The Churchill Myth
Some time ago I gave details about the activities of my father and some of the other Spaniards who had been members of the 2nd Regiment of the SAS during WW2 to an author writing on that subject. During the interview I expressed disappointment about the way in which the author tended to 'big up' Churchill. He stated that mentioning Churchill helped to sell books. Subsequently I was disgusted to find that he had described the Spaniards in 2nd SAS as 'Churchill's Spaniards'.
All but one of the Spaniards in 2nd SAS were strongly left wing and all were fully committed to the common fight against Fascism, - none of them were in any doubt about the grubby nature of Churchill.
Busy with other things I've been putting off writing this piece for some time, but watching the embarrassingly grotesque misrepresentation in a documentary on TV fronted by 'historians' last night effectively lit the blue touch paper. As viewers we were left to assume for ourselves that the Narvik fiasco was down to Chamberlain, who resigned over it, while the first mention of Churchill was a 'rabble rousing' comment of his from the battle for France. Not too long ago in another 'historian' fronted documentary the only mention of Churchill re Narvik was a statement of Churchill's, again 'rousing', which was not connected with Narvik at all.
I will return to the subject of Narvik and related matters later on.
In one sense this is a good time to examine the reality of Winston Churchill. It is February of 2022 and we have witnessed in the last few years two excellent examples of modern day Churchills - for both Donald Trump and Boris Johnson are in effect peas from the same pod simulacra of the tantrum toddler Churchill. Self-entitled self-promoting malignant incompetents.
Before looking at the toxic characteristics of the tantrum toddler let me state what Churchill was good for and why - this though is not entirely flattering.
As a figurehead in time of conflict Churchill did a good job of bolstering moral - he was a boorish loudmouth good at shouting the odds. When you're in a fight to the death loud encouragement has value. Note the use of the word figurehead, not leader; at the end of WW2 the Chief of the General Staff stated that had Churchill been allowed to make the decisions we would have lost the war.
Why he was an effective figurehead has a lot to do with the British mentality.
The Nazi figurehead was Adolf Hitler, fronting a military regime which projected physical fitness and power whether it be the Munich Olympics, squadrons of athletically fit young maidens leaping through the air in formation, the Hitler Youth hiking through the mountains, or Hitler himself in a black military style uniform and voice at full blast. Everything mechanistic and forceful.
Imagine if you will the quintessential Western - the professional gunslinger has come to town. He has already walked into the Rhineland, Austria, the Sudetenland, Poland, Belgium, Luxembourg, Holland, Denmark, Norway and now France. The only other thing moving as he walks with slow purpose down Main Street is the tumbleweed - The Sheriff 'by the merest chance' had decided the day before to go fishing, the general store is shuttered, in the bar the barman tries not to tremble and the few customers, well away from the door, stare out apprehensively, the undertaker, having noted numbers and sizes, is now quietly sorting timber in the barn.....
And then, stepping out from the barbershop comes the most unlikely figure - the slob of a barber; flabby, unfit, podgy, with a semi-gargoyle face, and with that ridiculous face an equally ridiculous voice, sticking his thumb in his belt and intoning "We will fight them on the beaches". The British mentality? The British love the underdog, and this clown is 100% underdog material.
Turning now to the nature of the tantrum toddler.
The tantrum toddlers are by definition profoundly immature characters - they have never really grown up.
Their cherry picking apologists can find statements from them which appear to show them as wise and far seeing, but the reality of the tantrum toddler is that they never stop talking, issue countless warnings of catastrophe, countless promises of panaceas; both catastrophes and panaceas in every direction imaginable and not infrequently self-contradictory. Fire off in enough different directions and you will hit the odd target.
The important thing to note is that all warnings of catastrophe have a consistent core element, so too do all promises of panaceas have a consistent core element. These two core elements are entirely accurate -
core element 1 - catastrophe will follow if the tantrum toddler is not in charge
core element 2 - perfect panaceas will follow if the tantrum toddler is in charge.
