Speeches, Interviews & Other Statements

Complete list of 8,000+ Thatcher statements & texts of many of them

1989 Jun 5 Mo
Margaret Thatcher

Interview for Sunday Mirror

Document type: Speeches, interviews, etc.
Document kind: Interview
Venue: No.10 Downing Street
Source: Thatcher Archive: COI transcript
Journalist: John Knight, Sunday Mirror
Editorial comments: 1110-1210.
Importance ranking: Major
Word count: 5967
Themes: Autobiographical comments, Defence (Falklands War, 1982), Northern Ireland, Terrorism, Foreign policy (USA), Foreign policy (Middle East), Foreign policy (Asia), Civil liberties, Defence (general), Religion & morality, Society, Autobiography (marriage & children), Parliament, Women, Health policy, Arts & entertainment, Leadership, Conservative Party (organization), Conservatism, Environment, Foreign policy (general discussions)

Interviewer

Has anything specifically changed you or affected you since you have been in high office. Thinking very basically of the awesome nature of the job, I wondered whether anything had affected you during this period which you would have specifically detected yourself, a change?

Prime Minister

I think the thing which I had never expected to do, and never thought it would come up in any way, was to have to put soldiers into battle. To us soldiers are here to defend, to deter, and of course we knew all about the Northern Ireland problems, that is part of aid to the civil power. But the Falklands just came up and I had never expected to have to do that or expected the kind of agonies that you get as you lose some soldiers, obviously, or some sailors. [end p1]

That I think was the thing which struck most of all and left the biggest, an indelible mark. We now know that it was successful and we know that it only lasted three months. But now that we look at things with hindsight, I was looking at things from the unknown all the time.

Interviewer

Did this harden you do you think, did it toughen you in any way?

Prime Minister

No, it does not harden you, it just makes you know how vulnerable you are to each agonising decision.

You see I had not been in power very long when we had a very bad incident in Northern Ireland, the Warrenpoint incident, where so many soldiers were killed. You remember I went over immediately the next day. And there was a bomb that went off and then as the soldiers went to take away their wounded fellow soldiers there was another one, it was booby-trapped, and it was terrible.

Then very quickly we had the murder of Mountbatten and that really brings you right sharply up to terrorism. Later of course we had the Brighton bomb.

I am sure it happens to all Prime Ministers. Other people you think of far more than yourself, first because that is your job but secondly because it is your very nature. [end p2]

But the Falklands was the thing that I had never, never, never expected to do. I knew that we would have to try to cope and go on coping with the terrorism in Northern Ireland.

The raid on Libya, which the United States carried out from our territory, was another difficult decision and I am absolutely certain it was right and I tell you what in the end influenced me, although I set it all out in the House of Commons, one of the things that if people know they can go on carrying out terrorist acts against you all over the world and that you will never in fact lift a finger in your own self-defence, then the terrorist has won.

Interviewer

Yes, exactly.

Prime Minister

And so although it was difficult and one of the most difficult speeches I have ever done in the House of Commons, that was right. They are all of a kind you see where you have to encounter some danger or you have to put people into danger really in defence of freedom.

And I suppose that again the scenes that we have seen recently, it brings you up so sharply the things we take for granted in this country: democracy, freedom, a rule of law. [end p3]

Interviewer

Like the Muslims being able to demonstrate recently.

Prime Minister

Yes, but also we have no idea what it is like to live in a country where you are oppressed, where you are intimidated, where you can have KGB doing terrible things to you, and there is nowhere where you can go and complain and have then brought to justice.

We have no idea what it is like. We have no idea what it is like living under a system of oppression.

Mr. Bernard Ingham

Thank goodness.

Prime Minister

Thank goodness. And then all of a sudden it has been brought home to us, been brought home to us. We really are so fortunate but you only keep it by a staunch defence.

