Winston Churchill

He was a British statesman who was the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from 1940 to 1945 and again from 1951 to 1955. Churchill was also an officer in the British Army, a historian, a writer and an artist. He won the Nobel Prize in Literature, and was the first person to be made an honorary citizen of the United States.

When he entered the famous Harrow School in 1888, the future prime minister was included in the worst class students. One of his teachers said of him: “It was not an easy guy to handle with.It is true that his intelligence was brilliant, but he only studied when he wanted and learned for the professors who deserved his approval.”

Churchill failed twice, consecutively in the entrance exams of the SandhurstMilitary Academy. However, once he entered the institution, he underwent a radical change. His proverbial stubbornness, his determination and its indomitable spirit were not abandoned, but the habit of capriciously disagreeing, all began to disappear.

In the parliament, his speeches and his good humor soon became famous. But his independent spirit, unwilling to submit to the party discipline, earned him important enemies in the camera, even among his own supporters. It’s no wonder that he changed the party several times and that his interventions, expected and feared by all, always awoke tremendous controversy. Disagreeing with the party regarding the South African question, Churchill went over to the Liberals in 1904, and in 1906, at the age of 31, he reached his first government post in the cabinet of Henry Campbell-Bannerman, who was named Subsecretary of the colonies. From this position he defended the autonomy granting to the Boers. Then he was appointed trade minister (1908-1910) and Interior Minister (1910-1911) in the government in which, Herbert Henry Asquith would be prime minister between 1908 and 1916.

As prime minister, he participated at the crucial conferences of Casablanca (1943), Cairo (1943), Tehran (1943), Yalta (1945) and Potsdam (1945), in which the war strategy was designed and, once the conflict was over, the world’s political map would remain unchanged until 1989. Finally, on the day when the Allied forces obtained victory, he went back to the Parliament and upon entering, he was the subject of the most tumultuous ovation that records the history of the assembly. Members forgot all ritual formalities and climbed into the seats, screaming and shaking newspapers. Churchill remained standing at the head of the ministerial bench, as tears rolled down his cheeks and shaking hands gripped his hat.

Despite the enormous popularity obtained during the war, two months after the vote,the British deposed him from office. Churchill continued to be part of the Parliament and emerged as a leader of the opposition. In a speech held in March 1946 he popularized the term “Iron Curtain” and some months later called to promote the creation of the United States of Europe. After the victory of the conservatives in 1951 he became once again prime minister, and two years later he was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature for his memoirs about World War II.

Re-elected in 1959, he no longer appeared to the elections of 1964. The people had seen Churchill personified as one of the most noble men of history and as having the most beautiful qualities of their race. The British did not cease to acclaim him as their hero until his death on 24 January 1965.

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