EXCERPT ONLY: For the complete text of “Churchill and the Baltic” with endnotes, please go to this page on the Hillsdale College Churchill Project.
“No doubt where the right lay”: 1940-95
Soviet Ambassador Ivan Maisky was a “Bollinger Bolshevik” who mixed support for Communism with a love of Western luxury. Friendly to Churchill, he knew the Englishman hoped to separate Hitler and Stalin, even after World War II had started.
But Maisky tended to see what he wished to see. In December he recorded: “The British Government announces its readiness to recognize ‘de facto’ the changes in the Baltics so as to settle ‘de jure’ the whole issue later, probably after the war.” There was no such announcement.…
“Very often the eagles have been squalled down by the parrots.” —Churchill, House of Commons, 18 January 1945
Some seasoned students of the man were of two minds about the January 2015 Winston Churchill death celebrations: gratified that people still remember; shock at the ill-considered assertions.
This is such a rote performance, and sadly typical. First, you tee up Churchill as the savior of 1940. Then you tear him down with the familiar litany of charges. I do wish they’d come up with some new ones; the old chestnuts are getting shopworn.…
The film “Judgment at Nuremberg” suggests that Churchill “praised Hitler” right after the Munich Pact, which would seem an odd time for Churchill to be singing the praises of the Führer. What’s the story? —K.C., Washington
In a speech to the Reichstag in early November 1938, Hitler had attacked Churchill and others who had objected to the Munich Pact by name and describing them as “warmongers.” Replying in the House of Commons on 6 November, Churchill said:
I am surprised that the head of a great State should set himself to attack British members of Parliament who hold no official position and who are not even the leaders of parties.…