America In World War 2
America\'s involvement in World War Two When war broke out, there was no
way the world could possibly know the severity of this guerre. Fortunately one
country saw and understood that Germany and its allies would have to be stopped.

America\'s Involvement in World War two not only contributed in the eventual
downfall of the insane Adolph Hitler and his Third Reich, but also came at the
precise time and moment. Had the United States entered the war any earlier the
consequences might have been worse. Over the years it has been an often heated
and debated issue on whether the United States could have entered the war sooner
and thus have saved many lives. To try to understand this we must look both at
the people\'s and government\'s point of view. Just after war broke out in Europe,

President Roosevelt hurriedly called his cabinet and military advisors together.

There it was agreed that the United States stay neutral in these affairs. One of
the reasons given was that unless America was directly threatened they had no
reason to be involved. This reason was a valid one because it was the American
policy to stay neutral in any affairs not having to with them unless American
soil was threatened directly. Thus the provisional neutrality act passed the
senate by seventy-nine votes to two in 1935. On August 31, Roosevelt signed it
into law. In 1936 the law was renewed, and in 1937 a "comprehensive and
permanent" neutrality act was passed (Overy 259). The desire to avoid
"foreign entanglements" of all kinds had been an American foreign
policy for more than a century. A very real "geographical Isolation"
permitted the United States to "fill up the empty lands of North America
free from the threat of foreign conflict"(Churchill 563). Even if Roosevelt
had wanted to do more in this European crisis (which he did not), there was a
factor too often ignored by critics of American policy-American military
weakness. When asked to evaluate how many troops were available if and when the

United States would get involved, the army could only gather a mere one hundred
thousand, when the French, Russian and Japanese armies numbered in millions. Its
weapons dated from the first World War and were no match compared to the new
artillery that Germany and its allies had. "American soldiers were more at
home with the horse than with the tank" (Overy 273). The air force was just
as bad if not worse. In September 1939 the Air Corps had only 800 combat
aircrafts again compared with Germany\'s 3600 and Russia\'s 10,000 . American
military Aviation (AMA) in 1938 was able to produce only 1,800, 300 less than

Germany, and 1,400 less than Japan. Major Eisenhower, who was later Supreme
commander of the Allied forces in the second World War, complained that America
was left with "only a shell of military establishment" (Chapman 234 ).

As was evident to Roosevelt the United states military was in no way prepared to
enter this European crisis. Another aspect that we have to consider is the
people\'s views and thought\'s regarding the United States going to war. After all
let us not forget that the American government is there "for the people and
by the people" and therefore the people\'s view did play a major role in
this declaration of Neutrality. In one of Roosevelt\'s fireside chats he said
"We shun political commitments which might entangle us In foreign wars...If
we face the choice of profits or peace-this nation must answer, the nation will
answer \'we choose peace\' ",in which they did. A poll taken in 1939 revealed
that ninety-four per cent of the citizens did not want the united states to
enter the war. The shock of World War one had still not left ,and entering a new
war, they felt, would be foolish. In the early stages of the war American

Ambassador to London was quoted saying "It\'s the end of the world, the end
of everything" ( Overy 261). As Richard Overy notes in The Road To War,
this growing "estrangement" from Europe was not mere selfishness. They
were the values expressed by secretary of state, Cordel Hull: "a primary
interest in peace with justice, in economic well-being with stability, and
conditions of order under the law". These were principles here on which
most Americans (ninety-four percent as of 1939) agreed on. To promote these
principles the United States would have to avoid all "foreign
entanglements", or as Overy puts it "any kind of alliance or
association outside the western hemisphere". Instead the