The Road to Liberation - 23rd December 1940
Good morning everyone
For those not based in Jersey, we have a Government announcement being made today at 11 am but as is common on Jersey, the news is old news and leaks to the media means we know what's coming. JWT will officially be told to close from Christmas eve, as will many shops, barbers etc etc. For those booked on tours in January we will need to reschedule and we will be in contact as soon as we can, apologies in advance!
If anyone is looking for any last min present for those explorers in your family, please think about popping into Newton & Newton they have everything from cool torches for exploring, bb's, safes, tools and lots of other cool stuff! Small business in Jersey needs as much support as we can offer this time of year.
Have a fantastic day!
Above (Top) is a very well known Jersey landmark and in WW2 it was used by the German forces as Resistance Nest Mont Orgueil. The Germans modified many parts of the castle including the three towers on the top that were used for observation.
More photos info and maps on the webpage.
80 years ago today 23rd of December 1940
Today would be the 176th day of the Islands Occupation with 1,598 days remaining.
"German Court passes sentence of four months upon the driver of the lorry which went over the quay on the 19th inst., resulting in the death of a German soldier; negligence was alleged. Frosty weather prompts a warning to the public to protect water pipes."
Civilian working at the evening post
80 years ago today
23rd of December 1940
On the 23rd December 1940 Churchill broadcast a speech directed at the Italian people. Various sources, not least interrogation of prisoners of war, made it clear that many Italians were ambivalent about the war and the direction that the dictatorship was taking them. This was all part of a longer campaign to turn the loyalties of the country:
"We have never been your foes till now. In the last war against the barbarous Huns we were your comrades. For fifteen years after that war, we were your friends. Although the institutions which you adopted after that war were not akin to ours and diverged, as we think, from the sovereign impulses which had commanded the unity of Italy, we could still walk together in peace and good-will. Many thousands of your people dwelt with ours in England; many of our people dwelt with you in Italy.
We liked each other. We got on well together. There were reciprocal services, there was amity, there was esteem. And now we are at war – now we are condemned to work each other’s ruin.
Your aviators have tried to cast their bombs upon London. Our armies are tearing – and will tear – your African empire to shreds and tatters. We are now only at the beginning of this sombre tale. Who can say where it will end? Presently, we shall be forced to come to much closer grips. How has all this come about, and what is it all for?
Italians, I will tell you the truth.
It is all because of one man – one man and one man alone has ranged the Italian people in deadly struggle against the British Empire and has deprived Italy of the sympathy and intimacy of the United States of America.
That he is a great man I do not deny. But that after eighteen years of unbridled power he has led your country to the horrid verge of ruin – that can be denied by none.
It is all one man – one man, who, against the crown and royal family of Italy, against the Pope and all the authority of the Vatican and of the Roman Catholic Church, against the wishes of the Italian people who had no lust for this war; one man has arrayed the trustees and inheritors of ancient Rome upon the side of the ferocious pagan barbarians.
On the very same day in Italy Mussolini is despondent about the quality of Italian troops, who have been forced out of both Greece and Egypt within the last month. He tells his Foreign Minister, Count Ciano:
I must nevertheless recognise that the Italians of 1914 were better than these. It is not very flattering for the regime, but that’s the way it is."
- only the tower and the administrative block were unscathed
The December book recommendation is "The Americans on D-Day."
This book has 450 dramatic photographs captured in northern France during the first day and week of its liberation and is available on kindle! Click the photo to find out more. It also would make a fantastic Christmas Present.