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Winston Churchill and the special relationship: reading between the lines

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posted on Jan, 7 2011 @ 03:59 AM
Mods, if this belongs in another forum, please move it.

I was reading about the `special relationship`between the UK and the USA today. One thing led to another, and eventually I found myself on the wiki page for The Atlantic Charter. The Charter was a series of joint agreements made between the British Prime Minister, Winston Churchill, and the US President, Franklin Roosevelt. The agreements were to provide governance in the post-war world.

What struck me about the article was the strangely friendly tone of its writing. It seemed to contain many flattering statements that would normally be weeded out by anal-retentive Wiki-War-II veterans. Allow me a demonstration.

As a cover story, a flag day was enacted at Upper Street, filmed, and then broadcast while Churchill had already set off for the conference using, for the first part of the journey, the Great Central Railway. Embarking at Thurso, he then boarded HMS Prince of Wales at Scapa Flow. Though the ship had to make multiple course changes to avoid U-boats and lost her escorts to bad weather, Churchill found the voyage restful, reading novels, watching films and losing unmercifully at backgammon to Harry Hopkins.

This flattery is unsupported by any references, but for the sake of argument let's presume that its source is a first-hand account. Can we really trust their stories here? Is it likely that Churchill enjoyed a bumpy, tense journey evading storms and enemy submarines? Picture it in your head. It's simply absurd! We should not believe that it is true, even if it was a first-hand account.

This clear falsification led me to seek out other mis-truths and fictions in the wiki article's narrative. I found something immediately satisfying in the next paragraph.

On the morning of Saturday, 9 August 1941 the Prince of Wales sailed into Placentia Bay down a line of United States ships to the USS Augusta where Roosevelt—who, like Churchill, had left Washington under a cover story (he was supposedly in New England on a ten-day fishing trip)[1]—his son and his chiefs of staff were waiting. On first meeting, Churchill and Roosevelt were silent for a moment until Churchill said "At long last, Mr. President", to which Roosevelt replied "Glad to have you aboard, Mr. Churchill". Churchill then delivered to the president a letter from King George VI and made an official statement which, despite two attempts, a sound-film crew present failed to record.

It feels to me improbable that a military film crew would botch the recording of an official statement twice. This statement is likewise unsourced, and therefore suspicious. Because the statement was not recorded, we have no means of knowing what Winston actually said to Roosevelt. We have no confirmation that the king's message was delivered. This would not surprise me for two reasons. Americans have no special respect for Kings or their messages and they prefer a fellow democrat. Churchill had worked against the interests of the sovereign in the past. Why would he not do it again, in the company of democrats, leaving no record of his actual statement to prove his disloyalty?

One wonders what secret truths are hidden in this paragraph.

Whilst the chiefs of staff and head of state and head of government met, Churchill's bodyguard Walter Thompson was shown round the ship and lunched with the president's bodyguard Mike Reilly. The following day, Sunday, August 10, a church parade was held on Prince of Wales. From a lectern draped in British and U.S. flags, and with a congregation and naval clergy drawn from both nations, hymns selected by Churchill were sung with the sound of the patrolling US aircraft overhead in the background. Walter Thompson was personally presented to the president by Churchill on the last day of the conference.

I wonder, what were the hymns that Churchill selected? What were the services delivered on that day? What is the secret faith of the elite? Why was Walter Thompson paraded around? Why did Churchill personally present him to Roosevelt? Why did he serve as Churchill's bodyguard for 18 years even when it took him away from his duties at Scotland Yard and with his wife?

We may never know what really happened during that conference aboard two Naval vessels. What we do know is its aftermath; the forging of a 'special relationship' between the elected leaders of the United Kingdom and the United States. The agreements made at that conference were made in confidence and went unrecorded. They were agreements made at Churchill's discretion, or lack thereof. The agreements made the United States a partner in the Pax Britannica and expanded that peace across the entire globe. This advanced Britain's interests in maintaining world peace, but it undermined the kingdom's autonomy and power. It likewise advanced American interests across the Atlantic, but it undermined the nation's freedom.

This is how the post-war world was conceived; a special relationship cemented by Assistant Secretary of the Navy Roosevelt and First Lord of the Admiralty Churchill.

posted on Jan, 7 2011 @ 05:28 PM
Personally I think you're looking too much into things.

I recently read a book about Churchill and it mentioned the hymns he chose for that meeting. I can't remember exactly what they were, but he chose them specifically because of their titles and the lyrics. Saviours in our time of need, that sort of thing.

posted on Jan, 7 2011 @ 05:29 PM
Also, it's a wikipedia article so what do you expect?

It's not exactly academic, so any old joe could have written it.

posted on Jan, 7 2011 @ 05:31 PM
Although the Atlantic Charter was a somewhat idealistic and noble document and gave people hope, at the end of the day it was just a piece of paper.

Churchill never intended it to apply to the British Empire, i.e. India.

posted on Jan, 8 2011 @ 01:10 AM
reply to post by Kram09

Yes, Winnie was quite the pooh about Indian freedom. But dig this. The Atlantic Charter was the foundation of the US-UK axis in the years to come.

It laid the groundwork for the Holden Agreement on shared intelligence in 1942, and the BRUSA Agreement on intelligence charing in 1943. The BRUSA regulations govern US-UK intelligence sharing to this day.

This may seem like normal wartime collaboration for two allies, but it continued after the war had ended. The Quadripartite Agreement, signed in 1946. This strengthened the two nations' global intelligence sharing, with a focus on the USSR and China. It was later expanded into the White Dominions of the British Empire. This international collaboration, grounded in the principles of the Atlantic Charter, is the foundation of the ECHELON worldwide monitoring program.

The National Security Act of 1947 established the Cold War intelligence community in America. It was part of the policy of Roosevelt's successor, Truman. Among other bodies, the Central Intelligence Agency was founded by this Act. Through the partnership formed in earlier agreements, the CIA has co-operated with British Military Intelligence since its founding. It should come as little surprise that the CIA has a strong pro-English inclination. Its seal features a white shield bearing the red cross of St. George. What does this remind you of? What is the CIA's real mission?
edit on 8-1-2011 by SmedleyBurlap because: (no reason given)

posted on Jan, 8 2011 @ 06:14 AM
To be honest I don't really know where you're going with this thread anymore.

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