RT. HON. SIR WINSTON SPENCER CHURCHILL
ROUND TABLE OF NEBRASKA
Barnes & Nobles Crossroads Mall
Omaha Nebraska, 68114
May 20th Sunday 2:00 pm
Winston S. Churchill Volume V 1922-1939
Chapter 12 “The Smiling Chancellor”
June 17th Sunday 2:00 pm
Winston S. Churchill Volume V 1922-1939
Chapter 13 “De-Rating: ‘A Plan for Prosperity 1927-1929’”
* Finest Hour ‘Journal of the Churchill Centre’ http://winstonchurchill.org/
* The Churchillian ‘The Magazine Of The National Churchill Museum’ http://www.nationalchurchillmuseum.org/
* The Great War http://www.greatnorthernpublishing.co.uk/the-great-war.html
* World War II http://www.historynet.com/worldwar2
* This England https://www.thisengland.co.uk/
Churchill on the Radio
3rd Hour of the Hugh Hewitt radio show on each Friday
If in Omaha, NE this segment is aired from 7am to 8am on AM 1420 and 94.5 FM
Broadcast are also available for free on ITUNES ‘Hillsdale Dialogues Podcast’
‘First the coal subsidy, then the 7 months’ coal strike, and now “heavily armed neutrality” in China’
Winston’s vacation is disrupted by the start of the Chinese Civil War which would conclude in 1950.
Excerpt from Martin Gilbert’s ‘Winston S. Churchill Volume V 1922-1939’ (1976, Page 227)
From Rome, Churchill went by train to the South of France, where he spent four days with his wife at Consuelo Balsan’s villa, Lou Seuil, at Eze. On his arrival he learnt, from P. J. Grigg, that the Cabinet had decided to send British troops to China, where British lives and property were being threatened by local warlords. British subjects had already been expelled from two Treaty ports, Hankow and Kiukiang, while at Nanking several British traders had been murdered by the mob. Churchill was in no doubt as to what should be done, and had already made his views clear to the Cabinet. Indeed, on January 18 Baldwin had written to Churchill that the Cabinet, ‘fired by your statement that we ought to have a policy and recognising that soon we shall have no more cheeks to turn, and taking their courage in both hands’ had decided to send at least a Division of British troops to protect the threatened ports. ‘Of course there never was such cruel luck as yours,’ Grigg wrote to Churchill from the Treasury on January 22, ‘first the coal subsidy, then the 7 months’ coal strike, and now “heavily armed neutrality” in China’. But in his reply to Baldwin on January 22, Churchill wrote that it had in fact been a ‘relief’ to him to learn of the Cabinet’s decision to send more troops to China, and he added:
Short of being actually conquered, there is no evil worse than submitting to wrong and violence for fear of war. Once you take the position of not being able in any circumstances to defend your rights against the aggression of some particular set of people, there is no end to the demands that will be made or to the humiliations that must be accepted.
On January 25 a British steamship, the Megantic, sailed from Liverpool to Shanghai with troops for the Shanghai Defence Force. That same day Churchill wrote to Worthington-Evans from Eze:
…my motive in writing is to urge you to send out plenty of Tanks to Shanghai. A dozen of those fast tanks we saw at Aldershot would do more to keep order in a great Chinese city than 20,000 infantry soldiers. Moreover, how are Chinese troops going to resist an attack by tanks? Unless they have really good artillerists—like the German officer who shot six tanks in succession single-handed before being killed1—they will be quite helpless against these vehicles.
1The officer was Lieutenant Müller of the 108th Regiment. The incident took place on 20 November 1917, during the Battle of Cambrai. According to Sir Douglas Haig’s despatch of 20 February 1918: ‘Many of the hits on our tanks at Flesquières were obtained by a German artillery officer who, remaining alone at his battery, served a field gun single-handed until killed at his gun. The great bravery of this officer aroused the admiration of all ranks.’ Lieutenant Müller was the only individual German officer ever to be mentioned in British despatches.
May 11, 1969
They were taken by surprise. Haim Ben Yona, commander of the first dinghy, where Bibi was, was shot in the head and dropped into the black waters of the canal.
