“There was about Churchill a faith that nothing was beyond our reach: A DETERMINED OPTIMISM. ‘I confess,’ he said, ‘that like Disraeli I am on the side of the optimists. I do not believe that humanity is going to destroy itself.’” —RML
“Antithesis of Democracy” (Or: Winston Churchill & Portland)

“Antithesis of Democracy” (Or: Winston Churchill & Portland)

Churchill’s stunning relevancy

It is remark­able how we still encounter in Churchill words of astound­ing cur­ren­cy. A friend in Port­land, Ore­gon asked for ver­i­fi­ca­tion of a Churchill quo­ta­tion: “A love for tra­di­tion has nev­er weak­ened a nation, indeed it has strength­ened nations in their hour of per­il….”  (“The Tasks which Lie Before Us,” House of Com­mons, 29 Novem­ber 1944.)  A good, sol­id max­im, but not out of the ordi­nary.

AND THEN my eye fell across what Churchill said a week lat­er. Its cur­rent appli­ca­tion, to Port­land among oth­er places, is remark­able. December 1944 Only two months after Greece had been lib­er­at­ed from Ger­man occu­pa­tion, left­ist ele­ments of the gov­ern­ment resigned and began an armed rebel­lion.…

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Galloping Lies, Bodyguards of Lies, and Lies for the Sake of Your Country

Galloping Lies, Bodyguards of Lies, and Lies for the Sake of Your Country

About lies. Can you please advise whether or not Sir Win­ston Churchill said: “A lie gets halfway around the world before the truth has a chance to get its pants on.”  Many thanks. —A.S., Bermu­da

That one lies with Cordell Hull

It was Franklin Roo­sevelt‘s Sec­re­tary of State, Cordell Hull, not Churchill. I have a slight vari­a­tion of it in the “Red Her­rings” appen­dix of  Churchill by Him­self, page 576: “A lie will gal­lop halfway round the world before the truth has time to pull its breech­es on.”  Although com­mon­ly ascribed to Churchill (who would have said “trousers,” not “breech­es”), this is def­i­nite­ly down to Hull.…

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Witold Pilecki: A Brave Pole Who Did His Best for Liberty

Witold Pilecki: A Brave Pole Who Did His Best for Liberty

Excerpt­ed from Richard Cohen and Richard Lang­worth: “Witold Pilec­ki: A Deserv­ing Addi­tion to “The Right­eous Among the Nations,” for the Hills­dale Col­lege Churchill Project. Mr. Cohen is a real estate lawyer based in Lon­don and head of the Essex Branch of the Jew­ish His­tor­i­cal Soci­ety of Eng­land. For the full text and illus­tra­tions please click here.

War aim or by-product?

Jack Fair­weath­er, The Vol­un­teer: One Man, an Under­ground Army, and the Secret Mis­sion to Destroy Auschwitz. (The sto­ry of Witold Pilec­ki.) New York: Harper­Collins, 2019, $28.99, Ama­zon $20.49, Kin­dle $13.99.…

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