Mujeres Libres II

Lead: During the Spanish Civil War, a women’s liberation movement, Mujeres Libres, free women of Spain, pushed for a far more radical social revolution for women than even their male allies on the left were willing to tolerate.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: Even by contemporary standards, the condition of Spanish women in the 1930s was pitiful. Clearly oppressed, women’s wages were half that of men, daughters were handed over to husbands as property, divorce was illegal. Women could not be out at night without a chaperone. Until the War, women’s rights groups focused on minor adjustments such as legalizing divorce, but during the liberating early days of the civil conflict, women’s organizations, allied with anarchist political groups, began to press for serious social change.

Mujeres Libres I

Lead: The Spanish Civil War provided a window of opportunity for the reformation of society. Among the most aggressive groups seeking fundamental change was a feminist organization emerging from Spanish anarchism, Mujeres Libres, free women of Spain.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: Political parties in the United States traditionally have been big tent consensus parties. While extremism left and right has certainly been a part of the American political spectrum, the nature of politics here pushes this sentiment to the margin. Extremists have influence, but must become a part of one of the major parties to exercise power. In Europe the development of democracy allowed a much more brilliant display of political variety, particularly up to the middle of the twentieth century. Political parties proliferated and often reflected narrow, extreme opinion.

Juan Garcia (Garbo), WW II Spy II

Lead: One of the most important factors leading to the success of the Normandy invasion in June 1944 was a network of double agents, loyal to Britain, who deceived the Germans about Allied plans.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: During World War II, the British Double Cross system, counter espionage operations, worked successfully to mislead the German intelligence organization – the Abwehr. One of the most successful British double agents was Spaniard Juan Pujol Garcia, codenamed Garbo, the ultimate “actor.”

Juan Garcia (Garbo), WWII Spy I

Lead: In July 1941, Spaniard Juan Pujol Garcia, operating out of Lisbon and then London under the codename “Garbo,” began his career as a double agent for the Allies.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: Juan Pujol Garcia believed that Franco’s fascist rule would bring Spain to ruin and that an Allied victory was the only means of deposing him. At first Garcia offered his services to British intelligence and was rejected, so he turned to the German Embassy in Madrid, where he was signed up by the Abwehr, the German military intelligence organization.

Juana La Loca, Queen of Castile II

Lead: At the dawn of the modern era, Castilian Queen Juana was beset by her own demons and used by ambitious relatives including her son. They called her Juana La Loca, Joanna the Mad.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: The theory used to justify the rule of European royalty and the royal succession sounds very strange in a democratic age. Merit, hard work, peer selection, and universal voting for leaders (the franchise) counted for little. Blood, divine sanction, aristocratic connection, and privilege were at the heart of society and its rankings. A king’s right to rule was conferred by God and transferred at his death to his eldest son. When there was no son or child to receive the appropriate succession, the system reached out through blood connection to the nearest relative. If that person was a woman, the system began to malfunction. Such was the case during the first decade of the 1500s in Spain.

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Juana La Loca, Queen of Castile I

Lead: Ignored by her philandering husband, imprisoned by a calculating son, few figures in modern European royalty equal the tragic misery of Juana La Loca, the Mad Queen of Castile.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: Juana or Joanna was the daughter of Ferdinand and Isabella of the united Spanish kingdoms of Castile and Aragon. She was the third child and surviving heir to the dual kingdom. Her younger sister, Catherine, became the Queen of England, married to and then controversially divorced from King Henry VIII.

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Sir Francis Drake III

Lead: His voyage around the world behind him, Sir Francis Drake, Queen Elizabeth's Golden Admiral, intensified his campaign to make miserable the life of the King of Spain.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: Returning from the East in 1581, Drake made Plymouth his home and was elected mayor of the town. He served with distinction, revamping the municipal water system with such care that his improvements lasted for decades. Ever restless, he returned to the sea which was both the love of his life and source of his fortune. In 1585 Elizabeth sent Drake back to the Caribbean where, over a period of months, he renewed his reputation as the scourge of Spain. His occasionally brutal capture and sacking of Cartagena in Columbia, St. Augustine in Florida, and Santo Domingo, combined with attacks on the Cape Verde Islands, were not as successful or lucrative as previous forays, but caused enormous financial distress to the Spanish and confirmed their hatred for el draque or the dragon, as he was coming to be known. This campaign and other conflicts with England so incensed Spanish King Philip II that he made the fateful decision to assemble a huge naval Armada to invade the island kingdom.

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Sir Francis Drake II

Commissioned by Queen Elizabeth to forage and loot the lands of the Spanish King, Francis Drake embarked on a voyage that took him around the world.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: In 1572, after a lengthy apprenticeship, Drake took two tiny ships on a cruise into the Caribbean. His vessels may have been small but his ambition was hefty. He attacked the town of Nombre de Dios in Panama and though not completely successful since he was wounded in the attempt, the foray netted substantial plunder and made him a rich man. Ever the adventurer, he and a small group of his men crossed the Isthmus of Panama and from a high western ridge vowed that he would someday explore the vast Pacific Ocean that lay before him. Elizabeth was engaged in one of her occasional diplomatic flirtations with the Spanish government and, while privately pleased at Drake’s success, could not acknowledge him publicly. For several years, he dropped out of the public eye, quietly helping to suppress a rebellion in Ireland.

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