Churchill at Sunset

The Washington Times (Washington, DC), December 3, 2010 | Go to article overview

Churchill at Sunset


Byline: Martin Sieff, SPECIAL TO THE WASHINGTON TIMES

Winston Churchill's last decade of active life, from age 70 to age 80, has been generally ignored or passed over - supposedly tactfully, by his many admirers. The conventional wisdom is that the Grand Old Man stayed in the political arena far too long, indulged in Victorian-era, grandiose daydreams and that he was far out of touch with the realities of a new nuclear world, where Britain was dwarfed by the competing superpowers.

Barbara Leaming fully acknowledges the elements of truth behind this prevalent view. But in her very welcome new book she also draws attention to the remarkable surge of achievements of Churchill's later years. Far from weeping crocodile tears at his determination to hang onto political power and stay active in the gladiatorial arena till the last possible moment, we should be deeply thankful that he did.

Churchill, could easily, as Ms. Leaming vividly portrays, have retired full of years and honor at the end of World War II. A dukedom was quite literally his for the taking. His visit to Hitler's bunker, where his great archrival, the scourge of mankind, had finally taken his own life and then been immolated would have been a fitting conclusion to the greatest national and wartime leader Britain has ever known in its long history.

But Winston Churchill was a man of flesh and blood as well as a legend of history, and the fray of democratic, parliamentary politics was in his blood. He led his Conservative Party into the 1945 general election and was devastated when it was swept out of office in the greatest popular landslide in history. Cheer up, it may be a blessing in disguise, Churchill's magnificent, indomitable wife, Clementine, told him. If so, it is most effectively disguised, he replied.

But Clemmie was right: As Paul Johnson, another sympathetic recent biographer, has pointed out, returning to office in 1945 would have probably finished off the exhausted Churchill in a couple of years. Instead he was able to recuperate at leisure: A lifelong Francophile, he adored the French Riviera and gambling at its casinos.

With a huge team of researchers and even ghostwriters, he wrote his magisterial - though incontrovertibly biased - six-volume History of the Second World War. The first and greatest volume of that history, The Gathering Storm, incorporated his great 1930s speeches about the dangers of appeasing Nazi Germany. It has rightly been called the greatest philippic in the history of the English language. …

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

Churchill at Sunset
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.