Re: Winston Churchill
Posted by Ron Carlson on January 15, 2008, 9:58 am, in reply to "Winston Churchill"
Winston Churchill was a great man and a great leader. Britain, and the Allies, were fortunate to have him as the British Prime Minister during World War II. One thing I have never understood is why, after he had valiantly led his nation to victory, the British would vote him out of office in 1945. (He was later elected Prime Minister a second time, serving from 1951 to 1955.) |
He also had a brilliant way with words. Here are a few of my favorites.
"I have nothing to offer but blood, toil, tears and sweat."
[First speech as Prime Minister, May 1940]
"We shall defend our island, whatever the cost may be. We shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing-grounds, we shall fight in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills. We shall never surrender!"
[Speech to House of Commons shortly after the evacuation of Dunkirk, June 1940]
"Let us therefore brace ourselves to our duties, and so bear ourselves that if the British Empire and its Commonwealth last for a thousand years, men will still say, 'This was their finest hour.' "
[Speech to House of Commons after the fall of France, June 1940]
"Never in the field of human conflict was so much owed by so many to so few."
[Paying tribute to the Royal Air Force for its heroism in the Battle of Britain]
"When I warned [the French] that Britain would fight on alone, whatever they did, their generals told their Prime Minister and his divided cabinet: 'In three weeks, England will have her neck wrung like a chicken.'
"Some chicken...Some neck!"
[Speech to the Canadian Parliament, December 1941]
"Now this is not the end. It is not even the beginning of the end. But it is, perhaps, the end of the beginning."
[Speech soon after a major German defeat in North Africa, November 1942]
"...an iron curtain has descended across the Continent."
[Speech at Westminster College, Fulton, Missouri, March 1946; some historians date the beginning of the Cold War from this speech]
"Democracy is the worst form of government except for all those other forms that have been tried from time to time."
[Speech to the House of Commons, November 1947]
Lady Astor: "If I were married to you, I'd put poison in your coffee."
Churchill: "If I were married to you, I'd drink it."
[Not original to Churchill but he may have heard a similar line elsewhere and was witty enough to think to use it at an appropriate opportunity.]
Ron Carlson, Webmaster