Churchill on Appeasement

by Conor Friedersdorf

Via Will at The League of Ordinary Gentlemen, a lesser known quote from Winston Churchill:

“The word ‘appeasement’ is not popular, but appeasement has its place in all policy,” he said in 1950. “Make sure you put it in the right place. Appease the weak, defy the strong.” He argued that “appeasement from strength is magnanimous and noble and might be the surest and perhaps the only path to world peace.” And he remarked on the painful irony: “When nations or individuals get strong they are often truculent and bullying, but when they are weak they become better-mannered. But this is the reverse of what is healthy and wise.”

Every time I hear that word, I think of this cable news exchange, one of my favorites in the history of broadcasting because it distills the intellectual dishonesty so prevalent in the medium. After watching it you'll always have a soft spot for Chris Matthews.