The afterglow of the empire- Winston Churchill(3) – US OBSERVERS

To the east of Germany, the Soviet Union is also an important force that can be won. Not only will Churchill not make peace with Hitler, he will continue to fight in the English Channel, in the Atlantic, and in the air in Europe. If the British Sea wants to maintain its position and prestige in the world, he must not bow to Germany. In the face of Hitler’s peace talks, the British senior officials almost split. While delivering a speech, Churchill persuaded Chamberlain to stand with him. At the time, Chamberlain was still supported by most of the Conservative Party members and had a significant influence on the political situation. As a dove, Chamberlain wanted to accept Hitler’s terms at first. But under Churchill’s persuasion, he decided to oppose the peace talks and encouraged Conservative Party members to support Churchill many times. The British government finally unified its pace and decided to insist on fighting against Germany.

    After the peace talks were rejected, Germany dispatched a large number of warplanes to attack the British Isles, and the largest aerial battle of World War II-the British air battle began. Germany dispatched more than four thousand fighters, while the number of British fighters was less than half of that from Germany. Even the capital, London, was bombed intensively, but Churchill had no intention of surrendering. He inspected the bombing site every week and gave a speech on the ruins. Relying on the home court advantage and the heroic combat of the Royal Air Force, Britain finally thwarted the German offensive plan and passed the darkest moment. After the British air war ended, Churchill began to strive for the support of the United States and the Soviet Union. As long as one of these two countries stood with Britain, then Britain would not lose miserably. If these two stand with Britain, then they will definitely win. Isolationism prevailed in the United States at that time and it was unwilling to participate in the war. Churchill had close consultations with American President Roosevelt, and allowed the United States to sell a large amount of arms to the United Kingdom. After the United Kingdom’s dollar reserves were exhausted, Churchill and Roosevelt led to a loan-lease bill that allowed the United Kingdom Obtaining arms from the United States through leases and loans. This bill was initially limited to the United Kingdom, and China was also included in that bill soon. The United States still maintains neutrality in name, but in fact it has turned to the anti-fascist camp.

As for the Soviet Union, Churchill was crafty. As early as the October Revolution, he was a well-known anti-communist. He advocated actively intervening in the Russian Civil War and letting the Soviet regime die. But after World War II, when Britain needed the Soviet Union to fight together, he changed his face again. In order to win over the Soviet Union, he also done a lot. After the partition of Poland, Soviet Union and Germany had a honeymoon period. Hitler really wanted Stalin and himself to fight against Britain. On November 12, 1940, Soviet Foreign Minister Molotov visited Berlin and had a high-level meeting with German Foreign Minister Ribbentrop. After Churchill learned about this trip, he ordered the bombing of Berlin. An ingenious meeting happened in history. After the air raid began, Molotov and Ribbentrop moved to a basement. There were only two of them in the house. Ribbentrop said excitedly, “Now There are only you and me. Why don’t we divide the world?” “What about the British opinion? Molotov asked. “Britain? “Ribbentrop replied disdainfully, “Britain is dead, it is no longer a big country.” “In that case, what are we doing in this basement?” Who threw bombs above us? “Molotov’s tone contained a hint of sarcasm, and Ribbentrop’s expression became more ugly.

This story was later told by Stalin to Churchill and recorded in his memoirs by Churchill. This story is small and big, showing that Germany and the Soviet Union were at odds partly because of the British.  Ribbentrop and Molotov are just messengers, they represent Hitler and Stalin respectively. Hitler wanted to carve up the world with Stalin, but at that time Soviet Union and Germany were already bordering. Germany will eventually have the entire industrially developed Europe, while the Soviet Union can only reap some benefits in the underdeveloped Central and East Asia. Stalin was not satisfied with this. Germany was also frustrated in the British air battle, which proved that it is difficult for Germany to conquer Britain alone. Stalin used this to raise the price and told Hitler that Britain is not a waste, and it is not finished yet. If you want to drag me to fight with Britain, you will have to pay more. Stalin just wanted to bargain, but he didn’t expected that Hitler was ashamed. Hitler had always had no good feelings about the Soviet Union and communism. The frustration of the plan to attack Britain made him very upset. The English Channel led to the defeat of the British air war, but there was no strait between Germany and the Soviet Union. Hitler thought he could defeat the Soviet Union like he did to France which was the deadliest mistake he made.

    On June 22, 1941, Germany invaded the Soviet Union and the Soviet-German War broke out. That day, Churchill was the happiest person in the world. He did not wait until the next morning to deliver a speech to the people all over the country that night, announcing that Britain would support the Soviet Union against Germany. Half a year later, the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor and the United States formally joined the anti-fascist alliance. The balance of power was completely reversed, and the Allied forces were already in their hands. In the course of the subsequent World War II, Churchill and Britain’s performance was not outstanding. Except for the Battle of Alamein and the two landing operations, Britain basically followed allies to pick up the bargains and enjoy the fruits of victory. Churchill also changed his focus from “how to win World War II” to “how to benefit from World War II.” He realized that the US-Soviet bipolar world pattern was taking shape, while Britain had already fallen short.

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