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Forget Putin and the 2016 election, look at the 1940 Presidential election

Discussion in 'Prelude to War & Poland 1939' started by Dracula, Jul 6, 2019.

  1. Dracula

    Dracula Member

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    If December 7th,1941 was the Day that will live in Infamy, then November 5th, 1940, was the day that, the Greatest Generation, saved the world, part I, and changed world history forever. That day, voters elected FDR, interventionist, to an unprecedented third Presidential term and sent the isolationist, Wendell Wilke, home.

    In the late 30's,Germany and Italy were militarily aggressive and FDR knew that war was coming. He was doing everything, that he could, to support Britain and France, both economically and militarily but his hands were tied by Congress, who had passed several Neutrality Acts, which had made it illegal for American citizens to provide or transport war material to warring nations and a strong national isolationist movement. Germany, Japan, and Italy didn't want the US to enter the war so they entered into the Tripartite Pact, late September 1940, less than 2 months before the general election. Basically, the deal was Germany, Italy and Japan would "assist one another with all political, economic and military means” when any one of them was attacked by “a Power at present not involved in the European War or in the Sino-Japanese Conflict.” In other words, Germany, Italy, and Japan were not so subtly trying to influence the 1940 election by threatening war, if the US got involved. Elect FDR and there will be war, elect Wilke and we will leave you alone, if you leave us alone. Luckily, for the world, the greatest generation gave them FDR and the rest is history.
     
    Last edited: Jul 6, 2019
  2. wooley12

    wooley12 Active Member

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    Goldwater was the for war candidate in 1964. Johnson ran for moderation. Johnson was elected and 50,000 dead Americans later the war was over. Crazy world.

    “Extremism in defense of liberty is no vice. Moderation in pursuit of justice is no virtue.” - Barry Goldwater 1964

    I remember that year, 1964.

    It was complicated.

    Race riot 2 miles from my house.

    I met my wife.
     
    Last edited: Jul 6, 2019
  3. Takao

    Takao Ace

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    This is what Trump calls fake news...

    Willkie was not an isolationist. Your thinking of Thomas Dewey - he didn't get the 1940 Republican nod because he was isolationist.

    Germany, Italy, and Japan did not want FDR? The same FDR that was telling the electorate that he would not send American boys to fight in overseas wars. That FDR?
     
  4. OpanaPointer

    OpanaPointer I Point at Opana Staff Member Patron   WW2|ORG Editor

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    Yep. The Republican platform in 1940 mentions "defense" eleven times.
     
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  5. Terry D

    Terry D Active Member

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    If there is anything worse than being completely ignorant of history, it's making false analogies based on what one knows of history.
     
  6. OpanaPointer

    OpanaPointer I Point at Opana Staff Member Patron   WW2|ORG Editor

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    Is there anything other than the Tripartite Pact that gives you this impression?
     
  7. KodiakBeer

    KodiakBeer Member

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    I've always suspected that Mussolini was in my Facebook.

    .
     
  8. Takao

    Takao Ace

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    He's also forgetting that Willkie was a Democrat until 1939, and that Willkie supported much of FDR's interventionist policies. Both Willkie and FDR donned the isolationist cloak to garner votes from both isolationist and interventionist. However, neither had any intention of furthering any isolationist policy. Indeed, once the election had passed, both Willkie and FDR reverted to their interventionist ways none the worse for wear.
     
  9. Dracula

    Dracula Member

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  10. Dracula

    Dracula Member

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    True, but we'll never know what Wilke would have done or when. FDR had a public paper trail of war preparation plans and the scars of fighting Congress to get them. When did Wilke ever jump on the stump and scream for 50,000 Army and Navy planes. Most telling is that, when push came to shove, instead of publically backing FDR, Wilke called him a war monger. Knowing what we know now would you have rather had FDR leading the charge or Wilke?
     
  11. Buten42

    Buten42 Member

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  12. wooley12

    wooley12 Active Member

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    My wife returned to civilization after 4 days of mountain back packing to find that he had resigned while we were out, The huge steak dinners we ate that night were extra tasty.

    And no one knew at the time that he had colluded with our enemy to swing an election.
     
  13. OpanaPointer

    OpanaPointer I Point at Opana Staff Member Patron   WW2|ORG Editor

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    Willkie worked for FDR after the war started, dying during the war after some hard-slogging around the planet as one of Roosevelt's representatives abroad.

    Have you read any of Willkie's speeches? The Republican platform called for the defense of the US, then of North America, and then of the Western Hemisphere. Can't do that unarmed.
     
  14. Takao

    Takao Ace

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    And Willkie had a paper trail of supporting FDR on those measures. The congressional vote is public record.


    I doubt he ever did, because the 50,000 planes call was an abject joke. The problem it highlighted was most certainly real, but the 50,000 was an unreachable goal in terms of production. The 50,000 also never took in the needs of maintenance + spare parts. Nor did it take into account that there were no pilots to man and fly those aircraft.

    It is not telling at all.sain were politicians, and both men were trying to win the Presidential election. As such, both men made statements that they did not personally believe, but would appeal to and get them more votes. I have mentioned FDR's campaign stump about not sending American boys overseas, which you have ignored, and he said this many times. Willkie calling FDR a warmonger was just Willkie trying to sway voters.

    Six of one and half dozen of another. Although Willkie might have made a better Commander in Chief than FDR.
     
  15. OpanaPointer

    OpanaPointer I Point at Opana Staff Member Patron   WW2|ORG Editor

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    Well, neither one lived all the way through the war.
     
  16. KodiakBeer

    KodiakBeer Member

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    Wilkie probably wouldn't have locked up 120,000 American citizens in concentration camps.

    .
     
  17. Dracula

    Dracula Member

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    Yes, he did and what did he call FDR during the election campaign. If you can't find it I can supply the links for you. What defense programs did the Republican party originate or did they let FDR do all the heavy lifting?
    It's interesting that you list the defense priorities, of the Republican platform as the US, then North America, and finally the Western hemisphere. It pretty much sounds as if the Republican party was the party of isolation and would have to be dragged kicking and screaming into defeating Hitler, Italy, and Japan. What was their timeline for saving the world since defending the Western hemisphere was third on their list?
     
    Last edited: Jul 7, 2019
  18. Dracula

    Dracula Member

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    You're probably right. Would Wilke have provoked the Japanese into launching an attack on the US or it's allies in the Pacific, thus giving him a reason to enter the war, or would Wilke had sat back and as Opana Point suggested, make sure that the US and North America was defended and to hell with Europe?
     
  19. Dracula

    Dracula Member

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    Why would Wilke have been a better CnC? As Opana Point suggested, his party platform was the US, North America, and then the Western hemisphere. The war was in Europe not in Iowa. FDR knew where the war had to be fought and Wilke didn't.
    I haven't ignored it. The comment, that I thought I had posted, agreed that FDR flat out lied through his teeth about not sending American soldiers overseas for combat duty. He said it, just a few months, after he requested and received, authority, from Congress, to activate National Guard and reserves. FDR deployed National Guard units to the Philippines, in September of 1941, and three months later, they were in combat.
     
  20. Dracula

    Dracula Member

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    Terry D, you've sure been quiet. Jump in and let's see what happens.
     

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