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World War ll London Blitz:  Buy On Smashwords
I am the great-granddaughter of Ruby Side Thompson. 
Recently I started re-reading the World War ll journals and felt that they were such an important part of a history that will soon be forgotten if not published and shared with the world. These diary excerpts are not the entirety of what is published in print and kindle.
Ruby grew up during a time when education was just beginning to be encouraged for both upper and middle class women. During the late 1890's Ruby explored many radical political ideas of London, England. She met many famous people including the writers George Bernard Shaw and William Butler Yeats. 
5.0 out of 5 stars A choice pick, not to be overlooked, November 6, 2011 By Midwest Book Review (Oregon, WI USA)

World War ll London Blitz: 10-9-41 The war news from Russia grows worse and worse. The Germans are still pressing in and a more violent battle than ever is now in progress, in the central sector, that is the Moscow section. The figures given out are so colossal they are almost beyond comprehension.

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October 9, 1941
The war news from Russia grows worse and worse. The Germans are still pressing in and a more violent battle than ever is now in progress, in the central sector, that is the Moscow section. The figures given out are so colossal they are almost beyond comprehension. Each side claims to have annihilated the enemy by millions. What folly! Oh God, what folly!

World War ll London Blitz: 8-13-41 Last night I had to get up, about one a.m.—guns. I came downstairs, and heard a big bomb fall somewhere. About four a.m. everything was quiet, so I went back upstairs to bed. Ted said he heard alerts every night whilst he was away.

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August 13, 1941
Last night I had to get up, about one a.m.—guns. I came downstairs, and heard a big bomb fall somewhere. About four a.m. everything was quiet, so I went back upstairs to bed. Ted said he heard alerts every night whilst he was away. His early return put a further crimp into my sewing. Weather has turned definitely stormy.
August 14, 1941
At the first news this morning we were told a special announcement from the government would be made on all stations at three p.m. by Mr. Atlee, the deputy prime minister. We had never heard of a “deputy prime minister,” so wondered if Churchill had been assassinated, or what. At three p.m. the announcement: Mr. Churchill and President Roosevelt had met at sea, and drawn up, and signed, a mutual statement, about our war aims. It has twelve points, which were then given. I suppose I should rather describe it as our peace aims. Anyhow, it answers the question: What are we fighting for? It’s good, and it’s clever, and it forestalls Hitler, which is especially good. For weeks there have been rumors of “Peace Negotiations” coming from Hitler. This asserts again that the world will never negotiate with Hitler. I can’t write it all here.
Anyhow, I’m sick to death of the war, and all the war talk. This ceaseless destruction and lunacy gets me down. We have had comparative quiet in England since Hitler attacked Russia, but the war in Russia is too ghastly awful. Awful! I’m not going to write it here. Let the history books take care of that. The destruction is frightful. I ask: Where is God in this?
Marshal Petain made a very silly speech from the Vichy this week. He is still talking to his defeated Frenchmen about self-abasement, and the need for repentance and sacrifice. He is just a pious old fool, cow towing to Hitler. He is a dictator, dictating his own countrymen. Frenchmen have lost their liberties. “Liberty, Equality, and Fraternity,” officially is no more. Petain has substituted Family, Work, and Obedience. Fine for nitwits! Petain is governing France “by authority.” Whose? His own? Hitler’s? France is dead.
August 19, 1941
Have I noted the meeting of Roosevelt and Churchill at sea? Anyhow let the history books take care of that. I’m too tired to write about the war, the damned war.
September 1, 1941
An “alert” is sounding. This is the first daylight warning for about two months. I have just got back from the library, so I am lucky to be inside the house. Last night Gerry was over. We had just gone to bed about eleven thirty p.m.; no alert was sounded, but we heard the German engines throbbing over, and then the guns; not immediately near, but about Upminister, I guessed. We did not come downstairs, but I felt simply awful. I began uncontrollably to tremble, and to feel sick in the pit of my stomach. I began to pray! In danger everything primitive asserts itself, and one prays by instinct. All my soreness against Ted vanished. I thought why do I get myself so wrought up for things that don’t matter? Ted is as he is, and I love him as he is. I do. I can’t help myself.
So this morning I am serene again. Moreover, I am not as nervous now, with the alarm given, as I was in the night without it, because it’s daylight I suppose. One feels so helpless in the dark. The very darkness itself is terrifying.
September 3, 1941
Ted is out to the Home Guard. This is the second anniversary of the start of the war. At eleven this morning we entered on the third year of this war. I heard guns in the depth of the night, but no alarm was given. All day planes have been flying overhead incessantly. The news today tells that we bombed Berlin very heavily last night; so I expect London will receive a bombing tonight. God help us! The news from the Russian front is terribly momentous. A tremendous battle for Leningrad is expected now, and my even have begun. The Russians are fighting magnificently but, regardless of their own awful losses, the Germans press on. Oh God! Save the world!
September 7, 1941
There was news on the wireless of the death of President Roosevelt’s mother, Mrs. Delano Roosevelt, today, within two weeks, of her eighty-seventh birthday.

