"Phoney War" Ended by Civilian Bombing

Archibald Maule Ramsay

The Nameless War

Though a state of war was declared to exist between Britain and Germany in September of 1939, it very soon became apparent that no war was being conducted by Germany against this country.

This was no surprise to those who knew the facts of the case. Hitler had again and again made it clear, that he never intended to attack or harm Great Britain or the British Empire. With the Siegfried Line strongly held, and no German intention of appearing west of it, stalemate in the west, or the "Phoney War," as it came to be called, must, in the absence of bombing of civilian populations ultimately peter out altogether.

No one was quicker to perceive this than the pro-Jewish war mongers; and they and their friends inside and outside the House of Commons very soon began exerting pressure for this form of bombing of Germany to be started.

On 14th January, 1940, The Sunday Times gave prominence to a letter from an anonymous correspondent, who demanded to know why we were not using our air power "to increase the effect of the blockade."

   "Scrutator," in the same issue, commented on this letter as follows:

"Such an extension of the offensive would inevitably develop into competitive frightfulness. It might be forced on us in reprisals for enemy action, and we must be in a position to make reprisals if necessary.

But the bombing of industrial towns, with its unavoidable loss of life among the civilian population — that is what it would come to — would be inconsistent with the spirit, if not the actual words of the pledges given from both sides at the beginning of the war."

The above quotation is taken from a book entitled Bombing Vindicated, which was published in 1944 by Mr. J. M. Spaight, C.B., C.B.E., who was the principal assistant secretary at the Air Ministry during the war.

As its title suggests, this book is an attempt to justify the indiscriminate use of bombers against the civil population. In it Mr. Spaight boasts that this form of bombing "saved civilisation": and reveals the startling fact that it was Britain that started this ruthless form of war on the very evening of the day on which Mr. Churchill became Prime Minister, May 11th, 1940.

On page 64 of his book, Mr. Spaight gives a further piece of information, which renders this sudden change of British policy all the more astonishing; for he states that a declaration was made by the British and French Governments on 2nd September, 1939, that

"Only strictly military objectives in the narrowest sense of the word would be bombarded."

This declaration, of course, was made in the days of Mr Chamberlain's Premiership; and no single fact perhaps could demarcate and differentiate more clearly the difference in the character and behaviour between Mr. Chamberlain and Mr. Churchill.

On the 27th January, 1940, thirteen days after the letter in The Sunday Times already quoted, The Daily Mail endorsed editorially the views which had been expressed in that issue by "Scrutator"; and it devoted a leading article, writes Mr. Spaight, to combating the suggestion of Mr. Amery and others that we should start the bombing of Germany.

Sir Duff Cooper had written on the previous day in the same paper that

"there would appear to exist a kind of unwritten truce between the two belligerents, according to the tacit terms of which they do not bomb one another."

In view of the declaration by Britain and France of September 2nd, 1939, that they would "only bomb military objectives in the narrowest sense of the word," Sir Duff Cooper's verbiage about "a kind of unwritten truce," seems to me gravely obscurantist, if honest.

Inside the House of Commons, the pro-Jewish war mongers were now becoming more and more intransigent; and more and more set on sabotaging the chances of turning the "phoney war" into a negotiated peace. This in spite of the fact that Britain had nothing to gain by further and total war, and everything to lose.

The Jews, of course, had everything to lose by a peace which left the German gold-free money system and Jew-free Government intact, and nothing to gain.

It seemed clearer to me every day that this struggle over the question of civilian bombing was the crux of the whole matter; and that by this method of warfare alone could the Jews and their allies cut the Gordian knot of stalemate leading to peace; and probably later on to a joint attack on Jewish Bolshevism in Russia.

Accordingly, on 15th February, 1940, I put down the following question to the Prime Minister:

Captain Ramsay asked the Prime Minister:
"Whether he will assure the House that H.M. Government will not assent to the suggestions made to them, to abandon those principles which led them to denounce the bombing of civilian populations in Spain and elsewhere, and embark upon such a policy themselves?"

Mr Chamberlain himself replied in outspoken terms:

"I am unaware of the suggestions to which my honourable and gallant friend refers. The policy of H.M. Government in this matter was fully stated by myself in answer to a question by the honourable Member for Bishop Auckland (Mr Dalton) on 14th September last.

In the course of that answer I said that whatever be the length to which others may go, H.M. Government will never resort to the deliberate attack on women and children, and other civilians, for purposes of mere terrorism. I have nothing to add to that answer."

Both this question and the reply were evidently distasteful in the extreme to the war mongers, so I resolved to carry the matter a stage further. On 21st February I put down another question on the subject:

Captain Ramsay asked the Prime Minister:
"Whether he is aware that the Soviet aeroplanes are carrying on a campaign of bombing civil populations, and whether H.M. Government have dispatched protests on the subject similar to those dispatched during the Civil War in Spain in similar circumstances?"

Mr. Butler replied for the Prime Minister:

"Yes, Sir. The Soviet Air Forces have pursued a policy of indiscriminate bombing, which cannot be too strongly condemned.

H.M. Government have not, however, lodged any protest, since there are unfortunately no grounds for supposing that such action would achieve the result desired."

There can be little doubt but that these two downright answers crystallised the resolves of the war mongers to get rid of a Prime Minister whose adherence to an upright and humane policy must inevitably frustrate their plans, seeing that Hitler wished no war with Britain, and would therefore never start civilian bombing himself.

The machinery of intrigue and rebellion against Mr. Chamberlain was set in motion. Ultimately he was saddled with the blame for the Norway blunder; and this pretext was used by the Churchillian-cum-Socialist caucus to secure his downfall.

It should be remembered in this connection that prior to and during the Norway gamble, Mr. Churchill had been invested with full powers and responsibilities for all Naval Military and Air operations; and if anyone therefore deserved to be broken over that second Gallipoli (pursued in defiance of high naval authority warning that, without control of the Cattegat and Skaggerack it could not possibly succeed) it should have been the Minister responsible.

He however was not only unbroken, he was acclaimed Prime Minister. The man who would tear up the British pledge of September 2nd, 1939, and start bombing the civilians of Germany was the man for the war mongers who now ruled the roost.

 And so civilian bombing [by England] started on the evening that the architect of the Norwegian fiasco became Prime Minister, viz., May 11th, 1940.

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