Charles A. Lindbergh and the Battle against American Intervention in World War II

Charles A. Lindbergh and the Battle against American Intervention in World War II

Charles A. Lindbergh and the Battle against American Intervention in World War II

Charles A. Lindbergh and the Battle against American Intervention in World War II

Excerpt

On December 7, 1941, the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor brought the United States into the most destructive and bloody war in human history. That attack also ended America's so‐ called "isolationism." The United States played a massive role in helping to defeat the Axis Powers in World War II. Since that war the United States has been involved continually in military, diplomatic, and economic matters all over the world. It never returned to its earlier policies of "no entangling alliances" and nonintervention in European political and military affairs—to what Charles A. Lindbergh had called "an independent destiny for America." In that sense Pearl Harbor was a watershed in the history of American foreign affairs. There was no turning back.

Before Pearl Harbor, however, the American people and their leaders had earnestly debated alternative courses for the United States in world affairs. That "Great Debate" was a part of the democratic process in shaping American foreign policy. Few debates have had such important long-term consequences for the United States and the world. The debate grew increasingly heated, but Americans conducted it without resort to domestic violence. It provided them with opportunities to consider, argue, and advocate alternative foreign policies during those alarming times in world affairs. That debate raged from the highest decision-making levels in Washington, D.C., to the grass roots all over the United States.Countless Americans in and out of the government played active roles.

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