Churchill and the Jews: A Lifelong Friendship

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9780805088649: Churchill and the Jews: A Lifelong Friendship
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An insightful history of Churchill's lifelong commitment―both public and private―to the Jews and Zionism, and of his outspoken opposition to anti-Semitism

Winston Churchill's commitment to Jewish rights, to Zionism, and ultimately to the State of Israel never wavered. In 1922, he established on the bedrock of international law the right of Jews to emigrate to Palestine. During his meeting with David Ben-Gurion in 1960, Churchill presented the Israeli prime minister with an article he had written about Moses, praising the patriarch. In between these events he fought harder and more effectively for the Jewish people than the world has ever realized.

Drawing on a wide range of archives and private papers, speeches, newspaper coverage, and wartime correspondence, Churchill's official biographer, Sir Martin Gilbert, explores the origins, implications, and results of Churchill's determined commitment to Jewish rights, opening a window on an underappreciated and heroic aspect of the brilliant politician's life and career.

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About the Author:

Sir Martin Gilbert was knighted in 1995 "for services to British history and international relations." The author of an eight-volume biography of Winston Churchill, among his other books are Churchill: A Life, The First World War, The Second World War, and most recently The Somme. He lives in London, England.

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Chapter Nine

The Rise of Hitler

In Britain, a General Election was called for 14 November 1935. As the day drew near, it was rumoured that Churchill would be brought back into government. On 24 October he spoke publicly of the dangers to Britain and Europe of German rearmament and of the German population being ‘trained from childhood for war.’ On the following day the British Ambassador in Berlin, Sir Eric Phipps, sent the Foreign Office an article by the London correspondent of the official Nazi Völkishcer Beobachter, stating ‘that as soon as Mr Churchill opens his mouth, it is safe to bet that an attack on Germany will emerge. He is one of the most unscrupulous political intriguers in England. His friendship with the American Jewish millionaire Baruch leads him to expend all his remaining force and authority in directing England’s action against Germany. This is the man whom the government are apparently thinking of including in the Cabinet.’

In an article in the Strand, a widely circulated monthly magazine published in both Britain and the United States, Churchill described in uncompromising language the militaristic and racist aspects of the Nazi regime. His sources of information were wide-ranging. He had read Hitler’s own book, Mein Kampf (My Struggle), and followed the often detailed British newspaper accounts of Nazi rule. Friends in the Foreign Office and the Intelligence Service had brought him first-hand information about the severity of Nazi rule. ‘Hitler’s triumphant career has been borne onwards,’ he wrote in his Strand article, ‘not only by a passionate love of Germany, but by currents of hatred so intense as to sear the souls of those who swim upon them. Hatred of the French is the first of these currents, and we have only to read Hitler’s book, Mein Kampf, to see that the French are not the only foreign nation against whom the anger of rearmed Germany may be turned. But the internal stresses are even more striking. The Jews, supposed to have contributed, by a disloyal and pacifist influence, to the collapse of Germany at the end of the Great War, were also deemed to be the main prop of communism and the authors of defeatist doctrines in every form. Therefore, the Jews of Germany, a community numbered by many hundreds of thousands, were to be stripped of all power, driven from every position in public and social life, expelled from the professions, silenced in the Press, and declared a foul and odious race.’

The twentieth century, Churchill wrote, had witnessed ‘with surprise, not merely the promulgation of these ferocious doctrines, but their enforcement with brutal vigour by the Government and by the populace.’ The Jews were the chief victims of these doctrines. ‘No past services, no proved patriotism, even wounds sustained in war, could procure immunity for persons whose only crime was that their parents had brought them into the world. Every kind of persecution, grave or petty, upon the world-famous scientists, writers, and composers at the top down to the wretched little Jewish children in the national schools, was practised, was glorified, and is still being practised and glorified.’

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Book Description St Martin s Press, United States, 2009. Paperback. Condition: New. Reprint. Language: English . Brand New Book. An insightful history of Churchill s lifelong commitment--both public and private--to the Jews and Zionism, and of his outspoken opposition to anti-Semitism Winston Churchill s commitment to Jewish rights, to Zionism, and ultimately to the State of Israel never wavered. In 1922, he established on the bedrock of international law the right of Jews to emigrate to Palestine. During his meeting with David Ben-Gurion in 1960, Churchill presented the Israeli prime minister with an article he had written about Moses, praising the patriarch. In between these events he fought harder and more effectively for the Jewish people than the world has ever realized. Drawing on a wide range of archives and private papers, speeches, newspaper coverage, and wartime correspondence, Churchill s official biographer, Sir Martin Gilbert, explores the origins, implications, and results of Churchill s determined commitment to Jewish rights, opening a window on an underappreciated and heroic aspect of the brilliant politician s life and career. Seller Inventory # AAS9780805088649

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