Herewith final installments by various writers in our two-month defense of Winston Churchill’s memory. These and the links below cover his most popular current sins—even castration and nuking the Maralinga. So, unless we get a new one, that’s a wrap! RML
Memory: “The stars still shone in the sky”
Lost in the pell-mell rush to denigrate his memory was the 8oth anniversary of Churchill becoming Prime Minster, 10 May 1940. I thought of his words as I read the ignorant, ill-informed, false attacks on his character. They occurred amid protest over a tragic event that had nothing to do with him.…
Excerpts from “Churchill, South Africa, Apartheid” an article for the Hillsdale College Churchill Project, June 2020. For the complete text with endnotes, please click here. This article is dedicated to the memory of Nelson Mandela (1918-2013), whose Churchillian magnanimity was a model for his time—and even more for ours.
Part 1: 1902-1909
In “Apartheid: Made in Britain,” Richard Dowden argued that Britain not South Africa cost black South Africans their rights. His account is factual as far as it goes, but there is more to say about Churchill’s effort to achieve justice in South Africa.…
Case for the defense: “If we allow our monuments and statues and place-names to be torn down because of our present-day views, and claims of people being offended by our built environment that has been around for decades and sometimes centuries, it speaks to a pathetic lack of confidence in ourselves as a nation. We are on the way to a society of competing victimhoods, atomized and balkanized into smaller and smaller communities, which ironically enough is something racists want too.” —Andrew Roberts
A magazine fact checker writes asking if Churchill ever said, “Stalin never broke his word to me.” The short answer is yes. The long answer shows how careful we should be when quoting Churchill.
The source of this quote is the journalist C.L. Sulzberger (1912-1993), in his 1970 book, The Last of the Giants, page 304. In it Sulzberger reports his “five hours with old Winston Churchill” at Chartwell on 10 July 1956.
Churchill, wrote Sulzberger, thought Stalin “a great man, above all compared to Khruschev and Bulganin,” and quoted Churchill as follows:
John Ivison in Canada’s National Post makes the point: “Donald Trump is no Winston Churchill, and the comparison is ludicrous.” He refers to a June 3rd statement by the President’s press secretary, Kayleigh McEnany. (She compared Trump’s appearance at St. John’s Episcopal Church across from the White House to Churchill visiting the blitzed East End in 1940.)
I think from a purely historical point of view we can all agree with him. In 1940, Churchill wrote, “There was a white glow, over-powering, sublime, which ran through our Island from end to end.”…
I’d like to know if you can shed light on Churchill’s use of the word “wizard” for radar scientists and engineers (as in Their Finest Hour, Book 2, Chapter 4 “The Wizard War”)? He first used the term in publication in that book in 1949; is there any indication of his use of the word, to describe what the RAF called “boffins”, during the early days of the war itself?
“Wizard” is of course a grand old Middle English word, and Churchill would have preferred that to the newfangled “boffin.” …