2010-2019 | Arms exports | Backing dictatorships

‘No Saudi atrocity too much’ to halt UK’s lucrative arms exports

[ 11 September 2018 ] On 11 September 2018, Emily Thornberry, Labour’s shadow foreign secretary, reminded parliament of British collusion with Saudi Arabia’s bombing campaign against Yemen which, since it had started in 2015, had created what the United Nations described as ‘the world’s worst humitarian crisis.’ She added: ‘It seems as though no Saudi…

1920-1939 | Appeasing Hitler | Backing dictatorships

Archbishop of Canterbury backs Hitler’s takeover of Austria

[ 29 March 1938 ] Speaking in the House of Lords on 29 March 1938, Archbishop of Canterbury Cosmo Gordon Lang, not wishing to appear too pro-Nazi, began his defence of Hitler’s recent seizure of Austria, cautiously. He reasoned that it had been ‘inevitable,’ and that Prime Minister Chamberlain, by not taking retaliatory action, had…

1920-1939 | Appeasing Hitler | Backing dictatorships | Media propaganda

Daily Mail journo given priority use of Hitler’s telephone

[ 13 March 1938 ] Late in the evening of Sunday 13 March 1938, Hitler gave an interview in a hotel room in the Austrian town of Linz to a journalist in whom he had complete confidence to dutifully report the Nazi propaganda line as to why a day earlier his troops had marched into…

1920-1939 | Appeasing Hitler | Backing dictatorships | Germany

BBC Director General offers to fly the swastika from Broadcasting House

[ 10 March 1938 ] On Thursday 10 March 1938, the newly appointed German Foreign Minister, Joachim von Ribbentrop, was on the second day of a four day diplomatic visit to London. Earlier in the day, he lunched with the foreign secretary, Lord Halifax, at the Foreign Office, having being forced to run a gauntlet…

1920-1939 | Appeasing Hitler | Backing dictatorships | Germany

The editor of the Daily Herald apologizes for insulting Hitler

[ 1 December 1937 ] The left leaning Daily Herald, was arguably the most progressive of Britain’s mainstream newspapers in the thirties. Unlike The Times, the Daily Telegraph, the Daily Express and the Daily Mail, it would often carry articles and editorials which were mildly disapproving, and even occasionally sharply critical, of Britain’s policy of appeasing Hitler. At the same time,…

1920-1939 | Appeasing Hitler | Censorship | Germany | Media propaganda

Editor of the Manchester Guardian reprimands reporter for anti-Nazi bias

[ 12 March 1935 ] On 12 March 1935, William Crozier, the editor of Britain’s most progressive mainstream newspaper, the Manchester Guardian, reprimanded Robert Dell, the paper’s Geneva correspondent, for allowing his heartfelt distaste for the Nazi regime in Germany to influence his reporting. ‘It simply won’t do, in my opinion,’ he warned the journalist, ‘to…

2000-2009 | Backing dictatorships | Blair's crimes | Egypt

Tony Blair accepts holiday from Egypt’s dictator Mubarak

23 December 2005 Today in 2005, Prime Minister Tony Blair, his wife Cherie and four children flew off to Egypt on, as his spin doctor Alistair Campbell politely put it, ‘another of his controversial holidays.’  Campbell also noted in a footnote to the diary entry that ‘Blair had previously been criticized for accepting hospitality from…

1960-1969 | Backing dictatorships | VIetnam

British ambassador to South Vietnam defends the Diem Dictatorship

20 December 1961 Today in 1961, the British ambassador in Saigon, Henry Hohler, wrote to Foreign Secretary Alec Douglas-Home, advising that ‘we should not be too greatly moved by complaints that the Vietnamese authorities are holding large numbers of individuals in detention camps.’ He reminded the foreign secretary that ‘At the worst period in Malaya…

1920-1939 | Appeasing Hitler

Lord Halifax on Hitler’s Nazi regime – ‘absolutely fantastic’

5 December 1937 On 5 December 1937, the Conservative MP Sir Henry Channon noted in his diary that he had ‘a long conversation with Lord Halifax,’ who had recently visited Hitler and other Nazi leaders in Germany, as a trusted informal ambassador acting on the prime minister Neville Chamberlain’s behalf. According to Channon, Halifax confessed…