Portugal during World War II
Upon the start of World War II in 1939, the Portuguese Government announced on 1 September that the 600-year-old Anglo-Portuguese Alliance remained intact, but that since the British did not seek Portuguese assistance, Portugal was free to remain neutral in the war and would do so. In an aide-mémoire of 5 September 1939, the British Government confirmed the understanding; as Hitler's occupation swept across Europe, neutral Portugal became one of the Continent's last escape routes. Portugal managed to remain neutral throughout the war despite extraordinary pressures from both sides, notably over the strategically located Azores islands and over the wolfram trade. At the outbreak of World War II, Portugal was ruled by António de Oliveira Salazar, the man who in 1933 had founded the Estado Novo, the corporatist authoritarian government that ruled Portugal until 1974. Salazar's dislike of the Nazi regime in Germany and its imperial ambitions was tempered only by his view of the German Reich as a bastion against the spread of communism.
He had favoured the Spanish nationalist cause, fearing a communist invasion of Portugal, yet he was uneasy at the prospect of a Spanish government bolstered by strong ties with the Axis. Salazar's policy of neutrality for Portugal in World War II thus included a strategic component; the country still held overseas territories that, because of their poor economic development, could not adequately defend themselves from military attack. Upon the start of the war in 1939, the Portuguese Government announced on 1 September, that the 600-year-old Anglo-Portuguese Alliance remained intact, but that since the British did not seek Portuguese assistance, Portugal was free to remain neutral in the war and would do so. In an aide-mémoire of 5 September 1939, the British Government confirmed the understanding. On May 15, 1940, Salazar's important role in the war was recognized by the British: Douglas Veale, Registrar of the University of Oxford, informed Salazar that the University's Hebdomadal Council had "unanimously decided at its meeting last Monday, to invite you to accept the Honorary Degree of Doctor of Civil Law".
Salazar's decision to stick with the Anglo-Portuguese Alliance allowed the Portuguese Island of Madeira to come to the aid of the Allies and in July 1940 around 2,500 evacuees from Gibraltar were shipped to Madeira. At the same time Life magazine, in a long article titled: "Portugal: The War Has Made It Europe's Front", called Salazar "a benevolent ruler", described him as "by far the world's best dictator, he is the greatest Portuguese since Prince Henry the Navigator", added that "the dictator has built the nation". Life declared that "most of what is good in modern Portugal can be credited to Dr. Antonio de Oliveira Salazar The dictator is everything that most Portuguese are not – calm, ascetic, puritanical, a glutton for work, cool to women, he found a country in poverty. He has balanced the budget, built roads and schools, torn down slums, cut the death rate and enormously raised Portuguese self-esteem."In September 1940, Winston Churchill wrote to Salazar congratulating him on his ability to keep Portugal out of the war, asserting that "as so before during the many centuries of the Anglo-Portuguese alliance and Portuguese interests are identical on this vital question."
Despite Portuguese neutrality, in December 1941, Portuguese Timor was occupied by Australian and Dutch forces, which were expecting a Japanese invasion. Salazar's reaction was violent, he protested, saying that the Allies had violated Portuguese sovereignty and jeopardized Portuguese neutrality. A strong Portuguese garrison force was sent from East Africa to take over the defense of east Timor but did not arrive on time. Portugal managed to remain neutral despite extraordinary pressures from both sides. Both the Allies and the Axis sought to control the strategically located Azores islands during World War II. Dictator Salazar was worried about a possible German invasion through Spain and did not want to provoke Hitler. Both Great Britain and the United States devised several plans to set up air bases in the Azores regardless of Portugal's disapproval; the plans were never put into operation. In 1942 Lajes Field on the Azores was assigned the name Air Base No. 4 and the Portuguese government expanded the runway and sent troops and equipment to Lajes, including Gloster Gladiator fighters.
