Tuesday, August 31, 2010


In my later years I have become an avid reader, and recently a good friend recommended "Churchill" by Paul Johnson. Normally I pick up a book and read a chapter or two, but in the case of this book I read the entire manuscript in three short sessions. That is probably the very best endorsement I can provide any authors’ efforts.

Paul Johnson is an accomplished writer with many fine works to his credit, and the fact that he personally met and talked with Winston Churchill provided a strong insight to Churchill the politician, painter, prolific author, and masterful wordsmith.

Without any desire to spoil your enjoyment of this book let me share a couple of items that caught my eye. Churchill is quoted as saying, “Words are the only things that last forever.”

While dining with a group of government officials and their ladies, Churchill is said to have responded to a lady seated adjacent to him, “Madam, all men are worms, but I am a glow worm.”

When asked, “Mr. Churchill, sir, to what do you attribute your success in life?” Without a pause or hesitation, he replied, “Conservation of energy. Never stand up when you can sit down, and never sit down when you can lie down.” Unfortunately, that statement is about the only similarity that your Commander has with Winston Churchill, because I have been known for years to avoid strenuous exercise at all cost.

I wonder just how many of our youth know anything about this great political figure and leader whose influences were vast and significant in changing the course of world events over a long period of time. One wonders just what our world would look like today had there been no Winston Churchill. Just consider the degree of influence Churchill gave to restrain Joseph Stalin’s goals during the closing days of World War II when President Franklin D. Roosevelt was in failing health.

Your Commander finds it most interesting to learn from historical writings the degree that one individual can impact world events. I highly recommend you get to your local library and pick up a copy of "Churchill" by Paul Johnson. This is a rewarding, and enlightening read.


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