Eden 1955-57

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Eden - Political

  • 1955 election - 344 seats
  • Educated at Eton and then Oxford. Acknowledged by many as WC‘s successor, Eden took over as Prime Minister in April 1955 at the age of 57. 
  • No real experience in domestic affairs
  • Did not inject any new blood into the cabinet
  • Popular when taking over from WC, less than one year into premiership, opinion poll rating feel to 70%
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Eden - Economic

  • 1950 world trade 25%, in 1960 15%
  • The 1955 budget caused problems of overheating in an already expanding economy
  • In 1956 government introduced premium bonds that had the effect of reducing the level of money in the circular flow of income
  • Butler (COE) introduced hire purchase tax and reduced housing subsidies
  • Reduced income tax, only to increase tax on profits and tobacco tax
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Eden - Social

  • Continuation of the Tripartie system introduced in 1944 via the Butler Act despite the widening social divisions. Secondary modern schools = shortages of 60,000. not until 1965 under Labour when this was addressed (Circular 10/65)
  • Lowest unemployment figures post WW2, 1955 c.215,000 (barely 1%)
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Eden - International

The Suez Crisis

  • Leading up to Suez - Nasser became the leader of Egypt in 1952. America and Britain to provide funding to Egypt via the world bank to build the Aswan Damn, crucial to Egypt becoming industrialised. Israel and Egypt begin a fierce war, and France provides arms to Israel, when Britan and America refuse to help Egypt, Nasser turns to USSR. Britain and America withdraw money from Egypt via the world Bank. In July 1956 Nasser Nationalises Canal to provide the $400m funding required to build the Aswan Damn. 
  • The Events - Br joined with France in a secretive mission to take down Nasser (the French resented Egypt for having supported Arab nationalists in French Algeria). France and Britain then coined a plan with Israel. When Israel attacked Egypt, Britian and France interved under the pretence of forcing Israel and Egypt to come to a seize fire. 
  • President Eisenhower demanded an end to the conflict in return for economic support towards to GB pound (there was a run on the pound) undermined Britains apparent economic strength.

The Canal was important because... 3/4 europe's oil through middle east, 1/2 of this through canal. 1/4 all british trade via cannal.

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Eden - International (2)

The consequences of the Suez Crisis

  • Relationships with the USA temporarily disrupted, over 100mps endorsed a parliamentary movement accusing the Americans of "gravely endangering the Atlantic Alliance".But in 1957, Macmillan met Eisenhower at Bermuda abd laid the foundations 'for restored cooperation over Middle Easter affairs"
  • £300 million (over)
  • Britain found herself isolated, only 2/9 major Commonwealth member's supported British action in Suez. (oz and NZ)
  • Germany said, "Europe will be your revenge" to France, eg EEC veto in 1963 and 1967. 
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