Thursday, 30 May, 2024
22November 1939

British viscount denies Royal Navy blockade will affect neutral nations

On this day, Viscount Cecil of Chelwood spoke in the British House of Lords to explain no neutral countries will be inconvenienced by the British blockade of German trade.

The viscount, speaking in the afternoon during a debate on progress of the war, stated how pleased he was the British Government had acted quickly to start blocking naval trade to Germany.

I rejoice very much at that decision of the Government. Your Lordships will no doubt remember that in the last war it was not possible for the Government to reach that decision until, I think, about six or seven months after the war began.

Viscount Cecil, speaking in the House of Lords, 22 November 1939

The viscount went on to explain how he felt the blockade would not be a problem for neutral trade.

I see that criticisms are coming from neutral countries. It is, of course, natural for them to dislike anything which interferes with their trade, but I think they are making undue protests. I think they will find that the position will not be so bad as they fear. There are bound to be difficulties, but there were difficulties in the late war and they were all settled without any great injury to neutrals in the end.

Viscount Cecil, speaking in the House of Lords, 22 November 1939
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