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Winston Churchill:
Message to the Yugoslav People

(April 13, 1941)


Churchill: Table of Contents | V-E Speech (1945) | Report on the War (1941)


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TO THE PEOPLE OF YUGOSLAVIA, TO THE SERBS, THE CROATS AND THE SLOVENES, I SEND MY GREETINGS.

You have been wantonly attacked by a ruthless and barbarous aggressor. Your capital has been bombed, your women and children brutally murdered. Our cities in England, too, have been bombed by the same insensate foe. Our women and children have been murdered. Our Sympathy for you therefore is heartfelt for we are sharing the same sufferings. But as we have faith in our victory, so we have faith in yours. Do not regret the staunch courage which has brought on you this furious onslaught. Your courage will shine out in the pages of history and will, too, reap a more immediate reward. Whatever you may lose in the present you have saved the future.

You are making a heroic resistance against formidable odds and in doing so you are proving true to your great traditions. Serbs, we know you. You were our allies in the last war and your armies are covered with glory. Croats and Slovenes, we know your military history. For centuries you were the bulwark of Christianity. Your fame as warriors spread far and wide on the Continent. One of the finest incidents in the history of Croatia is the one when, in the 16th Century, long before the French Revolution, the peasants rose to defend the rights of man, and fought for those principles which centuries later gave the world democracy.

Yugoslavs, you are fighting for those principles today. The British Empire is fighting with you, and behind us is the great democracy of the U.S.A., with its vast and ever-increasing resources. However hard the fight, our victory is assured.

[1] British Library of Information.


Sources: ibiblio

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