Thursday, July 9, 2015

Churchill: The War Memos

The war memos are in the annexes of  Churchill's History of WWII 

They show how Churchill micro-managed his war.
He tried to have all of it under his own personal control:
He monitored supply dates and delays,
- the logistics,
- each of the ships, the air force, the technology;
- what the Germans were doing;
- the allies, the supposedly neutral countries, US public opinion,
- reserves of raw materials, air raids, import stats, food stats.

The generals may have thought he was sort of a backseat driver.

. .

Most of the time, though he never said so, Churchill thought that England might break down. He wrote that her ships should be turned over to the United States before Hitler could take them.

Above is the famous portrait photo taken by Yousef Karsh.
It comes with its story at

Churchill wanted to keep his cigar in his mouth and Karsh, most respectfully or actually with  devotion, walked up to him and took it out of his mouth -- !!
The somber face of the photo shows Churchill's reaction to what must have felt like unspeakable impertinence, but instantly Churchill also realized the courage mustered by the photographer, and he smiled !

It's an awkward smile, between amused and shy, and the photographer also caught that, and you can see it there, on that website quoted above.

Audio file :
'... We shall go on to the end, we shall fight in France, we shall fight on the seas and oceans, we shall fight with growing confidence and growing strength in the air, we shall defend our island, whatever the cost may be, we shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills; we shall never surrender ...' .....


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