But when it comes to having to put young men into battle. You, oh, well of course you cannot, liberty will not endure unless there are young men and women like that who are prepared to see that it does endure. And I think that has been the message which has come through again and again and again. [end p4]

Interviewer

Did you cry at that moment at all?

Prime Minister

Sometimes, people will understand, sometimes it is too deep for tears. The tears come when perhaps you are alone and well it is just a kind of the emotions you can express. But some of those feelings really are too deep for tears. You feel so much not only for those who lost their lives. We had the other terrible thing when I went to Northolt to receive back [Corporal Derek Wood and Corporal David Howes] the bodies of those two young men who were murdered, soldiers who were murdered in Northern Ireland. Some people have now been convicted, oh, but the families.

There is so much tragedy that goes on every day. Again you get it at Lockerbie and I think you do not understand fully the depth of it and what it does to people until you are deeply in contact with it and have somehow, you say things like time heals, there are some wounds that time will never heal. They leave a gap in your heart forever.

I come across, I have so many of them and it is then, can I put it this way? It does not matter whether you are well off, not so well off or not, the most valuable thing in life is friends, the most valuable thing. And the most valuable thing is of getting a sense of community, and having more money through your own earnings and your own efforts is important not only that it enables [end p5] you to have a nicer standard of living to give your children a better chance, but it enables you also to do things for so many good causes, or for the arts, that you really wanted to do something for. How you use it is an expression of character.

And I think all those, and I have learned it specially, I think in an age of technology, you go to every office they have computers on the desk, you go everywhere, you go through a supermarket and it goes through not necessarily with the price on but with the price marked in a lot of little stripes and it goes up automatically on a cash till. And the thing which strikes me again and again and again, the more machines do in our lives the greater the need for human judgment and human nature.

So you must not let the machine dominate and I find it again and again and again.

Interviewer

Do you have your own circle of friends who keep you in touch with …

Prime Minister

Yes, you could not do without them, people whom you can talk to easily. [end p6]

Interviewer

Who keeps you in touch with the real world, as it were?

Prime Minister

I do not find any difficulty keeping in touch with the real world.

Interviewer

Mr. Thatcher?

Prime Minister

Denis ThatcherHe does, he is marvellous is he not? He has his wonderful way of saying precisely what he thinks and it is absolutely fantastic.

But then, do not forget, not all Prime Ministers have constituencies. Some are elected on a list. We have constituencies, so we have the letters every day in our constituencies regularly. I still have a surgery, an interview evening.

Interviewer

Do you go up to Finchley for that or do they come here?

Prime Minister

If they want one quickly I would see them in the House of Commons, after Questions. But I go up to Finchley for it. [end p7]

I am not there as much as I used to be but we are up there sometimes once a month, sometimes twice a month, but always for a whole day and then for something else as well. So we will do about six or seven engagements during that day and get around and see people.

But then I do regional tours. We will be doing a regional tour this week. And then do not forget I am bombarded and yowled at twice a week in the House of Commons, yowled at, shouted at!

Interviewer

Has this in any way do you think affected you? Is it a brutalising experience?

Prime Minister

No, it is not a brutalising experience, it makes you appreciate civility and courtesy because I personally think that when people watch the House of Lords on television, I think that that is so popular and I sometimes you know can dash down quickly to watch it on television if I want to know how something critical is going, because they are so courteous to one another, because they deal with the arguments.

And I think that is how people expect the House of Commons to be, but it is not like that, it is not like that. They say the Mother of Parliaments, it is a parley, you talk about things, you should talk about this issue, but I am afraid it is very hot, political and sometimes can be, alas, very abusive. [end p8]

Me, I much prefer, having had both a scientific background and a legal one, to deal with the issues quietly. But that is not life and you have to be able to deal with whatever comes at you, you just have to, because you are absolutely on your own and you have to be able to deal with it.

Interviewer

There are people who only hear you regularly under those conditions and they say that you are strident?

