Nazis planned to kill Churchill with exploding chocolate? Apparently so. Although I’d like to think that some talented individual out there could make up a fictional scenario as ridiculous as this, I highly doubt it. According to secret papers exchanged between MI5 officials during World War II, Hitler and his regime intended to end Sir Winston Chuchill’s life by appealing directly to his sweet tooth. That’s one way to do it.
Here’s the setup: German bomb makers would cover explosive devices with a thin layer of chocolate in an attempt to conceal their nefarious plans, which would then be packaged in black and gold paper. Using their cabal of secret agents, the Nazis intended to place these delicious candies among other “luxury items” in the dining room utilized by the War Cabinet during this area. If the scheme had gone off without a hitch, the ensuing explosions would have killed Winston Chuchill and anyone else who happened to be dining with him that evening. Scary stuff.
However, before the plan could be properly executed, British spies were tipped off to the plot, and were able to warn folks about the potentially lethal and seemingly harmless bars of Peter’s Chocolate. Honestly, this sounds like something John Steed and Emma Peel would have tackled during their tenure as “The Avengers”. It sounds pretty far-fetched.
In order to help spread the word about this potential threat, Lord Victor Rothschild sent a letter to an illustrator, instructing him to draw poster-size images of the chocolate in-question. The letter, which was addressed to Laurence Fish, was penned on May 4, 1943.
Here’s what Lord Rothschild had to say on the matter:
Dear Fish, I wonder if you could do a drawing for me of an explosive slab of chocolate. We have received information that the enemy are using pound slabs of chocolate which are made of steel with a very thin covering of real chocolate. Inside there is high explosive and some form of delay mechanism. When you break off a piece of chocolate at one end in the normal way, instead of it falling away, a piece of canvas is revealed stuck into the middle of the piece which has been broken off and a ticking into the middle of the remainder of the slab. When the piece of chocolate is pulled sharply, the canvas is also pulled and this initiates the mechanism. I enclose a very poor sketch done by somebody who has seen one of these. It is wrapped in the usual sort of black paper with gold lettering, the variety being PETERS. Would it be possible for you to do a drawing of this, one possibly with the paper half taken off revealing one end and another with the piece broken off showing the canvas. The text should indicate that this piece together with the attached canvas is pulled out sharply and that after a delay of seven seconds the bomb goes off.
The letter was unearthed by Fish’s wife while sifting through his possessions after his passing in 2009. For history buffs, that’s an amazing find.[h/t: The Daily Mail]