Presentation on theme: "The Brief American Pageant Seventh Edition Chapter 34 Franklin D. Roosevelt and the Shadow of War 1933-1941."— Presentation transcript:
The Brief American Pageant Seventh Edition Chapter 34 Franklin D. Roosevelt and the Shadow of War 1933-1941
Roosevelt’s Early Foreign Policies FDR’s initial focus was the Great Depression at home, as he shared a common view with most Americans of indifference toward foreign affairs. However the cloud of war hovered in Europe for much of the 1930s making it impossible for the US to remain uninvolved. FDR made a quick splash on the global stage in 1933 when he scolded delegates at the London Economic Conference for trying to stabilize world currencies. He did so out of a fear that by doing so it would tie his hands in terms of New Deal proposals he had forthcoming. FDR also tried to ease the pocketbooks of Americans abroad by signing the Tydings-McGuffie Act (1934) into law, which granted the Philippines its independence in 1946. In regards to Latin America, FDR promised the US to be a “good neighbor” and renounced the Roosevelt Corollary oft used by his cousin. FDR made good on promises to withdraw the American presence in the region by removing troops from Haiti, scaling back the Platt Amendment in Cuba, (although the US kept its military base at Guantanamo),and scaled back the US hold on Panama.
Turning Toward Isolationism A new breed of leaders emerged in Europe following WWI: Joseph Stalin- Communist dictator of the Soviet Union, paranoid leader who purged his own people of what he perceived to be enemies of the state Benito Mussolini- Fascist dictator of Italy, first outward sign of aggression was the invasion of Ethiopia in 1935 Adolf Hitler- Fascist dictator of Germany, most dangerous of the three, rose to prominence as leader of the Nazi Party, used the Treaty of Versailles and subsequent reparation payments as political capital to gain power, brilliant speaker, gave hope to a desperate people, immediately began to rearm Germany in 1933, allied with Mussolini (Rome-Berlin Axis) in 1936
Turning Toward Isolationism In the US, Americans disapproved of such dictators however they saw the actions of these individuals as further proof to remain isolated. Americans believed the Atlantic created a geographic barrier between themselves and the troubles of the world. They also felt like America’s inclusion in WWI was a mistake and many harbored ill will toward what they saw as ungrateful and defaulting debtors in Europe.
Turning Toward Isolationism In order to assure Americans of no US involvement in future European conflicts a series of Neutrality Acts were passed in 1935, 1936, and 1937. The laws stated that when the commander-in-chief acknowledged a foreign war then no American could legally sail on a belligerent ship, sell munitions to a warring party, or make loans to any participant in said war. America’s policy fell short however of making a distinction between the aggressor and the aggrieved. The US did not take a stand in the name of democracy and in opposition of authoritarianism.
Appeasing Japan and Germany Japan continued to boil the specter of war in Asia as well by invading China in 1937. In this case, the US sold munitions to both sides however the Japanese were the larger consumer. FDR tried to rally support for passive resistance to the dictators in the form of economic embargoes in 1937. In response to his “Quarantine Speech” critics argued that such actions would draw the country closer to armed conflict. As a result, FDR backed off his plan for sanctions against the aggressors.
Appeasing Japan and Germany Hitler had openly defied the Treaty of Versailles and committed other egregious acts: Reinstituted compulsory military service in Germany Violated the demilitarized zone of the Rhineland by marching German troops into the region Restarted the German air force (“Luftwaffe”) Mobilized German troops into divisions Created a union between Austria and Germany Demanded control of the Sudetenland of Czechoslovakia Secretly established a program of mass genocide against the Jewish population in territories he controlled (by 1945 over 6 million Jews had been exterminated)
Hitler’s Belligerency and US Neutrality Soviet dictator Joseph Stalin attempted to sign a mutual defense treaty with Britain and France in 1939, however the deal was never made and instead Stalin turned to Germany whom he signed a non-aggression pact with in that same year. The union of Stalin and Hitler was worrisome for observers in Europe who had hoped that the two men would serve as a check and balance on one another. With the assurance of peace with Russia, Hitler began bold demands for territorial claims in Poland. He demanded that lands taken from Germany at the end of WWI be returned. The official start of WWII came as a result of Poland’s refusal to give in to Hitler, therefore on September 1, 1939 German armored divisions began an invasion of Poland. Britain and France who for much of the 1930s stood by and allowed the events which led to war unfold, quickly came to the aid of Poland by declaring war. However, they were unable to mobilize before Hitler and Stalin divided the nation of Poland amongst themselves.
