Double Victory: Minorities and Women During World War II
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Neville Chamberlain, "Peace for Our Time," 30 September 1938

Only too soon, Chamberlain's public declaration on returning from Munich that the agreement represented "peace for our time" was discredited, making it synonymous in the future with a myopic determination to ignore at any price the threats that authoritarian dictatorships posed to democratic nations during the 1930s.[Neville Chamberlain read this statement to a cheering crowd assembled outside 10 Downing Street, the British prime minister's official residence, on the evening of his return from Germany, where Britain, France, and Germany had signed the Munich Agreement.]

We, the German Führer and Chancellor, and the British Prime Minister, have had a further meeting today and are agreed in recognizing that the question of Anglo-German relations is of the first importance for the two countries and for Europe.

We regard the agreement signed last night and the Anglo-German Naval Agreement as symbolic of the desire of our two peoples never to go to war with one another again.

We are resolved that the method of consultation shall be the method adopted to deal with any other questions that may concern our two countries, and we are determined to continue our efforts to remove possible sources of difference, and thus to contribute to assure the peace of Europe.

[He then added:]

My good friends this is the second time in our history that there has come back from Germany to Downing Street peace with honor. I believe it is peace for our time. And now I recommend you to go home and sleep quietly in your beds.


Further Reading
History of the United Kingdom Web site, Primary Documents. Available at http://www.lib.byu.edu/~rdh/eurodocs/uk/peace.html.
 

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