Churchill Warns of Russian Plans in MIT Talk
Winston Churchill last night warned the West, against Russia's "aim to rule the world" before a capacity crowd in the Boston Garden. His address was the keynote speech at the MIT mid-century convocation.
The 74-year-old former Prime Minister assented that "Europe would have been Communized and London under bombardment some time ago but for the deterrent of the Atomic Bomb in the hands of the United States," and claimed that fear of the West's friendship, not of its hostility, lies at the base of Russia's "sinister and malignant policy."
Calling on the rest of mankind "not to despair," he said that "we must make sure that the cause of Freedom is defended by all the resources of combined forethought and superior science," and pointed to the fact that "the doctrine of self-determinism was not the remedy for Europe, which needs above all things, unity and larger groupings."
The British wartime leader asked for the orcation of a world instrument capable at least of giving to all its members Security against Aggression," but falled to make specific proposals toward this end. However, he mentioned the "brave and ardent support" felt on the Continent for the cause of a United Europe, and praised the United States as an example of "new-won supremacy that has not been used for self-aggrandizement but only for further sacrifice."
Referring to the Atlantic Pact, Churchill went on to say that "no one could have brought about these immense changes in the policy of the United States, Great Britain, and Europe but for the astounding policy of the Russian Soviet Government."
He followed this statement with his own answer to "this strange conundrum. . . . It is because they fear the friendship of the West more than its hostility. They cannot allow free and friendly intercourse to grow up between the vast area they control and the civilization of the West. The Russian people must not see what goes on outside, and the world must not see what goes on inside the Soviet domain."
He stated that the Berlin Air Lift has so far been successful in maintaining our position in Europe, but pointed to the danger of the growing "Kremlin-controlled Communist Empire" in India and Asia. Churchill then warned again of the power of "these 13 men in the Kremlin," whose power he called "quite as wicked but in some ways more formidable than Hitler."
Despite his repeated verbal attacks on Russian aims and policy, he concluded that although "the almost vigilance should be practiced, I do not think myself that violence or precipitate action should be taken now. War is not inevitable."
He repeated several times that "we seek nothing from Russia but goodwill and fair play," but reiterated that the West must "persevere steadfastly together, and allow no appeasement of tyranny and wrong-doing in any form."
Churchill opened his address by tracing the course of world history during the first half of the twentieth century. He pointed to the confidence that marked its opening years, and said that while "on the whole I remain an optimist," mankind's failure to keep up with scientific progress has subjected it to terrible dangers. "The scale of events around (man) assumed gigantic proportions while he remained about the same size. By comparison therefore he actually became much smaller. . . . The need was to discipline an array of gigantic and turbulent facts. To this task we have certainly so far proved unequal."
He followed this summary with an elequent defense of human rights, saying that. "The soul of man thus held in france or forsen in a long night can be awakened by a spark coming from God knows where and in a moment the whole structure of lies and oppression is on trial for its life."
"The flame of Christian ethics is still our highest guide," he continued before turning to the political aspects of his address.
Churchill's address was preceded by short introductory remarks from Karl T. Compton, ex-president of M.I.T., and Bernard M. Baruch, elder statesman. The former read a letter from President Truman, who apologized for his absence with the assurance that it was "a matter of necessity, not of choice."
Baruch, who has been the British statesman's host during most of his visit here, introduced Churchill as "a peace-hungering man," and the "greatest living Englishman."
Interrupted by Applause
The official party arrived at the Garden at 8:55 p.m., five minutes before the program began officially. Churchill received a minute-long ovation as he walked slowly to the platform and bowed briefly to the audience before taking his seat. He was cheered again as he rose to speak, and was interrupted by applause 19 times during the course of his address. At its conclusion he was cheered for less than a minute.
The official United States Marine Corps band entertained the packed auditorium with a program of British music for a half-hour before the speeches. As Churchill's party entered, the bank struck up "Rule Britannia" and followed this with the British National Anthem.
Following the main address, the Star Spangled Banner was played. Churchill, alone of the dignataries on the platform, sang the words throughout.
The meeting was picketed by about 300 members of the "Citizens Action Committee for Peace." The demonstrators carried placards saying "No More Luce Talk," "No More Fulton Follies," and "Even Harry Wouldn't Come." They chanted "Churchill wants war, we want peace," and "Send that bundle back to Britain." Several of the participants were Harvard students. Other representatives came from the United Fur and Leather Workers (C.I.O.), and the New England Communist Party. A number of ministers were among the group, which was heavily guarded by police.
The auditorium itself was patrolled by several hundred State and local police, as well as secret servicemen and Scotland Yard agents.
Churchill and the official party entered the Garden by automobile, which they drove up the ramp inside the building to the door immediately outside the platform