Uneasy lies the head that wears the crown

Sunday, July 18, 1943

p.12_July 15, 1943This haunting editorial cartoon tells the most astonishing story of the 20th century: the toppling of monarchies from one end of Europe to another. Yes, some still stood and still stand now. Some have even risen again, as in Spain. But WWI and the Soviet Union had brought an end to dozens of smaller countries and more change was yet to come. Few foresaw in 1943 that the British Empire would shrink. It was the Colossus spanning the globe with colonies or members of Great Britain on every colony, from tiny Grenada off the coast of South Africa to Egypt in Africa to India and Hong Kong in Asia. George VI of England wasn’t merely a king, he was the Emperor of India! The title was bestowed on his grandmother Victoria in a grand ceremony yet he would be the last British monarch to carry it, for the people of India were demanding independence. Some were even supporting the Japanese, who had promised to end European colonial rule in Asia. And so the British tried to anticipate and direct change. Forgetting the lessons of the American Revolution, Colonial Minister Oliver Stanley proposed setting up commissions with representatives from the colonial states but also asserted Britain’s intention of “retaining full control of our own territory.” Moreover, he concluded, “It is no part of our policy to confer political advances not justified by circumstances or to grant self-government to those not yet trained to use it.” That line didn’t work so well with the American colonists either. Enjoy Rick Kaynan’s music video on Victoria, “Empress of India.”



This entry was posted in Chicago during WW II, Jewish life in America during WW II, Music and Media, WWII, Today in WWII, Uncategorized, World War II and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

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