The Government rehabilitates seven scientists punished by the Franco dictatorship | Science

The Government rehabilitates seven scientists punished by the Franco dictatorship | Science



On March 2, 1923, a journalist from the Herald of Madrid He went to the Palace Hotel in search of Albert Einstein, newcomer to the capital to give some lectures. The physicist, who had received the Nobel Prize a year earlier, refused to grant him an interview, but the reporter filled in as he could the next day's page with the scene he saw in the hotel lobby. "They are the companions of the German wise, those who are going to be able to penetrate in the substance of their explanations. The arrival of Einstein takes them for a moment out of their dark and secluded work and throws their names and their traces into publicity. They are called Cabrera, Carrasco, Plans … They are the men who hold among us the little lamp of mathematical research, "he said.

Cabrera was Blas Cabrera and Carrasco was Pedro Carrasco, two of the best Spanish physicists at the beginning of the 20th century. However, on May 10, 1941, the Franco dictatorship ordered that they be dispossessed of their medals granted by the Royal Academy of Exact, Physical and Natural Sciences, together with five other exceptional scientists linked to the Second Republic. Today, the Council of Ministers – proposed by the Minister of Science, Pedro Duque, and the Minister of Justice, Dolores Delgado – has declared "the radically unfair nature of the provisions for which the dismissal of these seven extraordinary investigators was agreed" .

A commission will investigate sanctions imposed on academics and may declare them "illegitimate" if they were imposed for political, ideological or religious reasons

"It was an injustice, totally. The Silver Age of Spanish science was cut short by the civil war, "says Ángeles Heras, Secretary of State for Universities, Research, Development and Innovation. The Government, he explains, has decided to "restore all the academic honors" of the seven reprisal investigators. In addition to Cabrera and Carrasco, they are the chemist Enrique Moles, the naturalist Ignacio Bolívar, the astronomer Honorato de Castro, the mining engineer Enrique Hauser and the aeronautical engineer Emilio Herrera, who became president of the Government of the Spanish Republic in exile.

"Now is the time for Spanish democracy to honor and recover those who suffered injustices and grievances during the dictatorship, through moral reparation and the recovery of their honor and their personal and family memory," said the Ministry of Health. Science in a statement.

The Council of Ministers has also approved today the so-called Labor Commission for the rehabilitation and guarantee of the right to honor of the members of the Royal Academies and National Academies sanctioned during the civil war and the dictatorship. The commission, chaired by Ángeles Heras, will investigate the sanctions imposed on academics and may declare them "illegitimate" if they were imposed for political, ideological or religious reasons.

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