Military activity in the Azores grew as the Gladiators' role progressed into flying cover for Allied convoys, reconnaissance missions and meteorological flights. In August 1943, Portugal signed the Luso-British agreement, which leased bases in the Azores to the British; this was a key turning point in the Battle of the Atlantic, allowing the Allies to provide aerial coverage in the Mid-Atlantic gap. Churchill surprised members of parliament. A few months on December 1, 1943, British and U. S. military representatives at RAF Lajes signed a joint agreement outlining the roles and responsibilities for the United States Army Air Forces and United States Navy at Lajes Field. The agreement established guidelines and limitations for the US to ferry and transport aircraft to Europe via Lajes Field. In return, the US agreed to assist the British in improving and extending existing facilities at Lajes. Air Transport Command trans
The Visigothic Kingdom or Kingdom of the Visigoths was a kingdom that occupied what is now southwestern France and the Iberian Peninsula from the 5th to the 8th centuries. One of the Germanic successor states to the Western Roman Empire, it was created by the settlement of the Visigoths under King Wallia in the province of Gallia Aquitania in southwest Gaul by the Roman government and extended by conquest over all of Hispania; the Kingdom maintained independence from the Eastern Roman or Byzantine Empire, the attempts of which to re-establish Roman authority in Hispania were only successful and short-lived. The Visigoths were romanized central Europeans; the Visigoths became Foederati of Rome, wanted to restore the Roman order against the hordes of Vandals and Suebi. The Western Roman Empire fell in 476 AD. Under King Euric—who eliminated the status of Foederati—a triumphal advance of the Visigoths began. Alarmed at Visigoth expansion from Aquitania after victory over the British army at Déols in 469, Western Emperor Anthemius sent a fresh army across the Alps against Euric, besieging Arles.
The Roman army was crushed in battle nearby and Euric captured Arles and secured much of southern Gaul. Sometimes referred to as the regnum Tolosanum or Kingdom of Toulouse after its capital Toulouse in modern historiography, the kingdom lost much of its territory in Gaul to the Franks in the early 6th century, save the narrow coastal strip of Septimania; the kingdom of the 6th and 7th centuries is sometimes called the regnum Toletanum after the new capital of Toledo. A civil war starting in 549 resulted in an invitation from the Visigoth Athanagild, who had usurped the kingship, to the Byzantine emperor Justinian I to send soldiers to his assistance. Athanagild won his war, but the Byzantines took over Cartagena and a good deal of southern Hispania and could not be dislodged. Starting in the 570s Athanagild's brother Liuvigild compensated for this loss by conquering the Kingdom of the Suebi and annexing it, by repeated campaigns against the Basques; the ethnic distinction between the indigenous Hispano-Roman population and the Visigoths had disappeared by this time.
This newfound unity found expression in severe persecution of outsiders the Jews. The Visigothic Code abolished the old tradition of having different laws for Romans and for Visigoths; the 7th century saw many civil wars between factions of the aristocracy. Despite good records left by contemporary bishops, such as Isidore and Leander of Seville, it becomes difficult to distinguish Goths from Latins, as the two became inextricably intertwined. Despite these civil wars, by 625 AD the Visigoths had succeeded in expelling the Byzantines from Hispania and had established a foothold at the port of Ceuta in Africa. Most of the Visigothic Kingdom was conquered by Umayyad troops from North Africa in 711 AD, with only the northern reaches of Hispania remaining in Christian hands; these gave birth to the medieval Kingdom of Asturias when a local landlord called Pelayo, most of Gothic origin, was elected Princeps by the Astures. The Visigoths and their early kings were Arians and came into conflict with the Catholic Church, but after they converted to Nicene Christianity, the Church exerted an enormous influence on secular affairs through the Councils of Toledo.
