More news from Ken Newall’s game report on For Whom the Bell Tolls: The last spring has come for the Spanish Republic. As the first green returns to the hills of the Serrania de Cuenca, the fascist forces finally have stretched the ressources of the Republic to its limits. While factional strife erupts in the streets of Barcelona the black- and brown clad columns of Generalissimo Franco descend from the hights, the optics of their Zeiss-manufactured german scissor scopes trained on the beautiful prizes along the Spanish coast: Valencia and Barcelona. In Andalucia, the unbowed Anarchist brigades slowly retreat from one hill to the next, pursued slowly but methodically by the nationalist brigades that keep up the pressure relentlessly.
This turn of events is especially tragic since the Nationalists only narrowly avoided a linkup between the forces of the Republic and the beleagured Gubernitos of the North last autumn. Demoralized after what was seen by many as the last chance for a defeat of the Insurgents, the Basques and their allies finally succumbed to Franco in the winter of 38/39.