The Atlantic Charter: Its Relevance Today

As President Barack Hussein Obama departs Britain for Germany, he leaves in his wake a large number of angry Britons — most prominently London Mayor Boris Johnson — who publicly express their resentment at Mr. Obama’s interference in Britain’s internal affairs in his lobbying against a “Brexit”.

The following guest-essay by Nick McAvelly compares the current situation with a meeting in August 1941 between Sir Winston Churchill and Franklin Delano Roosevelt that resulted in the Atlantic Charter.

The Atlantic Charter: Its Relevance Today

by Nick McAvelly

In August 1941, Winston Churchill, the wartime Prime Minister of Great Britain, sailed across the Atlantic in HMS Prince of Wales to meet Franklin Roosevelt,[1] who was at that time President of what Churchill called ‘the most powerful state and community in the world’,[2] the United States of America.

The President’s ‘special advisor’ Harry Hopkins[3] was aboard HMS Prince of Wales during the voyage. Hopkins had been visiting the United Kingdom in July 1941. According to the Soviet Ambassador Ivan Maisky, Hopkins had ‘entered the room’[4] while Churchill was reading a ‘personal message’[5] from Josef Stalin, in which the Soviet leader asked for military assistance. Subsequently, Hopkins met with Maisky at the American embassy and persuaded him that he, Hopkins, ought to visit the Soviet Union. Hopkins’ goal, according to Maisky, was to do whatever he could to ‘bring Roosevelt and Stalin closer’.[6]

Maisky facilitated the trip by writing a personal instruction inside Hopkins’ passport which said that he should be allowed into the Soviet Union. Hopkins duly arrived in Moscow before the end of the month.[7] So it was that when Winston Churchill arrived at Scapa Flow to board Prince of Wales, he found Hopkins waiting for him, having returned to Britain exhausted following his marathon journey.[8] It is an interesting historical fact that the unelected Harry Hopkins met Josef Stalin in Moscow before Roosevelt and Churchill met as leaders of their two nations during World War II.

In Newfoundland, at this first wartime summit between America and Great Britain, the President suggested that a document be drawn up which would establish ‘certain broad principles which should guide our policies along the same road’.[9] An initial draft was drawn up by Alexander Cadogan of the Foreign Office,[10] and after some discussion and relatively minor alterations, the declaration was deemed acceptable by both Americans and Britons.[11] This document came to be known as the Atlantic Charter.[12]

Churchill made the most of this meeting with Roosevelt, speaking in a radio broadcast on 24th August 1941 of ‘the deep underlying unities’ shared by their two countries, and claiming that their meeting symbolised the coming together of ‘the good forces of the world against the evil forces which are now so formidable and triumphant and which have cast their cruel spell over the whole of Europe and a large part of Asia.’[13] On the Sunday morning of 10th August 1941, when President Roosevelt came aboard HMS Prince of Wales together with hundreds of US Navy personnel to attend Divine Service, who would have disagreed with him? Here are Churchill’s words:

‘This service was felt by us all to be a deeply moving expression of the unity of faith of our two peoples, and none who took part in it will forget the spectacle presented that sunlit morning on the crowded quarterdeck – the symbolism of the Union Jack and Stars and Stripes draped side by side on the pulpit; the American and British chaplains sharing in the reading of the prayers; the highest naval, military, and air officers of Britain and the United States grouped in one body behind the President and me; the close-packed ranks of British and American sailors, completely inter-mingled, sharing the same books and joining fervently together in the prayers and hymns familiar to both.’[14]

It is not difficult for a Briton living in the 21st century to see the United States of America as our natural allies in any military conflict. Unlike the alliance with the Soviet Union during the war, which was born of necessity and was forever tainted by the duplicity and barbarism of the Soviets,[15] the Americans have shown many times that they are our true brothers in arms, and that they are willing to fight with us to preserve our way of life.

