Churchill source questions, Churchill was a great wartime leader, Wartime…
Churchill source questions
War time relationship with Roosevelt
Stage one: US support but non-intervention
• US troops occupy Greenland
• Lend-lease Act - $31.4 billion of assistance to Britain by 1945
• December 1940 – Roosevelt – ‘Arsenal of democracy’ speech
• 1940 – 50 US destroyers traded to the British
• Neutral zone across US and south America – prevent German attacking shipping
• Repealed the neutrality act to allow Britain to purchase US arms
US concerns: pre-war
• North Africa Campaign
• British imperialism and wanting to gain territories
• British empire stood in the way of free trade
• Obsolete destroyers
• South Africa gold is taken as security for land-lease payments USA gets large profits from arms sales.
Stage two: US enters the war
• Declaration of war requires congress
• Japan’s war with china and in the pasific begins to force US hands
• Pearl Harbour
• Churchill goes to US and makes a good impression
• American sees Churchill heroic figure post pearl harbour
• British intelligence efforts
• US supports a ‘Europe First’ approch
Stage three: The war years
• Churchill persuades the US not to launch Operation Sledgehammer – front in france
• Mediterranean campaign idea is accepted by the US
• Roosevelt disliked de Gaulle and churchill’s suport of him
• US favours attacks in south of france and churchill did not
• Vice versa with Balkans
• US pressure late forces churchill into operation overlord
• Roosevelt side-lined Churchill as USA and USSR contributing most to the war effort
Tehran: frosty relations
• Roosevelt refuses to meet churchill to decide a join policy before the conference
• Roosevelt meets chinese leader without churchill’s knowledge
• Roosevelt wants more british efforts in Burma
• US switches efforets to japan
• Bitter argumnts about operation overlord#
• Stalin davoured over churchill
• Churchill plans for the balkans rejected
• US suprereme commander for operation overlord
Churchill was a great wartime leader
Even after the failure of WW1 like Gallipoli he still was keen to interfere in the army’s business and lead the attack for the army. However very early on in the Norway campaign (1940) they were invaded and lost the country to Germany.
He risked Britain’s safety and by attacking a French fleet. Although it was to prevent them falling into the Germans hands, he still risked their closest ally turning against them.
He persisted for war even when their economy was very weak and close to collapse.
Towards the end of the war, he refused to talk about Britain after the war as he was focused on the now.
He did not have good relationships with his general and if he did not like them then he would just get rid of them. For example, he got rid of Wavell because he wanted to attack Italy in Greece, but Wavell was the key part of the success in Northern Africa.
He was keen to bomb civilians which was questionable with morale.
He was forceful in his views, although they were not always right.
He was a charismatic Pm who worked all day and night.
His speeches were what he was best known for. He made powerful speeches that used very strong imagery to draw in the public and give them hope in a moment of despair. Finest hour speech was made after Dunkirk.
The evacuation of Dunkirk showed the nations attempt to salvage the war for Britain, and it suggests that Churchill was a good wartime leader because he led the public to feel that it was a nation worth fighting for.
He refused to pull out of the war at the beginning even though Halifax was making peace talks with Italy and Germany (28th May). This showed his loyalty to his country. However, this did threaten the country's economy. “rot” was Churchills outlook on peace.
Wartime relations with USSR 1944-45
• Stalin was a clever and ruthless dictator
• Churchill hated Stalin and communism
• Churchill had earlier stent British forces to help the white Russians in the 1917 revolution
• Operation Barbarossa; (invasion of USSR by the Germans) “If Hitler invaded Hell I would at least make a favourable reference to the Devil in the House of Commons”
• Russian resistance was much admired in Britain but Churchill tried to stop the huge sacrificed made by Russians at Stalingrad and Leningrad (both battles were very bloody) from leading to an early invasion of Northern France
...Old style diplomacy...
• Spheres of influence – more typical of victorian politics that 1940s
• Percentages of influences
• Challenges ideas of Britain’s as a fighter for freedom and highlights a much more cynical policy
• Stalin respects this in terms of greece
• Churchill and Stalin actually get on – heavy drinkers and promote ther own countires interests.
Churchill was best suited to be prime minister in 1940
There was a substantial show of no confidence among backbench conservatives
• Churchill was not seen as a viable option because of his own personal character traits. (only a small minority wanted him as PM)
Labour would not server under Chamberlain
And he had fallen ill therefore was not up to the job
Halifax would not take office
• Lord Halifax was seen as the next in line due to his long heritage and as a former foreign secretary and sat in the house of lords
• However Halifax new he would have to resign from the house of lords to take this position and he knew he was not fit for the role.
• There was an obvious need for a decisive leader
the state of the country was poor and Britain had taken heavy losses in battle and the people were loosing moral. a strong powerful leader was needed to motivate everyone into fighting back.
The king, against his judgment appointed Churchill Prime Minister on 10th May 1940
• Churchill was the only alternative and the only one who wanted to take the job