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Ramiro Ledesma Ramos (May 23 1905, Alfaraz de Sayagomarker, Zamoramarker‚ÄĒOctober 29 1936, Aravacamarker, Madridmarker) was a Spanishmarker national syndicalist politician, essayist, and journalist.

Early life

After studying Letters and Sciences at the Complutense University of Madridmarker, where he was a disciple of José Ortega y Gasset, and contributing to La Gaceta Literaria and Revista de Occidente, Ledesma Ramos began studying the works of Martin Heidegger. He also wrote a novel for the youth, entitled El sello de la muerte ("The Seal of Death").

Attracted to both Benito Mussolini's Corporatism, and the developing Nazi movement in Germanymarker, he was troubled by his middle class roots, which he saw as an obstacle in reaching out to the revolutionary milieu of Spanish politics in the 1920s. In 1931, Ledesma Ramos began publishing the periodical La Conquista del Estado, named in tribute to Curzio Malaparte's Italianmarker Fascist magazine La Conquista dello Stato - one of the first publications of the Spanish far right. It attempted to bridge the gap between nationalism and the anarcho-syndicalist of the dominant trade union, the Confederación Nacional del Trabajo (CNT), by revising Syndicalism altogether.

Conquista del Estado and Falange

In the very first issue of the Conquista del Estado, Ledesma published a syncretic program, which advertised statism, a political role for the universities, regionalisation, and a syndicalist structure for the national economy. The paper was only published throughout the year, and, although a subject of debate in a CNT reunion, it never had the intended impact.

He subsequently led his group into an October 1931 merger with On√©simo Redondo's Junta Castellana de Actuaci√≥n Hisp√°nica, creating the Juntas de Ofensiva Nacional-Sindicalista, and its magazine JONS. It became the Falange Espa√Īola de las Juntas de Ofensiva Nacional-Sindicalista (FE-JONS), after it fused with Jos√© Antonio Primo de Rivera's group in 1934; he personally designed the movement's badge, the yoke and the arrows derived from the Catholic Monarchs, and coined the mottos Arriba Espa√Īa and Una, Grande y Libre (both of which were still in use in Francoist Spainmarker).

Death and legacy

The group remained stable, despite the fact that Ledesma left over disagreements with Primo de Rivera; he formed a small group, La Patria Libre, which opposed the Falange on ideological grounds, displaying the same favorable attitude to the left-wing trade unions.

The outbreak of the Spanish Civil War caught Ledesma in Republican Madrid, far from the forces of Francisco Franco. Imprisoned by the Popular Front government throughout the summer and early autumn of 1936, he was executed by the Republican militias, and his body was thrown in a makeshift grave.

A mythical figure in the propaganda of the Spanish Statemarker created by Franco, he was nonetheless viewed with suspicion by the highly influential Roman Catholic Church - which had even threatened to censor his works through the Index Librorum Prohibitorum.



  • Discurso a las juventudes de Espa√Īa ("Speech to the Youth of Spain")
  • ¬ŅFascismo en Espa√Īa? ("Fascism in Spain?")
  • Escritos filos√≥ficos, &c. ("Philosophical Writings, etc.")

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