Spain and the Great Powers in the Twentieth Century by S. Balfour

By S. Balfour

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2 (1981), pp. 213–29. 1906; for Reparaz, see Política de España en Africa (Madrid: Calpe, 1907). 30 Ministerio de Fomento, Expansión Comercial de España en Africa (Madrid, 1906). 31 For details see María-Rosa de Madariaga, ‘L’Espagne et le Rif: pénétration coloniale et résistances locales (1909–1926)’, thèse de doctorat, Université de Paris 1 (1987), vol. 1. 32 Primer Congreso africanista (Barcelona, 1907), p. 21. 33 For a contemporary statement from the neo-colonial lobby, see ‘Exposición que la Real Sociedad Geográfica de Madrid eleva al Excm.

Until then the traditional governing elites had managed to preserve their political hegemony by relying on patronage, social subservience, prestige and tradition. Such a devastating conflict produced massive social distress and economic dislocation which in turn generated a process of ideological mobilization and political militancy. 1 Spain was no exception. 2 This was a time in which internal and external affairs appeared mutually intertwined. The result was not only the crisis of a political system but also the end of an era.

But on an international level also, two related processes were beginning to undermine Spain’s original policy of maintaining in the north of Morocco a mainly defensive military and administrative presence. The first was the progressive disintegration of the Moroccan empire as a result of its internal contradictions, intensified by the opening of the country to international commerce. The problem of order in the Spanish sphere was worsened by the inefficiency of and lack of coordination between military and civil administration.

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