Wednesday, 13 May 2009

Churchill, Europe and the idiots of UKIP

Got home this afternoon to find the first election communications on my doormat from parties ahead of the forthcoming European elections.

One of them was from UKIP (United Kingdom Idiots Party) and contained a big headline saying: "Say NO to European Union", illustrated with a picture of Winston Churchill giving a V for victory sign.

That'll be the same Winston Churchill who famously said: "We must build a kind of United States of Europe," will it?

Indeed, it's worth quoting several passages from Churchill's speech in Zurich in 1946 to show how wrong it is that UKIP are trying to associate him with an anti-European stance:

If Europe were once united in the sharing of its common inheritance, there would be no limit to the happiness, to the prosperity and the glory which its three or four hundred million people would enjoy...

It is to re-create the European Family, or as much of it as we can, and to provide it with a structure under which it can dwell in peace, in safety and in freedom. We must build a kind of United States of Europe. In this way only will hundreds of millions of toilers be able to regain the simple joys and hopes which make life worth living...

And why should there not be a European group which could give a sense of enlarged patriotism and common citizenship to the distracted peoples of this turbulent and mighty continent? And why should it not take its rightful place with other great groupings and help to shape the onward destinies of men?...

The structure of the United States of Europe, if well and truly built, will be such as to make the material strength of a single state less important. Small nations will count as much as large ones and gain their honor by their contribution to the common cause..

If we are to form the United States of Europe, or whatever name it may take, we must begin now...

...we must re-create the European Family in a regional structure called, it may be, the United States of Europe...

Great Britain, the British Commonwealth of Nations, mighty America and I trust Soviet Russia-for then indeed all would be well-must be the friends and sponsors of the new Europe and must champion its right to live and shine. Therefore I say to you, let Europe arise!

6 comments:

Frank H Little said...

Great Britain, the British Commonwealth of Nations,[...] must be the friends and sponsors of the new EuropeThat would presumably be UKIP's point, that Churchill was in favour of a United Europe so long as it excluded GB.

Of course, things have changed since then. We no longer have Imperial - sorry, Commonwealth - Preference to rely on, nor is sterling a reserve currency.

Yasin Akgun said...

i think the author of this blog is the only idiot around since anybody with knowledge on history or churchill knows that Churchill never wanted Britain to be absorbed by Europe. Yes Churchill believed in a united Europe but not one where Britain would be absorbed.

So the only idiot here is the author of this blog, though he'll be too stupid to realise it.

Yasin Akgun

Stephen B said...

...and yet, despite being the 'Idiot Party', they managed to poll more votes in the UK at the last Euro elections than the Lib Dems (or is it 'Limp Dims' - forgive me I'm not very good at this name changing malarky).

I see that one of UKIP's candidates is a horse whisperer. Not sure what that means but I found it amusing anyway.

Stephen B said...

I've just received the Labour flyer and it's a classic of its type with an "impartial" quote from...a former Labour candidate.

Expect more of the depressing same from the other parties!

Bernard, do you have a view on the Cameron proposal to ditch the £10K MP communication allowance? My feeling is that the allo is used as thinly disguised party propaganda but, at the same time, there is a genuine need for MP's to communicate with their constituents.

Bernard Salmon said...

It is simply untrue to state that Churchill did not want the UK to be part of a united Europe. Yes, he also wanted the UK to play a full role in what's now the Commonwealth and be strongly allied to the USA, but he did want Britain to play its part in Europe. This site gives a rounded picture of his European views:
www.ceeol.com/aspx/getdocument.aspx?logid=5&id=B34FC879-0941-4BB7-AEFB-5554336ACB8F

Bernard Salmon said...

I have to say that I think communicating with their constituents is something that MPs should be encouraged to do more of. However, I do agree with you that there are dangers of it being used for things which, although not specifically party political in themselves, do tie in quite closely with party political activities. I'm not sure what the answer to this is, though.

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