Popular Myth About Winston Churchill Completely Wrong

An Actor Read Churchill’s Wartime Speeches Over the Wireless. This popular myth is completely wrong.

 

Winston Churchill Broadcast From White House

 Washington, DC. 1943.  Winston Churchill broadcasts the news of the third anniversary of the English Home Guard while visiting the White House.

Winston Churchill is such a towering figure in history that numerous myths about him have taken root over the decades. One of those myths is this: actors mimicked Churchill’s voice and broadcast his famous speeches on the BBC after he had given them in Parliament. (There was then no recording equipment in the House of Parliament). Winston Churchill’s speeches were uniquely his own.

 

an iconic photograph of Winston Churchill by Cecil Beaton at Number 10 Downing Street after he became Prime Minister

Churchill did not enjoy broadcasting since he couldn’t see the audience of listeners and was simply speaking into a microphone in a recording studio. Not the ideal venue for him.

Nonetheless, Churchill personally broadcast his speeches. Other times when he made brief comments on the BBC, he and only he broadcast those. No actor ever, not ever, presented himself to the BBC radio audience as Winston Churchill.

 

Churchill in his uniform as Honorary Air Commodore. He loved wearing uniforms but only wore ones he was entitled to wear. All the ribbons are decorations he had won as an army officer.

During his lifetime Churchill had been under enemy fire many times and was the first Prime Minister since the Duke of Wellington to have killed men in battle. As a young officer in the Empire, as a war correspondent, and as a Lt. Colonel commanding a battalion on the Western Front in World War One, Churchill was well acquainted with war and saw no glory in it.

“Ah, horrible war, amazing medley of the glorious and the squalid, the pitiful and the sublime, if modern men of light and leading saw your face closer, simple folk would see it hardly ever.” —Winston Churchill, 22 January 1900

winstonchurchill.org/publications/churchill-on-war/

 

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PLEASE CONSIDER DOING ME A FAVOR: I am the author of the World War Two naval epic, An Honorable German.

Kindly consider purchasing a copy of my novel on Kindle because the book is out of print and I only receive royalties on Kindle purchases. Follow this link to purchase the Kindle edition.

https://tinyurl.com/AnHonGermanKindleLink

SAYS NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLING AUTHOR NELSON DeMILLE

“A truly epic and stirring tale of war, love, and the sea. An Honorable German is a remarkable debut novel by a writer who…seems he was an eyewitness to the history he portrays in such vivid detail. An original and surprising look at World War II from the other side.”

To purchase a signed and personally inscribed copy of a first edition hardback go here:

https://tinyurl.com/NewcopyfromMcCainAmazon

then page down to seller Charles McCain then the order comes to me.

for Nook click here:

http://charlesmccain.com/

 

 

My entire website, this entire blog, and this blog post are Copyright (c) 2018 by Charles McCain.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Great Read Berlin Embassy by William Russell part one


Berlin Embassy by William Russell

Five Stars

I like this book a lot. I’ve read it four or five times. Part of the reason is the detail on everyday life in Berlin during the years 1939, 1940, and 1941. When I was researching my first novel, An Honorable German, I read this book on Berlin, among many others, because several chapters take place in the city of my book take place in Berlin and I needed details.

Another reason I like the book is that William Russell, a thoroughly decent and polite young guy from Mississippi, was in Germany studying German. He had very little money and often could afford only one meal a day. Finally, he got taken on as a part-time (later full time) clerk at the American Embassy, one of the reasons being his fluency in German.

Hitler’s new Reich’s Chancellory under construction in 1938

Russell was not important. Didn’t come from an important family. Had no high-level social contacts, had no money and didn’t know anyone important. Yet he happened to be at the epicenter of calamitous events and watched the Nazis ready their nation for war.  Just as important, he realized it which is why he kept notes for this book which appeared in 1941 to great acclaim.

Russell has an eye for detail including everyday exchanges he had with people he saw each day such as the Portierfrau for his apartment house. “The postman told me today that you forgot to pay your radio tax last month.” In Nazi Germany, if you owned a radio you had to pay two marks a month, or .80 cents, to listen since it was public radio, so to speak, and without commercials.

“Tell the postman that I don’t listen to German stations,” Russell said, “Tell him I consider London more accurate.” The Portierfrau laughed, somewhat uneasily.

Germans were forbidden to listen to foreign radio although a huge portion of them listened to the German Service of the BBC to get accurate news. The author speculates that based on his observations 60% to 70% of Germans listened to foreign radio, which is in line with the figures from post-war surveys. Russell also tells us: “Old fashioned headphones, which could be used for extra private listening, were sold out in every German radio shop during the first week of the war.”

 

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Rechts das Brandenburger Tor
Aufnahmedatum: 1939
Aufnahmeort: Berlin
Inventar-Nr.: Hu U1598-1a
Systematik:
Geographie / Europa / Deutschland / Orte / Berlin / Regierungsgeb‰ude / Botschaften
The US Embassy in 1939 is on the left in this picture. USA is printed on the roof in an attempt to minimize damage from accidental aerial bombings. The Brandenburg Gate is to the right. Damage sustained by the Embassy during the Battle of Berlin and from aerial bombings proved to be extensive partially as a result of being located so close to Hitler’s bunker (which was a block farther south of the embassy which is to the left in this picture).

 

Obama Nostalgia On a State Visit to Asia When President of the United States

Former President Barack H. Obama is a man of dignity and gravitas.  

When President, he represented America when making a state visit to countries and conferences and always was a gentleman and his wife, First Lady Michelle Obama, was a true lady. I’m having Obama nostalgia. I wish he could be President again.