What are those ‘common principles’, those ‘deep underlying unities’ which both countries share, and for which so many good men and women gave their lives during the war? Let us look at point three of the Atlantic Charter, that joint declaration made by the leaders of our two countries in 1941:

‘Third, they [the United States of America and the United Kingdom] respect the right of all peoples to choose the form of government under which they will live; and they wish to see sovereign rights and self-government restored to those who have been forcibly deprived of them.’[16]

How disappointing it is to see an American President visit the United Kingdom in order to threaten British citizens because they might peacefully choose a form of government which that ‘lame duck’ President disapproves of for his own ideological reasons. How disgraceful it is to see an American President stand on British soil and say that if British citizens choose to have their sovereign rights and self-government restored to them, then he will make them suffer through prejudicial trade arrangements that will favour other areas of the world, where the indigenous peoples are already under the iron heel of European super-governance.[17]

The number of fatalities during World War 2 is almost incomprehensible. In his authoritative history of the Second World War, Sir Martin Gilbert estimated that approximately 46 million (4.6 x 107) human beings died between the German attack on Poland in September 1939 and the Japanese capitulation in August 1945.[18] More recent research has estimated that the total number of fatalities could be significantly higher than that. One thing is beyond dispute, however. Every Briton knows that many Americans died while sailing merchant ships across the Atlantic to Britain in the Battle of the Atlantic (especially during Operation Drumbeat in early 1942),[19] and many more died alongside British and Canadian troops during the execution of one of the largest and most daring military operations in history, Operation Overlord, in 1944. These military endeavours are embedded within the consciousness of every Briton of my generation, and we are all aware that America paid a steep price to make certain that those operations were ultimately successful.

Apparently, none of this matters to America’s ‘lame duck’ President. Barack Hussein Obama has deliberately ignored the ‘common principles’ and ‘deep underlying unities’ shared by our two nations and has spoken out publicly against the explicitly stated ideals in the Atlantic Charter. By so doing, Obama has betrayed the memory of the Americans who gave their lives during World War II so that future generations of people living in Britain, just like everyone else in the world, would have the right to be able to ‘choose the form of government under which they will live’.

The war may have been over for 70 years, but the principles of the Atlantic Charter are still relevant, because they provide us with a yardstick with which to measure the intellectual and moral integrity of the politicians in office today. By properly understanding our own history, we can see that Barack Hussein Obama does not, as it said in the Atlantic Charter, respect the right of the British people to choose the form of government under which they will live. If the British people choose to leave Europe, then that is the right decision, by definition. Instead of accepting that, Obama has threatened British citizens because he would prefer that they gave away their sovereign rights to freedom of speech and freedom of religion, and renounced their hard-won claim to self-government. The possibility which Obama prefers is for the Britons of today, and their children, and their grandchildren, to be ruled by a European superstate headed by an all-powerful Germany. Is there anything wrong with this picture? Of course Barack Hussein Obama is not British, and he does not share our history, or our understanding of the war, any more than he shares anything else with us. The only principles that Barack Hussein Obama has consistently sought to advance, and has acted in accordance with since the day he came to power, are those of the false religion of Islam. And if we really know our history, then we will know what Sir Winston Spencer Churchill had to say about that.


