Brezhnev and Soviet Stagnation

By the end of the Khrushchev era, conservatives within the regime saw nothing but failure. ┬áNot only had the post Stalinist thaw resulted in chaos as far as they could see, but the economic initiatives the General Secretary had put forward, such as the Virgin Lands Campaign, had been dismal failures. The coup to oustContinue reading “Brezhnev and Soviet Stagnation”

John Maynard Keynes and the American Loan

Britain’s two world wars were fought as much by economists as they were by generals. Finding a strategy to pay for the wars against Germany and her Axis allies was a key part of Britain’s national survival. Hitler’s economic strategy was based around conquest and plunder, with occupied peoples paying for his wars and Germany’sContinue reading “John Maynard Keynes and the American Loan”

Over-teaching the Holocaust

  In 2014 I attended a forum held by No 10 Downing Street at Wembley Arena. Holocaust survivors and their families were being invited to participate in the Prime Minister’s commission for a permanent memorial for the Holocaust in Britain. Since the 1990s, successive British Prime Ministers have each attempted to out-do their predecessors inContinue reading “Over-teaching the Holocaust”

Problems with teaching about dictatorships

By the time most teachers have started delivering GCSE or A level lessons on Nazi Germany, their pupils will already have consumed hours of movies, documentaries and YouTube clips about Hitler. This, you might think, is an advantage. Rarely can a classroom teacher expect their learners to come prepared with subject knowledge so when theyContinue reading “Problems with teaching about dictatorships”

Lawrence of Arabia

In 1918, at the end of the First World War, Thomas Edward Lawrence was unknown to the vast majority of the British population. Throughout the 1920s, however, his wartime activities were popularised and he became a military celebrity that ranked alongside Horatio Nelson. Lawrence had been British intelligence in Egypt’s liaison with the Arab rebelsContinue reading “Lawrence of Arabia”