Thursday, 11 February 2016

Churchill's praise of Chamberlain

History has been deeply unkind the Neville Chamberlain, the British Prime Minister during the start of World War II. He is portrayed as a coward, as somebody who should have pre-emptively attacked Germany and defeated Adolf Hitler before the Third Reich could spread across Europe; Chamberlain appears to receive almost as much blame for the war as Hitler himself, even though he didn't initiate it. The man who succeeded Chamberlain, Winston Churchill, had these words to say upon his death:

"Whatever else history may or may not say about these terrible, tremendous years, we can be sure that Neville Chamberlain acted with perfect sincerity according to his lights and strove to the utmost of his capacity and authority, which were powerful, to save the world from the awful, devastating struggle in which we are now engaged. This alone will stand him in good stead as far as what is called the verdict of history is concerned."

History has the benefit of hindsight, which is something Chamberlain was not privy to. The entirety of Churchill's eulogy can be read here.


  1. I know a bit about him, most Americans are clueless about him. It's easy to blame someone for not acting when needed but imagine if he had attacked Germany earlier. I don't think it would have made matters much different.

    1. Theoretically, in that situation, history might have looked at Britain and France as the aggressors, especially if they had lost.