Thursday, June 05, 2008

Churchill e Estaline

"(...) When Stalin brought up Churchill’s role in 1919 as the champion of Allied intervention in Russia, Churchill asked, “Have you forgiven me?” The ex-seminarian replied, “All that is in the past. It is not for me to forgive. It is for God to forgive.” This scene is almost unimaginable.

On his return from that September 1942 trip to Moscow, Churchill appeared captivated, rising in Parliament to tell his countrymen they were truly fortunate to be allied to so great a man:

This great rugged war chief. . . . He is a man of massive outstanding personality, suited to the sombre and stormy times in which his life has been cast; a man of inexhaustible courage and will-power, and a man of direct and even blunt speech. . . . Above all, he is a man with that saving sense of humour. […] Stalin left upon me the impression of a deep, cool wisdom…

To appease his great ally, Churchill would agree to Stalin’s annexation of the Baltic republics, his plunder from the devil’s pact with Hitler, and turn a blind eye to the Katyn massacre. When the Polish government-in-exile asked him to look into the 1940 mass murder of the Polish officer corps in Soviet captivity, fifteen thousand Poles executed in all, Churchill was dismissive: “There is no use prowling round the three year old graves of Smolensk.”

Churchill’s answer suggests he suspected or knew the truth, that Stalin had perpetrated the Katyn massacre. If he thought an investigation would implicate the Nazis in the mass murder of Poland’s officer corps, Churchill would have pursued it.

In early 1944, “Churchill put pressure on the Poles to accept border changes that made Munich look like a simple frontier adjustment.” Churchill’s concessions at Moscow were far worse than Chamberlain’s at Munich. For the Poles were terrified of Stalin’s Russia, while the Sudeten Germans clamored to join Hitler’s Germany. What did Churchill think the fate of the Poles, who had defeated the Red Army in 1920, would be under Stalin? How could he not have known what Stalin had in store for the Poles when Stalin in 1944 had refused U.S. and British planes permission to fly supplies to the dying Home Army?

At Yalta in February 1945, Churchill gave moral legitimacy to Stalin’s control of half of Europe by signing a “Declaration on Liberated Europe.” Writes Nisbet, the one hundred million Europeans east of the Oder had to watch what democracy and freedom they had known before the war disappear, (...) — one, however, that both Churchill and FDR acquiesced in.

Yet Churchill “was so pleased with Yalta, noted a British diplomat, he was ‘drinking buckets of Caucasian champagne which would undermine the health of any ordinary man.’” To Churchill, the independence and freedom of one hundred million Christian peoples of Eastern Europe were not worth a war with Russia in 1945. Why, then, had they been worth a war with Germany in 1939? To this day, a question remains unanswered.

Did Churchill ever give a damn about Poland? (...)" Man of the Century, Posted by Patrick J. Buchanan


Miguel Madeira said...

"one hundred million Europeans east of the Oder had to watch what democracy and freedom they had known before the war disappear"

Os únicos europeus a leste do Oder que tinham "democracia" (se formos falar de "liberdade" é mais complicado) antes da guerra seriam alguns milhões de checoslovacos (ou nem esses, se contarmos o começo da guerra só a partir a invasão da Polónia).

A respeito de Yalta: quando a critica a Yalta é feita num contexto de critica à participação dos EUA e/ou do RU na guerra (como penso ser a posição de Buchanan), faz sentido. Quando é feita por defensores da participação anglo-saxónica na II Guerra Mundial (como por vezes acontece em sectores da direita "pró-guerra") não faz grande sentido: o que se acordou em Yalta foi, essencialmente, a norma habitual de distribuição de territórios entre aliados nas guerras - "cada fica com o que conseguir ocupar"

CN said...

"cada fica com o que conseguir ocupar"

Sim, uma boa verdade, por exemplo, no que respeita às sucessivas partições da Polónia.