"What is the sense of being against a man simply because of his birth? How can any man help how he is born?"
In 1932 Churchill's research on the Marlborough biography took him to the European battlefields on which his ancestor had staked his claim to greatness. Churchill continued to Munich and a possible meeting with Adolf Hitler. Martin Gilbert tells the story. . .
When in November 1932, shortly before Hitler came to power, and Churchill was in Munich doing some historical research about the First Duke of Marlborough, . . .an intermediary tried to get him to meet Hitler, who was in Munich at the time and had high hopes of coming to power within months. Churchill agreed to meet Hitler, who was going to come to see him in his hotel in Munich, and said to the intermediary: "There are a few questions you might like to put to him, which can be the basis of our discussion when we meet." Among them was the following question: "What is the sense of being against a man simply because of his birth? How can any man help how he is born?"
This may seem a simple sentiment to us now, but how many people, distinguished people from Britain, the United States and other countries, who met or might have met Hitler, raised that question with him? So surprised, and possibly angered, was Hitler by this question that he declined to come to the hotel and see Churchill. . .
POWERLINE FOOTNOTE: My friend Glenn Ellmers reminds me of the best part of the story. In The Gathering Storm Churchill remarks: "Thus Hitler lost his only chance of meeting me."