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// Information about Portugal during the world war two.


The Evolution of Neutrality Portuguese From September 1939 to Summer 1940

Since the beginning of the war until the summer of 1940 the Portuguese regime maintains good relations with Britain, which, moreover, does not seem very concerned about the German propaganda in Portugal. Has in its favor the good political relations with the regime, good relations with the economic circles of our country, the weight of the Luso-British alliance, the negative effect of the German attack on Poland, taken as a Catholic and conservative and the negative effect of the covenant German-Soviet. 

At this stage, the Portuguese neutrality is not (as had been the First World War) completely subordinated to British interests. With regard to economic interests, in many respects differs from the First World War, Salazar appears to be inflexible and unbridgeable. In this field, the head of state of Portugal strives to get the maximum economic benefits of neutrality in exchange for a policy that provides flexibility. Thus, Portugal has economic relations with all the belligerent countries, achieving thus be spared the strongest and negative economic effects of war. 

These relationships are possible due to the cunning and the ambiguity in the way of negotiating Oliveira Salazar. If, on the one hand says its goodwill with regard to British interests, on the other turns a blind eye to smuggling German Portuguese coast. 

There are few authors who, however, admit and defend the existence of a discrete anglofilismo. In this sense, we highlight the role of Peter Teotónio da Silva, the Portuguese ambassador in Madrid, and Armindo Monteiro, minister of foreign affairs until 1936, and ambassador to Portugal in England until 1943. About the latter, be justified from the placement of a brief excerpt from a letter to Salazar on the Portuguese foreign policy, and elucidating its inclination Anglophile: And note well that Your Excellency's neutrality has long been considered (.. .) an institution of the past, (...) I have always advocated a policy that, although neutral, is clearly in favor of England. [17]. 

It is undeniable that the posture of Armindo Monteiro is clearly favorable to the government in London. About a speech that Salazar was poorly received by England, Campbell arrives as to say that my impression is that Dr. Miller shares at least some of our views on the speech of Dr. Salazar, and I hope to support personally my repairs. [18]. 

This position Armindo Monteiro some friction to the Portuguese government to cost him his job as ambassador in 1943.


From July 1940 until the end of 1942

From July 1940, when the fall of France, a new strategic context and new data are changing the Portuguese foreign policy. Germany fighting the Battle of Britain, and Blood, sweat and tears of Churchill, with the help of the Royal Air Force (RAF), will able to maintain inviolate the English soil. 

The German Panzers await the order to carry out Operation Felix [19] and invaded the Iberian Peninsula. The incessant demands of the Spanish Falangist Franco media have aggravated the situation: it is feared a joint attack on German forces in Portugal and Spain. The passage of neutrality with non-belligerence of Spain is interpreted by many as a prelude to this attack. The pressures from the Spanish Portuguese government is felt: the June 26 Ambassador Teotonio Pereira is warned by Spanish Interior Minister, Serrano Suner (Franco's brother) that Portugal should fear a German attack is our nation persists in alliance with England. 

The July 6, is the proper counseling Teotonio Pereira Franco in the same direction. Salazar focuses well in keeping Spain out of war and Franco to hold against the pressure axis. 

However, it signed the Additional Protocol to the Non-Aggression Pact, which commits both countries to a position away from the conflict, and to safeguard the mutual interests (...) to focus together on the best means of as possible to safeguard their mutual interests, whenever you provide or verify facts which by their nature may compromise the sanctity of its metropolitan territory or pose danger to the security or independence (...) or drag any of them to an international conflict with others . [20]. If, on the one hand, this additional protocol ensures Salazar lull trends attach Spain, on the other hand is also seen as a victory for Franco, who, in a clear demonstration of its inclination to the axis forces, reports Berlin protocol in these terms: Portugal was partially diverted from the British orbit and launched in our direction. [21]. 

However, the constant threat of German armies in the Pyrenees can not be ignored. 

Thus, Portugal finds himself torn between the hypothesis of an approach to the allies - at the risk of being invaded by Spain and Germany and lose their independence and empire - or ally with the Axis and lose the Atlantic islands and see and Angola Mozambique passed into the hands of South Africa 

Although Salazar always strive to convince Franco that the neutrality of the two countries is the only way to save and protect the Iberian Peninsula, the caudillo continues to try to negotiate the entry of Spain into the war on the side of Germany in exchange for some economic benefits and territorial (as in Morocco), the Germans insist on not accepting. As Portugal to England, also Spain could become more of a burden than an ally to Germany, due to their fragility. 

