Did Winston Churchill Have Dementia?

Churchill

Directed by Jonathan Teplitzky (2017)

Film Reiview

What I find particularly interesting about this feature length biopic is its portrayal of Churchill as suffering from obvious dementia in the lead up to Operation Overlord (the D-Day invasion of Normandy – June 6, 1944). It shows Churchill as openly opposing the invasion owing to his catastrophic experience during World War I. As First Lord of the Admiralty he spearhead the attempted invasion of Turkey’s Gallipoli peninsula. After over 250,000 allied forces* were killed by Turkish forces, the Allies were forced to retreat.

In the case of D-Day, the Germans, like the Turks, represented a powerful entrenched army with the potential to mow down Allied forces as they landed on the beaches beneath.

As portrayed in the film, Churchill repeatedly tries to obstruct planning for Operation Overlord, and the generals involved (including Eisenhower) repeatedly call on his wife to pull him back in line.

Prior to watching this film, I was unaware that Churchill possibly suffered from dementia during the final stages of World War II. With two openly demented senior citizens competing for the US presidency, it raises some interesting questions about the true source of power in so-called liberal democracy


*A high disproportiate number of Anzacs (Australian and New Zealand conscripts) were massacred at Gallipoli.. Anazac Day, which celebrates the bloodbath, is one of the major holidays here. This film was shown on Māori TV for the April 2019 Anzac Day celebrations. A substantial number of the Kiwis killed at Gallipoli belonged to the Māori Battalion.

 

The full film can be viewed free at the Māori TV website: https://www.maoritelevision.com/shows/anzac-day-2019/S01E001/churchill

 

 

 

 

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