World War ll London Blitz: 8-9-41 Last week I read ambassador Dodd’s Diary. He was an American ambassador in Berlin from 1933 to 1938.

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August 9, 1941
I received a note from Artie this morning to say he had been passed for a commission. Good. He will probably go to an O.C.T.U. before the month is out.
Last week I read ambassador Dodd’s Diary. He was an American ambassador in Berlin from 1933 to 1938. This was an intensely interesting book. It was his private diary, not his official one. Right from the start he could see war coming. What struck me most in it was the rascality, and idiocy, of men in high places, and how greatly the life of the world lies in the hands of the giant capitalists. A few rich men do own the earth. No wonder they are afraid of the communists. The rich men of Europe wanted war, because war makes profits; but ordinary men never want war. As G.B.S. said somewhere: If you take out the governments and shoot them, then you will have peace.


World War ll London Blitz: 7-13-41 British and the Soviet governments have signed an agreement to give each other all assistance and support during the war against Hitlerism Germany, and to conclude no armistice or treaty of peace except by mutual agreement.

July 13, 1941
Mother here for the day. Rita Pullan in for tea. There was a severe thunderstorm last night, which has broken the back of the heat wave. At two p.m. there was a special announcement from the government. It was that the British and the Soviet governments have signed an agreement to give each other all assistance and support during the war against Hitlerism Germany, and to conclude no armistice or treaty of peace except by mutual agreement. This was a signal last night in Moscow by our ambassador, Sir Stafford Cripps and Mr. Molotov. So now we are definitely allied with Russia once again. It is three weeks today that Germany attacked Russia. The fighting is awful beyond words.
There is a rumor, coming via Stockholm, that Hitler and Goring have quarreled and Goring has been sent to a concentration camp. The story is that Goring declined to be responsible for his air force, and did not want to start the fight against Russia. He said that because of their losses in the West, and over Greece and Crete, he would not be responsible for their fighting now. So Hitler flew into frenzy and said he would command the Luftwaffe himself. Then Himmler, who was present, suggested that Goring be thrown into a concentration camp, and the presumption is that he was, particularly that Goring’s name has ceased to appear in the German papers for these last three weeks. Well, maybe. Anyhow we positively know that Rudolph Hess is here in England, so if it true about Goring that is two of the rogues who can be counted out.
July 14, 1941 – Bastille Day
In unoccupied France Marshal Petain has ordered it to be observed as a day of meditation and devotion, i.e. mourning. In Syria the armistice has been signed, the Vichy French have laid down their arms, and the free French are celebrating the day, as Frenchmen should.
July 17, 1941
This week we have to register anew for rations. This morning I went over to Carlton Parade and registered with Wenden for meat, and Mrs. Dennis for groceries, butter, eggs, etc. Sainsbury’s will have a shock when I do not re-register with them, but their wartime service is very unsatisfactory. Anyhow, I prefer to patronize the little one-man business. I am especially interested in Mrs. Dennis. She is a war widow from the last war. She has one son who is conscripted for this war. So that she should not have to carry on the business alone the son married when he was called up, and his young wife works with the mother in the shop. They are two lone women. I think they should be helped. A wealthy corporation like Sainsbury’s can look after itself.
Mrs. Prior should have come today but didn’t.
July 19, 1941
Waiting for deliveries. I had a minor shock last night, which sent me to bed full of bad feeling, but happily I am recovered this morning. When Ted came in last night he brought his commanding officer, a Mr. Cardon, in with him. The night had turned stormy, and Cardon had driven Ted home in his car. We had whiskey and cigarettes, and much talk of the last war, in which Cardon was flying as one of the first observers, over Egypt, Palestine, and elsewhere in the near East.
Cardon of course was asking about Cuthie. He told us of another Romford boy, named Tisford, who is a prisoner in Germany, but who, with two other English prisoners, is domiciled with a German farmer. This boy writes home that the German farmer is very good to them, that they like the life and they like the whole family.
“It isn’t the people who want war,” said Cardon. Exactly. Governments make wars. If the politicians in power could be taken out and shot there would be no more wars.
