Podcast 37 – Michael Petrou: Canadians who fought in the Spanish Civil War and the parallels with ISIS

Michael Petrou wrote a book back in 2008 on why 1,500 Canadians went to fight in the Spanish Civil War and what concerns their return raised. He joins Borealis to discuss what lessons we can apply to the worries about returning ISIS ‘foreign fighters’.

My chat with Michael Petrou on Canadians who fought in the Spanish Civil War – were they ‘foreign fighters’ and did they pose a security threat back home?
Michael Petrou

Michael Petrou is an historian and journalist. His 2008 book, Renegades: Canadians in the Spanish Civil War, was described by J. L. Granatstein as “the best and most complete account of Canadians in the Spanish Civil War we are ever likely to get. The Spanish newspaper El Pais called it “beautiful.”

Renegades, Canadians in the Spanish Civil War

Renegades: Canadians in the Spanish Civil War, by veteran journalist Michael Petrou, tells the story of the 1,681 Canadians who, between 1936 and 1939, defied Canadian law to fight fascism in the Spanish Civil war. The war pitted a left leaning, democratically elected Spanish government against a military uprising led by Francisco Franco and supported, with weapons and tens of thousands of troops, by Fascist Italy and Nazi Germany. By the time it was over, fascism had triumphed in Spain, and more than 400 Canadians were dead.

Listen to previous podcast episodes

Podcast 33 – Who was Abdallah Azzam? A discussion with Norwegian scholar Thomas Hegghammer

Who was Abdallah Azzam and what was his role in modern Islamist terrorism? Listen to my chat with Norwegian scholar Thomas Hegghammer on his new book on the jihadi ideologue.

Podcast 34 – Discussing radicalization with Lorne L. Dawson

What do we know about radicalisation to violence so far? Who are the leaders in this field and how can scholars and security intelligence practitioners work better together?

Phil Gurski
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