British civilian anti-war communist in GB 1939-1941, became supporter of war against fascism 1940, served in Royal Armoured Corps 1940-1941
REEL 1 Family background and education in Brighton. Growth of political awareness following mock parliament. Early involvement with Communist Party <CP>. Discussion of European political scene during 1930s and GB complicity with fascists. Explanation of Soviet-German Non-Aggression Pact 1939.
REEL 2 Response of British CP to Pact and outbreak of Second World War. Reaction of British CP and public to Soviet invasion of Poland. Reasons for opposition to imperialist war. History and nature of imperialism. Clarification of CP's stance on Second World War.
REEL 3 Reaction within CP and amongst public to CP's changed position on Second World War. Concept of 'just' wars. Reasons for acceptance of conscription and for working with pacifists. Philosophy behind anti-war People's Convention 1941; reasons for its failure. Ineffectiveness of Peace Pledge Union.
REEL 4 People's Convention manifesto. Focus of CP's anti-war activities. Speaking at public meetings in Brighton; techniques of public speaking. Ban and closure of 'Daily Worker'. Education of CP members. Recollections about William Gallagher and Palme Dutt. Status of CP with public during war. Some fundamental points of Marxism. Myth of 'Moscow Gold' financial aid. Hardships and harassment of being a communist.
REEL 5 Soviet invasion of Finland 1940. British press treatment of events. Statement on Soviet-Finnish Treaty 1940. Special treatment on registering for armed forces. Justification for joining Army. Response of officers and men to his communism.
REEL 6 Anti communist discrimination in Army. Royal Armoured Corps training. Transfer from unit bound overseas. Army discharge 1941 due to role as CP organiser. Relationship between discharge and Rudolf Hess' flight to GB. Subsequent work on railways. Significance of German invasion of USSR for CP and Churchill's government.
REEL 7 Settlements at end of war and USSR role. German invasion of USSR and Stalin's response. Assessment of Stalin. Nature of British CP's support for war after 1941; its opposition to wartime strikes.
REEL 8 Actions and role of CP in supporting war. Comments on outcome of war. Danger of nuclear weapons. Importance of USSR. Splits within CP.