In the Profumo affair – sex, spies and scandal that tarnished the Tories

The Profumo affair was one of the biggest scandals in British political history, resulting in prison terms, suicides and the fall of a government.

John Profumo, Secretary of State for War in Harold Macmillan’s Conservative government, had a hot relationship with 19-year-old model Christine Keeler from 1961 onwards.

A stack of black and white press photos documenting the sex and spy scandal that caused the downfall of the rising star of the Conservative government.

Initially, Profumo denied the case in a statement in the House of Commons, but weeks later a police investigation uncovered the truth, causing serious damage to the credibility of the Macmillan government.

The disgraced minister was then pictured looking humiliated as he walked away from parliament and politics.

Secretary of State for War John Profumo lied in his statement to parliament

After the Profumo case intrigued the public interest, reports revealed that Keeler may have been involved simultaneously with Captain Yevgeny Ivanov, a Soviet naval attaché, posing a possible national security risk.

An investigation by a senior judge, Lord Denning, initially concluded that there had been no security breaches resulting from the Ivanov connection, but it was later described as superficial and unsatisfactory.

Damage to the reputation of the Conservatives led Harold Macmillan to resign as Prime Minister in October 1963, due to health concerns cited as the cause of the Labor Party’s victory in the 1964 general election.

However, these politicians and “It Girls” were just players in the game as the man at the center of it all, Steven Ward was the only person who didn’t survive it.

Christine keeler
Christine Keeler died on December 4, 2017

The gifted osteopath, who once boasted stars like Elizabeth Taylor and Frank Sinatra, has been on trial for living off the immoral income of Christine Keeler and another woman implicated in the scandal.

Profumo and Ivanov through his friendship with Ward, who had taken her under his wing – who was known to Christine.

Keeler claimed Stephen Ward was in fact a Russian spy and gathered information on British establishment figures and briefed Vladimir Putin in Moscow.

But he didn’t live to hear the verdict – he took a fatal overdose the night before the judge finished summarizing his case.

Ward’s death was ruled as suicide by the coroners court.

He left several notes, one of which read: “I feel the day is lost. Ritual sacrifice is demanded and I cannot face it.

Former Minister of War John Profumo with his wife, actress Valerie Hobson
Former Minister of War John Profumo with his wife, actress Valerie Hobson

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Ward seemed to be the scapegoat for everyone’s antics – which rocked everyone in the country, including the royals.

Keeler also claimed that the late Prince Philip, The Duke of Edinburgh, had been unfaithful to the Queen and alleged he was linked to Steven Ward after nightclubs together in the 1940s.

After the Profumo scandal broke, a series of portraits were discovered at Ward’s home, which included members of the royal family such as Prince Philip and the Queen’s sister, Princess Margaret.

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