Fascism Fascism “President Roosevelt recognized the dangers of fascism early and did all that he could, under the circumstances, to lead the nation away form a policy of isolationism.” When the war broke out, there was no way that the world could possibly know the severity of it. Fortunately, one country saw and understood that Germany and its allies would have to be stopped. Americas involvement in World War II not only contributed to the eventual downfall of the insane Adolph Hitler and his Third Reich, but it also came that the precise time and moment. Had the United States entered the war any earlier, the consequences could have been worse. There are several different incidents where President Roosevelt showed this philosophy through some of his actions.
The Munich agreement is the first of many instances where Roosevelt and the issue of isolationism are tested. It started as a conference on September 29, with Eduard Daladier from France, Neville Chamberlain from England, Mussolini from Italy, and Hitler in attendance. The agreement that was eventually signed by France, Germany, Great Britain, and Germany “stipulated that the evacuation of the Sutedenland will begin on October 1st and be completed by October 10th.” (Lipson, 408) Chamberlain thought that he had achieved peace, “but the Agreement quickly became a symbol of the western powers appeasement to Hitler.” (Internet) “Hitler gained all that he had asked for, and Chamberlain went home deluded into believing he had purchased peace.” (Sulzberger, 50) The British people didnt like this agreement too much, feeling that they had “surrendered to the threat of force.” (Lipson, 408) Hitler said at that conference that Rhineland would be the last place that he would invade. This was, in fact, a complete lie. It was his eventual invasion of Poland in 1939 that brought upon the full-scale war.
As the problems increased in Europe, people were afraid that the whole problem would wind up spreading over to the United States. This was the last thing that we would want to happen, having just come out of the depression and all. The Neutrality Act of 1937, which embargoed arms to belligerent nations, was repealed, and”arms exports were put on a “cash and carry” basis, to the advantage of the Allies, who controlled the seas.” (Sulzberger, 134) This was declared by the Neutrality Act of 1939. It basically said European democracies could purchase American materials, only on the account that they pay cash and transport them on their own ships. This act basically removed us from the neutral position, and put us in on the side of the Allies.
The Destroyers for Bases Deal was another way that Roosevelt removed the United States from neutrality. The U.S. took the initiative to help the British out on September 3, 1939, “when fifty overage destroyers were transferred to England, in return for American rights to build bases in British possessions in the Caribbean and the western Atlantic.” (Sulzberger, 134) The destroyers that were traded to the British were old World War I types, “but still able to fight Nazi U-boats.” (Sulzberger, 134) The U.S. was back into a corner when Churchill told Roosevelt “the perilous position which the United States would occupy if British resistance collapsed and Hitler became master of Europe, with all its dockyards and navies.” (Churchill, 107) With that thought in mind, Roosevelt basically had no choice but to aid the Allies in their time of war. If Hitler gained control of Europe, his power would eventually spread to all other parts of the world.
Roosevelt was backed into a corner with all of these conditions, and he really had no choice but to initially aid the Allies, and eventually fight on their side. Hitler in control would have caused many problems, and it was the last thing that the world needed. He was an insane person that had no place in control of anything, let alone a country. He managed to condition the people that he led into doing what he wanted them to do, and they did it without questioning him, for fear of death.