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Winston Churchill and the death of Prince George, Duke of Kent


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It has been recently revealed under the 60 year rule on the release of information that the Duke of Kent was appointed as Churchill’s Liaison Officer at the impending talks in Washington on the invasion of mainland Europe, during 1942. On the morning of 25th August 1942 15 people were aboard the Sunderland flying boat No W4026, bound for America. One of the passengers was the Duke of Kent en route for the Washington conference. The plane took off from Invergordon, Scotland, and shortly afterwards tragedy struck. The plane should have been over open water; instead it flew into a Scottish hillside, killing all but one of the crew, Flt Sgt Andrew Jack the rear gunner. (Andrew Jack died in 1976)

I did not know this but it does raise interesting possibilities. Other released documents showed that Churchill did not trust the Duke of Kent during this period.

The website you have quoted in the past to defend the official story of the crash has this to say about the politics of the Duke of Kent and the royal family:

"If it was held paramount to rid the country of a particular individual, including a member of the Royal family, allegedly given to pro-German sentiment, it would no doubt have been done in the ruthless manner typical of any British establishment under wartime conditions. Edward VIII, had he not abdicated to marry Wallis Warfield , would undoubtedly have been a candidate. Edward was quite open in his admiration of Germany under Hitler and in turn, Hitler saw Edward as his potential ally in the New World order. It was certain that pre war, the Duke, in common with a sizeable minority in the United Kingdom, did exhibit a degree of empathy with the emergent political power in Berlin. Whether this view survived the first three years of total war is open to debate."

The point is that we know that members of the royal family were more than just sympathetic to the Nazis in Germany in the early 1930s. It is true that virtually all of the Conservative Party took a similar view of these events. It has to be remembered that the main fear of the ruling class during this period was the possibility of a communist/socialist revolution. They therefore approved of the way that Hitler locked up left-wing and trade-union leaders after he gained power. In fact, they sent them to concentration camps. This is the point Martin Niemöller, a supporter of the Nazi Party, makes in his poem he wrote after he was released from Dachau in 1945:

First they came for the communists, and I did not speak out - because I was not a communist;

Then they came for the socialists, and I did not speak out - because I was not a socialist;

Then they came for the trade unionists, and I did not speak out - because I was not a trade unionist;

Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out - because I was not a Jew;

Then they came for me - and there was no one left to speak out for me.

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/GERniemoller.htm

In the years following the Second World War Martin Niemöller was banned from entering both the UK and the USA. His account of Nazi Germany was a severe embarrassment to these governments who were busy trying to develop the myth that they had been totally opposed to the Nazi government from the beginning.

In reality they were urging the Nazis on to destroy the communist government in the Soviet Union. In “My Struggle (Mein Kampf)” Hitler made it clear that he planned to move East in order to destroy communism. Hitler believed that the Jews were involved with Communists in a joint conspiracy to take over the world. Like Henry Ford, Hitler claimed that 75% of all Communists were Jews. Hitler argued that the combination of Jews and Marxists had already been successful in Russia and now threatened the rest of Europe. He argued that the communist revolution was an act of revenge that attempted to disguise the inferiority of the Jews.

In Mein Kampf Hitler declared that: "The external security of a people in largely determined by the size of its territory." If he won power Hitler promised to occupy Russian land that would provide protection and lebensraum (living space) for the German people. This action would help to destroy the Jewish/Marxist attempt to control the world: "The Russian Empire in the East is ripe for collapse; and the end of the Jewish domination of Russia will also be the end of Russia as a state."

To achieve this expansion in the East, Hitler claimed that it might be necessary to form an alliance with Britain and Italy. An alliance with Britain was vitally important because it would prevent Germany fighting a war in the East and West at the same time.

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/GERmein.htm

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/GERhitler.htm

This is why the UK and France refused to support the democratically elected government in Spain against the German and Italian military forces that had intervened in the civil war that started in 1936.

It was clear to everyone, including Hitler, that the non-intervention by UK and France, meant that they supported his attempts to destroy the left in Europe. This was confirmed when the UK and France refused to form an alliance with the Soviet Union in an attempt to halt the growing power of Nazi Germany.

At this time, conservative politicians (and the royal family) thought that Hitler’s first target would be the Soviet Union. They were therefore embarrassed when Hitler decided to go into Czechoslovakia first. This forced Neville Chamberlain and the British government, urged on by George VI, to develop the policy of appeasement. Hitler’s understanding of this policy was that the UK government would never declare war on Germany. Therefore, he could build up his strength by taking Poland before tackling his main enemy, the Soviet Union.

