Two Dynamic Statesmen Who Led Britain in War

The Washington Times (Washington, DC), April 13, 2008 | Go to article overview

Two Dynamic Statesmen Who Led Britain in War


Byline: Martin Rubin, SPECIAL TO THE WASHINGTON TIMES

The two men who each led Britain through a great 20th-century world war are seldom bracketed together either by historians or the general public. Perhaps this is because the differences between David Lloyd George and Winston Churchill are so obvious. One, a poor self-made Welsh lawyer was one of the most radical forces in British political history, opposing the Boer War and putting into place the foundations of the welfare state and a national health system and paying for them by revamping taxation of income and capital. The other, a scion of one of England's most illustrious political, military and aristocratic families, is remembered today as an arch-imperialist and almost the personification of the dyed-in-the-wool Tory conservative.

Even as war leaders, the perception of their accomplishments is very different. Both men took over prosecution of a titanic global struggle at a desperate time in its course and by dint of their energy, positive attitude and dynamism, turned the tide and achieved victory. But while Churchill's stands as a triumphant achievement, Lloyd George's resulted in the punitive Treaty of Versailles, widely credited with making inevitable the next, even more terrible, conflict.

Yet few remember today that these two men, born only 11 years apart, were close colleagues in the government which enacted Lloyd George's radical domestic program and prosecuted World War I. For, though many British politicians have crossed the floor of the House of Commons from one political party to another, very few have successfully done it only to cross back to the original one, managing to hold high office in both Liberal and Conservative governments, as Churchill did.

One of the best things about "David & Winston" is its emphasis on the bonds which joined these two forces of nature and thus is a salutary corrective of the tendency to concentrate on the (albeit very real) differences between them. Unlike his second cousin, the Canadian historian Margaret MacMillan, who showed no partisanship towards her distinguished forebear in her dispassionate study "Versailles 1919," Robert Lloyd George is, I think it is fair to say, an advocate for his great-grandfather. Still, this does not stop him from making biting criticisms of him and of quoting other people's:

"Even after Chamberlain's death in November 1940 Lloyd George made excuses as to why he would not join Churchill's Coalition Cabinet . . . . Lloyd George, who was now seventy-seven, responded unconvincingly that he could do much more for the country outside the Government. His son Dick wrote: 'He had lost his nerve. The old war horse had lorded it in peaceful pastures so long that the weight of armour frightened him.'. . . . Perhaps the truth was that he did not want to play second fiddle to Churchill."

It is interesting to note that both these great statesmen are blessed with descendants who have made contributions to the literature about them. Churchill's son Randolph wrote the first volumes of his father's official Life before his untimely death only a few years after Winston's and his daughter Mary Soames and granddaughter Celia Sandys have written movingly about him. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Two Dynamic Statesmen Who Led Britain in War
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Author Advanced search

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.