t was assumed that the Churchill archives at Cambridge had all been diluted, weeded and altered, but miraculously, against all the rules, thousands of pages have been saved in their original state. The wartime assistant to the deputy secretary to the war cabinet, 1939-1945, Laurence Burgis, took notes of the meetings and speeches, drawn up for cabinet meetings. These papers contain much truth which was afterwards “deleted and sanitized“ by contemporary scholars,. Churchill insisted these notes would afterwards be burnt in the grate.
By keeping these authentic notes until his death in 1971, Burgis could have been prosecuted under the 1911 official secrets act and imprisoned or even shot as a 5th columnist.
The notes contain mentions of Pearl Harbor, Churchill’s naivety over Stalin, and his general political and military ineptitude.
No mention occurs as in Soviet notes of Churchill’s alcohol dependence.
Among news for historians is confirmation of the facts from M.I.6 that even under drugs and torture, Rudolph Hess never divulged the names of those in the British war cabinet who wanted to accept the latest peace deal with Hitler.
Churchill hid up the Soviet Katyn Forest murders, and blamed the Germans for the awful crime; Hess wanted the truth told and civilians guaranteed safety.
Churchill’s terrorist squads, the S.O.E., murdered Reinhard Heydrich, solely to bring reprisals on the Czech’s to harden their resolve against Germany, and reportedly, Churchill joked about the huge bombing raids on defenseless German dormitory towns.
It has been suggested by the Bletchley code breaker John Burrows, that the universally unpopular General Montgomery was pushed into taking on Rommel in North Africa, by threats of exposure of his sexual tastes, and the newly deciphered Enigma traffic was used to ensure his victories.
Also mentioned is Churchill’s wish to murder Gandhi, who was against the violence of the war.
Churchill who changed parties 4 times in his career, and discussed it several more times, was held in very low esteem at the House of Commons, and was called “the shithouse”as an abbreviation of his initials W.C.
The author Andrew Roberts has just published his book “Masters and Commanders” based on these new papers.