Prime Minister

Goodness me, well of course. When you have all sorts of verbosities and phrases and accusations and false accusations thrown at you, of course you defend yourself. As a matter of fact, if you did not raise your voice sometimes, you could not be heard because sometimes they try just to drown out your reply.

Interviewer

Deliberately of course.

Prime Minister

Yes, yes.

Interviewer

Has all this tired you at all? [end p9]

Prime Minister

No, not at all, I think I have got a very good supply of adrenalin. I think I must be one of the best adrenalin factories in the United Kingdom. I really do, and it always keeps one going.

But do you not find in life, in many many experiences, you find it with people helping for example in disasters, you somehow will have the strength to do and to go on doing whatever it is you have to do. And it is only when you have got time just to stop and flop down that the tiredness suddenly overwhelms you.

You do have strength to do whatever you have to do.

Interviewer

But is power in itself do you think an impetus, an adrenalin?

Prime Minister

I think duty is much stronger. It is duty. I have to keep on, we have to perform eight, nine sometimes ten, sometimes twelve engagements a day, and yet you must always have time to do the thinking. You have to, and if you cannot stand up to that then politics really is not for you.

But that means that you have really got to love it. People sometimes say to me: “Why did you come into politics?”. I do not know, except that I am totally and utterly fascinated by it, by its issues, by the problems, by the fact that you are all the time dealing with people. [end p10]

In a laboratory it always seemed to me a little bit impersonal although you have to remember that in a laboratory the work you are doing, the research you are doing, the fact ultimately is all connected with people or with theories which will illuminate the way in which things work.

But it is a sense of duty, a sense of being totally and utterly fascinated with the work you do and with its purpose.

You see a person is fascinated if they go into, you have printing ink in your veins, if you write it is because you have literature in your veins, you want to go on the stage it is because you have theatre in your veins, if you want to go to music it is because you have this gift within you and you really want to do it.

In a way politics for some of us is just like that and when you have read history and history becomes more and more fascinating the longer you are here because you see history not as a series of battles or events, but as a series of human decisions responding to the needs of the time, and sometimes foreseeing what could come about and making preparations to see that your people are all right. But it is a fascination. [end p11]

Interviewer

How about your own health? Do you have a routine?

Prime Minister

Do I have a routine? I am naturally healthy and for ever grateful I am, but then, women are pretty tough, you know, they have to be and they have had to be through the ages. My Beatrice Robertsmother worked extremely hard. It was nothing unusual for a woman both to help out in earning the family living, help out in a family business, help out with many things and doing so many more things for the family and do not forget, modern science has taken so much drudgery out of the life of the housewife and left her more time. But I am naturally healthy. [end p12]

As as matter of fact, I think that as long as you are doing things you are much healthier than if you have too much time to sit back. This is a theory I have had. There are a number of people who after they retire just sort of flop up and roll up. I think the greatest incentive is that you are constantly in touch with people. I am naturally healthy. I naturally dislike some of the things. I do not like very rich things so I do not eat very many fats; I do not like very sweet things so that keeps me reasonably &dubellip;

Interviewer

Do you have any exercise programme at all?

Prime Minister

No, I do not. I had a lovely walk yesterday morning.

Interviewer

Were you at Chequers?

Interviewer

Yes, we went on a long walk an hour before breakfast - the best time of the day - and the previous day, another lovely long walk. There is nothing like just walking freely in the countryside. You get so much oxygen into your lungs - that is [end p13] quite the best medicine, your muscles are working, but if I went out in St. James's Park I would be surrounded very quickly. You just walk and it is absolutely marvellous. It is quite the best exercise and it is quite the best medicine.

Interviewer

But are there any other treatments? There have been a lot of things in the newspapers about the electric bath. I was going to ask you about this.

Prime Minister

Oh well, I should forget about that.

The only other thing that I do is I do take vitamin C every morning.

Interviewer

And that is something you have done for a long time?

