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Appeasers, Past and Present

Richard Casey
"Onward"
Framingham Earl Rd
Yelverton
Norwich
NR 14 7PD

Fri. 3rd March '03

Dear Mr Apling,
I note with interest your comments on pre-war appeasment published in today's EDP. [see next page, half-way down].

As a cardinal rule I never normally contact any EDP contributer at their home address, but even cardinal rules have their exceptions: The following may explain why I feel an exception is warranted in this case, it is from a piece I had published m "The Herald" (Scotland) recently,

From the moment Adolf Hitler became Reichchancellor he was the idol of the British Establishment, he had the support of members of the royal family, including the future Edward VIII, virtually all of the House of Lords, the Conservative Party (with the honourable exception of Winston Churchill and four or five others), the right-wing press, plus the United States, which reiterated time and again that it would not involve itself in European affairs.
Hitler had a free hand, Austria, the Rhineland, Sudetenland, Czechoslovakia, the Nuremberg Laws, the Munich Agreement, he got away with all of it. Didn't anyone protest? Yes, Churchill, the Labour Party, with the exception of the pacifist Lansbury clique, the trade unions, and what is nowadays termed the "hard left. Their opposition was reviled because "Adolf Hitler was the bulwark against Bolshevism ".

Move forward SO years, 1980-91, appeasment is back in fashion, the appeased, Saddam Hussein, the appeasers, the US governments of Ronald Reagan and George Bush and the UK governments of Margaret Thatcher and John Major. Those of us who protested at Saddam's slaughtering of innocents were told that we were "Simplistic Idealists" and that, "Saddam Hussein was a bulwark against fundamentalism ".

A total of 55,014,000 people died in the Second World War as a result of appeasment; few if any of them were the appeasers. How many this time ?

I forwarded this section to the EDP, they published a excessively edited version of it on Saturday 22nd Feb. (The entire section in bold was ommitted). The reason I felt it neccessary to write to the EDP was the imputation being made by various contributers that the pre-war appeasers were, "Wimpish Lefties", I feel the edited version singularly fails to address this falsehood

Many years ago, while researching the period referred to, I met many of the "hard left" people These were people whose belief in Socialism and Democracy was unshakeable, some of them had fought against Franco in the Spanish Civil War, Franco triumphant, they escaped to France where they were interned until the start of WW2, returning to Bntain they immediatly volunteered to fight against Hitler, they were turned down, being. "Politically Suspect": Those who'd backed Hitler right up to outbreak of war were, apparently , "Politically Sound"
You are probably aware the gas used to kill those 5000 Kurds at Halabaja was sold to Saddam by the United States, their representative Donald Rumsfeld, now Secretary of State for War, after the gassing Mr Rumsfeld, "replenished the stock", and three weeks later, Tony Newton, Britain's Trade Minister offered Saddam another £340 million credit guarantees. Subsequently Mark Higson of the Foreign Office admitted they had responded, "With Downright Lies", to those of us who had protested against these murders and the subsequent actions of the British and United States Governments,

Yours sincerely

Richard Casey

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