July 20, 1941
It is a lovely morning. Ted off to his Home Guarding and I have a dinner to cook. When Captain Cardon was here the other evening he told us of a new detachment of our boys now training in Scotland and known as the Spear-Head Boys. We are systematically training our troops for invasion of the continent. Constantly our boys are practiced in the loading and unloading of ferry-barges and shock tactics. The Spearhead Boys are the soldiers who will go forward in the very front, and they are trained to throw themselves on to the barbed wire, and to lay on it and hold it down whilst the following fellows clamber right over them, actually running over their backs. My God! How many broken backs shall we have? All for what? My God! My God! This crazy war!
Here’s a funny tale to note. It is about Herbert. One day last week Ted saw Bert at the gate of the Masonic Hall “one foot only over the line” making inquiries about some R.A.F. boys who have been billeted on him. It appeared they arrived without their ration cards (of course) and moreover, Bert wanted to go away for a weekend, so what was he to do with the boys?
We laughed about this, because Bert hates having anyone billeted on him, and has successfully dodged all billetees up until now, and we thought, Jolly good for Bert! Let him do something for his country! I got a report on the situation via the R.A.F. boy next door, which makes it even funnier. It seems the boys sent to Arden Cottage very much dislike being there, and are actually embarrassed by “the family.”
July 21, 1941
All the while I have been writing and guns have been going off. I think a German plane or two is overhead nearby. It is a very cloudy morning, with poor visibility; just the kind of sky the raiders like. No alert has been sounded, so I shall go out anyhow. By the way, I ordered two more books yesterday. One is the new Oxford University Press’s The Bible For Today.I have been on the look-out for this for some time; it was reviewed in the Times Literary Supplement on Saturday, just out. The other is Marjorie Greenbie’s American Saga. I’m a most desperately home sick for America. America, my America!
July 23, 1941
Gladys has been to see me today. Her account of the blitzes in Plymouth is awful. She says there is practically no Plymouth left at all. It has literally been razed to the ground. On the last blitz there were nine hundred identified as dead, counting civilians only. The naval and military casualties were not counted in with the civilians. The unidentified were uncountable; two shelters, each holding about two hundred people were simply limed and sealed up and the wounded number about three thousand. This is war.
Gladys looks better than I would have expected her to look, but she has aged more than a year ought to age her. She has a perished look. It makes me want to weep. She left early after tea. She’s staying in Hammersmith until next Tuesday, and then returning to Devon and going to Cheriton for a week, with the Ways. Elizabeth Coppen came in this afternoon to see Gladys. Two old maids together; kind of sad, I think.
July 24, 1941
Ted is Home Guarding. This has been one of my unaccountable bad days. Why? I was in such a misery all morning I even felt physically bad. I had that feeling of fright and guilt, which is dreadful. Again the charwoman did not show up, so I set to work and did a little house cleaning, but not very much, because I felt I could not cope with the house. I am dreadfully tired of housekeeping anyhow. I don’t want to dust another room, nor cook another meal, ever. I don’t want a house. I don’t want belongings. I just want to wander away—wander and wander. Of course that’s impossible. I’ve just to keep on being Mrs. Edward Thompson, a working wife and housekeeper. Oh damnation. I can’t settle to anything. I can’t sew. I can’t read. I can’t write. I can’t play. I can’t even think. Everything is weariness, and I cannot hold my attention to anything.
Possibly what I really need is a good meal. I think my system is in steady need of a steady diet of fresh meat. One shilling’s worth of meat per week does not feed me. This war diet is a very poor one. We are filled, but we are not fed. Half a pound of good steak a day for the next month would be the very best tonic I could have. There is no meat. Yesterday I was able to get a chicken for Gladys. It was only a stewing foul, and it was one of the toughest old cocks I have ever had. We had to eat it, because there was nothing else to eat. Today Ted wouldn’t even try to eat the remnants. I chewed my way through them, but Ted only ate vegetables with toast and some of the broth. Chicken broth! What sort of dinner is that for two healthy adults, and not even any rice or barley in it!

