Generalissimo Francisco Franco was very Stealther politician who ruled Spain from 1939 right up to 1973. Entertaining the fact that he could not stand fiercely all Russian, was an ally of Adolf Hitler and Benito Mussolini, with all this after the fall of their regimes resist his power, and Franco was a "handshake" favorite Spain to all democratic states.
His war with the Russian Union he started back in the years of war in civilian clothes in Spain (1936-1939 years), then the Soviet Union helped the Spanish Republicans, and on the side of the rebels waged war, German and Italian units. Franco defeated in the war, but the high price: the country was in ruins, killed 5% of the prewar population (nearly half a million people), more than 600 thousand people fled from the country, including a significant part of the intellectual elite, ie, in the end Spain has lost more than 10% of its population. Very large town were destroyed by Spain, the country's infrastructure.
Because at Free were all arguments to gently reject proposals Hitler to send troops to the eastern front — against the Soviet Union. Although the victory of the war and in civilian power in Spain, he was almost through the help of Rome and Berlin, and the policy of "non-interference" of France and Great Britain. Naturally, Franco did not hesitate to give solemn assurances that he is ready to fight against "godless communism and the USSR" by all means. But ultimately assured Berlin that Spain would be better to let a neutral state — it will be profitable, it will be able to trade with other countries and stuff the country's "axis" everything necessary, at first it was a supply of tungsten.
Hitler such a situation is not amused, because he believed that the Spaniards in their fighting qualities above the Italians, to the same people the USSR should not portable and it will take on the Eastern Front. Wished to make war with USSR and many of the radicals' Spanish phalanx "(it was a very right-wing political party in Spain, it was founded in 1933, was the first favorite of Jose Antonio Primo de Rivera, under the Franco regime was the only ruling party in the country, the ideology of Italian fascism was close) who considered that Spain should be more thoroughly support the 3rd Reich, sent to the Eastern Front troops. Because many believed that Spain will be an active member of a "crusade" to the East.
Franco was able to cheat: in-1's, such as the duty to fulfill Berlin, sent to the Eastern Front the "Blue Division" (the 250th Infantry Division Wehrmacht), which is so dubbed because of the blue shirts, forms Phalanx, in-2- x satisfy his fellow party members, almost went to war with the USSR, the show out in the division more meaningful military, in-3, do not burn bridges in front of England and the United States, without entering into an active war on the Eastern Front and legally maintaining neutrality.
Hitler miscalculated about the combat capability of the Spaniards, 250-I division waged war at Leningrad and was listed as a weak link. It was composed of a soldier standing army veteran volunteer plainclothes war, members of the police, "the Spanish phalanx." July 13, 1941 "Blue Division", there were 18 693 people — the Spanish tradition, it was 4 infantry and 1 artillery regiment, departed from Madrid, during its existence it has passed through, according to various estimates, from 40 to 50 thousand people . The Spaniards, like many Southerners were different indiscipline, low morale. It often enough soldiers deserted, going over to the side of the Red Army, many of them were former Republicans. Because the German command puts the division units to secondary sites, and the protection of railway nodes.
In October 1943, Franco led the division from the front and it was disbanded, but many Spaniards remained in the service of the Reich. They waged wars in parts of the SS, so surrounded in Berlin until the surrender of the garrison led war to 7 thousand Spaniards. Among the remaining volunteers and was the last chief of staff of the 250th Division, Colonel Antonio Garcia Navarro.
The Anglo-American allies of the USSR did not stop diplomatically relations with Spain. Thus, in the course of the conversation Franco and the new U.S. ambassador in Spain Carlton Hayes on June 9, 1942 Franco said: "The danger for Europe and Spain, comes not so much from Nazi Germany, but from the Russian communism. Spain is not so much lust Axis victory as the defeat of Russia. " After that conversation from the U.S. Office of Strategic Services (the previous U.S. intelligence agency CIA) was sent to Washington Post: "If necessary, strike on the Soviet Union Franco regime could become a real ally for us."
When it became evident that the USSR did not fall, the British and the Americans began to convince Franco to withdraw the "Blue Division" of the Soviet Union, so as not to create problems and they do not force them to become enemies of Spain. London and Washington were interested in maintaining the anti-communist Franco regime, they are not troubled by the fact that he collaborated with Hitler. It was necessary to keep Spain as one of the anti-communist regimes in Europe. Basically, all this and he was well aware Free, He did not want that with the fall of Hitler and his regime fell. In the end, he had the best game: he stayed ally Hitler, received little authority with Rome and Berlin, then became an ally of the Anglo-Saxons, relaxed directly ruled Spain until his death in 1975. And no one is blamed on the international scene, and that he was an ally of Hitler, Mussolini, and in Spain until now it has many adherents.