White House Compares Trump-Churchill Leadership Styles, and Historians ScoffHistorians in the News
tags: Winston Churchill, Donald Trump
This week, the White House has likened Donald Trump to Winston Churchill, the hard-drinking and eccentric prime minister who led Britain as it faced off against the Nazis during World War II.
Some historians have responded to that with a resounding: Mr. President, you're no Winston Churchill. Others, meanwhile, have raised Churchill's troubling record on race, saying the American president shouldn't try to emulate the British leader whose disturbing views on race were rooted in 19th-century colonialism.
Historian Warren Dockter, a lecturer in international politics at Aberystwyth University in Wales, has been among many to say the two leaders' actions couldn't be more different. Churchill helped unify Britain — in stark contrast to Trump, he said.
The Trump-Churchill comparison "verges on obscenity," said the author Erik Larson, who recently published a book about Churchill during the war.
Similarly, Princeton historian Kevin Kruse said in a tweet that Churchill's efforts "showed resilience against the Nazi war machine."
Kruse summarized Monday's events as: "Trump wanted to pretend he wasn’t scared of his fellow citizens, so he had protesters gassed and a priest yanked from a church so he could pose outside it."
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