Tag: Churchill’s relevance

Consistency: Politics Before Country, 1936-2011, Part 2

Consistency: Politics Before Country, 1936-2011, Part 2

Con­sis­ten­cy in Pol­i­tics: con­tin­ued from Part 1… Updat­ed with mate­r­i­al from my book, Churchill and the Avoid­able War (2015). It exon­er­ates, par­tial­ly, the actions of Mr. Bald­win.

Churchill reflect­ed in his mem­oirs on why Prime Min­is­ter Stan­ley Bald­win refused to admit his coun­try had a defense problem—Nazi Germany—because he thought the admis­sion might cost him an elec­tion. (Ref­er­ence to Baldwin’s “mis­cal­cu­la­tion” refers to his admis­sion, in Par­lia­ment, that his pre­vi­ous low esti­mates of Ger­man air strength had been cat­a­stroph­i­cal­ly low)….

Mr. Bald­win was of course not moved by any igno­ble wish to remain in office.…

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Politics Before Country, 1936-2011, Part 4

Politics Before Country, 1936-2011, Part 4

con­tin­ued from Part 3

Amer­i­ca and the oth­er great democ­ra­cies con­front no mighty super­pow­er, like Britain did in 1936. Yet we face  prob­lems which, long sim­mer­ing, may indeed result in a wreck­age sim­i­lar to what might have befall­en the world, had Churchill’s Britain, and its Com­mon­wealth, not stood alone against Hitler, until, as he put it, “those who hith­er­to had been half blind were half ready.” The clear­est dec­la­ra­tion of Churchill’s char­ac­ter and prin­ci­ple I have ever read came in July 1936, at the height of the rear­ma­ment debate, Churchill told Par­lia­ment:

I would endure with patience the roar of exul­ta­tion that would go up when I was proved wrong, because it would lift a load off my heart and off the hearts of many Mem­bers.…

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Consistency: Politics Before Country, 1936-2011, Part 3

Consistency: Politics Before Country, 1936-2011, Part 3

Consistency in Politics…

…was a theme of Churchill’s, and he often wrote about it. He made many mis­takes, but was sel­dom guilty of lack­ing con­sis­ten­cy. Con­tin­ued from Part 2

In 1937, Prime Min­is­ter Stan­ley Bald­win retired in favor of Neville Cham­ber­lain, with whom Churchill had served in an ear­li­er gov­ern­ment, and respect­ed despite their polit­i­cal dis­agree­ments in the past. But Churchill was soon dis­en­chant­ed with Chamberlain’s for­eign pol­i­cy, which remained as ded­i­cat­ed as Baldwin’s had been to appeasement—to not antag­o­niz­ing Ger­many.

Praising Chamberlain

Cham­ber­lain did begin to rearm the coun­try.…

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