In Memory of Queen Elizabeth

Queen Elizabeth had constructive relationships with all US presidents since she became queen in 1952, beginning with President Truman.  A simple reason for this is that she stayed out of politics, but that is insufficient.  She was well aware of the Special Relationship between Britain and the United States through the 20th century.  She lived through the dark days of WWII as a teen-age ambulance driver during the blitz of London.  It was a time of deadly danger when, as Churchill said, Britain stood alone.  She saw the positive effects of the crucial lend-lease arranged by Roosevelt, and the buildup of American troops in Britain preparing for D-Day in 1944.  

She knew who Britain’s friends are.  The United States and Britain are allies that stand together.  There may be differences that come and go from time to time, but there has never been a serious threat to the relationship.  The queen not only recognized that, but actively, through many events, did her part to enhance it.  For that she had the respect, not just of the twelve presidents that knew her, but of the vast majority of Americans.

In the aftermath of Brexit when Britain (again) was alone, there was a plan to form a trade relationship encompassing the United States, Britain, and the British Commonwealth of nations. The idea of such a trade relationship has not been pursued to the degree it was previously. If it were pursued it would bolster the current difficult economic circumstances in Britain and be positive for the United States.

Dale A. Jenkins

Author of the forthcoming book: Diplomats and Admirals

Former International Banker

Staff Director at the Council on Foreign Relations

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