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"In many respects Edwina was indeed better informed than Secretaries of State for Foreign affairs
on 25 September 2015
"In many respects Edwina was indeed better informed than Secretaries of State for Foreign affairs, the Colonies, Commonwealth Relations, men who were generally either new to the job or the prisoners of their own and their officials' prejudices. Edwina had formed her own views over many years. She compared notes with Dickie and she was also influenced by Nerhu, wose letters offered a steady supply of information and opinion. (He was not infallible. Ho Chi Minh, the Communist President of North Vietnam, struck him as 'one of the most likeable men I have come across. He gives one the impression of integrity, goodwill and peace.') Discussions with Nerhu, Dickie, their colleagues and the Mountbattens' friends, together with her own experience - all this gave Edwina an unparalleled vantage point. She was considered left-wing; in fact she was a peace loving, romantic democrat. Her myopia was more pronounced when she looked east towards the Urals; westward, her eyes were sharp. Edwina was constantly irritated by what she considered the rabid anti-communism of the Americans. When she mentioned in her diary, in April 1949, that she had spent an evening seeing 'lenghtly and questionable films' with Dickie's shipmates, she was referring not to anything sexually suggestive but to "The Iron Curtain", an American film about a Soviet Spy ring. The Sunday service on an American destroyer was full of reference to the hydrogen bomb, Edwina told Nerhu in May 1957; 'Poor old God gets brought into everything nowadays.'"