Churchill's "Iron Curtain" Speech Revisited
Sixty years after he delivered them, we are carefully ensconced in the assurance that Winston Churchill's predictive sentiments were in fact accurate and that the comments he uttered in Missouri not only rang with clarity due to their precision and willingness to engage the truth, but because they were made in a post-war climate increasingly antagonistic, as former allies began to withdraw into their separate spheres:
"From Stettin in the Baltic to Trieste in the Adriatic, an Iron Curtain has descended across the continent."As he had done in 1930s, much to the chagrin of the appeasers who would do anything to prevent another war with Germany, Churchill denounced what he saw as the impending danger and advocated direct action. His view of the impending peril of Hitler's Nazi state was not popular, but he would be vindicated by the end of the decade, as war enveloped Europe once again. A decade later, Churchill once again recognized the encroaching danger to freedom, barely six months removed from the end of the century's greatest conflagration of violence and barbarism, and issued a prescient warning. One could see before the decade was over that the next conflict differed only in method but not in ramifications--a fight for freedom and democracy. The BBC's reporter notes the moral and authoritative clarity with which Churchill uttered his words:
His core beliefs were in the special bond between America and Britain, the need for the United Nations to be "a force for action and not merely a frothing of words", and the duty of the Western democracies to stand up for freedom and against tyranny.Sixty years after the speech, the UN is still nothing more than a "frothing of words" sprinkled with tin-pot dictatorships holding seats in Human Rights commissions and protecting the world's most grievous offenders of human rights violations with platitudes, monetary support, and corruption while turning a blind eye to genocide in Cambodia, Rwanda, and Sudan.
Sixty years later, there are more democratic governments in the world than ever.
Yet such moral certainty is rare, and the authority with which Churchill's expressed it is surely rarer still.
The example of Denmark illustrates once again the need for the West to stand up for freedom against the tyranny of sharia law, Islamo-fascists, and others who would cripple our freedoms with veiled threats of violence. The West did not surrender to Hitler's Blitzkrieg, Soviet tanks and ICBMs, and hopefully will not cede either freedom or the moral highground to anonymous terrorists bent on the West's complete destruction. The terrorists want total war; it is up to free democracies to protect themselves once again from those who would sell us our lives for the price of freedom.
"An appeaser is one who feeds a crocodile - hoping it will eat him last."--Churchill
Dr. Seuss, August 1941. Man in center labeled "The Appeaser".