David Irving[Photo by Michael Hentz, for The
New York Times]
Letter to the Editor of
The Sunday Telegraph,
London, October 25, 1983
F OUR Immaculate Left hope that the files will reveal the
names of Establishment figures supporting Sir Oswald, they
will be disappointed. These files certainly include lists of
names - according to MI5 he had 8,000 members, and their
funds were believed to come from Germany, as they "fell off
to practically nothing" around September 1939 - but no great
names are even hinted at.
In fairness to Mosley it
might be added that in 1943 MI5 did not consider membership
of his party sufficient to be regarded as "a subversive
element." Why then was Mosley interned in May 1940? You,
Sir, hit on the solution by implying that it was because of
the danger that his advocacy of a negotiated peace would
attract support. (Beaverbrook, then a Cabinet minister, and
Cecil King, to name two Fleet Street worthies, advocated
this in private, though they were more prudent than Mosley
and did not say so openly at the time.)
Churchill was obsessed with
Mosley, as is plain from his remarks to King George VI, to
his ambassador in Paris, to the American ambassador in
London, and to others in May and June 1940.
However, MI5 reported that
July, "The British Union of Fascists has been harried out of
existence," its leaders imprisoned, the remainder
intimidated or "squelched".
The rest, as the saying goes, is history.