The Visigoths developed the influential law code known in Western Europe as the Visigothic Code, which would become the basis for Spanish law throughout the Middle Ages. From 407 to 409 AD, an alliance of Germanic Vandals, Iranian Alans and Germanic Suebi crossed the frozen Rhine and swept across modern France and into the Iberian peninsula. For their part, the Visigoths under Alaric famously sacked Rome in 410, capturing Galla Placidia, the sister of Western Roman emperor Honorius. Ataulf spent the next few years operating in the Gallic and Hispanic countrysides, diplomatically playing competing factions of Germanic and Roman commanders against one another to skillful effect, taking over cities such as Narbonne and Toulouse. After he married Placidia, the Emperor Honorius enlisted him to provide Visigothic assistance in regaining nominal Roman control of Hispania from the Vandals and Suebi. In 418, Honorius rewarded his Visigothic federates under King Wallia by giving them land in the Garonne valley of Gallia Aquitania on which to settle.
This took place under the system of hospitalitas. It seems that at first the Visigoths were not given a large amount of land estates in the region, but that they acquired the taxes of the region, with the local Gallic aristocrats now paying their taxes to the Visigoths instead of to the Roman government; the Visigoths with their capital at Toulouse, remained de facto independent, soon began expanding into Roman territory at the expense of the feeble Western empire. Under Theodoric I, the Visigoths attacked Arles and Narbonne, but were checked by Flavius Aetius using Hunnic mercenaries, Theodoric was defeated in 438. By 451, the situation had reversed and the Huns had invaded Gaul. Attila was driven back; the Vandals comp
Kingdom of the Suebi
The Kingdom of the Suebi called the Kingdom of Gallæcia, was a Germanic post-Roman kingdom, one of the first to separate from the Roman Empire. Based in the former Roman provinces of Gallaecia and northern Lusitania, the de facto kingdom was established by the Suebi about 409, during the 6th century it became a formally declared kingdom identifying with Gallaecia, it maintained its independence until 585, when it was annexed by the Visigoths, was turned into the sixth province of the Visigothic Kingdom in Hispania. Little is known about the Suevi who crossed the Rhine on the night of 31 December 406 AD and entered the Roman Empire, it is speculated that these Suevi are the same group as the Quadi, who are mentioned in early writings as living north of the middle Danube, in what is now lower Austria and western Slovakia, who played an important part in the Germanic Wars of the 2nd century, allied with the Marcomanni, they fought fiercely against the Romans under Marcus Aurelius. The main reason behind the identification of the Suevi and Quadi as the same group comes from a letter written by St. Jerome to Ageruchia, listing the invaders of the 406 crossing into Gaul, in which the Quadi are listed and the Suevi are not.
The argument for this theory, however, is based on the disappearance the Quadi in the text and the emergence of the Suevi, which conflicts with the testimony of other contemporary authors, such as Orosius, who did indeed cite the Suevi among the peoples traversing the Rhine in 406, side by side with Quadi, Marcomanni and Sarmatians in another passage. Sixth century authors identified the Sueves of Galicia with the Alamanni, or with Germans, whilst the 4th century Laterculus Veronensis mentions some Suevi side by side with Alamanni, Quadi and other Germanic peoples. Additionally it has been pointed out that the lack of mention of the Suevi could mean that they were not per se an older distinct ethnic group, but the result of a recent ethnogenesis, with many smaller groups—among them part of the Quadi and Marcomanni—coming together during the migration from the Danube valley to the Iberian Peninsula. Other groups of Sueves are mentioned by Jordanes and other historians as residing by the Danube regions during the 5th and 6th centuries.
Although there is no documented reason behind the migration of 406, a accepted theory is that the migration of the various Germanic peoples west of the Rhine was due to the westward push of the Huns during the late 4th century, which forced the Germanic peoples westward in response to the threat. It should be noted that this theory has created controversy within the academic community, because of the lack of convincing evidence. Whether displaced by the Huns or not, the Suevi along with the Vandals and Alans crossed the Rhine on the night of 31 December 405, their entrance into the Roman Empire was at a moment when the Roman West was experiencing a series of invasions and civil wars. This allowed the invading barbarians to enter Gaul with little resistance allowing for the barbarians to cause considerable damage to the northern provinces of Germania Inferior, Belgica Prima, Belgica Secunda before the empire saw them as a threat. In response to the barbarian invasion of Gaul, the usurper Constantine III halted the masses of Vandals and Sueves, confining them to northern Gaul.