The Fall of France and the Destroyer Deal (1940) The months following the invasion of Poland became known as the “phony war.” It was during this time that Hitler turned his focus toward conquering France. In order to pave the way for such an invasion, in April 1940 Hitler ordered the takeover of neighboring Denmark, Norway, the Netherlands, and Belgium. The German army was too much for the French as the capital at Paris fell in June 1940. The Allied forces were driven with their backs against the English Channel. An event known as the “miracle at Dunkirk” is all that saved the Allied forces from annihilation. Every available sea vessel was employed to evacuation the trapped troops and return them to safety in Britain. Is response to the worsening war conditions, the British people called on a new prime minister named Winston Churchill. It was Churchill he rallied the Brits against the Germans and stood firmly in London against the backdrop of incessant bombing raids.
The Fall of France and the Destroyer Deal (1940) With France under German control, only one democracy remained in Europe (Britain). The fall of France was a wakeup call for Americans who for the first time felt threatened by the prospect of a Hitler controlled Europe. FDR led a call to action which included the quick development of an air fleet and a two ocean navy. Congress funded the project, totaling $37 billion and passed the first peace time conscription law in American history in 1940.
FDR Shutters the Two-Term Tradition (1940) In 1940 the Republicans chose a relative political unknown, Wendell Willkie, as their nominee for President. FDR broke with precedent and declared his intention to run for a third term with the justification that the present crisis needed an experienced leader. The Republicans accused FDR of desiring to become a dictator, however the president paid little attention to his opposition preferring to remain in Washington working. The result in 1940 was much like the other FDR elections, however the outcome was much closer especially in the popular vote. In the end however the Democrats maintained their stranglehold on the government retaining the White House and majorities in both chambers of Congress.
Congress Passes the Landmark Lend- Lease Law By the end of 1940, the Allies were nearing the end of their financial capabilities to fight the war. FDR advocated support for the Allies in the form of lending or leasing American arms that would then be returned at the conclusion of the war. FDR met opposition from isolationists, however under the banner of “Send guns, not sons,” the Lend-Lease Act was passed in 1941. By war’s end the US sent over $50 billion worth of arms and equipment to the Allied nations. This fact was especially positive considering that American factories churned out those items while employing millions of Americans.
US Destroyers and Hitler’s U-Boats Clash Hitler viewed the Lend-Lease Law as an unofficial declaration of war against his people. As a result, American merchant ships were subject to attack as well as British ships returning to Europe with American armaments. In July 1941, FDR made the decision to assist British ships by establishing a convoy of US naval vessels to accompany them across the Atlantic as far east as Iceland. The convoys resulted in several sparring matches between US ships and German U-Boats.
Surprise Assault at Pearl Harbor While war with Germany appeared possible, the spark that ignited American involvement in WWII came in the Pacific Ocean. The US and Japan had a previous trade agreement where the Americans supplied the Japanese with scrap iron, steel, and oil. This arrangement only helped to fuel the developing war machine that was the Japanese empire. FDR finally agreed to an embargo against the Japanese in 1940 and a year later froze all Japanese assets in the US. The embargo was effective as the Japanese were choked off in regards to oil. They were left with two choices: Falter under the stranglehold of the American embargo Attempt to seize oil fields in Southeast Asia, particularly in the Dutch East Indies
Surprise Assault at Pearl Harbor The US and Japanese entered negotiations in November 1941. The US demanded that the Japanese withdraw from China and in exchange the Americans would open up limited trade relations. The imperialists who ruled in Japan were unwilling to cave to American pressure and rather than appear weak they chose a violent option. The US was aware that the Japanese intended for their to be war, however debate in Congress waged on and the decision was that America would not shoot first.
Surprise Assault at Pearl Harbor While the Americans tried to figure where the Japanese attack would come from, they miscalculated that such an event would occur on US soil. On December 7, 1941 the Japanese struck at the US at Pearl Harbor naval base in Hawaii. The result was over 3000 casualties as well as severe damage inflicted upon the Pacific fleet. A day later, Congress quickly voted through a war declaration and within a week the US was at war with Japan and her allies Germany and Italy.