Anarchist who was jailed in Spain for an attempt to assassinate Franco and later acquitted of being a member of the Angry Brigade
Duncan Campbell, August 17, 2020
In 1964 a dashing, long-haired 18-year-old British anarchist, Stuart Christie, faced the possibility of the death penalty in Madrid for his role in a plot to assassinate General Franco, the Spanish dictator.
A man of great charm, warmth and wit, Christie, who has died of cancer aged 74, got away with a 20-year prison sentence and was eventually released after less than four years, only to find himself in prison several years later in Britain after being accused of being a member of the Angry Brigade, a group responsible for a series of explosions in London in the early 1970s. On that occasion he was acquitted, and afterwards he went on to become a leading writer and publisher of anarchist literature, as well as the author of a highly entertaining memoir, Granny Made Me an Anarchist.
Christie’s Franco-related mission was to deliver explosives to Madrid for an attempt to blow up the Spanish leader while he attended a football match at the city’s Bernabéu stadium. Telling his family that he was going grape-picking in France, he went first to Paris, where it turned out that the only French he knew, to the amusement of his anarchist hosts, was “Zut, alors!”