But in the spring of 409, Gerontius set up his own emperor, Maximus. Constantine, elevated to the title of Augustus, set off to Hispania to deal with the rebellion. Gerontius responded by stirring up the barbarians in Gaul against Constantine, convincing them to mobilize again, and, in the summer of 409, the Vandals and Suevi began pushing south towards Hispania; the civil war that erupted in the Iberian Peninsula between the forces of Constantine and Gerontius left the passes through the Pyrenees either purposely or inadvertently neglected, leaving southern Gaul and the Iberian Peninsula vulnerable to barbarian attack. Hydatius documents that the crossing into the Iberian Peninsula by the Vandals and Suevi took place on either 28 September or 12 October 409; some scholars take the two dates as the beginning and the end to the crossing of the formidable Pyrenees by scores of thousands, since this could not have been accomplished in a twenty-four-hour time frame. Hydatius writes that upon entering of Hispania the barbarian peoples-—and the Roman soldiers—-spent 409–410 in a frenzy, plundering food and goods from the cities and countryside, which caused a famine that, according to Hydatius, forced the locals to resort to cannibalism: " by hunger human beings devoured human flesh.
In 411 the various barbarian groups brokered a peace and divided the provinces of Hispania among themselves sorte, "by lot". Many scholars believe that the reference to "lot" may be to the sortes, "allotments," which barbarian federates received from the Roman government, which suggests that the Suevi and the other invaders had signed a treaty with Maximus. There is, however, no concrete evidence of any treaties between the Romans and the barbarians: Hydatius never mentions any treaty, states that the peace in 411 was brought about by the compassion of the Lord, while Orosius asserts that the kings of the Vandals and Sueves were pursuing a pact similar to that of the Visigoths at a date; the division of the land among the four barbarian groups went as such: the Siling Vand
The prehistory of the Iberian Peninsula begins with the arrival of the first hominins 1.2 million years ago and ends with the Punic Wars, when the territory enters the domains of written history. In this long period, some of its most significant landmarks were to host the last stand of the Neanderthal people, to develop some of the most impressive Paleolithic art, alongside southern France, to be the seat of the earliest civilizations of Western Europe and to become a most desired colonial objective due to its strategic position and its many mineral riches. Hominin inhabitation of the Iberian Peninsula dates from the Paleolithic. Early hominin remains have been discovered at a number of sites on the peninsula. Significant evidence of an extended occupation of Iberia by Neanderthal man has been discovered. Homo sapiens first entered Iberia towards the end of the Paleolithic. For a time Neanderthals and modern humans coexisted until the former were driven to extinction. Modern man continued to inhabit the peninsula through the Neolithic periods.
Many of the best preserved prehistoric remains are in the Atapuerca region, rich with limestone caves that have preserved a million years of human evolution. Among these sites is the cave of Gran Dolina, where six hominin skeletons, dated between 780,000 and 1.2 million years ago, were found in 1994. Experts have debated whether these skeletons belong to the species Homo erectus, Homo heidelbergensis, or a new species called Homo antecessor. In the Gran Dolina, investigators have found evidence of tool use to butcher animals and other hominins, to constitute the first evidence of cannibalism in a hominin species. Evidence of fire has been found at the site, suggesting they cooked their meat. In Atapuerca, is the site at Sima de los Huesos, or "Pit of Bones". Excavators have found the remains of 30 hominins dated to about 400,000 years ago; the remains have been tentatively classified as Homo heidelbergensis and may be ancestors of the Neanderthals. No evidence of habitation has been found at the site except for one stone hand-ax, all of the remains at the site are of young adults or teenagers.
