|United Kingdom of Great Britain and the Imperial Federation|
Head of State
His Imperial Majesty, the King-Emperor of Great Britain and the Dominions beyond the Seas, Edward VIII (1936), George VI (1936-1952), Edward VIII (from 1952)
National Coalition Government (from 1931)
Head of Government
A. Neville Chamberlain (1937-1940), Sir Winston Churchill (1940-1941), Viscount Halifax (1941-1945), Sir Winston Churchill (1945-1957), Sir Oswald Mosley (1957-1967), Earl Louis Mountbatten (1967-1968), Sir Enoch Powell (1968-1982)
Great Britain at war with Germany 1939-1941 during the so-called "Western War". This conflict was ended by Rudolf Hess's special diplomatic mission in May 1941, and by his offer of German guarantees for Britain's possessions "East of Suez" (an offer simultaneously relayed to Japan by Albrecht von Urach).
As a result of this negotiated peace, Great Britain experienced little territorial or political change as a result of the war, at first. In fact, as possessor of the world’s largest empire, the British government was committed to maintenance of the status quo, even if this required accepting German hegemony on mainland Europe.
There was significant repression of the left after Britain withdrew from the conflict with Germany in May 1941, almost leading to civil war in 1945. The National Government expelled the Labour Party, denouncing their attempt to impose ‘Soviet NKVD tactics’ on Britain. The Labour Party was found to be heavily infiltrated by agents of Soviet Russia, and after its expulsion from the Government of National Unity, and the British invasion of the USSR, the party was formally criminalised in August 1945.
There was also some attempt to reformulate the unwieldy British Empire and Commonwealth into a more unified and streamlined polity, the Imperial Federation. This task was handed to Sir Oswald Mosley, who was invited to join the Government of National Unity as Secretary of State for the Dominions and Colonies. This Ministry was created specially for Mosley, reunifying the Colonial and Dominion ministries separated in 1925. Britain’s position was mainly however reactive (as well as reactionary), attempting to retain control of its possessions in the Far East against Japan's territorial ambitions, as well as preventing secession elsewhere.
When Oswald Mosley became Prime Minister, he adopted, with support of Italy and Germany, a more conciliatory approach to a limited withdrawal from parts of the empire, especially "East of Suez" (the Asian colonies) and where another European or Aryan power had a claim. His main task was securing the continued pro-European stance of newly independent Dominions in the old British Raj.
At the same time, political control, economic exploitation and settler colonisation were extended in the African and West Indian colonies (the "Eurafrika" policy, a cornerstone of Mosley's BUF movement). The Dominion states are generally ruled by regimes closely allied to Britain, though some are increasingly drawn toward Germany (especially South Africa), the United States of America (especially New Zealand) or to some form of non-alignment.
Oswald Mosley was forced to resign in 1967, due mainly to his former's mishandling of the Irish question, his refusal to support Britain's German and French allies in Indochina and his mishandling of the economy. He was replaced by a caretaker government headed by Lord Mountbatten. In 1968, Mountbatten handed power to Sir Enoch Powell. Powell had made his name as a popular politician, rallying the British populace with his 'Rivers of Blood' speech, warning that soon 'inferior races will have the whip hand over the superior' without a more militant defence of European imperialism abroad and of Social Darwinism at home. Powell remained in power until he too was forced to stand down after a brief and unsuccessful war against Argentina.
Instituted in the crisis year of 1931, the National Government has ruled Great Britain, her Commonwealth and the British Empire since that date.
The First (1931), Second (1931-1935) and Third (1935-1937) National Cabinets were made up of Conservatives (and Unionists), Liberals, Liberal Nationals and National Labour. The Fourth National Cabinet (1937-1939) also included individuals of no party. The Fifth National or War Cabinet (1939-1940) was more or less the same. The Sixth National Cabinet (1940-1941) included members of the mainstream Labour Party. These Labour Party members left the Seventh National Cabinet (1941-1945), and were prohibited from participating in the Eighth (1945-1951), replaced by members of the BUF.
The subequent National Cabinets have remained broadly unchanged, with a mixture of Conservatives, Liberals, Liberal Nationals, National Labour and BUF, as well as technocrats of no party and members of small Fascist or National Socialist factions (such as the National Socialist League of William Joyce). The BUF has however increasingly dominated, especially after the assumption of the premiership by Oswald Mosley 1957-1967 (the Tenth National Cabinet).