Hitler, however, had failed to grasp that Chamberlain and his right-wing government, was not a dictatorship. A significant percentage of the British people were humiliated by the actions of Chamberlain’s actions. On 2 September 1939, a debate took place in the House of Commons on the German invasion of Poland. Chamberlain announced that he was unwilling to declare war on Germany. As Labour Party leader Clement Attlee was absent, Arthur Greenwood stood up in his place and announced that he was speaking for Labour. Leo Amery, an anti-appeasement Tory MP, called out to him across the floor, “Speak for England Arthur!” (Interestingly, Leo Amery’s son, John Amery, was executed for treason on 19th December, 1945. This is a convenient execution as John Amery had much to tell on the way the British government’s relationship with Hitler between 1938-41.)

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/2WWameryJ.htm

It was clear that if the UK was to remain a democracy, Chamberlain had no option but to declare war on Germany. We then entered what is now known as the “phony war” as both Chamberlain and Hitler worked behind the scenes to ensure that no fighting took place between these two countries.

Secret negotiations took place between Germany and the UK. The Duke of Kent played an important role in this. He was chosen as he could represent both the government and the royal family in these talks.

The Duke of Kent had a good relationship with several Nazi leaders, including Rudolf Hess and Alfred Rosenberg. A report written by Rosenberg for Adolf Hitler in October 1935 stated that the Duke of Kent was working behind the scenes "in strengthening the pressure for a reconstruction of the Cabinet and mainly towards beginning the movement in the direction of Germany."

In February 1937 it was reported that the Duke of Kent had met the Duke of Windsor in Austria. Later that year a Foreign Office document pointed out that the Duke of Kent had developed a close relationship with Joachim von Ribbentrop, the German Ambassador in London.

The Duke of Kent took part in secret talks with his cousin Prince Philip of Hesse in early 1939 in order to avoid a war with Nazi Germany. In July 1939, the Duke of Kent he approached George VI with a plan to negotiate directly with Adolf Hitler. The king, who supported the idea, spoke to Neville Chamberlain and Lord Halifax about the plan.

In 1940 the Duke of Kent travelled to Lisbon to meet the dictator of Portugal, Antonio Salazar. The Duke of Windsor, who was in Madrid at the time, planned to meet his brother while he was in Lisbon. British officials were instructed to prevent the former king from going to Portugal until the Duke of Kent had left the country. It was important that the media did not get to know what the Duke of Kent was up to. The presence of the Duke of Windsor would have caused alarm bells to ring.

I believe the Duke of Kent carried out these negotiations into the following year. On 10th May, 1941, Rudolf Hess flew a Me 110 to Scotland with the intention of having a meeting with the Duke of Hamilton. Hess hoped that Hamilton would arrange for him to meet representatives of the royal family. In fact, Hess believed that his visit had been approved by both Winston Churchill and George VI. According to the authors of “Double Standards” (2001) the Duke of Kent was with Hamilton at his home (Dungavel House) on the night that Hess arrived in Scotland. As the Duke of Kent's papers are embargoed it is impossible to confirm this story. However, we do know from other sources he was at RAF Sumburgh in the Shetlands on the 9th and at Balmoral in Scotland on the 11th of May. The following day he was at RAF Wick at Caithness. He was therefore definitely in that area during this period.

The Duke of Hamilton's diary records several meetings with the Duke of Kent during the early months of 1941. Elizabeth Byrd worked as a secretary for Hamilton's brother Lord Malcolm Douglas-Hamilton. She claims he told her that the Duke of Hamilton took the "flak for the whole Hess affair in order to protect others even higher up the social scale". Byrd added that "he (Lord Malcolm) had strongly hinted that the cover-up was necessary to protect the reputations of members of the Royal Family".

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You might have to think long and hard before answering this John (because I have a horrible feeling you might not have considered this before)...

but WHICH British government arranged the accident and cover-up?

I know what you mean, but I would not go as far as this.

No, John, you don't have a clue what I mean. Your mission statement (to fit Churchill up), your failure even to mention the obvious leading suspect(s) in the Duke of Kent case and your evasive, inadequate reply to my question all make Operation Paget appear credible by comparison.

I hear the steady drone of Lancasters coming to 'Coventrize' your argument...

Edited by Michael Chapman
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You might have to think long and hard before answering this John (because I have a horrible feeling you might not have considered this before)...

but WHICH British government arranged the accident and cover-up?

I know what you mean, but I would not go as far as this.

No, John, you don't have a clue what I mean. Your mission statement (to fit Churchill up), your failure even to mention the obvious leading suspect(s) in the Duke of Kent case and your evasive, inadequate reply to my question all make Operation Paget appear credible by comparison.

I hear the steady drone of Lancasters coming to 'Coventrize' your argument...

I think it would be fair to say you have a number of us intrigued, Michael. Certainly you can count me in.