July 28, 1941
Last night Gerry renewed his air attacks on this London area. We were wakened by the alert at a quarter to two. Of course we came downstairs.
Ted just left for Home Guards. Our last night’s raid was a fairly bad one. One whistling bomb which we heard descending caused Ted to roll off his sofa and get under the table! Victoria Road was hit again; this time five bombs and also Catharine Road, Hamilton Road, Heath-Park Road; our immediate vicinity. Many houses demolished, casualties not yet known. The Heath Park School has a D.A. so school officially “broke up” today, instead of waiting until next Thursday. The London damage has not yet been told us but large fires were started there, and we could see them still burning this morning. Oil bombs. Our fighters went up and everything seemed be going on immediately overhead. Three Gerry’s were brought down in this neighborhood. I was very frightened, and trembled. The all clear was given at four fifteen a.m.
All day planes have been up much more than usual; some are roaring over right now. I am afraid we shall have another bad night. Five weeks now since the attack on Russia, and Russia is still holding. Nine million men are arrayed against each other on the Russo-German frontiers. The carnage is frightful. Oh, God save the world!

World War ll London Blitz: 7-2-41 Since Germany attacked Russia we have had quieter nights in England.

June 27, 1941
My new room looked so nice and inviting last night that I nearly went up there to sleep, but didn’t. A good thing too, because soon after one a.m., flashes and heavy gunfire awakened me, and this was twenty minutes or so before the alarm was sounded. Ted, of course, who had gone to bed in the front room, had to come down here to his sofa. He fell asleep again at once, but I cannot sleep during a raid. Whilst it was going on I thought of another good reason for the change around upstairs; it has removed a lot of heavy stuff from the room immediately above this one where we sleep. Most people have removed all heavy furniture from upper rooms above the downstairs sleeping apartment, so that there is less to fall upon you if your house receives a direct hit. When the Peel’s house was destroyed Mary Bernadette had an escape from certain death. Had she remained for the night with the Peel’s, as they wanted her to do, she would have been crushed to death because the divan on which she would have been sleeping was buried by the ceiling falling upon it, and a huge wardrobe which was standing on the floor immediately above. So here with us, the room alone contained a bed, two wardrobes, one big desk, and two large trunks, filled with the boys’ books..
July 2, 1941
Last night I slept upstairs in my bed. This is the first time since last August. It was delicious to get between the sheets and stretch out in a real bed. Since Germany attacked Russia we have had quieter nights in England. Ted has been sleeping upstairs for about a month, but I have had to call him down on several occasions, when the guns began. However, we have had quiet nights now for a week, so I decided to try it upstairs myself. It was bliss to sleep in a bed again. Ted came to my bed, too. So, I am happy and serene again, for a while anyhow.
We were surprised this morning by the news of the transference of Sir Archibald Wavell to India. We think this is ominous. It looks as though our government expects the Germans to take the Ukraine, and smash through there and attack us in India. Perhaps. There is continuous and fierce day and night fighting all along the Russian-German border. The accounts of losses and gains, from both sides, are prodigious. We believe neither side, but it does look as though the Germans are penetrating into Russia, and Hitler, as usual, is winning. It is truly awful. What next? Supposing Hitler does beat Russia, then what? He will have won the world, for not even America could then stand up against him. We should be doomed, that’s certain. Meanwhile the carnage continues.
July 5, 1941
Feeling fine. I have been sleeping upstairs in my bed ever since the first, and feel a different woman for it. I have also been out every day, which has done me heaps of good, I am sure. The weather is good too, summery, but not too hot for comfort. I have also had many visitors, who keep me from too much introspection; so that’s good too.
The war continues to get worse and worse. Today the Russians have claimed to kill seven hundred thousand Germans in White Russia alone. The Germans have claimed to have killed five hundred thousand Russians, and taken two hundred thousand Russian prisoners. I don’t know who counts but presumably the losses on both sides are enormous. The Germans continue their advance. The Russians continue their retreat. The R.A.F. is now bombing Germany in daylight every day. The Italians in Abyssinia are nearly finished, but in Libya the fighting continues and also in Syria. The Vichy French do not quit. The Turks continue to sit on the fence. Last night Roosevelt gave a small broadcast “for freedom.”
Our supplies diminish markedly. Myrtle Arch told me this morning that the queues of shoppers in Romford this morning were the worst yet, and there isn’t a potato in town. People quarrel about food, and about the waiting. In Wallis this morning Mrs. Thompson saw a man and woman come almost to violence over a quarter pound of bacon. The man refused to wait another turn. The woman shoved him and abused him. The man swore at her. He said, “I work twelve hours a day seven days a week. I get only three hours of sleep a night, and I’m damned if I am going to wait about hours for my rations. You can wait, you’ve got all day.”
The woman said, “I’ve got my kids waiting for me, and who the hell do you think you are, anyhow? Just because you’re a man! Think the world can’t get on without you, don’t you? Think you’re winning the war, don’t you? Well, let me tell you, the women are in this war just as much as you are, and you can damn well wait for your rations the same as the rest of us.”
Food is scarce and very dear, and rationing severe. There is a great food ramp going on. As soon as prices are coded, food disappears. Someone is making money. There are frequent scandals, and the bureaucrats are smothering us. New ministries are instituted nearly every week, and with every Board of Control, muddle is increased and prices are increased and supplies become extinguished. There is far too much government control, most of it only gumming the works. This wonderful land of liberty is snowed under continuous official forms, and harassed and annoyed by the ever-increasing army of ineffective petty clerks. War! They say, but most of it is just plain stupidity.
This isn’t what I wanted to write about. All this will be in the war books, and let it molder there with all the other items of the greedy and stupid and beastly record.
I sat down to note I was feeling fine, and why. I am.  I’m feeling simply splendid. Of course if Gerry comes and bombs London again tonight I shan’t feel so good. Meanwhile, he is giving us a rest whilst he gives the Russians a deviling, so we’ll take our happy ease whilst we can.

World War ll London Blitz: 6-12-41 The wireless news reported fairly heavy raiding all over the country last night, with heavy casualties in one place, not specified as yet. Perhaps we shall be told before the day is finished.


