During his first term President Roosevelt became the idol of the American people and reflected our attitude of hatred toward war. We had learned that the sole guilt for the World War did not rest on Germany, that there had been deceit and blundering, and that the world had not been made safe for democracy.(1)
Gradually there had come to light from the archives of foreign governments and from the records of great munitions industries the story of how French and German industrial magnates had worked together to prolong the war. Quincy Howe had published much on this in the Living Age while he was editor, which was utilized for the article "Arms and the Men" ( Fortune, March, 1934). Senator Borah brought this to national attention in a Senate speech and had it reprinted in the Congressional Record. (cf p 158)
In response to popular call for Congressional investigation, Borah recommended Senator Nye, who as chairman made front page headlines for a year, revealing the sinister methods of the bankers and 'merchants of death'. The persistent popular demand that the munitions industries be nationalized was skilfully sidetracked by the President's alternative suggestion that we 'take the profits out of war'. The American Legion had for some years proposed that if men were drafted capital should be too, and tax bills had been introduced to take up to 96% on profits during war time. Fortune for a time promoted this demand and spent much money on investigations which were finally suppressed. Powerful commercial organizations through skilled publicists were at work to prevent the public getting foolish ideas.(2)
Hitler in his fourth year, in the spring of 1936, had occupied the Rhineland. That summer war broke out in Spain and the President through the State Department, to please the British Foreign Office and appease the Catholic vote, immediately applied an unofficial embargo, which hampered only the Loyalists as the Nationalists were receiving their munitions through Germany and Italy.
Opening the campaign for his second term at Chautauqua in August, 1936, the President won the confidence and votes of the nation by de
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Publication information: Book title: Getting US into War. Contributors: Porter Sargent - Author. Publisher: P. Sargent. Place of publication: Boston. Publication year: 1941. Page number: 49.