I'd like to see your cards.

What've you got?

In a similar spirit, I'd like to hear more from John about the motive he believes Churchill would have had for killing the Duke of Kent in 1942.

By then the war party was firmly ensconced in power in Britain, with Churchill at the helm of the British State at War. I'm unaware of any significant, organized 'peace camp' in Britain by that stage in the war.

Why, in your view, would Churchill have wanted the Duke's death so much?

Sikorski was a very different case. His refusal to accept Allied propaganda about Katyn and his concurrence with Hitler's demand for a Red Cross Inquiry into the mass slaughter of Polish officers in eastern Poland was deeply embarrassing to the allied leaders.

But what, in your view, was the threat posed by the Duke of Kent to Churchill and his interests?

If I missed this in your presentation, please excuse me. I'm rather short of time at present and don't have time right now to re-read the thread.

Edited by Sid Walker
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I hope that anyone investigating Churchill will consider carefully this anecdote by Fletcher Prouty:

http://www.prouty.org/coment11.html

Keep in mind, Prouty is simply relating what Stalin (who was probably not reliable) told Roosevelt's son.

Prouty has been unfairly maligned. He is a careful scholar and an important eyewitness to many of these events.

Good luck with investigating airplane crashes. I hope insight into the recent crashes in America of Mel Carnahan (in 2000) and Paul Wellstone (in 2002) will be of relevance.

Best,

Dr. Gregg Wager

http://www.angelfire.com/music2/greggwager

I had not heard this story. Stalin was aware that Churchill was willing to order the assassinations of other political figures. In fact, one one occasion Churchill ordered the killing of one leading politician on behalf of Stalin (it was in both their interests that he died). This killing is linked to that of the Duke of Kent and I will be writing about it later.

It was in Churchill's interest for Roosevelt to die in 1945 (he considered him far too soft on communism). However, I very much doubt if he had the power to get rid of Roosevelt.

Hi John

There was a documentry on the History channel last night about the major political player's in WW2.

Two bits stuck in my mind:

i) Churchills armed forces advisors where required to pull Churchill back from ill thought out proposals.

(one in particular was the use of poison gas on German civilians)

ii) Roosevelt made clear to Churchill his position (and I dare say his country's position) with regard to the breakup of the British Empire after the war was won.

Chris Brown.

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I hope that anyone investigating Churchill will consider carefully this anecdote by Fletcher Prouty:

http://www.prouty.org/coment11.html

Keep in mind, Prouty is simply relating what Stalin (who was probably not reliable) told Roosevelt's son.

Prouty has been unfairly maligned. He is a careful scholar and an important eyewitness to many of these events.

Prouty was not "a careful scholar," as the link you provided demonstrates. Here is the truth about the John Swinton whom Prouty misrepresents (which doesn't surprise me at all):

http://www.rense.com/general20/yes.htm

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I hope that anyone investigating Churchill will consider carefully this anecdote by Fletcher Prouty:

http://www.prouty.org/coment11.html

Keep in mind, Prouty is simply relating what Stalin (who was probably not reliable) told Roosevelt's son.

Prouty has been unfairly maligned. He is a careful scholar and an important eyewitness to many of these events.

Prouty was not "a careful scholar," as the link you provided demonstrates. Here is the truth about the John Swinton whom Prouty misrepresents (which doesn't surprise me at all):

http://www.rense.com/general20/yes.htm

Whether or not Prouty was a careful scholar is immaterial. Winston (I use the familiar moniker just to get up Simmer's nose) was at the very least an accessory to Rooselvelt's murder (there, you see, evidence that my probiscus isn't half way up Winston's sphincter!). Their relationship can only be characterised as 'special' only in so far as the adjective describes the state of loathing and distrustfulness that existed between them.

Roosevelt had to die...

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Whether or not Prouty was a careful scholar is immaterial. Winston (I use the familiar moniker just to get up Simmer's nose) was at the very least an accessory to Rooselvelt's murder (there, you see, evidence that my probiscus isn't half way up Winston's sphincter!). Their relationship can only be characterised as 'special' only in so far as the adjective describes the state of loathing and distrustfulness that existed between them.

Roosevelt had to die...

Where is your evidence for this claim?

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I can't resist telling the joke about the time Churchill stayed overnight at the White House. Early the next morning, Roosevelt caught Churchill coming out of Eleanor's bedroom.

FDR said, "Now, Winnie, I'll have no more of that."

Churchill said, "By Jove, I don't believe I will either."

