The British plans for bringing the United States into the next war, so fully explained in Rogerson's book, were a shock to the few Americans who learned of them. Generally disillusioned in the last war, we had tried to forget, and when the revisionists again brought the war and its blunders to our consciousness, we came to the firm decision that "never again" would we take part in a European war. Absorbed in the ventures of the New Deal, intent on building our own country, the thought came angrily to many,--why should there be another war?
"It can be stated very simply. Britain's policy has always been to support the second strongest power on the continent." That was the answer, given straightforwardly by Winston Churchill at a forum meeting in Chicago in 1938. Canning a century before had put this policy in writing but it had been followed by Britain for more than two centuries, during which the English had held the world in the hollow of their hands. Referred to as the "balance of power", it brings to mind the scales of justice, but Britain's practice has been to weight the scale surreptitiously with a thumb, that was diplomacy,--or in crisis by throwing in a military force.(1)
"The policy of 'divide and rule' has forced the growth of rivals competing industrially with England and with one another--and has brought all Europe, including England, to the edge of destruction", writes Jerome Frank in "Save America First" ( Harper, 1938). "It was not liberty that England sought--except incidentally and accidentally; it was continental anarchy."
After the war the continent was dominated by France, with the greatest army in the world at a high state of efficiency. Germany had been completely disarmed and denuded of all surplus and material for armament, reduced to impotence. The Versailles Treaty had provided that the other powers too should gradually reduce their armaments. France, nervous for her security and complaining that the United States had not lived up to her expectations in guaranteeing the Treaty, with loans and in connivance with the international armament clique, armed the buffer states by which Germany had been encircled.(2)