On 16 October 1940, Serrano Suñer is appointed Minister of Foreign Affairs of Spain, leading to the total triumph-German faction in this country. Suñer no secret of their desire for annexation of Portugal, and even tell Ribbentrop (the German foreign minister) that geographically speaking, Portugal has no right to exist [22] (September 16, 1940), and Francesco Laquio (Italian ambassador in Madrid) that Portugal should be part of a great Spain. [23]. 

After a whirlwind visit to Madrid of Admiral Canaris, Hitler was definitely convinced that Spain is not prepared for war. Regardless of the efforts of Mussolini with Franco, Spain has not declared war on the Allies, thus serving the interests of British and Portuguese. A year later, in 1942, signed the treaty known as Block or Iberian Peninsular which ultimately put an end to the hegemonic tendencies of Spain on the Peninsula, though he can not influence and change the position of Franco relation to the forces of the Axis. You will need to wait until the autumn of 1943 to the chief of the neighboring country takes over the neutrality and withdraw from the eastern front the famous División Azul, 18,000 volunteers. 

Once away from the war, Portugal is now in a delicate situation. The Portuguese population deals with the war every day: The theme of war takes care of spaces: the underground walls painted with V for victory, the newspaper billboards, shop windows, (...) are filled with posters. People carry badges, distributing pamphlets, (...) with propaganda articles (...). The conflict (...) is the topic of conversation in coffee; of rows at the door of establishments (...). [24]. 

The Portuguese government strives to maintain an equidistant neutrality, even under the force of the idea of ??the invincibility of the German armies and the pressure forces germanófilas in Portugal, trying to view, aided by the propaganda of Berlin, the ideals that British people are a threat serious threat to the survival of the Estado Novo. Exacerbated by the contacts established by the British with the clandestine Portuguese Communist Party to organize a resistance in the event of German invasion, relations between Lisbon and London deteriorate. As an example of germanófilas trends existed for some time of the Portuguese, there is a letter from Lieutenant Gonçalves de Andrade to Adolf Hitler in 1936, asking for urgent help to create an anti-European League of opposing the Soviet danger [25]. 

The June 22, 1941, Germany invaded the Soviet Union and win the final status of flagship anti-communism. 

The Iberian Peninsula then passes into the background. 

In Portugal is felt to some degree the support of some media and anti Germanophiles the German invasion. To highlight the support of the Portuguese Legion, the organization reportedly affects the German cause. It is therefore the invasion of the Soviet Union by the Germans that causes a clear assumption of the Portuguese Legion of your germanofilismo. For the first time, published a position of clear alignment struggle developed by the Nazis through a work order issued on July 10, 1941 by the Central Board of the Portuguese Legion in the Daily News. [26] Against Moscow win ! (...) Can not remain indifferent to the campaign of liberation from oppression red no nation, no people, no nationalism, against Moscow who want to align the order; march the legions of the world, armies honorable defenders of the homeland, (. ..). The legionnaire Portuguese as nationalist and Christian is, above all, anti-Communist. [27]. 

Besides the Portuguese Legion, other personalities support the German cause. Among them Fernando dos Santos Costa (Secretary of State of War), Ortins Manuel Bettencourt (Minister of the Navy), John Costa Leite (Lumbrales, responsible for one of the first Portuguese Legion and finance minister at the ministerial reshuffle on 28 August 1941) and Mario Figueiredo (Minister of National Education on the same date). On the other hand, supporters of England were, among others, Marcelo Caetano (then National Commissioner of the Portuguese Youth), Peter Teotonio Pereira (ambassador in Madrid), Anthony Ferro (Director of SPN) and Captain Lawrence Augustine (responsible for PVED). 

The economic blockade decreed by England in 1940 to Portugal and Spain sets the tone for the worsening relations Luso-Iberian. Proposed by Hugh Dalton, Minister of the British economy, under the pretext, though neutral, countries of the Iberian Peninsula enemy territories are contiguous, this blockade has put the economy in serious difficulties. Come, on the other hand, encourage greater trade with Germany and the loosening of traditional ties with Britain. When the United States adopt the same economic measures of the English on the Peninsula, our country is going to Germany to buy the raw materials it needs, as well as some basic necessities in exchange for Portuguese wolfram, so important to the effort German war [28]. 

The worsening crisis between Portugal and England happens when the Anglo-Soviet treaty of May 16, 1942, which received harsh criticism of Salazar, outlined in his speech to the microphones of the national broadcaster, on 25 June: I refer especially to the undeniable disturbance of spirits caused by the Anglo-Russian and the painful anxiety that can sense everywhere, (...) by virtue of solidarity borrowed by English and American democracies to the Soviet government. [29]. 