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Whether or not Prouty was a careful scholar is immaterial. Winston (I use the familiar moniker just to get up Simmer's nose) was at the very least an accessory to Rooselvelt's murder (there, you see, evidence that my probiscus isn't half way up Winston's sphincter!). Their relationship can only be characterised as 'special' only in so far as the adjective describes the state of loathing and distrustfulness that existed between them.

Roosevelt had to die...

Where is your evidence for this claim?

Mr. Chapman’s game seems to be making enigmatic posts that he fancies as cleverly written in which he normally takes jabs you or members of the forum in general, providing evidence thus far has not been part of that game. I doubt he plans to provide or even has any.

Thanks for the above Ron LOL

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Whether or not Prouty was a careful scholar is immaterial. Winston (I use the familiar moniker just to get up Simmer's nose) was at the very least an accessory to Rooselvelt's murder (there, you see, evidence that my probiscus isn't half way up Winston's sphincter!). Their relationship can only be characterised as 'special' only in so far as the adjective describes the state of loathing and distrustfulness that existed between them.

Roosevelt had to die...

Where is your evidence for this claim?

Mr. Chapman’s game seems to be making enigmatic posts that he fancies as cleverly written in which he normally takes jabs you or members of the forum in general, providing evidence thus far has not been part of that game. I doubt he plans to provide or even has any.

Thanks for the above Ron LOL

1) See my last post on the Litvinenko thread.

2) Len, I swear, you will always be first in the queue for the 'Chapman Experience.' But you must understand, like all great showmen, I have to build the tension first.

In any case, Simmo still hasn't given us his grand Churchill theory...

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There was a documentry on the History channel last night about the major political player's in WW2.

Two bits stuck in my mind:

i) Churchills armed forces advisors where required to pull Churchill back from ill thought out proposals.

(one in particular was the use of poison gas on German civilians)

ii) Roosevelt made clear to Churchill his position (and I dare say his country's position) with regard to the breakup of the British Empire after the war was won.

I did not see the documentary but it is true that Roosevelt and Churchill had very different views on the British Empire. Churchill also had a greater fear of communism than Roosevelt. Churchill would have had much more difficulty starting the "Cold War" if Roosevelt had lived. Nor do I believe Roosevelt would have used the atom bomb on Japan. However, I do not believe Churchill had anything to do with Roosevelt's death.

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You might have to think long and hard before answering this John (because I have a horrible feeling you might not have considered this before)...

but WHICH British government arranged the accident and cover-up?

I know what you mean, but I would not go as far as this.

No, John, you don't have a clue what I mean. Your mission statement (to fit Churchill up), your failure even to mention the obvious leading suspect(s) in the Duke of Kent case and your evasive, inadequate reply to my question all make Operation Paget appear credible by comparison.

I hear the steady drone of Lancasters coming to 'Coventrize' your argument...

I think it would be fair to say you have a number of us intrigued, Michael. Certainly you can count me in.

I'd like to see your cards.

What've you got?

In a similar spirit, I'd like to hear more from John about the motive he believes Churchill would have had for killing the Duke of Kent in 1942.

By then the war party was firmly ensconced in power in Britain, with Churchill at the helm of the British State at War. I'm unaware of any significant, organized 'peace camp' in Britain by that stage in the war.

Why, in your view, would Churchill have wanted the Duke's death so much?

Sikorski was a very different case. His refusal to accept Allied propaganda about Katyn and his concurrence with Hitler's demand for a Red Cross Inquiry into the mass slaughter of Polish officers in eastern Poland was deeply embarrassing to the allied leaders.

But what, in your view, was the threat posed by the Duke of Kent to Churchill and his interests?

If I missed this in your presentation, please excuse me. I'm rather short of time at present and don't have time right now to re-read the thread.

To explain Churchill’s motive we have to understand British foreign policy in the 1920s and 1930s. As I said earlier, the main fear during this period was the spread of communism. After the First World War the political attitudes of people in Europe moved to the left. This was partly due to the perceived success of the government in the Soviet Union.

The fortunes of left-wing parties improved during the 1920s. This was true of the UK. In 1923 Ramsay MacDonald formed a minority government. The Labour Party only lost office in 1924 after the Times and the Daily Mail published a letter written by Grigory Zinoviev, chairman of the Comintern in the Soviet Union. The Zinoviev Letter urged British communists to promote revolution through acts of sedition. The newspapers argued that MacDonald had been aware of this letter and had failed to do anything about it. In fact, the letter was a forgery and had been created by two of MI5's agents, Sidney Reilly and Arthur Maundy Gregory, and Major Joseph Ball, who later went to work for Conservative Central Office where he pioneered the idea of spin-doctoring. The media successfully portrayed the Labour Party as a subversive organization and the 1924 General Election was easily won by the Tories.

