Saturday, 5 March 2016

On This Day Facts - March 5th

On This Day in 1946, Winston Churchill, now longer the Prime Minister, made one of his most famous speeches, of which there were more than a few, as that guy knew how to write and deliver good speech. The speech he made on this day in history in 1946 was the one in which he used the infamous phrase "Iron Curtain" to condemn the Soviet Union's policies in Europe.
"From Stettin in the Baltic to the Trieste in the Adriatic, an iron curtain has descended across the continent."
It is commonly believed that this was as close to an official announcement of the commencement of the Cold War as you could get.
Winston Churchill had been invited to speak at Westminster College, Missouri, which I believe is in the United States of-We-Appreciate-Churchill-More-Than-The-British.
Winston Churchill had played a key role in winning World War 2 as Britain's Prime Minister. But, it seems, the man who led Britain in a time of war, was not the man to lead Britain in a time of peace.
In July 1945, to everyone's surprise, apart from those who didn't vote for him, Winston Churchill lost the General Election in a landslide victory to the opposition Labour Party.
And this was just after defeating the Germans in the Second World War. The guy was a hero. Loved by the whole country. And the world. And they kicked him out. Bunch of gits.
Upon hearing of his defeat, Churchill took a long drag of his cigar, made from dried-out flattened hedgehogs, which are then rolled in tobacco leaves, and muttered, "They have a perfect right to kick us out. That is democracy. That is what we have been fighting for."
Churchill didn't quit parliament. He also refused to step down as leader of the Conservatives. He stayed on as Leader of the Opposition, even after losing the following General Election in 1950.
He'd get his opportunity again. Another General Election was called in 1951 and Churchill won, returning to 10 Downing Street and the Premiership.
He made his trip to America in 1946, and the Westminster College, Missouri, invited him to speak. He was joined by President Harry S. Truman.
Churchill's speech began with praise for America, which he told, stood at the pinnacle of world power. His speech was to continue, but with a darker tone. He condemned the Soviet Union in no uncertain terms.
He said that Britain and America needed to work together and forge an even closer "special relationship."
Churchill declared the Soviet Union had communist fifth columns operating throughout Western Europe. They were unchallenged and he drew analogies to the disastrous appeasement of Hitler before the commencement of open warfare before World War 2.
He said of the Soviet Union, "there was nothing they admire so much as strength. And there was nothing for which they had less respect than for military weakness."
“From Stettin in the Baltic to Trieste in the Adriatic, an iron curtain has descended across the continent.”
Also On This Day In History
On This Day in 1616, the book On The Revolutions Of The Heavenly Spheres by Nicolaus Copernicus was added to the Index of Forbidden books, 73 years after being first published.
And that's pretty much when everyone wanted to buy it. Nothing boosts sales of a book than getting it banned. It's Amazon ranking the day before was over three million. They day after it hit #2 on the bestseller list.
On This Day in 1836, Samuel Colt patented the first production-model revolver - the .34-caliber pistol.
On This Day in 1850, The Britannia Bridge was opened to the public for the first time. The bridge spans the Menai Strait between Anglesey and mainland Wales.
On This Day in 1982, Venera 14, a Soviet made probe, landed on the planet Venus.
Fun Fact
Even though Venus is a lot further away from the sun than the planet Mercury,
Venus is actually much hotter. It's all down to the atmosphere. Mercury has none, and loses heat quickly. Venus has an atmosphere and can retain heat at the surface.
On This Day in 1984, over six thousand minors decided they'd go on strike at Cortonwood Colliery, England.
What the heck is a coal mine doing employing children? That's just wrong. I'm seriously going to .... Oh, wait, that's meant to be miners. That's embarrassing.
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