Lincoln Battalion Commissar by H. A.

August 5, 2018
By
Steve Nelson shortly after his return from Spain.

Steve Nelson shortly after his return from Spain.

The Volunteer for Liberty, V. 1, No. 9, August 9, 1937.

Lincoln Battalion Commissar by H. A.

“Don’t let ‘em get Steve!”

This is the word that travels like a flash of lightning through the Lincoln-Washington Battalion lines before and during the attack. Steve Nelson, Political Commissar of the Lincoln-Washington Battalion, tireless worker. At any minute of the night or day you can see him moving from trench to trench, always on the look-out for bad peepholes, poor sandbags, dangerous machine gun positions. Patiently explaining to groups of comrades news of the outside world and other fronts. Concerned with the opinion of every comrade in the battalion, whether it be a question of winning a battle or of buying a toothbrush, Steve epitomizes all that the Spanish People’s Army demands of a political commissar. In the attacks of July 6 to 9, when the Lincoln Battalion suffered a terrific loss of military leadership, Comrade Nelson without hesitation assumed command. Seventeen-hour days could be called a short day for Steve. Not a day passes without a visit from this indefatigable leader of men to brigade, machine-gun company, infantry, kitchen and armory, in addition to many bedside discussions with weary determined comrades. Now is not the time to tell in full the story of this comrade who is loved by his men. Suffice at this time to say of him: soldier, strategist, political leader and comrade.

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