By Susan Dunn
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Additional resources for 1940: FDR, Willkie, Lindbergh, Hitler—the Election amid the Storm
Well, you filed your protest,” Roosevelt snapped. “Well, Mr. ” In reply, Roosevelt insisted that he already knew “exactly” what Marshall would say. ”90 But Marshall persisted. “Mr. ” The general usually was a team player. “I never haggled with the President,” he later said. ” Now, the issue was big, and world events forced him to think, plan, and lead on a global level. Talking for far more than three minutes, Marshall outlined the disastrous state of American military forces and equipment. Not only was war matériel in desperately short supply, but no more than fifteen thousand troops could go into combat at any one time—at a moment when the Germans had two million men equipped and trained for combat.
We actually have in mind a modern form of medieval slavery which we must and will introduce because we urgently need it in order to fulfill our great tasks. ”107 During his first presidential campaign in 1932, FDR had remarked, “It’s a terrible job. ”108 Seven and a half years later, in the spring of 1940, the job had become infinitely more terrible. But despite his vague and contradictory stances, his tergiversations and equivocations, Roosevelt’s mind and heart were firmly anchored in the internationalist camp.
27 Roosevelt’s ambassador to France, William Bullitt, was less circumspect. In September, the crisis over Germany’s determination to annex the Sudetenland, a region in Czechoslovakia with a majority German population allegedly oppressed by the Czechs, was escalating. ” American newspapers had a field day, reporting that Roosevelt was bent on carrying the nation into war. Two days later at a press conference in Hyde Park, a reporter asked Roosevelt if the United States had allied itself “morally” with France and Great Britain in a stop-Hitler move.
1940: FDR, Willkie, Lindbergh, Hitler—the Election amid the Storm by Susan Dunn