Winston Churchill

Discussion in 'History Forum' started by Botfield, Jun 1, 2007.

  1. Botfield

    Botfield
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    I am currently reading the condensed history, 'Churchill A Life' by Martin Gilbert (the official biographer of Churchill and author of the 15 volume official history), and thoroughly enjoying it.

    Churchill is a hero of mine, and was an amazing man. Yes, like any human being he had his faults, and he made mistakes, but history would have been the poorer without him.

    You can find out more at Wikipedia below:

    Churchill
     
  2. Alcott

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    Yeah, let's follow his example. Eat like he did-- meat pies, gourmet desserts-- drink a pint of brandy and smoke 15 big cigars daily.. and maybe we'll live 91 years, too.
     
  3. Botfield

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    So the man had an appetite, so what? And he was 90 when he died, not 91, (he died 24th January 1965 - same date as he faither had died - but his birthday wasn't until 30th November).

    He also managed to save Britain from the Nazi's, was a major friend of the US and oversaw some of the most beneficial changes to policy.
     
  4. ktn4eg

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    Churchill indeed was a great friend not only to the US but also to many others who loved freedom.

    Had we followed his advise instead of conceding so much to the ruthless Stalin, the history of post-WWII eastern Europe would have been considerably different than it was.
     
  5. Botfield

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    Agreed. In fact, WWII might not have happened if the then Government had listened to him. He wanted to help the anti-Bolshevik factions in Russia and introduce Western liberal democracy to Russia. If this had succeeded, there would have been no Communist bloc and Eastern Europe would have been much better off.

    Likewise, at the end of WWII he wanted the Allies to continue into Poland, and much of Eastern Europe and help re-establish these nations as independent countries. Instead Trueman overruled him and allowed the Russians to seize what became the Communist Bloc.
     
  6. Bob Farnaby

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    Whiest true that Churchill did do some great things at the time of the second world war don't get over enthused with the man.

    As has been said, he had alcohol problems, had adulterous affairs, and did make other numerous errors.

    No Austrlain or New Zealander will forget Galipoli, nor his abandonment of Aus/NZ in WW2.

    Nor should you forget that the British didn't want him as PM at the end of WW2, and that he hung on to political leadership long after he should have retied.

    As you may have noticed, I'm not a great Churchill fan, all I ask is that you don't get carried away with the hype and the lives of him written by his worshipers.

    Regards
    Bob
     
  7. Jim1999

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    I wonder how many were alive during Churchill's term in office? I wonder how many faced his anger in London or the mines when he threatened to turn the "guns on the lot of them" when, in angst, the Londoners had had enough of daily bombing and marched on Downing Street.

    Or a Canadian, when he knowingly allowed Canadian troops to go to Hong Kong and then abandom them to 5 years of prison, and many to death?

    Churchill had a way with words, and this made him an appropriate leader in war, but we voted him out at end of war in favour of a Labour government.

    I'll give him much credit for his wartime activities, but I never did like the man, and I prolly speak for a lot of Londoners in the East End who lived through those horrible years.

    Yes, he had praise abroad, but they didn't have to live under him!

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
  8. LadyEagle

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    If only our leaders would have learned from Churchill's quagmire in Iraq - where many British lives were lost trying to "fix" Iraq and the British treasure almost went broke. But, alas, we didn't. Too bad for us.:tear:
     
  9. Botfield

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    Check your sources. Churchill was not responsible for Gallipoli. Asquith dithered. If he had listened, there would have been no Dardanelles or Gallipoli problem.

    And it is a myth that he sent the troops into the mines - a myth promoted by socialists. He did not. He was a big fan of negotiation and wanted to get all sides together, but again he was overruled.

    Nor was he an adulterer.

    And as for staying on too long, he lost an election in 1945 but remained as Conservative leader, and then won again in 1951. He retired in 1954 because he was very aware of his failing powers.

    There are many myths about him, most started by socialists.
     