The age similarity suggests. The deliberate placement of remains and lack of habitation may mean that the bodies were deliberately interred in the pit as a place of burial, which would make the site the first evidence of hominin burial. Around 200,000 BC, during the Lower Paleolithic period, Neanderthals first entered the Iberian Peninsula. Around 70,000 BC, during the Middle Paleolithic period the last ice age began and the Neanderthal Mousterian culture was established; the Escoural Cave has evidence of human activity starting in the Middle Palaeolithic, with an estimated date of 50,000 years BP. Around 35,000 BC, during the Upper Paleolithic, the Neanderthal Châtelperronian cultural period began. Emanating from Southern France this culture extended into Northern Iberia; this culture continued to exist until around 28,000 BC when Neanderthal man faced extinction, their final refuge has been said to be Gibraltar. Neanderthal remains have been found at a number of sites on the Iberian Peninsula.
A Neanderthal skull was found in Forbes' Quarry in Gibraltar in 1848 making it the second territory after Belgium where remains of Neanderthals were found. Neanderthals were not recognized as a separate species until the discovery of remains in Neandertal, Germany in 1856, though their classification as a separate species has been called into question. Subsequent Neanderthal discoveries in Gibraltar have been made including the skull of a four-year-old child and preserved excrement on top of baked mussel shells; the Neanderthals were present in Iberia until at least 28,000 or 27,000 BC. Evidence of their presence in this period is found in Figueira Brava and Salemas; the Cave of Salemas and the Cave of Pego do Diabo, both located in Loures Municipality, were inhabited in the Paleolithic. Archaeological industries of the Middle Paleolithic in Iberia lasted until about 28,000 or 26,000 BC. During this period, the Mousterian culture was replaced by the Aurignacian culture; the Mousterian culture is associated with Neanderthals and the Aurignacian culture is associated with modern humans.
In Zafarraya a Neanderthal mandible and Mousterian tools, associated with the Neanderthal culture, were found in 1995. The mandible was dated to about 28,000 BC and the tools to about 25,000 BC; these dates make the Zafarraya remains the youngest evidence of Neanderthals and have expanded the timeline of Neanderthal existence. The more recent dating of the remains provides the first evidence for prolonged co-existence between Neanderthals and modern man. L'Arbreda Cave in Catalonia contains Aurignacian cave paintings, as well as earlier remains from Neanderthals; some have suggested that the newer remains in Iberia suggest Neanderthals were driven out of Central Europe by modern man to the Iberian peninsula where they sought refuge. The Chatelperronian culture is found in Catalonia; the Aurignacian culture succeeds it and has the following periodization: Archaic Aurignacian: found in Cantabria, where it alternates with Chatelperronian, in Catalonia. The carbon-14 dates for Morín cave are late in the European context: c. 28,500 BP, but the occupation dates for El Pendo must be of earlier date.
Typical Aurignacian: is found in the Basque Country and Catalonia. Radiocarbon dating gives the following dates: 32,425 and 29,515 BP. Evolved Aurignacian: is found in Cantabria (Morin, El Pendo, El Otero, H
In political and social sciences, communism is the philosophical, social and economic ideology and movement whose ultimate goal is the establishment of the communist society, a socioeconomic order structured upon the common ownership of the means of production and the absence of social classes and the state. Communism includes a variety of schools of thought, which broadly include Marxism and anarchism, as well as the political ideologies grouped around both. All of these share the analysis that the current order of society stems from its economic system, capitalism; the two classes are the working class—who must work to survive and who make up the majority within society—and the capitalist class—a minority who derives profit from employing the working class through private ownership of the means of production. The revolution will put the working class in power and in turn establish social ownership of the means of production, which according to this analysis is the primary element in the transformation of society towards communism.
