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Churchill and Appeasement [Hardcover]

R. A. C. Parker
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)

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Book Description

19 May 2000
Alastair Parker argues that if Churchill had controlled Britain's foreign policy, he would have made a Grand Alliance to group other European countries around a strong Anglo-French alliance, and thus might have stopped Hitler.

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Macmillan; 2nd Impression edition (19 May 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0333675835
  • ISBN-13: 978-0333675830
  • Product Dimensions: 23.6 x 15.8 x 3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 498,293 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Amazon Review

R A C Parker is not a man to mince his words. The opening sentence of this book puts forward the author's belief that Churchill could have prevented the Second World War. This is such a huge statement, so totally at odds with the views of most historians, that you can only sit back and admire his nerve. If, says Parker, Churchill had controlled British foreign policy he could have formed a Grand Alliance with France, around which other European countries could group, which would have provided a robust and effective deterrent to German aggression. He goes on to suggest that such an alliance may have been a more attractive proposition to the Soviet Union than the treaty it went on to make with the Nazis, that ultimately provided the green light for Hitler's invasions of Czechoslovakia and Poland. These are all very big "ifs", which Parker goes on to argue entertainingly if not always completely convincingly. In the early 1930s, Churchill appeared to many as something of a political busted flush--albeit a very dangerous one. He was a part-time politician making a lucrative career as a writer who liked to bark loudly from the sidelines. His right-wing views always made him a potential threat to the more liberal Conservative Party leadership of Baldwin and Chamberlain during the 30s, but the reality was that for the most part he was totally at odds with the mood of the majority of the country. Churchill's advocacy of a rearmament policy looks the obviously rational choice in hindsight, but it must be remembered Churchill was also the man who raised no objections to Mussolini's invasion of Abyssinia, who initially sided with the Fascists in the Spanish Civil War and who considered British rule in India to be sacrosanct. In short, his judgments on some issues were highly questionable to say the least. As the 1930s unwound Churchill's position did indeed become a far more sensible proposition, having dumped Franco's fascists and taken a less isolationist and more pro-League of Nations stance. But ultimately his politics sobered up too late to be taken as seriously as he might have been by both the Tory Party and, more importantly, the British public to influence the events of the war. To blame Churchill for the Second World War is to let the real culprits off the hook. But what Parker's elegant treatise eloquently reminds us is that there were precious few politicians in the 1930s who realised just how dangerous Hitler was while there was still time to make a difference, and that those who did were incapable of carrying their government or people with them. --John Crace

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2 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars FAAAAAAAAAAAAAANTASTIC 27 Feb 2001
By A Customer
This book was moving and I'm sure it was all very true! I didn't like the part about the Purple Human Eating Monster, it scared me half to death! But it's an exhilirating read though so GO AND BUY YA COPY NOW!!!
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