Isolationism In Ww2

After the conclusion of World War I and leading up to World War II, there was increased presence of isolationist ideals and values. America had just gotten back from a war that costed the lives of American soldiers and tons of money in weapons and capital. Many Americans believed that it was time to step back from the Eastern Hemisphere and to return to the isolationist policies of their founding father, George Washington. American, for the most part, practiced these ideals of Washington in the 1920s and 1930s; however, during the 1940s a shift in the mood of the United States was present through the various legislations passed and actions taken. Ultimately, the attack on Pearl Harbor triggered the US’ entrance into World War II, but until …show more content…
The overall rise of totalitarianism in Italy, Germany, Spain, Soviet Union, and Japan scared Americans alike. The isolationist views of Americans began to change slowly after Hitler and the Nazi party started to defy the terms set forth in the Treaty of Versailles, like when they occupied the Rhineland in 1936, rebuilt the German army, and annexed Austria in 1938. Japan also fully invaded China in 1937, which threatened the Open-Door Policy that helped American interests in China. President Roosevelt gave the Quarantine Speech in 1937 to express his views about the actions of these totalitarian nations and how they needed to be controlled to prevent the spread of disease. The Japanese attacked Nanking in December of 1937 and they brutally murdered Chinese citizens. As described in Document F, the murder of citizens was widespread and systematic. Japan’s imperial power was noticed by this brutal attack. This forceful attack came only weeks after the Panay incident, which destroyed the US ships and killed the sailors aboard. This brutal attacked showed how there was a lack of concern after FDR’s Quarantine Speech in October of 1937. Document F describes the need of support from other countries to battle these totalitarian nations. At the same time in Europe, the British were threatened by the Nazis in Germany. The Nazi had taken over many territories in Eastern Europe and were making their way to Western Europe. This greatly concerned Franklin D. Roosevelt and many Americans because the United States would be the next on the list of attack. To help the British, FDR had the Neutrality Act of 1939 passed. The Neutrality Act of 1939 allowed countries to buy necessary supplies such as munitions and other war equipment from the United States through a policy know as Cash and Carry. Document H exemplifies how Americans were

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