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June 12, 1941
Last night I was interrupted by the arrival of Mary Bernadette and Doreen Biel. A pleasant evening followed. Ted came in before nine, very amiable when he saw the girls. At bedtime he retired upstairs, but at about two a.m. I had to call him, because an alert had been sounded. Gunfire followed, but we fell asleep. Then, sometime later, I was awakened by a terrible crash, a bomb falling somewhere nearby. Others followed it, either smaller or not so near.
We have not heard yet exactly where these were, not immediately near, or we should know by now. The wireless news reported fairly heavy raiding all over the country last night, with heavy casualties in one place, not specified as yet. Perhaps we shall be told before the day is finished.
June 14, 1941
Today all the women born in 1918 are registering. Also everyone must register for eggs today. The likelihood is that we shall be allotted two eggs per person per week. We are also informed that our milk ration is to be cut again; to what we do not know, but we are told that the British Medical Association recommends that the allowance should be half a pint per person per day. Hitler’s blockade is working all right: our rations shrink and shrink.
Here is a funny story told me by Ted at lunch; it is a conversation he overheard in the market this morning. Two old dames were chatting.
Says the first one: “I hear men are to be rationed now.”
Says the second: “That won’t suit Vera.”
Typical Romfordian housewives out shopping, laughing at the war and at themselves. English humor. Who can understand it but the English?
June 21, 1941
It is eleven p.m. A quarter of an hour ago Ted was called out by the Home Guard! Is it scare, practice, or real invasion? There has been much air activity today, but no alarms given in the neighborhood. Planes have been going overhead all evening and are still up. This evening’s nine o’clock news reported us making day light attacks on Northern France, and the destruction of twenty-four enemy fighters and bombers; our losses, three fighters and one bomber—so they say. I don’t believe any of the reports. The news is juggled, and also withheld. The British public is treated as one irredeemable fool, or a tiresome child who must be given doses of soothing syrup. The government is a huge muddle and Hitler goes on winning and winning. All the men keep on talking; in the homes, in the pubs, in parliament; their self-righteousness is nauseating. Meanwhile the infernal destruction goes on and on. Syria looks to be shaping into another glorious retreat. America is on the verge. How much longer she can balance there, God knows.
This week Roosevelt has frozen all the German and Italian consulates, travel agencies, etc., and given their staffs until July fifteenth to leave the country. No German or Italian is to be allowed to go to any South American state; all have to return to Germany or Italy. Roosevelt talks, Halifax talks, Churchill talks. The radio is a curse. Hitler says nothing. Nor does Stalin. All week there have been rumors that Hitler is now going to attack Russia. From Finland to the Black Sea both the Russians and the Germans are mobilized along the boundaries, more millions of men waiting to war on each other. Finland is calling up all her men to the age of forty-four. The supposition is that Finland will now join Germany in an effort to get her own back from Russia. So more Finns will die. For what? Politics. Greed. Hate. It is the infernal hatred, which saturates our world, the infernal folly.
Artie is home on a forty-eight hour leave. He arrived in the middle of yesterday afternoon. He is out this evening, taking Mary Bernadette to a dance.
June 22, 1941
Have just listened to the midnight news. Damascus has fallen to us. The news came from Cairo an hour ago. King Peter the second arrived in this country today.
