Person - Lending, Edward Isaac (1912-2003)

Lending, Edward Isaac (1912-2003)

Identification

Type:

Person

Preferred form:

Lending, Edward Isaac (1912-2003)Other forms

Dates of existence/Biographical dates:

New York  1912-03-24 - 2003-09-24

History:

Lending, Isaac Edward was born on the 24th of March 1912 in New York. His father was a religious Jew and early member of the Zionist Organization of America. As a young man, Lending switched the order of his first and middle names, and was known thereafter as Edward Isaac Lending.

Lending studied journalism and business at City College of New York and New York University, but never completed his degree. In 1935, he joined the Communist Party and in 1937, at 27 years old, he departed for Spain aboard the "Ile de France" to join the International Brigades in fighting the Spanish Civil War. Over the next 21 months, Lending played a variety of roles in the war. He served with the Washington Battalion of the 15th International Brigade in the Battle of Brunete where he was wounded. When he recovered, he was promoted to sergeant and fought in the Battles of Quinto and Belchite in the Lincoln-Washington Battalion. In a break from fighting, Lending edited Brigade newspaper Our Fight and worked with volunteer Robert Steck in the Cultural Commission organizing a theatrical troop to entertain rearguard units. In December 1937, Lending volunteered for anti-aircraft service, joining the German Dimitrov Battery in the air defense of Barcelona.

After returning to the United States in December 1938, Lending became a member of the Executive Board of the Veterans of the Abraham Brigade (VALB). In 1943, he enlisted in the U.S. Army and served in World War II, putting his anti-aircraft experience to use in Belgium and Holland.

Lending pursued his political goals through journalism and public speaking, meanwhile making his living in sales and advertising in New York City. While Lending had been devoted to the Communist Party between 1935 and 1943, his disillusionment with policy dictated by Soviet Party leadership had been growing at least since the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact in 1939. Around this time, Lending also grew critical of the VALB organization for what he perceived to be its rigid political orthodoxy. He gradually distanced himself from VALB and embarked upon what became a lifelong mission to persuade his former Spanish Civil War comrades, among others, to reject the Communist Party line. He gave talks, conducted correspondence with veterans, publicly challenged VALB in its publication, the Volunteer, and wrote numerous articles and letters to editors on the issue.

Another effort to which Lending devoted much time and energy was raising awareness of Jewish participation in the Spanish Civil War. Among other activities, he joined an endeavor led by veteran Irving Weissman to secure pension rights for struggling Polish Jewish veterans of the Botwin Company; and he initiated a campaign to commemorate Jewish fighters in Spain.

In 1978, after a brief period managing the family textile business, Lending retired and moved to Florida. Lending died in Florida on the 24th of September 2003 at the age of 91.

Spanish Civil War, 1936-1939

Date of the event: 1936 - 1939

 

Occupations

Activity:

Brigadists

Places

Domicile:

United States

Lugar de Nacimiento:

New York in 1912-03-24

Lugar de Defunci¿n:

Florida (Estados Unidos) in 2003-09-24

Sources

Martínez Reverte, Jorge. Guerreros y traidores: de la guerra de España a la Guerra Fría. 1ª edición. Barcelona: Galaxia Gutenberg. 2014. 242 páginas. ISBN: 978-84-672-5803-5 .

Related Authorities

Brigadas Internacionales (España)

Associative relations :

Abraham Lincoln Battalion  ( He/She is a member of )

External Links

Catálogo Archivístico:

Archivegrid

Catálogo Bibliotecario:

Jewish Virtual Library

Catálogo Bibliotecario:

NYU Libraries

Recurso web:

The Volunteer

Recurso web:

The volunteer

Documents

Producer of:

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