Ponzán group

The Ponzán group was an organization of guides and couriers, made up mainly of Spanish anarchists, which operated in Southern France and in Spain during World War II. It took its name from Francisco Ponzán Vidal, the one who was mainly responsible for the group. Its center of operations was located in Toulouse.

Ponzán Group
Grupo Ponzán
LeaderFrancisco Ponzán Vidal
CountrySecond Spanish Republic Spain
Political positionFar-left
Part ofSecond Spanish Republic Spanish Resistance
Allies United Nations:


In the words of Albert Guérisse, head of the English "Pat O'Leary escape network":

“Vidal always greeted Pat like a brother. A man who never said he could do anything without promptly carrying it out, he did not particularly like the English, the Germans, or the French, regarding them all as so many pawns in his own game of undermining the Franco régime and replacing it with anarchy. He had one complaint against life. It did not yield him enough arms. He needed, he continually said to Pat, more revolvers, more rifles, and perhaps if it could be managed, an occasional machine-gun.”[1]

Robert Terres, a French agent, referred to the members of the Ponzán Group as:

“Recruited (by the English) in the border regions among the most irreducible and most idealistic elements of the anti-fascist refugees determined to continue the fight against Franco and ready to accept any help (...) in the form of protection and money.”[2]

Agustín Remiro, arrested and sentenced to death after a Ponzán Group mission in Spain and Portugal, wrote in a letter addressed to López (probably Eusebio López Laguarta) from the Madrid prison:

"Don't trust the English, they are scoundrels (...) and they only want us to exploit our will. I am not spiteful, no, I am only speaking to you so that you are not victims of those responsible for Spanish pain."[3]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ Brome, Vincent (1958). "7". The Way Back. The Story of Lieut-Commander Pat O'Leary. London: Companion Book Club. p. 87–88. OCLC 917695707.
  2. ^ Robert Terres, ed. (1977). Double jeu pour la France 1939-1944 (in French). Paris: Bernard Grasset. OCLC 833936309.
  3. ^ Téllez, Antonio (2006). Agustín Remiro. De la guerrilla confederal a los servicios secretos británicos (in Spanish). Zaragoza: Provincial Council of Zaragoza. OCLC 74880648.