Critics of communism can be divided into those concerning themselves with the practical aspects of 20th century communist states and those concerning themselves with communist principles and theory. Marxism-Leninism and democratic socialism were the two dominant forms of socialism in the 20th century; the term "communism" was first coined and defined in its modern definition by the French philosopher and writer Victor d'Hupay. In his 1777 book Projet de communauté philosophe, d'Hupay pushes the philosophy of the Enlightenment to principles which he lived up to during most of his life in his bastide of Fuveau; this book can be seen as the cornerstone of communist philosophy as d'Hupay defines this lifestyle as a "commune" and advises to "share all economic and material products between inhabitants of the commune, so that all may benefit from everybody's work". According to Richard Pipes, the idea of a classless, egalitarian society first emerged in Ancient Greece; the 5th-century Mazdak movement in Persia has been described as "communistic" for challenging the enormous privileges of the noble classes and the clergy, for criticizing the institution of private property and for striving to create an egalitarian society.
At one time or another, various small communist communities existed under the inspiration of Scripture. For example, in the medieval Christian Church some monastic communities and religious orders shared their land and their other property. Communist thought has been traced back to the works of the 16th-century English writer Thomas More. In his treatise Utopia, More portrayed a society based on common ownership of property, whose rulers administered it through the application of reason. In the 17th century, communist thought surfaced again in England, where a Puritan religious group known as the "Diggers" advocated the abolition of private ownership of land. In his 1895 Cromwell and Communism, Eduard Bernstein argued that several groups during the English Civil War espoused clear communistic, agrarian ideals and that Oliver Cromwell's attitude towards these groups was at best ambivalent and hostile. Criticism of the idea of private property continued into the Age of Enlightenment of the 18th century through such thinkers as Jean Jacques Rousseau in France.
Following the upheaval of the French Revolution communism emerged as a political doctrine. In the early 19th century, various social reformers founded communities based on common ownership. However, unlike many previous communist communities they replaced the religious emphasis with a rational and philanthropic basis. Notable among them were Robert Owen, who founded New Harmony in Indiana, as well as Charles Fourier, whose followers organized other settlements in the United States such as Brook Farm. In its modern form, communism grew out of the socialist movement in 19th-century Europe; as the Industrial Revolution advanced, socialist critics blamed capitalism for the misery of the proletariat—a new class of urban factory workers who labored under often-hazardous conditions. Foremost among these critics were his associate Friedrich Engels. In 1848, Marx and Engels offered a new definition of communism and popularized the term in their famous pamphlet The Communist Manifesto; the 1917 October Revolution in Russia set the conditions for the rise to state power of Vladimir Lenin's Bolsheviks, the first time any avowedly communist party reached that position.
The revolution transferred power to the All-Russian Congress of Soviets, in which the Bolsheviks had a majority. The event generated a great deal of theoretical debate within the Marxist movement. Marx predicted that socialism and communism would be built upon foundations laid by the most advanced capitalist development. However, Russia was one of the poorest countries in Europe with an enormous illiterate peasantry and a minority of industrial workers. Marx had explicitly stated; the moderate Mensheviks opposed Lenin's Bolshevik plan for socialist revolution before capitalism was more developed. The Bolsheviks' successful rise to power was based upon the slogans such as "Peace and land" which tapp
Portugal in the Middle Ages
The kingdom of Portugal was established from the county of Portugal in the 1130s, ruled by the Portuguese House of Burgundy. During most of the 12th and 13th centuries, its history is chiefly that of the gradual reconquest of territory from the various petty Muslim principalities of the period; this process was complete with the ascension of Afonso III of Portugal, the first to claim the title of King of Portugal and the Algarve. The history of Portugal in the period between the death of Afonso III in 1279 and the beginning of the Portuguese Empire in 1415 includes the 1383–1385 Portuguese interregnum and the subsequent transition from the Portuguese House of Burgundy to the House of Aviz. Towards the close of the 11th century crusading knights came from every part of Europe to aid the kings of León, Castile and Aragon in fighting the Moors. Among these adventurers was Henry of Burgundy, who, in 1095, married Teresa of León, illegitimate daughter of Alfonso VI of León and Castile; the County of Portugal was included in Teresa's dowry.
