|The War That Came Early |
POD: July 20, 1936;
Relevant POD: September 29, 1938
|Type of Appearance:||Direct POV|
|Date of Birth:||20th century|
|Religion:||Atheist (apparently), born into Judaism|
|Parents:||Moishe and Ruth Weinberg|
|Spouse:||La Martellita (m. 1940, divorced 1941)|
|Military Branch:||Lincoln Brigade|
Chaim Weinberg was an American communist from New York City who volunteered to fight on the side of the Republican forces of the Spanish Civil War. Like his comrades in the Lincoln Brigade, Weinberg was witness to a particularly ugly form of warfare in Spain against the Nationalists from 1936 to 1938. Mike Carroll was a fellow American in his regiment.
In 1938, the fighting in Spain was joined to the greater European war which began in Czechoslovakia. In 1939, Weinberg took a Nationalist prisoner, Joaquin Delgadillo, under his arm. He saw potential in Delgadillo, and determined to indoctrinate him into changing sides and fighting for the Republic, but this was rendered moot when Delgadillo was killed in a bombing raid soon after.
In 1940, Weinberg began an affair with Magdalena "La Martellita" Flores, a fanatical petty commissar. She had once disciplined him for disloyal statements, only to be entrapped into expressing unorthodox sentiments herself by his clever play on words. A drunken action resulted in Flores getting pregnant. They had a quick marriage so that their son Carlos Federico Weinberg would be legitimate, and divorced soon after he was born.
In 1943, Weinberg's friend Mike Carroll was killed in action. In the same action Weinberg's hand was badly injured. His wound would normally have necessitated amputation. However, it was saved through a series of painful reconstructive surgeries by a physician attempting to pioneer an innovative new treatment.
Shortly after Weinberg was deemed fit to return to the front lines, the Republic won the war, when the Nationalist commander Marshal Sanjurjo was killed by a sniper with whom Weinberg had previously been acquainted.
Weinberg displayed something of a nonconformist streak during this time, standing up to fellow communists who violated the bounds of common sense and decency. When he could, he would prevent them from treating captured enemy soldiers and suspected collaborators too harshly.
In 1944, Weinberg returned home to his family in New York. He appeared to have abandoned his youthful communist enthusiasm entirely, as his first thought was of opportunities he would have for upward mobility in the professional arena.