Sunday, February 23, 2014

History and politics

The Rank of the Channel Islands from the poorest is 177 and from the richest is 9.The eight permanently inhabited islands of the Channel Islands are
In general the larger islands have the -ey suffix, and the smaller ones have the -hou suffix.
The islands were annexed to the Duchy of Normandy in 933. In 1066, William II of Normandy, invaded and conquered England, becoming William I of England, also known as William the Conqueror. In the period 1204–1214, King John lost the Angevin lands in northern France, including mainland Normandy, to King Philip II of France; in 1259 his successor, Henry III, officially surrendered his claim and title to the Duchy of Normandy, while retaining the Channel Islands. Since then, the Channel Islands have been governed as possessions of the Crown separate from the Kingdom of England and its successor kingdoms of Great Britain and the United Kingdom.
The islands were invaded by the French in 1338, who held some territory until 1345. Owain Lawgoch, a mercenary leader of a Free Company in the service of the French Crown, attacked Jersey and Guernsey in 1372, and in 1373 Bertrand du Guesclin besieged Mont Orgueil.[5] Jersey was occupied by the French in theWars of the Roses from 1461 to 1468. In 1483 a Papal bull decreed that the islands would be neutral during time of war. This privilege of neutrality enabled islanders to trade with both France and England and was respected until 1689 when it was abolished by Order in Council following the Glorious Revolution in Great Britain.

20th century[edit]

The Channel Islands remain covered in German fortifications built in the Second World War.

World War II[edit]

During the German occupation ofJersey, a stonemason repairing the paving of the Royal Square incorporated a V for victory under the noses of the occupiers. This was later amended to refer to the Red Cross ship Vega. The addition of the date 1945 and a more recent frame has transformed it into a monument.
The islands were the only part of the British Commonwealth to beoccupied by the German Army during World War II.
The British Government demilitarised the islands in June 1940 and the Lieutenant-Governors were withdrawn on 21 June, leaving the insular administrations to continue government as best they could under impending military occupation.[7]
Before German troops landed, between 30 June and 4 July 1940, evacuation took place (many young men had already left to join the Allied armed forces): 6,600 out of 50,000 left Jersey whilst 17,000 out of 42,000 left Guernsey.[8] Thousands of children were evacuated with their schools to England and Scotland.
Crowds cheer as the Channel Islands are liberated atSaint Peter Port in 1945
The population of Sark largely remained where they were;[7] but inAlderney, the entire population, save for six persons, left. In Alderney, the occupying Germans built four concentration camps in which over 700 people out of a total prisoner population of about 6,000 died. Due to the destruction of documents, it is impossible to state how many forced workers died in the other islands.[7]These were the only Nazi concentration camps on British soil.[9][10]
The Royal Navy blockaded the islands from time to time, particularly following the Invasion of Normandy in June 1944. There was considerable hunger and privation during the five years of German occupation, particularly in the final months when the population was close to starvation. Intense negotiations resulted in some humanitarian aid being sent via the Red Cross, leading to the arrival of the Red Cross supply ship Vega in December 1944.
The German occupation of 1940–45 was harsh: over 2,000 Islanders were deported by the Germans,[7] and Jews were sent toconcentration camps; British Bobbies assisted the Nazi occupiers in rounding up the Jewish population. Partisan resistance and retribution, accusations of collaboration, and slave labour also occurred. Many Spaniards, initially refugees from the Spanish Civil War, were brought to the islands to build fortifications.[11][12] Later, Russians and Eastern Europeanscontinued the work.[12] Many land mines were laid, with 65,718 land mines laid in Jersey alone.[13]
There was no resistance movement in the Channel Islands on the scale of that in mainland France. This has been ascribed to a range of factors including the physical separation of the Islands, the density of troops (up to one German for every two Islanders), the small size of the Islands precluding any hiding places for resistance groups, and the absence of the Gestapofrom the occupying forces. Moreover, much of the population of military age had joined the British Army already.
The end of the occupation came after VE-Day ( Victory in Europe Day, generally known as V-E Day or VE Day, was the public holiday celebrated on 8 May 1945 (7 May in Commonwealth realms) to mark the formal acceptance by the Allies of World War II of Nazi Germany's unconditional surrender of its armed forces.[1] It thus marked the end of World War II in Europe.) on 8 May 1945, Jersey and Guernsey being liberated on 9 May. The German garrison in Alderney did not surrender until 16 May, and it was one of the last of the Nazi Germanremnants to surrender.[14] The first evacuees returned on the first sailing from Great Britain on 23 June, but the people of Alderney were unable to start returning until December 1945. Many of the evacuees who returned home had difficulty reconnecting with their families after five years of separation.


The Channel Islands fall into two separate self-governing bailiwicks, the Bailiwick of Guernsey and the Bailiwick of Jersey. Both are British Crown Dependencies, and neither is part of the United Kingdom. They have been part of the Duchy of Normandy since the 10th century and Queen Elizabeth II is often referred to by her traditional and conventional title of Duke of Normandy. However, pursuant to the Treaty of Paris (1259), she governs in her right as The Queen (the "Crown in right of Jersey",[18] and the "Crown in right of the république of the Bailiwick of Guernsey").