The British Empire and the Second World War
In 1939 Hitler went to war not just with Great Britain; he also went to war with the whole of the British Empire, the greatest empire that there had ever been. In the years since 1945 that empire has disappeared, and the crucial fact that the British Empire fought together as a whole during the war has been forgotten. All the parts of the empire joined the struggle and were involved in it from the beginning, undergoing huge changes and sometimes suffering great losses as a result. The war in the desert, the defence of Malta and the Malayan campaign, and the contribution of the empire as a whole in terms of supplies, communications and troops, all reflect the strategic importance of Britain's imperial status. Men and women not only from Australia, New Zealand and India but from many parts of Africa and the Middle East all played their part. Winston Churchill saw the war throughout in imperial terms. The British Empire and the Second World War emphasises a central fact about the Second World War that is often forgotten.
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The young Churchill saw action on the North-West Frontier in India, and in 1898
rode in the British Army's last cavalry charge at Omdurman in the Sudan. After
observing the Spanish counter- insurgency at close quarters in Cuba, Churchill ...
In August 1941 HMS Prince of Wales, Britain's newest battleship (shortly to
become the first capital ship ever to be sunk by aircraft when attacked by
Japanese bombers in the Gulf of Siam), transported a delighted Churchill to meet
Churchill was wildly out of touch, but then so was just about everybody else at the
time. ... Admiral of the Fleet Sir Dudley Pound told Churchill that by April 1942 he
could build a force around the battleships HMS Nelson, Rodney and Renown ...
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The Approach of War
The Home Front
The Caribbean 177
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