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Memorial Service: Sir Alistair Horne, 1925-2017

Regulars | December 2017

They sang The Battle Hymn of the Republic in Chelsea Old Church to celebrate the life of Sir Alistair Horne, soldier, secret agent, political biographer, historian and foreign correspondent. He had a lifelong love of America, starting with the war years when he was evacuated as a child, and culminating with a visit to the White House when George W Bush invited him to the Oval Office. ‘He was very discreet about his meetings with powerful and influential people,’ said his Oxford colleague, Professor Margaret MacMillan, former Warden of St Antony’s College, where he was an honorary fellow, in her eulogy. ‘He never breathed a word about what was discussed.’ Sir Alistair told the President how Harold Macmillan had said the top job is a lonely position. ‘How can you be lonely when all these guys are hanging around?’ replied Dubya, gesturing to his aides. ‘He loved good wine, good...

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