Foseti opens his review of The Last Lion by Paul Reid with this quote from the book, which is a biography of Winston Churchill:
Given their distrust of Stalin, why did two such brilliant politicians as Churchill and Roosevelt remain so loyal to an ideological enemy who for almost twenty years had terrorized his own people while declaring capitalism to be his mortal foe?
Churchill fought the war to save the empire. Alas, his only strategy for winning the war consisted in getting the US to join the war on his side. The price the US would ultimately demand was the end of the empire.
Churchill once said that if hell would fight Hitler, he’d find something nice to say about the devil. I’m sure he meant it in jest — but it ended up being all too true. A fact Churchill saw well before the war ended and decades before the most brilliant minds in US diplomacy figured it out.
In the end, the story of Churchill is a tragedy. The very values he fought for were compromised by the Allies he ultimately chose. Far from delivering the world into the sun-lit uplands of liberty, his victory delivered most of the world into hands of horrors at least bad — likely worse — than the ones he fought.
I suspect we all have trouble seeing the war through the eyes of the people who hadn’t fought it yet, and they had trouble seeing the war playing out so differently from the previous war.
The Russians needed all the help they could get, because they were obviously going to get knocked out of the war by the Germans.
When France fell almost overnight, they interpreted that as not as this is a very different war but as Germany is even stronger this time around.
I think. I’m no expert, and, as I’ve said before, this all makes less sense the more I learn.