The first premiership of Winston Churchill ended in failure with Great Britain's negotiated withdrawal from the conflict with Germany. His return to power in 1945 attempted to reverse this failure: while maintaining a dignified distance from the Axis Powers, Churchill aimed to secure the continued greatness of the British Empire with three major policy shifts. First,Great Britain would join in the Axis attack on Bolshevik Russia. Second, Bolshevism would be attacked at home, with pro-Soviet parties liquidated and pro-Soviet individuals arrested. Third, using support for Germany's anti-Bolshevik crusade as leverage, Great Britain would obtain German guarantees for her Far Eastern colonies against Japanese expansion.
This period of mutually suspicious but beneficial cooperation between Great Britain andGermany also led to the surrender of the mandate over Palestine to Axis forces (though specifically excluding German forces), and, in 1952, toGreat Britain becoming the last European nation to commit itself to a resolution to the Jewish Question in Europe under German auspices (as a result of the Buckingham Conference, organised by Lord Beaverbrook).
After a decade of Imperial intransigence culminating with a disastrous intervention in Egypt and Sudan alongside France and Lebanon, Churchill was ousted by his own party and replaced as premier by Mosley, now considered the figure best equipped to secure Great Britain's future in the German-led bloc.
Mosley reduced Great Britain's overseas commitments, negotiating the end of long-standing imperial conflicts, notably in Ireland and the Raj. This period also saw the transfer of some British territory to other imperialist powers, notably Italy, which became Britain's closest ally, with Mosley enjoying extremely good relations with Benito Mussolini, his one-time paymaster, and his successor Italo Balbo.
At the same time the British Imperial system was rationalised. Home-rule was extended to various regions with substantial white settler populations, notably British Central Africa or Rhodesia and British East Africa or Kenya. Consistent policies on race and free trade across the British Empire were adopted, inspired in great part by ideas from the Commonwealth leaders such as D.F. Malan of South Africa, Eric Butler ofAustralia and Enoch Powell, the last Viceroy of India.
His policy of colonial streamlining however earned him the wrath of many die-hard imperialists: Enoch Powell and William Joyce in particular never forgave Mosley for what they perceived as the 'loss' of Ireland and India. Joyce left the government at this point, though Powell continued, accepting Mosley's vacated Colonial portfolio. Withdrawal from parts of the British Empire which had become untenable was accompanied by an intensification of both the integration and exploitation of the remaining colonies, especially Africa, which became for the first time a major priority and the new 'Jewel in the Crown'. Under the so-called 'Eurafrika' policy, the settlement of Africa and the devolution of power to the local White population were accelerated.
By 1967, Mosley's policies had become as unpopular as Churchill's had been in 1957: the deteriorating situation in Ireland in particular, and the need for economic reforms, led him to surrendered power to an emergency military-led government under Earl Mountbatten, the former Viceroy of India. This government was known as the Eleventh National Cabinet or the Emergency Cabinet. There was some resistance by hardliners within the BUF (led by Jeffrey Hamm, exiled to Argentina), but Mosley himself denounced any opposition to the new regime and the uprising was quickly put down.
Out of respect for British traditions, rather than establish a military regime, Mountbatten quickly surrendered to power to a civilian government under Enoch Powell (the Twelth National Cabinet), whose resignation from the Colonial Ministry had hastened Mosley's own resignation. Several of Mosley's closest collaborators (including his son, Max) were ousted, and some of his fiercest opponents returned to office.
Powell's premiership continued until the Great Britain was defeated in a brief war with Argentina, the result of a misguided attempted by the British to reclaim the Malvinas Islands, surrendered to Argentina by the Mosley administration.