During this period MI5 was under the control of the far right. Maxwell Knight was the key figure in this development. Knight was the former Director of Intelligence of the British Fascisti (BF), an organization established to counter the growing powers of the Labour Party and the Trade Union movement.

In 1925 Vernon Kell, head of MI5 recruited Knight to work for the Secret Service Bureau. Knight played a significant role in helping to defeat the General Strike in 1926 and by the early 1930s was placed in charge of B5b, a unit that conducted the monitoring of political subversion.

The left got another boost with the Great Depression that was triggered off by the 1929 Wall Street Crash. Whereas the Soviet Union enjoyed rapid economic growth the rest of Europe and the United States had to endure increasing levels of unemployment.

It was no real surprise when the Labour Party won 288 seats in the 1929 General Election, making it the largest party in the House of Commons. MacDonald became Prime Minister again, but as before, he still had to rely on the support of the Liberal Party to hold onto power. MacDonald was soon turned (Blair is not the first person to betray the Labour Party) and he formed a National Government in 1931. This act of betrayal destroyed the Labour Party and ensured that the right governed the UK for the next 15 years.

MacDonald was soon cast aside but the governments led by Stanley Baldwin and Neville Chamberlain continued to follow a foreign policy that was motivated by a desire to destroy the threat of socialism/communism.

The Communist Party was fully aware of how the far right had taken over MI5 and MI6. They therefore instructed secret members of the party like Kim Philby and Guy Burgess, to join fascist front organizations such as Anglo-German Fellowship. It was because they were members of these organizations that they were recruited into the intelligence services.

It also has to be remembered that the national press was very much under the control of the far right. In 1929 Lord Rothermere owned the Daily Mail, Daily Mirror and the Evening News. His friend, Lord Beaverbrook, owned the Daily Express, Evening Standard and the Sunday Express. The Times and the Sunday Times were owned by John Jacob Astor. Geoffrey Dawson was appointed editor of the Times.

In 1929 Lord Rothermere and Lord Beaverbrook joined forces to form the United Empire Party. Rothermere urged the Conservative Party to remove its leader, Stanley Baldwin, and replace him with Beaverbrook. Baldwin was considered not to be right-wing enough. However, this new political party split the vote and enabled Labour to win the 1929 General Election.

The tactics changed after this election. Rothermere, Beaverbrook and Dawson used their influence to turn both the two main political parties, Labour and Conservative, to the right.

Rothermere sold the Daily Mirror in 1931 and after that it became a newspaper of the centre-left. However, the Times, Daily Mail, Daily Express, Evening Standard and the Evening News, throughout the 1930s supported the agenda of the far right. This included support for Hitler in Nazi Germany.

Rothermere gave open support to Oswald Mosley and the National Union of Fascists. He wrote an article, Hurrah for the Blackshirts, in January, 1934, in which he praised Mosley for his "sound, commonsense, Conservative doctrine".

Rothermere also had several meetings with Adolf Hitler and argued that the Nazi leader desired peace. In one article written in March, 1934 he called for Hitler to be given back land in Africa that had been taken as a result of the Versailles Treaty.

The key issue was the Spanish Civil War that began in 1936. The Times, Daily Mail, Daily Express, Evening Standard and the Evening News all urged that the British government should not give any help to the democratically elected republican government in its fight with the Spanish fascists. It followed their advice and with the help of German and Italian military forces, fascism was established in Spain and Portugal.

Spain was the start of what became known as the Conservative “appeasement policy”. This was fully supported by Rothermere, Beaverbrook and Dawson. In fact, the recently published correspondence of Dawson shows that the media played an important role in developing this policy. The same is true of the correspondence and diaries of George VI. It shows that the king was playing a major role in the development of government foreign policy.

So where does Winston Churchill fit in with this situation. Churchill lost office after the 1929 General Election. In 1931, when McDonald established the National Government, Churchill was excluded because he was considered too right-wing.

The previous year he had published his book, Parliamentary Government and the Economic Problem. In the book he argued for the abandonment of universal suffrage and a return to a property franchise.

Churchill had also upset people with his support for Mussolini’s fascist government in Italy. In 1933 Churchill described Mussolini as “the greatest lawgiver among men”. Some suspected him of wishing to become the "British Mussolini" while others suggested that Churchill was interested in forming a coalition government with Oswald Mosley.

Churchill was also outspoken in his support for the British Empire opposed to the government policy of granting independence to India. Churchill argued that Ghandi "ought to be laid, bound hand and foot, at the gates of Delhi and then trampled on by an enormous elephant with the new viceroy seated on its back."