As I was writing the above last night, Artie came in bringing Mary Bernadette with him. She had no key and could not get into her own house; either Doreen was deep asleep, or had returned to her own home. So Mary came here. She is upstairs in my bed right now. Artie and Ted are at church. Ted did not return until after three this morning; but he was up at six thirty this morning just the same, silly fool! I see his boots are entirely covered with thick dust, as they must have made a long march somewhere. Playing at soldiers. There was no invasion, and Ted had known all the time that the Home Guard would be called out last night, “for maneuvers.” Why didn’t he tell me? This is another instance of his absurd secrecy, and a most inconsiderate one too, I think. It might have been a real call out, for the real invasion, and I might have worried myself insane, about him, about the town. But no, he wouldn’t say a word!
When he switched on the news at seven a.m. the announcer said: “An hour ago Hitler marched against Russia. Goebbels made the announcement in Berlin an hour and a half ago.” Hitler is impelled, he says, to save Europe from the perfidious Russians. The Finn’s and the Romanians will help their true friends, the Germans.
Fine! What irony! Ted says Hitler will destroy the Russians in a few weeks. “The communists can’t fight,” he says. We shall see. They fought in poor Finland all right, and even more savagely than Germans. Well, I must get breakfast, so Au-Revoir.
Most of the day Ted has been lying on the sofa, and he has now gone upstairs to bed. Last night’s “maneuvers” tired him out completely. Naturally. He is an old man. Home Guards indeed! An old man’s club, that’s what the Home Guard is: old boys playing as soldiers. Against the young foe they would be useless; worse than useless, in my opinion, because having overcome an old man the young man would instantly secure for himself the old man’s weapons. The Home Guards are another example of English waste, muddle, and sentimentality, and just about as effective for real usefulness as the evacuation of mothers and children.
At nine o’clock tonight Mr. Churchill made a broadcast, which was relayed to the world in general. It was a declaration of British policy in view of the new situation created by the German attack on Russia. He promised Russia that all possible help would be given to her steadfastly to the end. He said that he would unsay nothing he had ever said about Communism, “but all this fades away before the spectacle now unfolding. The past with its crimes, its follies, and its tragedies, flashes away. I see the Russian soldiers standing on the threshold of their native land, guarding the fields, which their fathers had tilled from time immemorial, and I see them guarding their homes where mothers and wives pray. Ah yes, for there are times when all pray.”
And so he went on; a great speech. He went on, “My mind goes back across the years to the days when the Russian armies were our allies against the same deadly foe, when they fought with so much valor and helped to gain a victory from a share in which, alas! They were from no fault of ours, utterly cut out. I have lived through all this…now I have to declare the decision of his Majesty’s Government, and I feel sure it is a decision in which the great dominions will in due course concur. We must speak out now at once, without a day’s delay. I have to make a declaration. Can you doubt what our policy will be? We have but one aim and one single irrevocable purpose. We are resolved to destroy Hitler and every vestige of the Nazi region. From this, nothing will turn us, nothing. We will never parlay, we will never negotiate, with Hitler or any of his gang. Any man or state that fights against Nazism will have our aid. Any man or state that marches with Hitler is our foe. We shall give whatever help we can to Russia and to the Russian people. We shall appeal to all our friends and allies in every part of the world to take the same course, and pursue it as we shall faithfully and steadfastly to the end.”
And lots more. Oh God help us!
June 23, 1941
The alert sounded soon after I had put out the light last night. I had to waken Ted to call him downstairs. He fell asleep again at once, he was still so tired, but I lay awake until dawn and the all clear. Much gunfire. Two land mines dropped in Collier Row. It was a terrible night. It is very hot too. Summer came in with a rush yesterday.
June 24, 1941
I had to call Ted downstairs again last night. Not as bad as the previous night, but pretty bad enough. The heat has moderated, thank heaven.

