What’s Really Behind a Royal Child’s Nazi Salute?

Posted on July 21, 2015

When I popped in to Sainsbury’s yesterday, I decided that I would stop in the cafeteria and have a cup of tea and a bit of lunch (£5:00 for cod chips and mushy peas is a bargain).  As I went to sit down, I stopped at the paper rack to discover that the marketing department at Sainsbury’s have decided that the two papers their customers read are The Sun and The Mail, of which there were two or three copies of each.

So, with a choice equivalent to sticking my hand either into a nest of vipers or a bucket of hot tar, I opted for the Daily Mail, preparing myself for some vitriol aimed at immigrants, single mothers or anyone else who doesn’t tow to the line of this often spiteful rag that seeks to turn the masses on each other to deflect them from the sinister activities of its owners.

However, I was surprised to see a three page article about the Royal family and the recent scandal of the video showing Queen Elizabeth as a young child, practising a Nazi salute under the guidance of her mother (known to us as the Queen mother) and her uncle, Prince Edward, a persistent thorn in the side of the 1930’s Royals. The Prince Andrew of his time perhaps?

Now, I am no Royalist, apathy rules my feelings towards them for a number of reasons, but for The Daily Mail (despite an admittedly excellent piece by historian, Max Hastings) to embark on such a story and dig up historical facts that the Royals would rather remained buried, is a classic example of standing in a glass house and throwing stones.

The Daily Mail you see, was, during the Queen’s Nazi salute period (and still is by the way) owned by the Rothermere empire, who right up until the distasteful fracas at the Olympia Rally in 1934, were active supporters of fellow aristocrat, Oswald Mosely, who had served in both the Conservative and Labour parties before establishing the New Party and then the British Union of Fascists (the Blackshirts) who sort alliance with Italy and German fascist regimes, adopting the Roman salute that had also been adopted by Hitler and the Nazis.

Moseley, born in Mayfair, London, to aristocrat Staffordshire landowners seated at Rollaston Hall, Burton-On-Trent, was a well-known figure in the higher echelons of society and in 1920, when he married the second daughter of The First Earl Curzon of Kedleston, Lady Cynthia Curzon, the wedding was arguably the social event of the year, attended by King George V and Queen Mary no less. There were aristocrats wherever he turned.

It seems Moseley was a bit of a cad in his time, having affairs with his wife’s younger sister as well as his step-mother and when Lady Cynthia died of peritonitis (whatever that is) in 1933, he married yet another mistress, Diana Guinness, at the home of Joseph Goebbels, with Adolf Hitler as a guest (you may have read about these two mischief makers in school history books). Hitler was adept with both German and British aristocrats, the key to his success being the rabid fear of communism that terrified high society after the brutal massacre of the Russian Royals in 1918.

The Royal family themselves, whose name (presumably for PR reasons) was changed to Windsor from Saxe-Coburg-Gotha after WWI, was awash with links to fascism and the Nazi’s.  Family members of Prince Philip, who is from the house of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Glucksburg, were fervent supporters of Hitler and the Nazis and Phillip’s Brother-in-law, Prince Christoph of Hesse, was a member of the SS who piloted fighters that attacked allied troops in Italy.

To emphasise what was at least a lucid relationship between the Royals and the Nazi’s, a few weeks before Germany invaded Poland, King George VI and his wife (the Queen Mother) sent Hitler a birthday greeting.

“Happy Birthday Adolf…good luck in Poland, LOL :-)”

“I never thought Hitler was such a bad chap,” said the former King Edward VIII, who became the Duke of Windsor after abdicating in 1936 and marrying Mrs Simpson. This remark was made in 1970 when it was pretty much widely known that Hitler and the Nazis had killed more than six million Jews, gypsies, prostitutes, disabled and work shy, thus emphasising an acceptance of extreme eugenics, at least in some Royal circles.


Prince Edward on a guided tour of Germany with the Nazis

So, with Edward thinking that Hitler was a decent chap, it was not just a bit of tomfoolery that tempted him teach the would be Queen to salute the ideology of fascism, it was actually pretty sinister. However, the Queen was young and was not to know what was about to happen in Germany a few years later but it seems her uncle (Edward) never showed an ounce of contrition for the mass genocide that followed….perhaps in his eyes, the Jews got what was coming to them?

This was probably because if various attempts by Moseley’s BUF (Blackshirts) to find national support and peace with Germany, resulting in a European axis of fascism, had been successful, Hitler had promised to see to it to re-instate Edward as the King of fascist England, possibly in return for some of the Jews who had escaped his clutches and had sort refuge in England. That we will never know, thankfully.

As it happened, justice somehow prevailed and the BUF lost media and public support after distasteful Blackshirt violence at the 1934 Olympia Rally. They suffered further humiliation during the 1936 *Cable Street Riots which eventually led to the banning of military uniform and widespread condemnation of Moseley and fascism as a whole, with Moseley finding himself interned during the war effort.

It was only after the Blitz the Royal appeasers gave up on the false hope of peace and mobilised themselves in the firm defence of Churchill’s war effort, but it has to be said that during this pre-war period, it was not just the Royal family who were tempted by the folly of appeasement. Britain was ill-equipped both on a financial and military basis to fight another brutal war against the might of Germany and to many, in particular the Royals, fascism was a viable alternative to potential communism.

Still, to this day, the Royal archives have ensured that any correspondence between the monarchy and their German relatives remains firmly closed to historians, which in my opinion, fuels suspicion amongst conspiracy theorists. I for one would have far more respect for the Royal family if they were more open and remorseful for their links to fascism in the 1930’s, admitting that misguided attempts at appeasement were behind certain members prostituting themselves to the likes of Hitler, Mussolini and Moseley.

The truth is, if we all went back through our family history at that time, we would find that, somewhere, whether it was a great grandfather, auntie or uncle, there would have been a family member tempted by national socialism, because during great depressions where economic collapse is dominating the lives of so many, it is an easy ideology to promote. Creating fear always has been a propaganda master-stroke and fascists used this tool to great effect on the masses and the ruling classes. Newspapers still do it today, as do political parties, UKIP being a classic example.

What we need to be reminded of is the fact that fascism descends into authoritarianism, resulting in the removal of political enemies and the imprisonment and death of just about anyone who is seen as a threat. What we don’t know is whether the Royals were appeasing the Nazi’s and temporarily supporting Moseley and his Blackshirts in a misguided attempt to protect Britain from another war, or simply to protect themselves, even if it meant getting in to bed with fascism.

By banning historians from the archives of this complex period of 20th Century Britain, the Royals are merely lending to the theory that a fascist regime and an Aryan Europe may have suited them just dandy, even if it did mean wiping out some unwanted races and religions on the way.

If that was the case, we would have a real scandal, not just a grainy video with the future Queen playing Nazis with her mother and a mischievous uncle.


I always thought the Cable Street Riots were at the height of Moseley’s power, however I have since learnt that this is something of a myth, as the BUF were already rapidly losing popularity after the Olympia Rally and the riots actually gave them temporary sympathy and a short-lived swell of support before they descended into oblivion.


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