Wanted for Incitement to Murder: Winston S. Churchill

February 1, 2012.

Wanted for Incitement to Murder: Nazi propaganda leaflet of Churchill with a Thompson sub-machine gun.

One of the most famous propaganda images of the Second World War, this photo of Winston Churchill with a Thompson sub-machine gun, or Tommy gun, was taken while the Prime Minister was inspecting a coastal defence unit at Hartlepool in July 1940. But Churchill’s resemblance to a stereotypical American mobster wasn’t lost on the Nazis, who began dropping these propaganda leaflets over Britain within weeks of the photo being taken. These leaflets are very delicate, making original copies extremely uncommon.

Verso of the Churchill propaganda leaflet.

 

Laura joined Peter Harrington in 2009 after completing a master's degree in book history at the University of London. Her special interests are science and medicine, modern literature, and the book culture of the medieval and early modern eras.