Avowed supporter of anti-communism, Salazar had already said on 9 October 1939, the National Assembly about the ideological crisis that lived within Europe, which (...) of people are wondering if there will still be anxious about, in within this debacle, the place of truth, honor, justice, the legitimacy of law, the common good of men and nations. Nor can we believe (...) that a nation like Russia, which denied these principles is exactly who's coming (...) help to restore them in Western Europe. [30]. 

Responding to accusations of partiality British, at a time when, as we see, the Anglo-Portuguese relations have experienced better days, Salazar defends the Portuguese neutrality saying that Dresser or awkward, selfish or not, neutrality is not only advantageous while serving the interest national (...). [31]. At this point the Estado Novo is the connoted hopelessly germanofilismo. They shall be such conferences anticommunist, promoted by the National Union of National Radio in July to December 1942. The German propaganda gains strength in anti-Portuguese feeling, whereas advertisement English, focusing on the exaltation of the strong resistance of the Red Army and Soviet people, is in itself an obstacle Salazar: it is he that says he is not willing to allow the England becomes a channel for Soviet propaganda. 

However, the Portuguese head of state is concerned to maintain good relations with both belligerents blocks. Although the national feeling at this stage is post-maioritariamene German Salazar tries to keep the balance of Portuguese foreign policy, even leading the British ambassador Campbell write in the letter dated March 7, 1942, which (...) this is not a symptom of ill will (...) Dr. Salazar himself, who is extremely careful not to reveal too much on his mind is obviously sympathetic to the British cause [32]. On the other hand, Goebbels, the propaganda minister of the Third Reich, writes in his diary, a year later, Salazar made ??a speech yesterday extraordinarily anti-Bolshevik, however, was not public. (...) It is sufficient, however, to conclude that while Salazar in Portugal is in power, nothing will be really hostile against us. [33]. 

Alongside this equidistant posture that Salazar seems to want to keep you grow in Portugal a real anti-American sentiment. Salazar's contempt for the new power, aided by the press (including the Daily News) and by advertising, where Antonio Ferro is responsible for destroying the American popular culture and give the idea of ??America as a country of dark business and gangsters, foster a sense of anti-Americanism in the Portuguese population. Roosevelt will pay later, during the negotiations about the Azores, the image ofmillionaire anti-colonialist and reformist [34] it is established in Portugal.

The Question of Timor

On December 17, 1941 Dutch and Australian troops landed in East Timor under the pretext of defending the Portuguese territory of the threat of invasion nipónica. The Portuguese Empire, hitherto untouched, is directly affected by the tide of war. 

Australia seeks to ensure the control of an island so close to his own territory, and the Netherlands want to guard against the Japanese invasion and protect his empire in Indonesia today. 

Portugal does not prevent this unexpected landing. On the one hand, seeks to avoid a situation of open conflict with the two countries, on the other hand, the small garrison of Timor is unable to cope with the invaders. It is with this last point that the Australians and Dutch underpin and justify the invasion: they want to help Portugal fight the impending Japanese invasion - The Resident Koepang, accompanied by the Australian Consul Ross (...) presented to the governor of the colony requiring an Ultimatum consent to the landing of the Austro-Dutch troops intended to occupy Dili, because they believe an imminent attempt by the Japanese to settle in the Portuguese Timor (...) [35]. 

Again comes Salazar ask for explanations for the English, guilty in his eyes, of negligence. The contingent sent to Mozambique to strengthen the garrison at Dili does not arrive in time: the Japanese invade Timor on February 19, 1942, and expel the Dutch and Australian troops. Salazar protested by diplomatic means, but without ever losing sight of the risk that would antagonize Japan: Portugal lose definitely Timor and also Macau, surrounded by the Japanese army in southern China. 

Thus, the relations between our country and Japan are not as affected as expected. In 1942, the two countries that celebrate four centuries of bilateral relations. 

On the other hand, the 23 June the same year, Salazar tells Britain's readiness to help their military allies to expel the Japanese from the island. This position is not unlike that of the head of the Portuguese state feared the annexation Australian Timor. The ability of ambiguous diplomatic Salazar again puts our country in a neutral position that can please the two warring parties without seriously undermining Portugal. 

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Text from the João Pedro Trigo's work.

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Roderic Ashley
August 22, 2022 at 10:34:34 AM
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Aspects of this subject and of the vital importance of wolfram (tungsten) in trading with both the Allies and the Axis powers are referred to in my book Wolfram Wars (2016). See: http://bennionkearny.com/Wolfram-Wars-Exposing-The-Secret-Battle-in-Portugal-book.htm
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