Photo of Netanyahu from his days as a member of the Sayeret Matkal, Israel’s elite commando unit. Netanyahu served in the unit from 1968-1973, participating in many risky operations. Netanyahu nearly drowned during such a mission in Egypt in 1969. –from Elisa Silverman’s Benjamin Netanyahu: Leading the Way for Israel (2016,page 14)
Excerpt is from Ben Caspit’s The Netanyahu Years (2017, Pages 38-40)
On May 11, 1969, Bibi’s team crossed the canal in rubber dinghies and laid an ambush for an Egyptian military truck.
The unit’s attack came in response to traps laid by Egyptians for Israeli patrols and their attacks on commando units in Israeli strongholds along the Bar-Lev Line, a defensive line along the Suez Canal. The IDF was concerned about Egyptian successes and the Southern Command wanted to respond in kind. Sayeret, along with the paratroop unit, was sent to carry out special operations in the canal region. The paratroopers laid ambushes in regions vulnerable to Egyptian invasion, while the Sayeret and the Shaked elite commando forces carried out activity on the canal’s west bank.
On that May 11 night, Sayeret’s holding force, of which Bibi was a member, opened fire at close range on an Egyptian truck. The truck went up in flames. The unit’s safe retreat to the canal’s eastern bank was illuminated by Egyptian star shells.
Two days later, on May 13, when they were a short distance from the canal, the two young teams comprising Sayeret were called by their commanding officers for a briefing. Shortly before, the unit’s commander had been replaced by Lieutenant Colonel Menachem Digli. The team commanders were briefed on a planned ambush of Egyptian commando forces west of the canal.
Bibi prepared a special sling on which he laid four boxes of ammunition for his MAG machine gun. The sling weighed almost two hundred pounds and Bibi was supposed to carry it on his back, in addition to his usual equipment. He arranged the straps of his ammunition belt to keep them from pressing on his shoulders or making any noise when he was moving quickly. The additional ammunition would increase his firepower.
His comrades recall that he was uneasy about the operation. Under the command of Amiram Levin, the force set off in a truck in the direction of the canal, a few miles before the waterline. They disembarked and continued on foot. Israeli Navy SEALs awaited them at the bank of the canal with three rubber dinghies. They boarded the dinghies and started moving toward the Egyptian bank of the canal.
Halfway there, they were spotted. Egyptian star shells lit up the sky and the Egyptians opened heavy fire on the Israeli dinghies, which were several dozen yards from the Egyptian bank. They were taken by surprise. Haim Ben Yona, commander of the first dinghy, where Bibi was, was shot in the head and dropped into the black waters of the canal. The boat was riddled with bullets and started to lose air. Several of the fighters jumped into the water, Bibi among them. He forgot the excruciatingly heavy sling on his back, remembering only when he touched water, but it was too late by then. He started sinking. His strength and physical condition didn’t matter. He was unable to float while bearing the huge weight of metal on his shoulders.
Fortunately for him, Israel Assaf, the SEAL in charge of the boat, noticed the disappearance of one of the Sayeret fighters. The water was disturbed when Bibi sank, and Assaf understood. He pushed his hand in and felt a head, grabbed the hair on that head, and pulled with all his might. Bibi gulped for air, on the verge of death as Assaf helped him release the heavy load from his shoulders and inflated Bibi’s life belt. Bibi was exhausted. One of his comrades swam up to support him, helping him keep his head above water. In an effort to return to the Israeli side of the canal, Israel Assaf changed the direction of the boat, which continued to lose air. “Hold on,” he called to the Sayeret fighters grasping the swiftly deflating dinghies. Bibi did not reply. He was unable to speak, occasionally losing his grip and sinking into the water, his comrades supporting him to keep him afloat. The boat made it to the Israeli side. The waiting fighters dragged it a few yards to shore and continued to support the sinking Bibi, who arrived at the bank with his last breath and lay there, depleted, physically destroyed at the water’s edge, his chest heaving up and down like bellows. An Egyptian shell exploded a few yards away. The fighters rushed for shelter. Only Bibi didn’t move. He didn’t react. The body of Sayeret’s commander, Haim Ben Yona, was not found despite the numerous attempts of commando divers. Some weeks later it surfaced near Port Said, a dozen miles from the spot where he had died.