Count Henry ruled as a vassal of Alfonso VI, whose Galician marches were thus secured against any sudden Moorish raid. But in 1109 Alfonso VI died, bequeathing all his territories to his legitimate daughter, Urraca of León, Count Henry at once invaded León, hoping to add it to his own dominions at the expense of his suzerain. After three years of war against Urraca and other rival claimants to the throne of León, Count Henry himself died in 1112, leaving his widow Teresa to govern Portugal north of the Mondego during the minority of her infant son, Afonso Henriques: south of the Mondego; the Moors were still supreme. Teresa renewed the struggle against her half-sister and suzerain Urraca in 1116-1117, again in 1120, but a peace was negotiated by the archbishops Diego Gelmírez and Burdino of Braga, rival churchmen whose wealth and military resources enabled them to dictate terms. Bitter jealousy existed between the two prelates, each claiming to be primate "of all Hispania", their antagonism had some historical importance insofar as it fostered the growth of separatist tendencies among the Portuguese.
But the quarrel was temporarily suspended because both Gelmires and Burdino princes within their territories, had reason to dread the extension of Urraca's authority. It was arranged that Teresa should be liberated and should continue to hold the county of Portugal as a fief of León. During the next five years she lavished wealth and titles upon her lover, Fernando Pérez de Traba, count of Trava, thus estranging her son, the archbishop of Braga and the nobles. Meanwhile, her son Afonso Henriques thrived; the boy born around 1109, followed his father as Count of Portugal in 1112, under the tutelage of his mother. The relations between Teresa and her son Afonso proved difficult. Only eleven years old, Afonso had his own political ideas different from his mother's. In 1120, the young prince took the side of the archbishop of Braga, a political foe of Teresa, both were exiled by her orders. Afonso spent the next years away under the watch of the bishop. In 1122 Afonso became fourteen, the adult age in the 12th century.
He made himself a knight on his own account in Zamora Cathedral, raised an army, proceeded to take control of his lands. Near Guimarães, at the Battle of São Mamede he overcame the troops under his mother's lover and ally, Count Fernando Pérez de Traba, making her his prisoner and exiling her forever to a monastery in León, she died there in 1130. Thus Afonso become sole ruler after demands for independence from the county's people and nobles, he vanquished Alfonso VII of León and Castile, his nominal suzerain, thus freed the county from political dependence on the crown of León. On April 6, 1129, Afonso Henriques dictated the writ in which he proclaimed himself Prince of Portugal. Afonso turned his arms against the persistent problem of the Moors in the south, his campaigns were successful and, on July 25, 1139, he obtained an overwhelming victory in the Battle of Ourique, straight after was unanimously proclaimed King of Portugal by his soldiers. This meant that Portugal was no longer a vassal county of León, but an independent kingdom in its own right.
That he convened the first assembly of the estates-general at Lamego is to be a 17th-century embellishment of Portuguese history. Independence, was not a thing a land could choose on its own. Portugal still had to be acknowledged by the neighbouring lands and, most by the Catholic Church and the Pope. Afonso wed Matilda of Savoy, daughter of Amadeus III, Count of Savoy, sent ambassadors to Rome to negotiate with the Pope. In Portugal, he built several monasteries and convents and bestowed important privileges to religious orders. In 1143, he wrote to Pope Innocent II to declare himself and the kingdom servants of the Church, swearing to pursue driving the Moors out of the Iberian Peninsula. Bypassing any king of Castile or León, Afonso declared himself the direct vassal of the Papacy. Thus, Afonso continued to distinguish himself by his exploits against the Moors, from whom he wrested Santarém and Lisbon in 1147, he conquered an important part of the land south of the Tagus River, although this was lost again to the Moors in the following years.
