Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Ministers at War

Much of what we know about Churchill relates to his wartime leadership, chronicled as part of the late Sir Martin Gilbert’s magisterial biography. Schneer does not repeat the oft-told tales of the prime minister who wooed Franklin Roosevelt, kept Joseph Stalin informed and reasonably content as a new ally, and did so much to hold the Allied coalition together. Instead, Ministers at War deals with his success with a different coalition: his wartime cabinet. Here is a riveting account of how Churchill​—​working behind the scenes as skillfully as he worked in public to rally the nation, using the same gifts of tenacity and charm​—​contended with strong-minded men from different parties and backgrounds, with differing ambitions, and competing against each other, both at cabinet meetings and in Parliament.

Read the rest of Cita Steltzer's review of Jonathan Schneer's new book.

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