On August 1941, two of history’s greatest defenders of democracy, Winston Churchill and Theodore Roosevelt, at the crucial time in history when democracy was in peril, braved the enemy submarine threat on the Atlantic to meet near Placentia, to, among other things, plot to rid Newfoundland of democracy when the time arrived for its return. Sounds inconceivable? Possibly a little crazy? Don’t brush it off lightly. Because that is exactly what modern day Confederation conspiracy promoters claim.
They declare this meeting was held “... after (the Americans) had built five of their largest military bases in the world in Newfoundland, and having spent hundreds of millions of dollars here, the two leaders decided that democracy would not be allowed to return to Newfoundland in order to protect their interests.”
But wait a minute; democracy’s duo met here when? August 1941. This cannot be right. The American bases had not yet been built and less than $50 million, rather than hundreds of millions of dollars, had been spent by the Americans up to that date. When all the Newfoundland bases were completed, they were a far cry from the five largest in the world. In total acres for U.S. bases: Jamaica boasted 31,409; Trinidad 25,752, and Newfoundland, 4,547.
Apart for the documented evidence contradicting this in Churchill’s memoirs, there is the Anglo-American Bases Act of July 11, 1941, giving the Americans 99-year leases on bases in Newfoundland.
What nobody told the Newfoundlanders was that Churchill, with Roosevelt’s approval, included the provision that when democracy was restored in Newfoundland “...wherever in the Act the words ‘the Government of the United Kingdom’ occur in relation to the Newfoundland territory leased, the Agreement shall be interpreted to mean the Government of Newfoundland and the Agreement shall then be construed accordingly.”
This is certainly not the protection for Newfoundland’s rights that two leaders would show if planning to deprive Newfoundland of its democracy. The Confederation conspiracy theory is built upon a host of similar combinations of fact, fiction fancy and exaggerations. In this widely publicized story, fictional claims are added to the fact that the two leaders met in Newfoundland. The result of combining the one fact surrounded with exaggerated fiction is an unsupported and fabricated version of history. Historic records annihilate the basis for the Roosevelt-Churchill involvement in the Confederation conspiracy theory. The same is true for the entire theory.