Meanwhile, King Alfonso VII, Afonso's cousin, regarded the independent ruler of Portugal as nothing but a rebel. The conflict between the two was bitter in the following years. Afonso became involved in a war, taking the side of the Aragonese king, an enemy of Alfonso VII
Portuguese Communist Party
The Portuguese Communist Party is a major political party in Portugal. It is a Marxist–Leninist party, its organization is based upon democratic centralism; the party considers itself patriotic and internationalist. The party was founded in 1921 as the Portuguese section of the Communist International. Made illegal after a coup in the late 1920s, the PCP played a major role in the opposition to the dictatorial regime of António de Oliveira Salazar. During the five-decades-long dictatorship, the party was suppressed by the political police, the PIDE, which forced its members to live in clandestine status under the threat of arrest and murder. After the Carnation Revolution in 1974, which overthrew the 48-year regime, the 36 members of party's Central Committee had, in the aggregate, experienced more than 300 years in jail. After the end of the dictatorship, the party became a major political force in the newly democratic state among the working class. Despite being less influential since the fall of the Socialist bloc in eastern Europe, the party still enjoys popularity in large sectors of Portuguese society in the rural areas of the Alentejo and Ribatejo, in the industrialized areas around Lisbon and Setúbal, where it holds the leadership of several municipalities.
The Party publishes the weekly Avante!, founded in 1931. Its youth organization is the Portuguese Communist Youth, a member of the World Federation of Democratic Youth. At the end of World War I, in 1918, Portugal fell into a serious economic crisis, in part due to the Portuguese military intervention in the war; the Portuguese working classes responded to the deterioration in their living standards with a wave of strikes. Supported by an emerging labour movement, the workers achieved some of their objectives, such as an eight-hour working day. In September 1919, the working-class movement founded the first Portuguese Labour Union Confederation, the General Confederation of Labour; the goal of FMP was to promote socialist and revolutionary ideas and to organize and develop the worker movement. After some time, members of the FMP began to feel the need for a "revolutionary vanguard" among Portuguese workers. After several meetings at various trade union offices, with the aid of the Comintern, this desire culminated in the foundation of the Portuguese Communist Party as the Portuguese Section of the Comintern on 6 March 1921.
Unlike all other European communist parties, the PCP was not formed after a split of a social democratic or socialist party, but from the ranks of anarcho-syndicalist and revolutionary syndicalist groups, the most active factions in the Portuguese labour movement. The party opened. Seven months after its creation, the first issue of O Comunista, the first newspaper of the party, was published; the first congress of the party took place in Lisbon with Carlos Rates as leader. The congress was attended by about a hundred members of the party and asserted its solidarity with socialism in the Soviet Union and the need for a strong struggle for similar policies in Portugal. After the military coup of 28 May 1926, the party had to operate in secrecy. By coincidence, the coup was carried out on the eve of the second congress, forcing the suspension of party business. In 1927, the party's main office was closed; the party was first re-organized in 1929 under Bento Gonçalves. Adapting the its new illegal status, the party re-organized as a network of clandestine cells.
Meanwhile, in 1938, the PCP had been expelled from the Comintern. The reason for the expulsion was a sense of distrust in the Comintern caused by a sudden breakdown in the party's activity after a period of strong communist tumult in the country, accusations of alleged embezzlement of money carried out by some important members of the party and the weak internal structure of the party, dominated by internal wars; the action against the PCP, signed by Georgi Dimitrov, was in part taken due to some persecution against Comintern member parties or persons led by Joseph Stalin. These series of events would, in part, lead to the end of the Comintern in 1943; the PCP would only re-establish its relations with the communist movement and the Soviet Union in 1947, after sporadic contacts made through the communist parties of Spain and France and through Mikhail Suslov. After the 1933 rise of Salazar's dictatorial Estado Novo regime, suppression of the party grew. Many members were arrested and executed.
Many were sent to the Tarrafal concentration camp in the Cape Verde Islands. This included Bento Gonçalves; the vast wave of arrests led to a major re-organization in 1940 and 1941, named the "Reorganization of'40". The first congress held after these changes was held in 1943, stated that the party should unite with all those who wanted an end to the dictatorship. Another important conclusion was the need to increase the party's influence inside the Portuguese army; the party was able, for the first time, to assure a strong clandestine organization, with a network of clandestine cadres, which would aid the resistance against Salazar's regime. In 1945, with the defeat of th