We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
The Battle of Britain, Churchill, Steve McQueen, V for victory and Henry V and the Battle of Agincourt
On 20 Aug. 1940, when the Battle of Britain was nearly over but decisively in Britains favor Winston Churchill uttered that famous line, "Never in the field of human conflict was so much owed by so many to so few." His famous "V" symbol appeared and for victory it stood, or did it?
Churchill was a great student of history and author of many books on history, not the least of which is "A History of the English Speaking People" He aslo knew of Henry V and the Battle of Agincourt , one of the most famous battles in history.
Before that battle Henry V, immortalized by Shakespeares', St Crispins Day Speech in Henry V, remined his men of this.
He warned the archers that the French had sworn to cut three fingers off the right hand of every English bowman captured. "Sirs and fellows," he promised his army, "as I am true king and knight, for me this day shall never England ransom pay." When he had finished they shouted back, "Sir, we pray God give you a good life and the victory over your enemies!"
Ah, there's the rub. The three cut off fingers amounted to permanently disabling an archer, for if you remove the middle three fingers it is not possible to shoot an arrow.
Winston Churchill was signalling to the Germans, not victory, for he knew that England was still in mortal peril, but rather he was signalling that the English still had their archers fingers and would fight on.
Steve McQueen, in his movie "Lemans" signals his chief rival in the same manner, with the "V", backhanded, not because he had won the race , for he had not but that he was still "in the race". McQueen explained his signal in that manner. Churchill likewise used the back handed "V" originally although he did open palm it on occasion.
Compare these two photos for some fun
Steve McQueen: http://stvmcqueen.tripod.com/salute.jpg