Churchill was also a supporter of the pro-fascist Edward VIII during the Abdication Crisis. At the time, it was commonly believed that if the king won this struggle with the government, Baldwin would have been forced to resign. Edward VIII would then have then appointed Churchill as prime minister. Baldwin refused to back down and it was Edward who was forced to leave office. Not that it made much difference as George VI and Neville Chamberlain, the man who replaced Baldwin, both favoured a policy of appeasing Hitler in the hope he was head East.

After the Abdication Crisis Churchill was a completely isolated political figure. His career appeared to be at an end. He was seen a political extremist who belonged to an earlier age. There was only one way back. That was to undermine the leadership of Neville Chamberlain. Although he had earlier supported the government’s appeasement policy, for example in 1936 and 1937 during the Spanish Civil War, he did an about turn and began to argue that Hitler needed to be confronted. He also argued that the best way to do this was to form an alliance with the Soviet Union. Churchill obtained little support from the Conservative Party for this policy. This is understandable as they still saw the Soviet Union as the main enemy. The only real support for Churchill came from the left-wing of the Labour Party. However, their support was only lukewarm as they knew that Churchill was a committed right-winger who had only taken this position in an attempt to gain a political advantage over Neville Chamberlain.

Churchill would have remained an isolated figure but for Chamberlain’s mishandling of the negotiations with Hitler. The German leader became convinced that the Conservative government would never go to war over his attempts to expand the territory under his control. After all, the Conservative Party had made it clear that they shared the same objective, the destruction of communism in the Soviet Union. As we now know, Chamberlain had no intention of going to war over Poland.

As I said earlier, Hitler had failed to grasp that Chamberlain and his right-wing government, was not a dictatorship and he was forced to declare war as a result of the actions of opposition MPs and a growing number of Tories who had begun to support Churchill.

Even so, declaration of war on Germany was followed by the “phoney war”. Both sides continued to take part in secret negotiations. However, when these broke down Hitler took the bold decision to invade Norway. Chamberlain was now put under pressure to resign. Chamberlain approached Clement Attlee, the leader of the Labour Party, to help form a National Government. Attlee refused to serve under Chamberlain. That night, the German Army invaded Holland and Belgium.

Chamberlain then went to Buckingham Palace and offered his resignation. The king suggested that Lord Halifax, the arch-appeaser, should takeover as prime-minister. Chamberlain said that was his choice as well, but that Attlee had made it clear that the Labour Party would be unwilling to serve under Halifax. Chamberlain admitted that the only possible candidate for the job was Churchill.

When the House of Commons met on 13th May, 1940, Tory MPs rose to cheer Chamberlain. When Churchill stood up to speak, the only cheers came from Labour MPs. Tories were only too aware that Churchill had gained power by betraying a policy that he had agreed with. They believed it was only a matter of time before he began secret negotiations with Hitler. They were right. (more later)

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You might have to think long and hard before answering this John (because I have a horrible feeling you might not have considered this before)...

but WHICH British government arranged the accident and cover-up?

I know what you mean, but I would not go as far as this.

No, John, you don't have a clue what I mean. Your mission statement (to fit Churchill up), your failure even to mention the obvious leading suspect(s) in the Duke of Kent case and your evasive, inadequate reply to my question all make Operation Paget appear credible by comparison.

I hear the steady drone of Lancasters coming to 'Coventrize' your argument...

I think it would be fair to say you have a number of us intrigued, Michael. Certainly you can count me in.

I'd like to see your cards.

What've you got?

In a similar spirit, I'd like to hear more from John about the motive he believes Churchill would have had for killing the Duke of Kent in 1942.

By then the war party was firmly ensconced in power in Britain, with Churchill at the helm of the British State at War. I'm unaware of any significant, organized 'peace camp' in Britain by that stage in the war.

Why, in your view, would Churchill have wanted the Duke's death so much?

Sikorski was a very different case. His refusal to accept Allied propaganda about Katyn and his concurrence with Hitler's demand for a Red Cross Inquiry into the mass slaughter of Polish officers in eastern Poland was deeply embarrassing to the allied leaders.

But what, in your view, was the threat posed by the Duke of Kent to Churchill and his interests?

If I missed this in your presentation, please excuse me. I'm rather short of time at present and don't have time right now to re-read the thread.

To explain Churchill’s motive we have to understand British foreign policy in the 1920s and 1930s. As I said earlier, the main fear during this period was the spread of communism. After the First World War the political attitudes of people in Europe moved to the left. This was partly due to the perceived success of the government in the Soviet Union.

