Spain to attack Gibraltar. Perhaps this was because Franco knew that if Gibraltar was taken, then the Brits would in turn go after his beloved Canary Islands, but whatever the reason—can you imagine how the course of World War II might have been changed if the Germans had blocked off the Mediterranean?
But I digress. Under Franco, our daughters could walk the streets of Santa Cruz de Tenerife at midnight, completely safe under the watchful eyes of the Guardia Civil. Almost everyone went to church on Sunday, young women were chaperoned until marriage, and drugs were virtually non-existent. (If the USA instituted Franco’s method of eliminating drug dealers, the Mexican drug cartels would be out of business tomorrow morning!)
Spain today is a disaster. The level of crime boggles the mind, drugs are endemic, the nation is headed for bankruptcy, and the vast majority have left the Catholic church in the pursuit of freedom from all restraints. (Although we are not Catholics, we much prefer Catholic neighbors to neighbors with no guiding principles at all.)
And privacy? In Spain? DOA.
As for Generalissimo Francisco Franco Bahamonde— R.I.P.