1.   Hastings, M. Finest Years: Churchill as Warlord 1940-1945, Harper Press, pp. 19-192.
2.   Churchill, W. The Atlantic Charter, [radio broadcast] 24th August 1941. Available in: Never Give In! Winston Churchill’s Speeches, Bloomsbury, p. 247.
3.   Maisky, I. The Maisky Diaries: Red Ambassador to the Court of St. James’s 1932-1943, Yale University Press, p. 374.
4.   ibid., p. 374.
5.   ibid., p. 373.
6.   ibid., p. 375.
7.   ibid., p. 376.
8.   Hastings, M. Finest Years: Churchill as Warlord 1940-1945, Harper Press, p. 191; Fenby, J. Alliance: The Inside Story of How Roosevelt, Stalin and Churchill Won One War and Began Another, Simon and Schuster, Kindle location 1012.
9.   Churchill, W. The Second World War Volume III: The Grand Alliance, Weidenfeld & Nicolson, p. 346.
10.   ibid., p. 342; Hastings, M. Finest Years: Churchill as Warlord 1940-1945, Harper Press, p. 197.
11.   Churchill, W. The Second World War Volume III: The Grand Alliance, Weidenfeld & Niconson, p. 352.
12.   ibid., pp. 346-347.
13.   Churchill, W. The Atlantic Charter, [radio broadcast] 24th August 1941. Available in: Never Give In! Winston Churchill’s Speeches, Bloomsbury, p. 247.
14.   Churchill, W. The Second World War Volume III: The Grand Alliance, Weidenfeld & Niconson, p. 345.
15.   Excerpts: Beria letter to Stalin on Katyn, BBC News, 28th April 2010 [online]. Available at: [accessed 23rd April 2016]; Stewart, W. Secret documents confirm Stalin did sanction Katyn massacre … but Russia still won’t name police who shot 22, 000, Daily Mail, 28th April 2010 [online]. Available at: [accessed 23rd April 2016]; Anglo-Soviet Treaty (1942), British Pathé, youtube channel [online]. Available at [accessed 23rd April 2016).
16.   Churchill, W. The Second World War Volume III: The Grand Alliance, Weidenfeld & Nicolson, p. 352.
17.   Obama warns UK it will be at ‘back of the queue’ for US trade if it votes to leave EU, euronews, 23d April 2016 [online]. Available at: [accessed 23rd April 2016].
18.   Gilbert, M. The Second World War: A Complete History, Phoenix, p. 1.
19.   Dimbleby, J. The Battle of the Atlantic: How the Allies Won the War, Viking, pp. 247-250; Chronology of attacks off the US East coast, Wikipedia [online]. Available at: [accessed 23rd April 2016].

33 thoughts on “The Atlantic Charter: Its Relevance Today

  1. Astonishing to hear what this lying individual Obama is up to, when the concept of good and evil have been so corrupted that it is no longer possible to distinguish between the two in the global political domain.

    Growing up with the idea that ‘Great Britain’ stood for good (Godly) values, while opposing systems where generally evil — the Nazi and their bedfellows, Islam –then Socialists for a while took over as the evil ones; now we find it hard to tell whether the Russians have morphed into the good guys and the Obamanation that is OS America have become the truly evil ones.

    Perhaps Britain needs someone to make it ‘Great” again — even someone like a Donald Trump may be better than the incumbent.

    • Donald Trump For President of America … And Scotland! (Doesn’t his mother hail from Scotland?)

      • Yes I had heard his grandfather was Scottish fisherman .Trump’s grandpa’s on the fishing boat sank in a storm and he drowned.

        Yes Trump would certainly be better than the faux Conservative Cameron.Cameron is really Blair with better teeth and a sharper suit..

        • Don’t you mean a better suit and sharper teeth?

          Either description would be accurate, when you think about it ..

          • No I’m going for gangsta speak with “sharper suit” and plum- in -the- mouth trying hard to appeal to the middle class with “better suit”.That’s Cameron to a tee .He’s ,an old Etonian trying desperately to appeal to middle class Tories(who he thinks are probably the sons of shopkeepers ) and the working class that he despises as ill-educated ignorant oiks ,petty criminals ,bigots and welfare cheats.

    • I think that this notion of having fought ‘the good war’ and been on the ‘victorious’ side has as part of its legacy the deep reluctance to see our politicians as anything other than ‘good’ in the final analysis. Yes, they may make mistakes and yes, there may be the odd corrupt fellow here and there, but by and large they can be depended upon to do the right thing. That sort of worldview.

      As we are now coming to realise, the people in charge of our countries do not have our interests at heart, and they are capable of anything – absolutely anything.

  2. “Apparently none of this matters to America’s lame duck president….”
    Of course it doesn’t. Obama said at the start of his presidency that should the political winds ‘blow rough’ he would side with the moslems, and he has certainly done that, at any and all available opportunities.