The fortunes of left-wing parties improved during the 1920s. This was true of the UK. In 1923 Ramsay MacDonald formed a minority government. The Labour Party only lost office in 1924 after the Times and the Daily Mail published a letter written by Grigory Zinoviev, chairman of the Comintern in the Soviet Union. The Zinoviev Letter urged British communists to promote revolution through acts of sedition. The newspapers argued that MacDonald had been aware of this letter and had failed to do anything about it. In fact, the letter was a forgery and had been created by two of MI5's agents, Sidney Reilly and Arthur Maundy Gregory, and Major Joseph Ball, who later went to work for Conservative Central Office where he pioneered the idea of spin-doctoring. The media successfully portrayed the Labour Party as a subversive organization and the 1924 General Election was easily won by the Tories.

During this period MI5 was under the control of the far right. Maxwell Knight was the key figure in this development. Knight was the former Director of Intelligence of the British Fascisti (BF), an organization established to counter the growing powers of the Labour Party and the Trade Union movement.

In 1925 Vernon Kell, head of MI5 recruited Knight to work for the Secret Service Bureau. Knight played a significant role in helping to defeat the General Strike in 1926 and by the early 1930s was placed in charge of B5b, a unit that conducted the monitoring of political subversion.

The left got another boost with the Great Depression that was triggered off by the 1929 Wall Street Crash. Whereas the Soviet Union enjoyed rapid economic growth the rest of Europe and the United States had to endure increasing levels of unemployment.

It was no real surprise when the Labour Party won 288 seats in the 1929 General Election, making it the largest party in the House of Commons. MacDonald became Prime Minister again, but as before, he still had to rely on the support of the Liberal Party to hold onto power. MacDonald was soon turned (Blair is not the first person to betray the Labour Party) and he formed a National Government in 1931. This act of betrayal destroyed the Labour Party and ensured that the right governed the UK for the next 15 years.

MacDonald was soon cast aside but the governments led by Stanley Baldwin and Neville Chamberlain continued to follow a foreign policy that was motivated by a desire to destroy the threat of socialism/communism.

The Communist Party was fully aware of how the far right had taken over MI5 and MI6. They therefore instructed secret members of the party like Kim Philby and Guy Burgess, to join fascist front organizations such as Anglo-German Fellowship. It was because they were members of these organizations that they were recruited into the intelligence services.

It also has to be remembered that the national press was very much under the control of the far right. In 1929 Lord Rothermere owned the Daily Mail, Daily Mirror and the Evening News. His friend, Lord Beaverbrook, owned the Daily Express, Evening Standard and the Sunday Express. The Times and the Sunday Times were owned by John Jacob Astor. Geoffrey Dawson was appointed editor of the Times.

In 1929 Lord Rothermere and Lord Beaverbrook joined forces to form the United Empire Party. Rothermere urged the Conservative Party to remove its leader, Stanley Baldwin, and replace him with Beaverbrook. Baldwin was considered not to be right-wing enough. However, this new political party split the vote and enabled Labour to win the 1929 General Election.

The tactics changed after this election. Rothermere, Beaverbrook and Dawson used their influence to turn both the two main political parties, Labour and Conservative, to the right.

Rothermere sold the Daily Mirror in 1931 and after that it became a newspaper of the centre-left. However, the Times, Daily Mail, Daily Express, Evening Standard and the Evening News, throughout the 1930s supported the agenda of the far right. This included support for Hitler in Nazi Germany.

Rothermere gave open support to Oswald Mosley and the National Union of Fascists. He wrote an article, Hurrah for the Blackshirts, in January, 1934, in which he praised Mosley for his "sound, commonsense, Conservative doctrine".

Rothermere also had several meetings with Adolf Hitler and argued that the Nazi leader desired peace. In one article written in March, 1934 he called for Hitler to be given back land in Africa that had been taken as a result of the Versailles Treaty.

The key issue was the Spanish Civil War that began in 1936. The Times, Daily Mail, Daily Express, Evening Standard and the Evening News all urged that the British government should not give any help to the democratically elected republican government in its fight with the Spanish fascists. It followed their advice and with the help of German and Italian military forces, fascism was established in Spain and Portugal.

Spain was the start of what became known as the Conservative “appeasement policy”. This was fully supported by Rothermere, Beaverbrook and Dawson. In fact, the recently published correspondence of Dawson shows that the media played an important role in developing this policy. The same is true of the correspondence and diaries of George VI. It shows that the king was playing a major role in the development of government foreign policy.

So where does Winston Churchill fit in with this situation. Churchill lost office after the 1929 General Election. In 1931, when McDonald established the National Government, Churchill was excluded because he was considered too right-wing.

The previous year he had published his book, Parliamentary Government and the Economic Problem. In the book he argued for the abandonment of universal suffrage and a return to a property franchise.

Churchill had also upset people with his support for Mussolini’s fascist government in Italy. In 1933 Churchill described Mussolini as “the greatest lawgiver among men”. Some suspected him of wishing to become the "British Mussolini" while others suggested that Churchill was interested in forming a coalition government with Oswald Mosley.

