Email this review


Carlton Hayes took leave of absence from his post at Columbia University to go to Spain as Ambassador; he stayed three years -- years during which the Franco regime shifted from active pro-Axis to benevolent neutrality, with almost every demand on the part of Washington met in regard to Spain's foreign policy. The relations with Spain have frequently been difficult and strained; our policy has been under constant fire and criticism; we have been suspected of appeasement and timidity. But when you read ex-Ambassador Hayes' inside story you realize that the policy -- with all its mistakes -- has produced the results, -- neutrality, when that was needed; withdrawal of commercial dealings with the Axis; withdrawal of the troops sent to the Russian Front; concessions in regard to allowing passage to Free French, stateless refugees, and allied airmen routed out through the Underground; break with Vichy France and recognition of North African authorities. Hayes was instructed to keep on basis of hands off internal politics -- his goal was to maintain Spain's neutrality. In this -- and the subsequent additional minor goals, including bi-lateral air agreements, he succeeded. His difficulties with the British Ambassador, a confessed advocate of a restored monarchy, his criticism of ineptness and delays in our own State Department, and his recognition of certain internal economic factors in Spain combined to make his post a difficult and thankless one. This book will help silence some critics, though others will say there is more that has not been told. At no point does he endorse the Falangist dictatorship in Spain. Nor does he back the demands of the Spanish exiles nor the communist minority inside Spain itself. His style is pedestrian, colorless; but he has a story.

Pub Date: Nov. 3rd, 1945
Publisher: Macmillan