 

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President Barack Obama visits a Dignity for Children Foundation classroom in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, Nov. 21, 2015. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

p112015ps-0574

President Barack Obama greets participants following a Young Southeast Asian Leaders Initiative (YSEALI) town hall at Taylor University in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, Nov. 20, 2015. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

p111915ps-0112

President Barack Obama talks with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau of Canada and President Enrique Peña Nieto of Mexico prior to an Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation Summit (APEC) meeting at the Philippine International Convention Center in Manila, Philippines, Nov. 19, 2015. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

p111815ps-1197

President Barack Obama talks with Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah, Brunei Darussalam, wearing traditional off-white linen Barong Tagalog shirts, at the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation Summit (APEC) leaders welcome dinner at the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay, Metro Manila, Philippines, Nov. 18, 2015. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

It Stinks In Here No Bathing Facilities on U-Boats

“It stinks in here!”

In every memoir I have read about the UBootwaffe every author mentions how disgusting the boat smelled after a week at sea and that they never got used to it.

dasbo01h_0

This still photo from the German film “Das Boot” gives you an idea of how cramped was the interior of a U-boat. This particular shot is of the engine room with the two 12 cylinder MAN diesels usually found in German U-Boats of the era. “Das Boot” translates as “The Boat.” In German, “boot” is pronounced “boat.”

Freshwater was rationed and the men only received one cup a day for personal use such as brushing teeth. Most men drank the water because they were often thirsty.

Because there was a limit to the amount of fresh water a UBoat could carry, the men were unable to bathe unless they used sea water. Boats were supplied with special soap to use with salt water but they didn’t like it and rarely used it.

Many U-Boat crewmen developed skin rashes, boils, and other types of skin diseases. The UBootwaffe had a special medical department which did nothing but study the skin diseases of Uboot crewmen. (Tuberculosis was also a major problem due to the constant damp.)

Commander of the boat sweats as do all the men around him as he maneuvers the boat to avoid British depth charges. The “old man” is actually Heinrich Lehman-Willenbrock, commander of U-96. The author of Das Boot made one war patrol on the U-96 and years later fictionalized his experience in his novel.

Also contributing to skin diseases among the men was the sickening miasma of air inside the uboat which clung to their skin and often infected their lungs. When boats returned from patrol and the flotilla engineers went aboard to make an inspection, they usually vomited because of the horrible smell.

U-boats were not well ventilated so when they were on the surface, the only way to get fresh air into the boat was to keep the bridge hatches open, close the outboard air intakes to the diesels, open the e-motor interior hatch and interior engine room hatch. This allowed the diesel engines to draw air from the outside through the open hatchways.

This arrangement didn’t help as much as one might think since there was no way to vent the bad air except by opening the engine room deck hatch or the forward hatch to the deck in the crew compartment. This was never, ever done at sea except in an emergency.

So the fresh air coming in helped but it did not expel the bad air. The author of every U-Boat memoir I have ever read remarks on the horrible fugue of noxious air and the disgusting smell which no one ever completely adjusted to.

Sweating men without fresh water to bathe will soon have the boat smelling like a locker room uncleaned for years.

This smell was a combination of the body odor of 45 or more unwashed men, their exhalations, rotting food, diesel oil, cooking odors, and worst of all, the smell of urine and excrement in the bilges.

While the most common types of uboat, the type VII, and type IX had two toilets or water closets, one was always used for storage and wasn’t available. So one toilet had to suffice for more than 45 men. The controls were so difficult to operate that each boat had one man specially trained in how to work the controls and he was known as “the toilet fuhrer”).

Below 25 meters the toilet did not work because the water pressure was such that one could not open the outboard toilet valve to discharge the contents of the toilet.

The outboard toilet valve was a weak spot which could compromise comprise the water-tight integrity of the boat when it was used. So the men used cans or buckets to urinate or defecate. As you might imagine, in the heat of action or action drills, these containers were often kicked over or in an emergency dive tipped over, spilling their contents which seeped into the bilge.

Being in a Uboat was like serving time in a public latrine that was never sanitized in spite of constant efforts by the crew to keep the interior of the boat clean.

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As an aside, the founder of the U-Boot Archiv in Cuxhaven, the late Horst Bredow, an officer in the UBootwaffe, had made one war patrol in the last months of World War Two. He had to be hospitalized upon returning to port because he had developed a skin rash covering his entire body. Another officer replaced him on his Uboat. The boat was sunk with all hands on her next war patrol. (The Archiv has changed its name from “U-Boot Archiv” to Deutsches U-Boot Museum.)

The link to their site is here:  www.dubm.de

copyright(c) 2018 by Charles McCain

I am the author of the World War Two naval epic, An Honorable German.

Kindly consider purchasing a copy of my novel on Kindle because the book is out of print and I only receive royalties on Kindle purchases.

https://tinyurl.com/AnHonGermanKindleLink

 

SAYS NEW YORK TIMES BEST SELLING AUTHOR NELSON DeMILLE

“A truly epic and stirring tale of war, love, and the sea. An Honorable German is a remarkable debut novel by a writer who…seems he was an eyewitness to the history he portrays in such vivid detail. An original and surprising look at World War II from the other side.”

To purchase a signed and personally inscribed copy of a first edition hardback go here:

https://tinyurl.com/NewcopyfromMcCainAmazon

then page down to seller Charles McCain then the order comes to me.

 

for Nook click here:

http://charlesmccain.com/

 

 

My entire website, this entire blog, and this blog post are Copyright (c) 2018 by Charles McCain. If you repost one of my blog posts, please be so kind as to have the courtesy to tell me.