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Historical events of the

early thirties to the late

eighties of the 20th century


(60 years of lost opportunities)


By John McMillen


About the author



The author, John McMillen, was born of a working class family in Belfast towards the end of 1922. 


His education – six grades in a public elementary school between 1928 and the early 30’s.


In 1938, he left Belfast and went to live with his eldest sister whom shortly after she was married, had settled in Birmingham.  He has lived in Birmingham for the past 70 years.


His accomplishments to-date include: a family, with his wife Rose, of sixteen including daughter and son-in-law, son and daughter-in-law, a grandson and granddaughter-in-law, 2 granddaughters and grandson-in-laws, and 4 great-grandchildren.


He has been Branch Secretary of a former sauce factory in Aston, Birmingham, 5/631 ACTSS and for a brief period of time treasurer of the Birmingham Branch of the Connolly Association.


Assistant Secretary of the Labour Party in Bartley Green, Birmingham.


He has spent 3 years (1944 to 1947) in the British Army Medical Corps in India (Calcutta) and Port Said (Egypt) as ship’s medical staff, operating between Haifa, Palestine and Famagusta in Cyprus – rank, Lance Corporal – transporting Jewish refugees prior to their entry into Palestine (now Israel) during the exodus from Europe.  His ship was damaged by a limpet mine in Famagusta Bay.


He was a drummer and founder member of the Birmingham Irish Pipe Band, which had members from the four provinces of Ireland.  The band was popular at the Irish dance halls and a variety of parades around the city.


It is not often that a “man in the street” has the opportunity to compete on the one hand with notional chauvinistic cannon patriots and professional historians on the other.  His book is an attempt to add a third dimension to the perception of world affairs as seen through the eyes of a typical man in the street.







Epilogue (written on 2nd November 1939):


The chief reason for writing this book has been to further a better understanding of the USSR.  And when I am asked why I undertook this thankless task, my answer is threefold.  Because it was necessary to tell the truth.  Because it was necessary to understand the experiment which was being attempted on a continental scale by Russia.  And in order, in the interests of peace, to influence men’s minds in the direction of warmer relationships between Great Britain and the Soviet Union.  Without agreement with Russia, war seemed inevitable.


Alas, the events have moved too quickly, and war has overtaken us.  I have found it hard to believe our governing class were so blind and stupid as to prefer war to shaking hands withthe Soviets.  Yet that, in simple English, records that tragedy of this year.  The object of this epilogue is to try to correct and cure the distortions, misrepresentations, and lack of understanding of the Soviet Union in order that, even at this late hour, we may still win the sympathies of that great country and prevent her from moving into a conflict against us.


World War 2:

The Causes and Consequences




John Mc Millen


Price:  €15.00