Thursday, January 3, 2013

Henry Dawson's war aims : "You catch more flies with honey than with vinegar..."

The Allies, convinced their troops lacked the Nazi and Japanese killer instinct, spent most of the war trying to prove Dawson wrong by demonstrating that they could be tougher than tough.

But given their overwhelming advantage in men and material over the Axis, it didn't seemed to be working very fast.

But it did eventually work -  at least militarily : only when the Allies seemed sure to win did people in neutral and occupied nations move, ever so slowly, over to the Allied side.

Certainly the moral claims that the Allied raised as to why to support them seemed to have little credibility at home as well as abroad.

Deeds, not words, was what the undecided were looking for - and they found few deeds to reassure them that the Allies wouldn't just be a milder eugenic version of the harshly eugenic Axis.

But in the final days of the long, long war, they saw some reason for hope.

Penicillin the deed

The Allies were beginning to fly penicillin into occupied countries and to neutral sick children and even using it to save the lives of dying Axis POWs : these were deeds, at last, Dawson deeds, not mere empty rhetoric.......

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