Prime Minister

Yes, for a very long time.

At week-ends, I have fruit for breakfast and I might have an apple or a pear for breakfast but otherwise I always have some vitamin C. I might have just now and then, one other vitamin as well - it might be a B or it might be &dubellip; [end p14]

Interviewer

Is Royal Jelly at all on the &dubellip;

Prime Minister

I sometimes have had Royal Jelly.

Interviewer

That is extremely beneficial, isn't it?

Prime Minister

Yes, it is, but the vitamin C is the steady thing and then I will have something else which I want and possibly a piece of fruit and a cup of black coffee.

Interviewer

Does it energise you, do you think or are they general things for your wellbeing?

Prime Minister

I just have a theory that if you keep your own systems going that they will deal with most things. You keep your own circulation going, for which walking is the best thing, and vitamin C because you cannot manufacture it in your body - most other things you can. If you keep yourself reasonably fit. We have far less fat in our house than we used to. I suppose we have been influenced. I think everyone has. [end p15]

Interviewer

I think this is a general sort of thing, isn't it?

Prime Minister

Yes. And we have skimmed milk. I never have eaten very much sugar. You do go for the things that give you vitamins and give you nourishment and a walk, and Denis ThatcherDenis, of course, does golf. He keeps fit.

Interviewer

Does he play that several times a week?

Prime Minister

No, no, no. He has a back, so he could not play several times a week. He plays usually about once a week and he will now and then go off for a golfing week-end.

But if you keep yourself fit and, as I say, not too much fat and not too much sugar, it does help to keep you fit, and a lot of fresh fruit and fresh vegetables.

Interviewer

And of course, you do not smoke or anything like that?

Prime Minister

I do not smoke, no. [end p16]

Interviewer

Have you never?

Prime Minister

No, I have not smoked. I tried it once and I did not like it and my children do not smoke. Denis ThatcherDenis smokes - he is very fit, but he smokes.

Interviewer

Does he smoke cigarettes?

Prime Minister

Cigarettes, yes. He does not smoke cigars at all. And he only smokes a half. I am always trying to urge manufacturers to make cigarettes with a half filter tip.

Interviewer

Of course, the Russians have a cigarette like that. It is about so much tobacco and about so much filter. They are unsmokeable, but that is another question.

But how about your sleep, Prime Minister? I always read that you sleep really probably only four or five hours. How about that? [end p17]

Prime Minister

I do not sleep (a lot), but that is years and years of training. I have always been very busy.

You know, it would be difficult - well it would be with me now because I am trained differently. So many people say: “I need eight hours of sleep!” If you say you need eight hours of sleep, you will need eight hours sleep. But I have always had a lot to do. I have always worked quite a lot at night because often it is quieter if you work late at night, although sometimes now if I find I am getting tired, I go to bed and get up early in the morning, because you are fresher and can do more then.

I do not need, indeed I could not sleep a long time now because I am just trained that way and, again, perhaps sometimes when you get older you need less sleep. What you would like sometimes is a quick ten minutes after lunch. Questions comes after lunch!

Interviewer

Do you find that you sleep as soundly as did?

Prime Minister

It depends very much on what you are doing. I do like one night a week when I know that I can go on sleeping without having to get up early. It just depends. If you have got something that [end p18] really worries you, you do not get an easy night's sleep, you just do not, it goes round and round. Mostly, I do some different sort of reading before I go to sleep. If you have got something really worrying you, it will go round and you will not have an easy night's sleep.

Interviewer

And you will wake up in the middle of the night perhaps?

Prime Minister

You will probably dream about what is worrying you or wake up suddenly, thinking that something has happened.

Interviewer

These tremendous responsibilities, to the ordinary person that is always mystifying in a way.

Prime Minister

One is no different from the way in which ordinary people react - if you are worried, you do not sleep well.