World War ll London Blitz: 6-8-41 Men talking: Roosevelt is busy now talking the States into war, whilst Lindbergh is busy talking against war. Roosevelt, of course, will finally carry the day, for he is government.

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June 8, 1941
Men talking: Roosevelt is busy now talking the States into war, whilst Lindbergh is busy talking against war. Roosevelt, of course, will finally carry the day, for he is government. I am convinced it is governments that make war, never the people. The English people don’t really want to fight this war, but our government talked us into it, and keeps us to it by talking at us. I listen to unending talk that comes over the air, and I hate it. Propaganda. A guiding of opinion and a holding of the mass will to endure, and to carry on this war our politicians have committed us to. No political fights. I am convinced no politician limits himself to rations. God, how I detest politicians!
Today we have been told that at two a.m. this morning Free French Troops, with companies of our Imperial Press, under the leadership of General Wilson, marched into Syria. Fine! So now we’ll have another bloody civil war. Frenchmen against Frenchmen, and then after a slaughtering from the Germans, we can make another masterly retreat. Politics: war: madness: men justifying themselves. Fool men: crazy men: old governmental rams driving out the lambs to the slaughter: rich old politicians seeking more riches ordering out the young men to die.
I weep. My heart is weeping.
June 9, 1941
Yesterday was one of my most awful days. I did not know how to bear anything. The war news got me down. Once, when I had turned on the radio in an attempt to find something to distract my thoughts, I fell into a dreadful spell of weeping. Evelyn Laye was on the air. She said, “I will now sing something to you which I sang a little while ago to our boys on the you-know-what. I say this most reverently, and I sing it for those boys again—from my heart.” Then she began the song from Bittersweet, “I’ll see you again. When spring breaks through again.”
Evelyn Laye is in charge of entertainments for the Navy, and she herself is the wife of a naval officer. She was alluding to H.M.S. Hood, destroyed off Greenland so recently, with thirteen hundred men aboard, all lost. Even over the air one could sense the tension, which came over her visible audience. How she managed to conclude the song I’m sure I don’t know, and here, just to write this morning, makes me cry again. War, death, loss. It is eternal loss and eternal grief. For what? Glory? Glory be damned.
June 11, 1941
The night was quiet, but the siren giving the alarm at six forty a.m. this morning awakened me. Ted came down soon afterwards, already dressed for the day. He gave no greeting, no good morning, no enquiry about the night, and after the seven o’clock news he went off to church in the usual way. What a man! What a completely selfish man.