Winston Churchill

Discussion in 'History Forum' started by Ps104_33, Mar 26, 2005.

  1. Ps104_33

    Ps104_33
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    I find Churchill the most fascinating man in history. It seems people either loved or hated him. What a life he had. The Boer War, WWI, WWII. I am presently reading Manchesters biography on Churchill, "The Last Lion". Does anyone know if he(Manchester) is the best authority on Churchill? Also I was very surprised to find out that no one has ever made a movie about Winston Churchill. There are movies about Patton (George C. Scott), Napoleon, and other great war time leaders, but not one on Churchill. Who would you cast to play Winston? What is your opinion of Winston Churchill? I would especially like to hear from Matt and others from England.
     
  2. Jim1999

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    Speaking as a Londoner during the war years, there is no question that Churchill was the man of the hour. There is no question that most of us in London disliked him. He even threatened to shoot the East Londoners, who took most of the bombing, had had enough and marched on the Parliament to have Churhill call a halt to the war. That is when he threatened to shoot us.

    He took such drastic measures to accomplish what he wanted. He also made mistakes which cost thousands their lives, but men were expendable..his words. For example, Dunkirk need not have happened. He knew it would be a disaster and Canadians paid the price dearly. He also knew that Hong Kong would fall to the Japanese, but he dispatched Canadian and British soldiers into Hong Kong and thousands ended up in Japanese POW camps for the duration.

    It is significant that Churchill was defeated as Prime Minister the moment the war was over and a Labour government elected.

    I must reiterate, however, that he was the man of the hour. He had the right words and the resolve to win the war. No other man in England at the time could have stood up to Hitler the way he did. He even defied Roosevelt, who called Hitler a great leader just before the war, as did the Canadian Prime Minister. Churchill stood his ground regardless of what others thought,,,thankfully.

    So, that is the dichotomy, by this Englishman, who was there.

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
  3. Melanie

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    Churchill was also involved in the wastage of ANZAC lives, the colonies were simply fodder to protect the motherland.

    Thankfully our PM (Mr Curtin) at the time stood up to him and called our troops home to protect our shores from the Japanese hop scotching down to Aus.
     
  4. blackbird

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    Jim---you say to the line---"Dunkirk need not to have happened. He knew it would be a disaster Canadians paid the price dearly."

    Are you sure you're not thinking of a place called Daeppe?? The Canadians lost nearly 5,000 troopers---to death, and to POW camps there!

    Dunkirk was a massed retreat by the British Expeditionary Forces and the French---when asked why Hitler didn't send his Luftwaffe in to the beaches in Dunkirk in full force---his reply was---the British would loose whats left of their dignity!!!
     
  5. Jim1999

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    Blackbird,
    In the 2nd world war, there were two assaults on DUnkirk. The first was an absolute disaster when the Brits were retreating...remember, the Canadian Forces were an integral part of the British Forces until McNaughton had Canada recognized as a separate army.

    On the second assault, the expectations of the higher ups was to come back with 30,000 men. Boats were badly controlled and even broke down, and original plans went awry. The first assault was delayed by winds. Had the winds not come up, 335,000 men were in peril and surely would have been lost. It was a plan to foil Hitler at the cost of many lives. Canadians played an integral role in Dunkirk.

    Dieppe was also a planned error at the cost of many Canadian lives...I never even mentioned that assault.

    As I said, I am of two minds on Churchill. As a Londoner, I despised the man. On the same token, he was the man of the hour. The world outside only saw his heroics. We, who faced the bombs, day after day, for a whole year, have a far different opinion.

    Let the election immediately at the close of the war speak for itself. Churchill was soundly defeated in favour of a Labour Government. Unlike your Eisenhour (sp) who became a very popular president, probably because of his wartime adventures.

    Afraid you don't read everything in books. How many know about the Londoner's march on Downing Street, demanding the prime minister (Churchill) to call a halt to the war because we had had enough. Here is where I give Churchill credit. He stood his ground, and the rest is history; we survived.

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
  6. blackbird

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    I'm sorry, Brother Jim---but I haven't ever read of any assault conducted by either the Brits or Canadian troopers on Dunkirk! I do know that there was a sizable Expeditionary force of British troops on the main continent when Hitler initiated his invasion of France---thus the retreat at Dunkirk.

    When the British were successful in their withdrawal back to the Island Nation---the vast majority of Englanders saw the withdrawal as a victory----in which Churchill reminded them that

    "Wars are not won in retreat!!"

    I'm sorry---I will try to do better with my history of WW2!!
     
  7. Ps104_33

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    I am just finishing the first volume of Manchester's "the Last Lion" which mainly deals with Churchill as Lord of the Admiralty during WWI. Many of Churchill's failures were due to his inability to carry out his war plans as he thought they should have been carried out and the disloyalty of Admiral Fisher and General Kitchener. (head of the BEF). Had they listened to Churchill and carried out his plan for the Dardenelles to take Constantinople the war would have taken a different turn. There was another incident where Turkey purchased two warships from England and when they sent a officers and a crew to pick them up Churchill refused to let them have them because England needed them now and Turkey was never justly compensated. Turkey then turned to Germany for their ships and Germany got another ally. Had Churchill let Turkey have their ships the Dardenelles may have been a moot point. Chirchill seemed to have a great disdain for Islam. But greatness comes with failure. All men who achieve greatness seem seem to have a life riddled with mant failures. (Lincoln for example). Churchill made some blunders because he accomplished much.
     

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