Composition of the Government of National Unity Edit
Prime Minister: Neville Chamberlain (Conservative, 1937-1940), Sir Winston Churchill (Conservative, 1940-1941), Viscount Halifax (Conservative, 1941-1945), Sir Winston Churchill (Conservative, 1945-1957), Sir Oswald Mosley (BUF, 1957-1967), Earl Mountbatten (no party, 1967-1968), Sir Enoch Powell (League of Empire Loyalists, 1968-1983), Denis Thatcher (League of Empire Loyalists, from 1983)
Deputy Prime Minister: David Lloyd George (Liberal, 1941-1945), JFC Fuller (BUF, 1945-1957), Robert Gascoyne-Cecil, Marquess of Salisbury (Conservative, 1957), Hastings Russel, Duke of Bedford (BPP, 1957-1958), Arthur Kenneth Chesterton (BUF, 1968-1973), Denis Thatcher (Conservative, 1973-1983)
Home Secretary: Herbert Morrison (Labour, 1940-1941), Samuel Hoare, Viscount Templeton (Conservative, 1941-1957), Sir Ormonde Winter (no party, 1957-1960), Thomas Haller Cooper (BUF, from 1960)
Defence Secretary: Sir Winston Churchill (1940-1941), Edmond, Baron Ironside (Conservative, 1941-1957), Douglas, Duke of Hamilton (Conservative, 1957-1967), Sir Anthony Courtney (Conservative, from 1967)
Chancellor of the Exchequer: Sir Kingsley Wood (Conservative, 1940-1942), Sir John Anderson (no party, 1942-1945), Rab Butler (Conservative, 1945-1962), George Kennedy Young (Conservative, from 1962)
Foreign Secretary: Viscount Halifax (Conservative, 1940-1941), Anthony Eden (Conservative, 1941-1957), Robert Gordon-Canning (BUF, 1957-1967), Viscount Cranborne (Conservative, 1967-1971), John, Lord Wodehouse (Conservative, from 1971)
Secretary of State for Production and Supply: Lord Beaverbrook (Conservative, 1940-1957), Edward Martell (Liberal, from 1957)
Secretary of State for Dominions and Colonies: Baron Moyne (Conservative, 1941-1945), Sir Oswald Mosley (BUF, 1945-1957), St John Philby (no party, 1957-1958), Sir Enoch Powell (Conservative, 1958-1967), Arthur Kenneth Chesterton (BUF, 1967-1968), Robert Gascoyne-Cecil, Marquess of Salisbury (Conservative, 1968-1972), Julian, Baron Amery (Conservative, from 1972)
Secretary of State for Labour: Ernest Bevin (Labour, 1940-1941), Herbert Morrison (National Labour, 1941-1943), Ben Greene (National Labour, 1943-1967), Sir Charles Petrie (Conservative, 1967-1972), Sir Walter Walker (Conservative, from 1972)
Secretary of State for Propaganda and Public Understanding: Sir Reginald Goodall (BUF, 1957-1967), AFX Baron (IFL, 1967-1974),
Secretary of State for Aviation: Viscount Swinton (Conservative, 1935-1938), Sir Kingsley Wood (1938-1940), Viscount Thurso (Liberal, 1940-1943), Douglas, Duke of Hamilton (Conservative, 1942-1945), Charles Vane Tempest Stewart, Marquess of Londonderry (Conservative, 1945-1948), Sir Alliott Verdon Roe (BUF, 1948-1957)
Secretary of State for Science, Education and Youth: Sir Arthur Bryant (no party, 1945-1962), Max Mosley (BUF, 1962-1967), Denis Thatcher (Conservative, 1967-1973), John O'Brien (Conservative, from 1973)
Preisdent of the Board of Trade: Viscount Swinton (Conservative, 1941-1972), Jonathan Guinness, Baron Moyne (Conservative, from 1972)
Secretary of State for Health: Marie Stopes (no party, 1941), William, Duke of Westminster (Conservative, 1941-1962), Sir Robert Fogan (BUF, 1962-1967)
Secretary of State for Agriculture and the Environment: Arnold Leese (BUF, 1945-1956), Jorian Jenks (BUF, 1956-1963), Henry Williamson (BUF, 1963-1967), Rolf Gardiner (no party, 1967-1971), Gerard Wallop, Earl of Portsmouth (no party, 1971-1979), Alan Clark (Conservative, from 1979)
Secretary of State for Faith: Bishop Arthur Headlam (no party, 1945-1947), RBD Blakeney (BUF, 1947-1950), Sir John Biggs-Davison (Conservative, from 1950)
Secretary of State for Scotland: John Colville, Baron Clydesmuir (Conservative, 1938-1943), Earl Rosebury (Conservative, 1943-1945), Sir Louis Greig (Conservative, 1945-1953), Lord William Montagu Douglas Scott (Conservative, 1953-1957), Patrick Boyle, Earl of Glasgow (BUF, 1957-1963)
First Minister of Scotland: Douglas Young (SNP, 1958-1967), Douglas, Duke of Hamilton (Conservative, 1967-1973), Neil McLean (Conservative, from 1973)
Secretary of State for Northern Ireland: Earl Mountbatten (no party, 1969-1970), William Joyce (NSL, 1970-1975), Norman Tebbit (BUF, from 1975)
First Minister of Northern Ireland: Viscount Craigavon (UUP, 1921-1940), John Miller Andrews (UUP, 1940-1941), Viscount Brookeborough (UUP, 1941-1957), WF McCoy (UNP, 1957-1967), William Craig (UNP, 1967-1968), Reverend Ian Paisley (PUP, from 1968)