    Nor has this nothing to do with the above article; we’re talking about Obama, whose raison d’etre is the rise of islam and Marxism–Obama would have loved the traitorous Hopkins.

    • For readers unaware of Harry Hopkins’s role in U.S. history (as I was until very recently), “American Betrayal” by Diana West is an eye- and brain-opener.

      Un***believable, this man, and doubly un***believable, his influence over FDR.

      • Apologies if this is a double post, I hit the wrong key on this wireless keyboard I’m using & jumped back a couple of screens for a moment there. Anyhow, with that said:

        Hopkins is an interesting character, and it is most interesting to see that FDR sent this fellow to meet Josef Stalin in July of 1941. America was still not a belligerent at that time, and would not officially join the war for several months. On the 27th of July 1941, as John ‘Gil’ Winant was asking Ivan Maisky to organise a visa for Hopkins so that he could visit the Soviet Union (Maisky ended up writing a personal message inside Hopkins’ passport instead), Sumner Welles was writing to Laurence Steinhardt, the American ambassador to the Soviet Union, to tell him that Hopkins was coming and that ‘The objective of his [Hopkins’] mission is to investigate how best to furnish the Soviet Union with military assistance at this time.’ All very interesting …

        Source: United States Department of State / Foreign relations of the United States diplomatic papers (FRUS), 1941. General, The Soviet Union, pp. 797-798 [online]. Available at:

      • Cynthia — Coincidentally, I’m reading this very book right now! I have to take frequent breaks — it’s just that upsetting. Why do you suppose Horowitz & Co. were so upset by it?

        • Which Horowitz are you referring to?
          Also remember Alger Hiss and Henry Collins were Soviet agents who served in the Department of State during that time. A good rundown can be found in the Naked Communist by Cleon Skousen.

  3. Do we even have nations anymore or are they all just local facades for the rulership of various transnational consortiums, “NGOs”, and such?

    How long until the whole planet looks like China with some sort of Obama clone ruling it?

    • “‘Third, they [the United States of America and the United Kingdom] respect the right of all peoples to choose the form of government under which they will live”

      The Big Lie is so outrageous. Once a democratic dictator Traitor is elected the his/her only goal is empower islam and muslim brotherhood, import jihadis, antagonize Israel and asphyxiate the remaining Christians, and turning the 500 left Churches into mosquitos, talk about the Bible Fairy Tales and integrate mosque and Quran into the western constitutions stealthily or openly and no one cares.

    • Obama’s rule is one up on Mao’s ” People’s Democratic Dictatorship” !

      • When a Chinese Communist Party diplomat has to implore Obama to abandon the zero-sum mentality, it’s pretty obvious that Obama is more Maoist than anyone in charge of China right now.

  4. the problem with all this is that Winston Churchill supported Britain in Europe.

    • Did you know that when France was in the process of being overrun by the Nazis in 1940, the Brits offered to make France part of Britain, to join the two countries as one, so that all French citizens would have what I guess we would call today ‘dual citizenship’? There was some crazy stuff going on back then, that’s for sure. Churchill was known to be something of a Francophile. Mind you, that didn’t stop him sinking the French fleet at Mers el-Kebir.

  5. Neither the US nor Great Britain are in any way the same countries or nations that they were 70 years ago. The flags and names remain the same, but that is about it.

    The Atlantic Charter is no longer relevant. And let us remind ourselves that all treaties fade in time, all nations die, as others are born, and that change is the only constant.

    Our task then is to manage that change, to seize the opportunities that change presents us, and to avoid that cardinal sin of pride that allows us to think that our way, and how our way has been for the last seventy years, is the ultimate answer.

    It was just that kind of thinking that has all but finished the multicultural EU experiment, and will ultimately lead to a remaking of nations and political systems in the West.

    The mistake most moslems make is to assume what is natural evolution in geo-politics somehow vindicates Islamic government as “the answer” somehow. They too will be swept away by the tsunami of history, but Islam is catastrophically rigid and inflexible in its thinking. Islam is nothing but reactionary historical chauvinism, and is as doomed to failure now as it was under the Caliph many centuries ago.