Churchill was also outspoken in his support for the British Empire opposed to the government policy of granting independence to India. Churchill argued that Ghandi "ought to be laid, bound hand and foot, at the gates of Delhi and then trampled on by an enormous elephant with the new viceroy seated on its back."

Churchill was also a supporter of the pro-fascist Edward VIII during the Abdication Crisis. At the time, it was commonly believed that if the king won this struggle with the government, Baldwin would have been forced to resign. Edward VIII would then have then appointed Churchill as prime minister. Baldwin refused to back down and it was Edward who was forced to leave office. Not that it made much difference as George VI and Neville Chamberlain, the man who replaced Baldwin, both favoured a policy of appeasing Hitler in the hope he was head East.

After the Abdication Crisis Churchill was a completely isolated political figure. His career appeared to be at an end. He was seen a political extremist who belonged to an earlier age. There was only one way back. That was to undermine the leadership of Neville Chamberlain. Although he had earlier supported the government’s appeasement policy, for example in 1936 and 1937 during the Spanish Civil War, he did an about turn and began to argue that Hitler needed to be confronted. He also argued that the best way to do this was to form an alliance with the Soviet Union. Churchill obtained little support from the Conservative Party for this policy. This is understandable as they still saw the Soviet Union as the main enemy. The only real support for Churchill came from the left-wing of the Labour Party. However, their support was only lukewarm as they knew that Churchill was a committed right-winger who had only taken this position in an attempt to gain a political advantage over Neville Chamberlain.

Churchill would have remained an isolated figure but for Chamberlain’s mishandling of the negotiations with Hitler. The German leader became convinced that the Conservative government would never go to war over his attempts to expand the territory under his control. After all, the Conservative Party had made it clear that they shared the same objective, the destruction of communism in the Soviet Union. As we now know, Chamberlain had no intention of going to war over Poland.

As I said earlier, Hitler had failed to grasp that Chamberlain and his right-wing government, was not a dictatorship and he was forced to declare war as a result of the actions of opposition MPs and a growing number of Tories who had begun to support Churchill.

Even so, declaration of war on Germany was followed by the “phoney war”. Both sides continued to take part in secret negotiations. However, when these broke down Hitler took the bold decision to invade Norway. Chamberlain was now put under pressure to resign. Chamberlain approached Clement Attlee, the leader of the Labour Party, to help form a National Government. Attlee refused to serve under Chamberlain. That night, the German Army invaded Holland and Belgium.

Chamberlain then went to Buckingham Palace and offered his resignation. The king suggested that Lord Halifax, the arch-appeaser, should takeover as prime-minister. Chamberlain said that was his choice as well, but that Attlee had made it clear that the Labour Party would be unwilling to serve under Halifax. Chamberlain admitted that the only possible candidate for the job was Churchill.

When the House of Commons met on 13th May, 1940, Tory MPs rose to cheer Chamberlain. When Churchill stood up to speak, the only cheers came from Labour MPs. Tories were only too aware that Churchill had gained power by betraying a policy that he had agreed with. They believed it was only a matter of time before he began secret negotiations with Hitler. They were right. (more later)

Rivetting stuff, Simmo. Reads like a C4 script (it rehashes all the usual errors). Your last para is a real hoot.

The roars of the Lancaster pilots can be heard while their engines are running...

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Guest Gary Loughran

Can't wait for the next piece John.

Michael, is there any chance you can elaborate on some of your comments re: WHICH government and why John's last paragraph was a real hoot.

It's not fair on the folk with interest in the thread that your areas for debate are appearing as facetious comment. By offering a more substantive rebuttal; everyone could have a fair chance at dialogue on the matter, including John.

I for one, as someone, who because of this thread has began researching the topic, am as interested in what you have to add as I am about John's next piece.

Be a good sport. :)

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Can't wait for the next piece John.

Michael, is there any chance you can elaborate on some of your comments re: WHICH government and why John's last paragraph was a real hoot.

It's not fair on the folk with interest in the thread that your areas for debate are appearing as facetious comment. By offering a more substantive rebuttal; everyone could have a fair chance at dialogue on the matter, including John.

I for one, as someone, who because of this thread has began researching the topic, am as interested in what you have to add as I am about John's next piece.

Be a good sport. :)

All in good time Gazzer: I promise I won't disappoint. You have to make allowances for my exponentially expanding ego. There will be a Viking funeral for Simmo's nonsense just as there was for the Reich. The 'Nero Order' is being drafted as we speak.

But if you want your fireworks sooner rather than later, tune into the Litvinenko channel tongiht...

Edited by Michael Chapman
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