An interpretation of Churchill — Geoffrey Norman replies. Honest Abe wasn’t so bad. Government generosity. Plus more.
NEWSFLASH: POLITICIANS DISSEMBLE
Re: Richard M. Langworth’s letter (under “A Red Herring”) in Reader Mail’s Misquoting an Ally:
I am not now, nor have I ever been, a neo anything. Funny how a little prefix has become so loaded, isn’t it. But that is another question.
I’m sorry that I didn’t know the entire story of that Churchill quote. If I had, I would have added the fact that Churchill confirmed giving the interview but denied the quote. But Mr. Churchill was a political man — arguably the finest specimen of the breed we have ever seen, but still a political man. And political men are not beyond denying that they have said things which they, indeed, did say. Especially when there is a good reason behind the denial. Churchill had such reason. Namely, he didn’t want to come off as sourly ungrateful about the U.S. role in the first World War with Hitler showing every sign he was eager for a rematch; one for which Mr. Churchill’s country was woefully unprepared, as he’d been urgently telling anyone who would listen. He no doubt figured he’d need American’s help in round two and didn’t need so sound like he regretted our assistance in the first one.
So I’d say it’s even money that Churchill did make the remarks as the man who published them swore, under oath, he did.
Anyway, I got the quote from a book of military history — J.F.C.
Fuller’s Decisive Battles of the Western World — and if
Mr. Churchill did not say it, I apologize to him and to
Spectator readers none of whom, I’m sure, doubt that the
sentiments in that quote were at one time widely shared in Europe
can be logically and historically defended to this day.
— Geoffrey Norman
Re: Geoffrey Norman’s Ninety-Two Years and Counting:
As an Englishman, I accept most of Mr. Norman’s assertions. I think that in Europe in particular, and less so in Britain, the crucial past and present role of the U.S. is under-acknowledged.
On the other hand the wartime leadership of the U.S. spoiled everything. Roosevelt thought he could ”deal with” (his words) Stalin, and sacrificed Eastern Europe through his ignorance. He took the side of Stalin against Churchill, who had a far more realistic view of just what Stalin represented — yet he is still held in adulation, for some reason.
I often think that the over-respectful attitude, and in Obama’s case hagiography, stems from the Germanic constituent of 19th and 20th century immigration into the U.S.
Meanwhile let us all unite under a common anti-terrorist and pro-freedom view of the World. There is a lot wrong with Britain, just as there is with the USA. It is fruitless and counter-productive to continually have a negative view of each other, whatever the history.
I myself recognize that my future freedom is intimately bound to the U.S. championship of freedom throughout the World.
Let us all think like that and struggle against terrorism and
mock liberalism, the two real enemies of the present.
Re: Jay D. Homnick’s The Importance of Justice:
Ginsburg is an embarrassment to our entire justice system. Even with the likes of leaky Leahy on the judiciary committee, I seriously doubt Ginsburg would have been confirmed if she had told the truth during her confirmation hearings: she believes foreign law should influence American legal decisions.
Ginsburg should be impeached and thrown off of the bench. America
— Garry Greenwood