Interviewer

You have so many more responsibilities - this is the thing. [end p19]

Prime Minister

But again, the best thing to get a good night's sleep is a really good walk so that you get physically tired, or go and see some other people. The one gives you the oxygen, the other gives you the adrenalin. Never never just stay alone, because then your worries get bigger and bigger and bigger. If you bottle them up, they get bigger and bigger and bigger.

In my job, there are some things that I have to bear alone because I cannot talk about them to anyone. You can put that aside and go and talk about something else to a group of people.

I think it is quite difficult at first, but you have to get used to the fact that however large the worry to you, life is going to go on and you must somehow see it in perspective. A lot of it you can put in perspective - the ones I spoke about at the beginning, where you have to put people into battle or where people are in danger are the ones which are the most worrying of all, but otherwise, if they are what I call a kind of political worry, life goes on. Sometimes you go out in spring into the countryside and the countryside goes on and you walk up a hill. I love going hill walking for a holiday. The hills and the mountains put things into perspective.

Interviewer

Does romance play a big part in your life? Do you read poetry and things like that? [end p20]

Prime Minister

Now and then. I picked up the other day Wavell's “Other Men's Flowers”. It is all the poetry which appeals to him, so much of which also appealed to me. And you will do a certain amount of reading, listening to music, going to a concert, because music can take you out - it is an emotional thing and it can take you out.

But the days are pretty busy. I do keep reading hard, because it always enlarges your understanding, enlarges your vocabulary, makes you so appreciate people who have such a marvellous literary talent, the capacity they have to put things in such a wonderful way and the economy as well as the beauty of poetry - absolutely marvellous!

I just picked up Wavell's “Other Men's Flowers” and they speak of so many things. You think of Keats, you think of Wordsworth, the poetry is fantastic. It is marvellous.

Interviewer

Do some men particularly compliment you, do you think, because you are a woman?

Prime Minister

I have no idea.

Interviewer

Or do the leaders, Mr. Gorbachev or Mr. Reagan, do they ever particularly go out of their way to treat you more as a woman than a leader? [end p21]

Prime Minister

I do not think so. I think they may expect very practical proposals because that is the way in which one tackles things. They will expect very down-to-earth arguments.

You know, politics is bedevilled by jargon and I am not good at jargon. This is why they always say I am frank, because you take it and put it into ordinary language. You say: “Now what do you mean by that?” and so, when it comes to drafting communiques you say: “Well what does it mean?” and there are some times, when you get Resolutions in the United Nations, when the only way they can get then through is because the words mean different things to different people. Now you cannot conduct ordinary daily business like that, so they do expect very practical things from me and they know - I have said for so many years when I am dealing with people: “Now look! Please say just exactly what you feel. We will both say it courteously; we may disagree; but you must understand I have no toes to tread on. I would rather you say what you felt. Then, if you are feeling something that I do not know about, I can get to deal with it! Do not think that if you say something you think I ought to know but you are afraid to say …” I will not bear any resentment against anyone ever for saying what they think, ever, because that is the way in which you get to an understanding and can find a way through. All right, sometimes it hurts, but you have got to sort of get the poison out so that that you can go on. [end p22]

Interviewer

Do you think that this is a feminine trait particularly? I think it probably is, isn't it?

Prime Minister

I think it is partly a feminine trait and I think it is partly the way you are brought up. But I think that women are very much more practical and I think that the language they use is much more straightforward.

Interviewer

Is there such a thing as a womanly wile, do you think?

Prime Minister

I think there might be sometimes but often it is used to get over an awkward situation.

Interviewer

In your own case perhaps do you think that happens.

Prime Minister

I do not think a great deal, but sometimes you just pass something off easily.

Interviewer

With a smile and so forth? [end p23]

Prime Minister

Just pass something off easily and move to another subject. I would not call it a womanly wile. It is just really courtesy and feeling a little bit of tension and being able to diffuse it.

