V for Victory: Celebrating a Gesture of Solidarity and Defiance

 

       

Today, the hand gesture above—index and middle finger extended, palm outward—is as innocuous and ubiquitous a token of greeting or farewell as one is likely to see, anywhere. In fact, one would be hard-pressed to find a group portrait of youngsters, grown-ups, teens—in any culture—where at least one person in the photo is not flashing what most of us know as a "peace sign."

The redoubtable fellow above, however, is hardly a hippie, and in his hands the symbol is far more freighted than a laid-back, "Peace, man." He is, of course, Winston Churchill, the British Prime Minister who guided England through the darkest days of World War II—especially when Great Britain effectively stood alone against the forces of the Reich, which had overrun the rest of Europe. (Churchill was not knighted until 1953, and so was not "Sir Winston Churchill" until after the war—indeed until after LIFE's Alfred Eisenstaedt made this photo in 1951.)

To read the rest of Ben Cosgrove story, follow this link.  http://time.com/3880345/v-for-victory-a-gesture-of-solidarity-and-defiance/?utm_source=time.com&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=life&utm_content=2018031218pm&xid=newsletter-life-weekly&eminfo=%7b%22EMAIL%22%3a%22tVfhVGIM7QPPwR49xDAjtFRYfqTVf7fO%22%2c%22BRAND%22%3a%22TD%22%2c%22CONTENT%22%3a%22Newsletter%22%2c%22UID%22%3a%22TD_LIF_7F3C6332-333B-4861-BFEB-5B055851BF6C%22%2c%22SUBID%22%3a%2284261034%22%2c%22JOBID%22%3a%22675017%22%2c%22NEWSLETTER%22%3a%22LIFE%22%2c%22ZIP%22%3a%22%22%2c%22COUNTRY%22%3a%22%22%7d
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