    Islam’s war on the West furnishes those of us with the drive, energy and ideas to rebuild our societies in a better and more appropriate form for the issues facing us, with all the impetus and justification we need to dynamite the old order, and rebuild in our image.

    Life is good. We are winning the long game…

    • Interesting thought, bdsm. Some have argued that the rise of totalitarianism in the C20th was a reaction to the ideals of the Enlightenment.

  6. BHO’s hubris will backfire. NO ONE likes to be threatened or scolded, which is what he did.
    I know the American people are sick to death of 8 years of scolding.
    Nigel Farrage pointed out that the US has a trade pact with Oman. Why would they deliberately forgo one with the 8th largest economy on earth? You are small but mighty!
    And who wrote that “You will go to the back of the queue” line for him? The word queue is not in American parlance… David Cameron’s team or some wisenhimer in the White House wanting to serve up pablum to morons?
    As an American, I actually cringed when I heard his statement. What more can this guy do to embarrass my country. It wasn’t bad enough that he had official photos taken in front of Che in Cuba or paling it up with Raoul at a baseball game while the body parts hadn’t even been picked up in Brussels? How about Tango dancing with a woman not his wife that had a slit up her dress to you know where?
    Vote Brexit and put a thumb in his eye.

    • There was a comedy show on British TV last night which I had never seen before. It was called, if I got it right, play to the whistle. Bradley Walsh and Frank Lampard were team captains, & they had a series of sporting-related questions. Anyhow, one question was: What has Barack Obama done 200 times since becoming President?

      No one on the programme knew.

      I knew.

      • And former Pres. George W. Bush probably did the same at least 200 times; his # of vacation days taken while in office beggars Obama’s.

        • I think he spent a lot of time at his ranch in Texas, and they liked Camp David, iirc. But then I’ve never paid much attention to Prez vaycays. Not interesting, just media bizziness.

        • Obama played more rounds of golf during his first term than all other US President’s combined going back to LBJ.

          When Bush was at his ranch in Texas he had a fully fitted office and was working from it.

          Obama, on the other hand, was playing golf when the order to kill Osama was given, thus it was actually carried out. Panetta had gotten fed up with getting the approval for the mission and Jarrett getting to the obamessiah and getting it cancelled, so he gave the go order when the One was on the golf course and out of Jarrett’s reach.

        • I seem to remember a video clip where some enterprising reporter asked W how he could get any work done when he was out on the golf course all the time, and Bush told the reporter that he [the reporter] didn’t know what work was, and that a lot of work got done on the golf course … something along those lines, anyway, I don’t know if anyone else remembers that video.

          Do you think any of our employers would accept that excuse if we disappeared one afternoon & ended up in ‘the 19th hole’?

        • Actually, “Bush played many fewer rounds as president — 24, mainly because he stopped in 2003, since it sent the wrong message when troops were fighting in Afghanistan and Iraq.” Politifact, August 2014

          Bush vacationed in places where security was relatively easy – his Texas ranch and his father’s home, Kennebunkport. It’s called a working vacation. And he actually read the daily security briefings.

          Obama, on the other hand, takes his’n’hers jets to various exotic locales regardless of cost to the suffering taxpayer. Regardless of internal or external events that should require his attention.

          Don’t want to get into a spitting contest over something so trivial, except it belies an attitude belittling taxpayers (“citizens”), Presidential decorum, and the seriousness of world events.

          Which bring me back to Obama’s not valuing the Atlantic Charter. I also cringed and the “back of the queue” remark but his speech today in Hannover was horrifying. He equated opposition to overwhelming migration in Europe with the Nazis. He lectured Europe on the need to combat economic inequality “collectively.” Guess he’s done such a spectacular job destroying the US that he is ready to move on to the rest of the world.

          • That is truly sickening. I couldn’t bring myself to watch his visit to Germany. I’m glad I didn’t see or hear that, my blood pressure would have gone through the roof.

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