Sometimes you find a Speaker in the House of Commons can do it too and has to do it. It is the same thing - diffuse the tension.

BREAK WHILE MOVING TO ANOTHER ROOM

Prime Minister

… I think, like everything else, experience makes you more economical with time, enables you to distinguish what you have to worry about because you can do something about it and what you must not worry about too much because you cannot do anything about it. [end p24]

Interviewer

And you come to terms with it.

Prime Minister

And you come to terms with it and I think you use time better. And also I think that two-thirds or three-quarters of the things you do, you have done them before and so you know you can do them.

Interviewer

So it is not such a difficult journey is it?

Prime Minister

No. It is the same in doing almost any job, most of the things you come across you know you have done before and it is the comparatively small things that are totally new to you. [end p25]

So I think you do get, without realising it, you get the confidence which comes from experience. A young housewife, a young married woman, is also just a little bit worried whether she is going to be able to cope with everything, whether she has got organisation and method.

If you go to any new job, it does not matter what age you start it, when you have been doing it yes you know you can cope and you know that you can cope with others at your same Head of Government level because you have been doing it.

So I think perhaps the proportion of worry, as I say you then put your worries to things which either experience has told you will be difficult, or that you have got to look all round the problem because you have not seen it before, so you have got to do a lot of reconnaissance about it. And I think that makes a difference.

Have I changed, Bernard InghamBernard, have you changed?

Mr. Bernard Ingham

I think we have all changed.

Interviewer

Some people change for the better, some people change for the worse, do they not? [end p26]

Prime Minister

Also you know your team, you know your team, and you automatically know how other people react and how to cope.

Interviewer

Which inevitably brings one round to the thought, do you ever think of retirement at all Prime Minister?

Prime Minister

One day it will come.

Interviewer

What is your philosophy? Is retirement a dirty word to you?

Prime Minister

No, because I would just change, and I would always be working at something, always be working at something because when you have got this kind of experience you can always place it at the disposal of someone else who needs that kind of experience or help.

Interviewer

This is obviously a question you are asked very often. Does this occur in your thinking at all? [end p27]

Prime Minister

Yes, but it is not in the foreground, it may come one day but it is not in the foreground.

Interviewer

It is not top of the priorities in any way?

Prime Minister

It is not top of the priorities in any way.

Interviewer

Everyone seems to think, and I do as well of course, that you look so very very much younger and in such excellent health.

Prime Minister

Do you know when I look back at some pictures I think that, but I am not quite sure why.

Mr. Bernard Ingham

Government is good for you.

Interviewer

It must be, mustn't it? [end p28]

Prime Minister

I tell you, if you put on any weight you immediately …

Interviewer

But you have not lost any weight have you?

Prime Minister

No, if I put on a few pounds I take it off fairly quickly.

Interviewer

But you have always been like that have you not?

Prime Minister

Yes, but sometimes you do, sometimes you do put on a little, and then you just have to take it off. But I sometimes think, I do not know, is it a different hairstyle, I do not know. You know the formula of a plain, classic tailored suit is really a very very good …

Interviewer

But this is not particularly new for you is it?

Prime Minister

No, it is not but I think I wear more suits now than I used to and I think it is a formula that will last from seventeen to seventy. [end p29]

Speaker

A lot more women now wear suits because of you.

Prime Minister

Do they, yes?

Interviewer

Yes it is becoming common with fashion because of you I think.

Prime Minister

Yes, it is very comfortable to wear too and I wear far fewer dresses. In fact a suit is more flattering as you get older.

Interviewer

But you have not changed your hairstyle?

Prime Minister

No, it just changes sometimes, this is consciously.

Mr. Bernard Ingham

It did in Thailand.

Prime Minister

In Thailand, yes, a lady came and did it beautifully. [end p30]

Interviewer

In an oriental way do you mean?

Prime Minister

No no no, she just did it slightly differently. I did not change it, it is just really as it goes, it goes that way, you cannot change that.

