QUEEN GREETS KILLER TYRANT CEAUSESCU AND AWARDS HIM WITH A KNIGHTHOOD
[ 13 June 1978 ]
On this day in 1978, at the insistence of Britain’s Labour government, the Queen welcomed Romania’s dictator Nicolae Ceausescu at Buckingham Palace as part of a British effort to encourage the regime to continue to distance itself from Moscow. He remained her guest for three days and was awarded an honorary knighthood.
The Daily Mirror commended the Queen for her dutifulness in politely acting as hostess despite her own personal reluctance, and noted that Ceausescu was “incomparably the worst.. Warsaw Pact Head of State” and that “the Romanian people suffer a harsh dictatorship that offers no threat by example to the Soviet one.”
Such was the dictator’s perceived importance in checking Soviet influence that Ceausescu’s knighthood was not revoked by any of the subsequent Conservative governments until after he had been toppled by a democratic uprising in December 1989.
BRITAIN SUPPORTS US ASSAULT ON VIETNAM
13 June 1965 – Tony Benn comments in his diary regarding the situation in Vietnam that “the Americans are now deciding to invade in full strength and we are left in the embarrassing position of appearing to support them.”
- Frederick Wills, “Palace Red Carpet for Tyrant,” The Daily Mirror, 14 June 1978, p6