legion-condor

80th Anniversary of the bombing of Guernica (Gernika)

80 years have gone by since the Nazi German Condor Legion (an air force unit Hitler wanted to test out before WWII and guess who were its Guinea pigs?) and the Fascist Italian Aviazione Legionaria warplanes bombed the Basque town of Gernika, which represented the heart of Basque culture, on April 26, 1937 at the request of the Nationalist faction during the Spanish Civil War (1936-1939) in an manoeuvre known as Operation Rügen.

Ruins of Guernica after the bombing. Number of victims: between 150 and 1650 (estimates vary according to different reports).

This heinous attack aimed at civilians (mostly women and children since the men were away fighting at war) on a market day, inspired one of Pablo Picasso’s most famous paintings Guernica (1937). It took him 35 days of work and finished his masterpiece on June 4, 1937.

Guernica (1937)
Pablo Picasso
349cm x 776cm
Oil on canvas
Museo Reina Sofía, Madrid (Spain)

P.S. This is primarily not related to OP but if you want a slight connection to it, think about Nazi Germany being the main base for the Vinsmoke family and Jora’s art powers would connect to cubism.

Last commander of the Condor Legion, Generalmajor Dr.Wolfram Freiherr von Richthofen (he received a diploma engineer, dated May 10, 1924 and engineering doctorates in 1929),

photographed by Hugo Jaeger in the event of acceptance of the Condor Legion in Berlin dated June 6, 1939.

He is one of only 28 people selected German soldier who was awarded Spanienkreuz Schwertern in Gold mit mit Brillanten (look at his left, just under the D Wing Pilot Spain), which he received on the above date (June 6, 1939). At his right pocket we could see the other two medals Spain: “Medalla Militar Individual” and “Medalla de la Campaña 1936-1939” which is given to all troops who joined Franco’s Nationalist party (including the Condor Legion) in the Spanish Civil War.

He still has a relationship with Manfred von Richthofen brothers, hero of the top air in the First World War

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This plane. This diorama. This dog.

This is a model of a Dornier Do-17p that served with the German Condor Legion during the Spanish Civil War. But to me, it’s so much more than that.

This was the first model I built after moving into my girlfriend’s house. That woman is no longer my girlfriend, she’s my fiancée! And in less than a year she’ll be my wife. But us being together, me moving in and me putting that ring on her finger would not have happened if I hadn’t passed the test over two years ago. That “test” was ensuring I met the standards of my fiancée’s 126lb German Shepherd, Gunter. Gunter had been known to growl and bark and snarl at other men that my wonderful woman had gone out with before she met me. Hell, Gunter even put on such a show of force that one man was literally denied entry into the house. But the first time I met Gunter, he was absolutely cool with me. He not only welcomed me into the house, but didn’t leave my side the whole time I was there. As the relationship between his human and myself blossomed, Gunter was there every step of the way. After over two years of being with my bride-to-be, I’m proud to say that Gunter is my dog as well!

So after about a month of living with the woman who changed my life forever, I decided to make use of the all but abandoned workshop in the basement. One of the many former homeowners was a carpenter, and I found that this was the perfect place to build models! I chose to build one of the toughest kits in my stash: an RS Models 1:72 scale Do-17p. This kit fought me nearly every step of the way. Large gaps that seemed to eat filler putty, vague instructions, and decals that disintegrated when they were submerged in water all tried my patience. But I persevered. I went from being frustrated to being determined. It was also the first kit I ever built that utilized resin parts and photo-etched metal parts. Before I knew it, I had a wonderful model airplane on the workbench in front of me!

Simply building it wasn’t enough. I was proud of overcoming the kit’s shortcomings, and I wanted to show it off in the new home I was living in. I decided to build a diorama for it. I had a small jar of sand from Spain that my friend Bergo had brought back from her semester abroad, and I decided to use that as a dirt road for the diorama. I went a bit insane with my dremel, and drilled a ton of bullet holes in the top of one of the engines. Smoke streaks and battle damage were added to the aircraft during the weathering process. I purposely left one of the landing gear doors off so I could make it look as though it was ripped off when the plane crashed through the wooden fence I made out of toothpicks. I sanded one of the tires down and drilled a hole through it to make it look flat, and it did a great job making the plane sag to one side. Luftwaffe ground crewmen and a pilot were glued to the top of the model railroad grass I sprinkled onto the board.

The diorama needed something else though. It needed Gunter.

As I rummaged through a box of 1:72 scale farm animals, I was delighted to find what looked like a small German Shepherd. I immediately started painting it, using my pooch as a reference. I then painted up some sheep to give Gunter something to chase after, and attached them all to my diorama.

It’s hard to believe that it’s been two years since I’ve built this plane and diorama. But I’m reminded of it every time I look into my display cases. It’s always there…..A testament to overcoming a tough project, and a monument to my love of aviation and most of all, my dog.

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Rare gold damascened Spanish pocket pistol presented pilots of the Condor Legion by the Spanish Civil War Luftwaffe Association.  Comes with matching cigarette case.  During the Spanish Civil War the Germans supported the Nationalist Regime, using the war as an opportunity to test their weapons and gain combat experience for their soldiers and airmen.

Estimated Value: $7,500 - $15,000

Pablo Picasso painting Guernica, 1937.

On the 26th of April, 1937, Hitler showed his support of Franco by sending his Condor Legion of Luftwaffe warplanes to bomb and strafe the Basque town of Guernica.  The bombing is considered the first raid on a civilian population by a modern air-force. On learning the news of Guernica, Picasso began work on a new painting. Guernica is often heralded as one of the best anti-war works of art ever created. 

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Parade of the ‘Condor Legion’ which had returned from Spain, in Berlin. Adolf Hitler and the commander of the 'Legion’, General Baron von Richthofen - 1939