June 21, 2015

Finest Hour 100, Autumn 1998

Page 61


Beginning with Finest Hour 69 in 1990, “International Datelines” led with a “Quote of the Season,” wherein we related something Churchill said to current events. His words on other matters, in other times, were often eerily relevant…

THE GULF WAR

“When the ancient Athenians, on one occasion, overpowered a tribe in the Peloponnesus which had wrought them injury by base, treacherous means, and when they had the hostile army herded on a beach naked for slaughter, they forgave them and set them free, and they said: ‘This was not because they were men; it was done because of the nature of Man.'”
-WSC, 1945 (FH 70,1991)

COLLAPSE OF THE SOVIET UNION

“Socialism has become intellectually discredited. It no longer presents itself as a solution of human difficulties or as an effective and practical philosophy….We have seen grisly examples of the ruin which it brought to States, industries and communities of all kinds, whether it was applied on the largest or on the smallest scale….It is intellectually bankrupt and discredited and has been proved on a gigantic scale and with perfect clearness to be fatal to the welfare of living nations.”
-WSC, 1929 (FH 73,1991)

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U.S. PRESIDENTIAL PRIMARIES

“No one has ever suggested that prolonged electioneering is capable of settling our problems….One can hardly imagine anything more unfortunate than that we should find ourselves split in half on domestic politics, with both parties gathering and arranging their forces for another trial of strength. That this should continue for many months without remedy can only be disastrous to our prosperity, and may well endanger both our life and even our survival as a great power.”
-WSC, 1950 (FH 74,, 1992)

UNIFICATION OF GERMANY

“The re-entry into the European circle of a Germany at peace within itself, with a heart devoid of hate, would be the most precious benefit for which we could strive, and a supreme advantage which alone would liberate Europe from its peril and its fear, and I believe the British and French democracies would go a long way in extending the hand of friendship to realize such a hope.”
-WSC, 1935 (FH 77,1992)

A NEW AMERICAN ADMINISTRATION

“Every new administration, not excluding ourselves arrives in power with bright and benevolent ideas of using public money to do good. The more frequent the changes of Government, the more numerous are the bright ideas, and the more frequent the elections, the more benevolent they become.”
-WSC, 1927 (FH 80,1993)

RICHARD NIXON, R.I.P.

“It might be said that he outlived his future by ten years and his past by more than twenty. The brilliant prospects which had shone before him until he became the leader were dispersed by the break-up of his Government and the defeat of his Party. The part he took as a patriot in supporting the War destroyed his hold upon the regard and confidence of the Radical masses….He severed himself by purposeful action from his friends and followers….Within a decade after achieving the pinnacle his political career was closed for ever. It was only two decades later that his long life ended.”
-WSC ON ROSEBERY, 1937 (FH 83,1994)

NORTHERN IRELAND PEACE TALKS

“Let us not be led by impatience, by prejudice, by vexation, by anxiety, into courses which would lay us open to charges of fickleness or levity in dealing with those issues so long lasting as the relations between the two islands. Let us so direct our steps that, in spite of every disappointment, we give this Treaty arrangement every possible chance of becoming the true act of reconciliation.”
-WSC, 1922 (FH 84,1994)

ISRAEL-JORDAN PEACE TREATY

“My Dear Weizmann…The wonderful exertions which Israel is making in these times of difficulty are cheering to an old Zionist like me. I trust you may work with Jordan and the rest of the Moslem world. With true comradeship there will be enough for all.”
-WSC, 1951 (FH 85,1995)

CIVIL WAR IN THE BALKANS

“Yugoslavia, since Hitler’s invasion and conquest in April 1941, had been the scene of fearful events….In the mountains there began again the fierce guerrilla with which the Serbs had resisted the Turks for centuries….This confronted the Germans with a problem which could not be solved by the mass executions of notables or persons of substance. They found themselves confronted by desperate men who had to be hunted down in their lairs. No reprisals, however bloody, upon hostages or villages deterred them.”
-WSC, 1951 (FH 88,1995)

DROPPING THE MONARCHY

“Ignorant people are often disposed to imagine that progress consists in converting oneself from a monarchy into a republic. In this country we have known the blessings of limited monarchy. Great traditional and constitutional chains of events have come to make an arrangement, to make a situation, unwritten, which enables our affairs to proceed on what I believe is a superior level of smoothness and of democratic progress.”
-WSC, 1944 (FH 89,1996)

EUROPEAN UNION

“Anyone can see what the position is. The Government simply cannot make up their minds, or they cannot get the Prime Minister to make up his mind. So they go on in strange paradox, decided only to be undecided, resolved to be irresolute, adamant for drift, solid for fluidity, all-powerful to be impotent. So we go on preparing more months and years—precious perhaps to the greatness of Britain—for the locusts to eat.”
-WSC, 1938 (FH 92,1996)

SCOTTISH SCIENTISTS CLONE A SHEEP

“There seems little doubt that it will be possible to carry out in artificial surroundings the entire cycle which now leads to the birth of a child. Interference with the mental development of such beings, expert suggestion and treatment in the earlier years, would produce beings specialized to thought or toil….A being might be produced capable of tending a machine but without other ambitions.”
-WSC, 1931 (FH 94,1997)

ANTAGONISM IN THE U.S. CONGRESS

“Class quarrels, endless party strife, on a background of apathy, indifference and bewilderment, will lead us all to ruin. Only a new surge of impulse can win us back the glorious ascendancy which we gained in the struggle for right and freedom, and for which our forebears had nerved our hearts down the long aisles of time. Let us make a supreme effort to surmount our dangers. Let faith—not appetite—guide our steps.”
-WSC, 1950 (FH 95,1997)

PALESTINIAN STATEHOOD

“When the Arab municipalities are conducting their affairs with anything like the progressive vigour that is shown by the Jewish community, and when you have come to the point of the whole principle of local government having been implemented by the good will and activities of the population, your case will be enormously stronger for a forward movement.”
-WSC, 1936 (FH 96,1997)

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