France’s Colonial Empire

In the inter war years both the British and French empires, the last two major colonial players after the First World War, struggled to contain economic and ideological storms that threatened to tear them apart. These sometimes allied, sometimes antagonistic imperial systems were fundamentally different from one another on an organisational and ideological level, watchContinue reading “France’s Colonial Empire”

Churchill, Roosevelt and the Atlantic Charter, 1941

In August 1941, the British Prime Minister Winston Churchill and US President Franklin Roosevelt met along with their top military and diplomatic advisors at Placentia Bay off the coast of Newfoundland. Their discussions shaped the western allied war aims and laid the foundations of a post war order based on the United Nations. American interventionContinue reading “Churchill, Roosevelt and the Atlantic Charter, 1941”

America in 1945 – podcast and study notes

At the end of the Second World War, the United States of America emerged as the wealthiest society in human history. The contrast from the 1930s was stark; Britain, France and Germany had emerged from the great depression between 1933 and 1934, whereas mass unemployment was still prevalent in America in 1939. New industries, massiveContinue reading “America in 1945 – podcast and study notes”

The First World War and Britain’s Liberal Government

In the three years before the First World War, the Liberal Government, which had swept to power on a platform of social reform in 1906, faced unprecedented challenges and unrest. Foreign commentators saw the problems of Ireland, trade union militancy and the suffrage movement and assumed Britain might well be sliding towards a civil war.Continue reading “The First World War and Britain’s Liberal Government”

Churchill and Greece

Throughout the Second World War, Winston Churchill favoured a ‘Mediterranean Strategy’, believing that the ‘soft underbelly’ of Hitler’s Europe was Italy, Greece and the Balkans. By 1945, as the German occupiers of Greece withdrew in the face of a possible Red Army invasion Winston Churchill prioritised a British occupation of Greece to ensure that thereContinue reading “Churchill and Greece”

Nixon and Kissinger 1968-74

The Watergate Scandal is the first thing most people think of when Richard Nixon’s name is mentioned. Whilst this was the defining point of his presidency, the shadow it casts blots out other important aspects of the years from 1968 to 1974. Nixon’s very own Cardinal Wolsey, Henry Kissinger, came to exert an enormous amountContinue reading “Nixon and Kissinger 1968-74”