All that is left is to recognise the nature of the catastrophe and the panacea - for the tantrum toddler not in charge the catastrophe is right here right now, it is the unbearable tantrum within their own cranium, for the tantrum toddler in charge the panacea is right here right now, it is the effulgent joy of being in charge - until the next spell of boredom.
The reality of the tantrum toddlers is that their entire drive centres around their infantile failure to attain emotional maturity. We indulge these toxic characters at our peril!
If you start to itemise all the failings, the incompetence, the bigotry, the grubbiness, the cruelty, the malignancy of Churchill the Churchill fans will cling to one 'fact' and upon that will build an edifice of illusory greatness to overwhelm his, to them, minor and forgivable 'occasional' frailties.
That 'fact' is that 'Churchill was the only person to recognise the threat of the Nazis'.
That 'fact' is not fact at all.
Firstly an enormous number of people fully understood the threat of the Nazis, a fair few of them in Britain.
France and Russia wanted to establish again the alliance of WW1 to bracket the Nazis - the British governing class would have nothing of it. The nightmare scenario for the French was that if they formed a bracketing alliance with the Russians, then Perfidious Albion might form an alliance with their German cousins - interesting that during the battle for France Weygand observed "If France falls the English will form an alliance with Germany within six weeks".
Churchill was born at the height of the British empire when Britain was still seizing large junks of the planet by all manner of means, when any form of violence or skullduggery was applauded in the name of Empire. When India was the jewel in the crown.
The phrase was meant - India was the great prize.
From the moment Britain seized India until the moment we left the British governing class was obsessed with a ridiculous paranoid fear - the fear that Russia was going to invade India.
If that last sentence doesn't shock you go and look at a map. It takes a profound lack of understanding of geography, terrain, and logistics added to the guilty conscience stomach churning fear of the thief who thinks he might be caught, to arrive at the idea of a Russian invasion of India.
Only two significant figures in the British governing class recognised this paranoid fear for what it was - neither of them was Churchill.
Churchill grew up 'knowing' that Russia was THE GREAT ENEMY.
Later, of course, the Russians did something unforgivable for a dyed in the wool fan of Capitalist exploitation and member of the governing class - the ordinary people of Russia rose up, overthrowing their governing class and turfing out Capitalism.
For Churchill it was always about Russia.
At the end of WW1 the Western allies made a calculation to the effect that Germany did not have the economic resources to win a European war - they did not have the cash or the colonies of a Britain or a France, and therefore would not dare to start a war.
For Churchill, like the rest of the British governing class, the Nazis might kick off a little local rough-housing but a war? No.
So we come to the Phoney War. Poland has gone, we have declared war but no fighting is taking place. The Finns and the Russians are fighting over a border dispute, and Churchill comes up with a real whoopie-cushion idea - we should send an army to Finland, and inveigle the French to send one as well, ostensibly to help the Finns, but in reality to launch a war against Russia. For Churchill the threat of the Nazis doesn't exist - it is always all about Russia for Churchill.
The Finns surrender. But Churchill's not finished - whoopie-cushion idea number two - this time, again persuading the French to join in, we should invade then neutral Norway at Narvik, from there cross the border to invade neutral Sweden (which would have been a blood-bath) and seize the iron ore region of Gällivare. To then use Gällivare as a bargaining chip to force an alliance with the Nazis, with Britain as the senior partner no less. This, once again for the purpose of invading Russia.
When the real Narvik operation (not the fantasy one above) took place Churchill was in charge of it, the foul-up was his - Chamberlain resigned, Churchill got Chamberlain's job!
Weygand knew what he was talking about - on May 27th 1940 Churchill told Cabinet colleagues that he was agreeable to Britain coming to terms with the Nazis.
The following day he did an about face, but gave the game away - either it had occurred to him or someone had tapped him on the shoulder, the terms would include Churchill being out of a job. His replacement would be a British Quisling, most probably Oswald Mosley.
For the tantrum toddler all that matters is that they are in charge, everything else is incidental - overweening personal ambition trumps all.
To repeat, whether its a Johnson, a Trump or a Churchill we indulge these tantrum toddlers at our peril.