As I say at the top, I don’t want to go into Suez here. Instead, it’s about what Suez tells us about Britain’s pace in the world and told Britain and the world in 1956. In short, post-Suez Britain was one which both Britain and everyone else knew that Britain was no longer a great power.
It’s worth knowing what (and when) the following were…
- Marshall Plan
- Council of Europe
- European Coal and Steel Community (ECSC)
- Pleven Plan: European Defence Community (EDC)
- Western European Union (WEU)
- Baghdad Pact
- Eisenhower Pact
- Messina: European Economic Community (EEC)
- EFTA (European Free Trade Association)
- Macmillan’s idea of Britain as Greece to America’s Rome
- Winds of Change
- Nassau Agreement (it was 1962!)
- ‘There is no alternative’ (Britain’s failed application to join the EEC in 1962)
- Dean Acheson: ‘lost an empire and failed to find a role’
This three-part BBC documentary on Suez is definitely worth a watch:
There is a good History Today article on Eden and Suez here.
And here, arguing that we overdo the importance of Suez, and that British policy was not immediately reorientated, and that the primary task post-Suez was the the restoration of Britain’s relation ship with the United States: read that here.
For books (chapters 9 and 10 of the Hennessy are excellent):