  10. Jim1999

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    And you were there during the war years, were you, in East London or in Wales. Nevermind all the writing, there are some of us who lived through his threats. And which Party was it,,,he crossed the floor so many times I forget his official party.

    Downing Street was not that far from Plaistow, where I lived!

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
  11. Ps104_33

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    Her was only voted the greatest Brit who ever lived. By Brits!

    He accomplished more in one lifetime than 100 ordinary men.

    His accomplishments are legion. It absolutely amazes me at how he found the time to do all that he did.

    He was a prolific writer and an accomplished painter. (His landscapes hang in the Louvre.)

    He built his own house and was a very good stone mason.

    His reputation for smoking and drinking are mostly urban legend. He did smoke between 10 and 15 cigars a day but they were usually not lit as he would just let them go out and he mostly chewed on them. He got into the habit of putting a little whiskey into his drinking water to sterilize it because of the bad water he had to drink in Africa and India and just continued the practice.

    Was he a perfect man? Absolutely not. Was he a political opportunist? Absolutely yes. But as Jesus said "Woe be unto you when all men speak well of you"

    BTW, how old were you Canadian Jim in 1940?
     
    #11 Ps104_33, Jun 2, 2007
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 2, 2007
  12. Jim1999

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    Thirteen, January 5th, 1940. Old enough to know what was going on and grew much faster through 5 years of war in London, thank you very much.

    Voting in favour of any historical character always changes with time. Look how many showed favour to Diana after her death!

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
  13. TomVols

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    Is it true that on one side of the doorway into the House of Commons there's a statue of Churchill (and on the other, one of Lloyd-Jones)?

    Is it also true that Churchill wrote these words at the end of a qualiifying essay for school admission: "I have nothing else to say about this that is either relevant or true"?

    I sure hope both are true - they're my favorite pieces of Churchill trivia :laugh:
     
  14. ktn4eg

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    My favorite Churchill story is the conversation that supposedly occurred between him and Lady Astor (who wasn't exactly a fan of Churchill).

    The two were at some ball when Lady Astor remarked, "Sir Winston, if I were your wife, I'd put poison in your tea!'

    His reply: "And, my dear madam, if you were my wife...I'd drink it!" :thumbs:
     
  15. Melanie

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    Yes I guess you can call him great cos he did many things that helped shape history, so did Stalin and Hitler, but as an Australian I can not forgive him for using our lads as cannon fodder because of his arrogance....he did not give a continental for the poor British foot slogger for that matter, maybe it is a requirement for greatness...that to spend the lives of the poor and oppressed....
     
  16. Botfield

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    Jim you sound like a socialist.

    Churchill was a great politician, but as with any politician, he had his flaws. And he didn't send for Australian and Empire troops, the Government did, headed by Asquith. They did it because they were part of the Empire. Their own PMs could have refused. So if you have a problem with this you should question the PMs of the day, not Churchill.

    Another good Churchill quote is also to Lady Astor. She is alleged to have said to him: "Sir, you are a drunk!". He replied: "Madam, I may be a drunk, but in the morning I will be sober. You on the other hand, will still be ugly."
     
  17. Botfield

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    He did more to relieve poverty than any other politician of his day. He introduced pensions, increased the rights of workers, got rid of many of the slums, etc. Again, don't listen to the myths of the socialists.

    And Jim: He was a Tory, who joined the Liberals and the rejoined the Tories when the Liberals collapsed in the early 1920s. But at heart he was always a reformer and a One Nation Tory. Many Liberals joined the Tories when their party collapsed, and a minority joined the Socialists. As he himself once said: "Anyone can rat [change parties], but it takes a certain ingenuity to re-rat."
     
  18. David Lamb

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  19. just-want-peace

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    Say what you will, he was a man that God placed in power with perfect timing and abilities for the needs of the day!

    Just suppose that Neville Chamberlain had been the PM during the war. 'Course then London would never have been bombed, it would have just been given to Hitler as a peace offering, I suppose!
     

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