TRUTH ABOUT MALAGA Government Exaggerations
Mr. Douglas Jerrold, the well-known publicist and publisher, has recently made an extensive tour of Spain. The following are some of the statements he has made as a result of his visit.
"1 motored over 4,000km. in Spain in a fortnight. These 4,000km. represent roughly the length of General Franco's military communications. They are entirely unprotected. The task of provisioning and supplying four fronts, all of them dependent on different bases of supply, would be, as any soldier knows, an absolutely impossible one in a hostile country, without thousands of mobile troops on the lines of communication. There arc none."
Troops Overwhelmingly Spanish
" It is certain that the total number of fighting troops, irrespective of nationality, who are employed on the Guadarrama and on the Jarama front do not exceed 35,000. This force is overwhelmingly Spanish. Whether there are as many as 8,000 Italian troops in the line is very doubtful : it is certain that there are not more, because there would be no room for them, in addition to the Spanish forces known to be on these two fronts. In any case, why should there be more? The man-power reserves are untapped. No man over 26 has even been called tip so far, and the Spaniards rate themselves better fighters by far than the Italians. They are probably right.
Peace When Fighting Reported
" Announcements are repeatedly made of heavy fighting at points where no fighting has occurred.
"At Malaga, for instance, reports have been given out of 8,000 or 10,000 supporters of the Valencia Government shot in the street fighting or after it.
" The fact is, as hundreds of neutral residents in Malaga can testify, that the Nationalist troops marched into Malaga without a shot being fired, and when was in Malaga only a few days after the town had fallen there were fewer police or troops to be seen in the streets than there are in I.ondon, and I was assured by the British Consul that there had been no disturbances of any kind since the change of government. Similarly, the very day when 1 was in Toledo, Valencia announced heavy fighting, an announcement which was broadcast all over the world. I was dining that evening in a restaurant far outside the town. There were no troops and few police, and not a shot was fired anywhere near, or had been for weeks."