Winston Churchill and “The Iron Curtain”

3 Points

1 – The U.S. is at its peak of power and now has a great responsibility to determine the future. One must feel a strong sense of duty and it is necessary to have constancy of mind, persistency, and the simplicity of decision making in determining the future of the English-speaking population.

2 – The fact about the current situation in Europe is that an “iron curtain” has fallen across the continent and the cities behind it are under the Soviet influence and control of Moscow. The safety of our world lies in the future unification of Europe.

3 – Communism presents a threat and challenge to the Christian civilization, however, the idea of another war is repulsing and the the English speaking people have the power to save the future. What the Soviets want are the positive outcomes of winning a war and expansion of their power, control and beliefs.

2 Questions

1 – Do you think Churchill makes a valid point when he says about WWII: “there was never a war in history easier to prevent by timely action than the one which has just desolated such great areas of the globe”?

2 – How does Stalin respond to Churchill’s speech and who does he compare him and his “English racial theory” to?

1 Observation

During the time that Churchill spoke of the dangers of the Soviet power and the iron curtain, many people in the west still viewed the Soviet Union as an ally coming out of WWII.

2 thoughts on “Winston Churchill and “The Iron Curtain”

  1. Churchill’s “Iron Curtain Speech” represented the beginning of the massive polarization between western and communist states. When Churchill gave this speech in 1946 many Americans regarded the Soviet Union as an ally emerging out of WWII in light of the defeats of Germany and Japan. Churchill publically exposed the Soviet Union. His use of the phrase, “the iron curtain,” served as a reference and metaphor for the great division in Europe. Churchill reminded the United States of their leading position on the global scale and urged compliance with the United Nations so that no global war would ever reoccur.

  2. I see this speech as being a large proponent of American policy within the Cold War, specifically the Marshall Plan and containment policies. Churchill directly says that the USSR doesn’t appear to want war, but rather “What they desire is the fruits of war and the indefinite expansion of their power and doctrines. But what we have to consider here today while time remains, is the permanent prevention of war and the establishment of conditions of freedom and democracy as rapidly as possible in all countries.” Statements like this lead America to instate the Marshall Plan which included economic aid to rebuild after WWII and convince those nations the ally with western, anti- communist nations. Similarly, policies of containment are a reaction to Churchill’s statements- they do not always enact war (as apparently the USSR did not want war), but rather attempt to prevent the rapid spread of communism that Churchill describes as “indefinite” without intervention.

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