Churchill: The official version versus my dad’s version.

Strange how one’s background affects one’s perception of events.

For a long time I had difficulty reconciling the official line on Sir Winston Churchill, Saviour of the Nation, with my own father’s view of him.

The only item of record that seemed to match my father’s view was the fact that he was thrown out of office by “an ungrateful Nation”.

Again, the official line seemed to be that this was a temporary aberration, brought on by “war fatigue”.

I do recall an expression on my father’s face, when this matter was mentioned.

It seemed similar to the expression that I saw on many faces around me, when it was announced that the beatific Maggie Thatcher had resigned.

The comparison of the contrast, between the official lines on these two heroes of Britain with the observed distaste for them of those around me, seemed to point up the fact that History is written by those in power, with a complete disregard for the perceptions of the majority.

Andrew Marr’s History of Britain helped me to see Churchill through my father’s eyes.

He had told me of Tonypandy, of warships in the Mersey and Gallipoli Mark I and Mark II.

Andrew Marr’s account of Churchill( painted a portrait of a man, who deprived of the chance of declaring war on his countrymen in Ulster, had badgered his party leader into joining in the Great War.

One wonders how much of an influence he had had.

If we hadn’t been involved in the First World War, we wouldn’t have had whole families wiped out, including many young men of the working class, who had been moving towards revolution.

So we might have had a revolution.

On the other hand it is unlikely that France would have defeated Germany. France would not have raped the German Economy demolishing its base for economic recovery and creating the conditions that brought Hitler to power.

We wouldn’t have had Churchill sell our national assets and surrender our Empire in exchange for American Arms and materiel.

We wouldn’t have become vassals of American Foreign policy, made to secede from Suez etc.

Made to surrender our cotton industry to the Far East to fend of the communist menace (the domino theory).

Our Steel Industry to Japan.

We wouldn’t have had our banks raise our interest rates to under-write the bankrupt nations of S. America because of the “Special relationship” twixt Ronald Reagan and Maggie.

On the other hand I wouldn’t be here to moan about it.


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