No, I think everything you do, you get more economical in time, because you know where things are you know and you put them all away. Really I think it is management of time and knowing the things that you must spend time on.

Sometimes they will come and say: “Oh you only need twenty minutes to see that person, or to see that group of people”, and I say: “I cannot possibly do that, it is going to take twenty minutes to get out what is at the root of the problem, that will take you an hour.” Something else that will take quarter of an hour, we both know what the problem is, it will only take about a quarter of an hour, but you know.

Interviewer

Do you get as angry as you used to?

Prime Minister

Angry? [end p31]

Interviewer

Maybe you never got particularly angry?

Prime Minister

I never got angry. I am amazed at seeing “Maggie furious” you know. Well I have just looked at it and said: “My goodness me, that problem again”. I think if I was angry or furious as often as they said I think I would have had a stroke by now.

But in fact I have a low blood pressure, quite a number of politicians have a low blood pressure, so you do not come to a flash point quickly at all.

Interviewer

There are not any pet hates or loves?

Prime Minister

No, I do not have any pet hates, life is too short for pet hates and it is too short for resentments.

Interviewer

Mr. Heath does not flash you up at all?

Prime Minister

No, isn't it a pity, isn't it a pity? I think it is a bit sad, a bit sad. [end p32]

Interviewer

Have you achieved all you want to achieve?

Prime Minister

No, not quite, not quite. We are enlarging opportunity at the moment and this is a great thing for young people. But so many of them want to start up on their own now so the enterprise is coming out. But I was also enormously pleased when I was in Scotland the other day they had a poll and discovered that 80 percent of young people now wanted to own their own homes. You would not have had that a few years ago. So it is enlarging opportunity to those who have not had it and it is spreading ownership so that everyone has something of their own, their house, some savings. It gives you security, it gives you stability and then just think how different it will be in say twenty years time, everyone has something to leave to their children.

Interviewer

And those are things which are still to do slightly?

Prime Minister

No, we are getting on with the home ownership, we are getting on with the savings ownership, we are getting on with the share ownership. [end p33]

We are just a bit concerned that we have not yet got education getting the best out of every child because every child has something …

Interviewer

And peace presumably?

Prime Minister

And also freedom incurs responsibility. It is getting people to rise to their responsibilities as well as accepting their rights. You know, the environment is just one such thing, and the world around us. The best thing you can do with the world around us is to keep it beautifully clean, see that trees are planted, shrubs are planted, no graffiti, and just being a part of the community. And it is happening more.

Interviewer

Has having a grandson made you feel even more conscious about the world that he is going to grow up in?

Prime Minister

Yes, even more, we just have to hand it on with all the best in it and a little bit more that we have added to it. You know, you cannot just accept things without making your own contribution to it. [end p34]

The amount of talent in this country that is coming out is terrific, it is marvellous. It is that countries are working together much more than ever before and I think that is immensely encouraging.

Certainly we have seen great setbacks, we have seen scenes recently that we hope never to see again, but we still have to renew our efforts to work more closely together. The world is so much smaller a place now because, you know, young people can travel quite a long way with their qualifications, they can and do travel the world over. And I think there is a coming together.

Interviewer

But it is a better place than ten years ago do you think?

Prime Minister

It is a better place than it was ten years ago and it is going to be a better place by the end of the century and the end of the millennium because we are working at it and we are working together.

Interviewer

But you are in an optimistic mood are you?

Prime Minister

Yes, I am in an optimistic mood. Yes, there are dangers, we are seeing dangers, we are seeing that the communist world is going to take a very long time before it comes to have and value the [end p35] things that we have. But it has started, it has started, the ball is rolling.

During a period of uncertainty you are always vulnerable, that is why you have to keep your defences sure so that whatever happens you can defend your liberty and always keep it there so that it can enlarge again into the outside world. But it is better, and the chances to make it better are better.