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The America First Committee was the foremost pressure group against American entry into the Second World War. The term anti-war usually refers to the opposition to a particular nation's decision to start or carry on an armed conflict unconditional of a maybe-existing just cause. Organised opposition to a possible future military attack against Iran by the United States (US is known to have started during 2005-2006 There has been significant opposition to the Iraq War across the world Opposition to the 2001 Afghanistan War consisted of tens to a hundred thousand protestors in the United States and the United Kingdom. See also War on Terrorism Criticism of the War on Terrorism (also named the War on Terror) addresses the issues morals Ethics, efficiency economics The International Campaign to Ban Landmines is a coalition of Non-governmental organizations whose goal is to abolish the production and use of Anti-personnel mines Opposition to US involvement in the Vietnam War is significant because domestic protest in the U Nuclear disarmament is the proposed dismantling of Nuclear weapons. Opposition to World War II was most vocal during its early period and stronger still before it started while Appeasement and Isolationism were considered viable diplomatic World War I was mainly opposed by Left-wing groups but there was also opposition by Christian Pacifist groups Opposition to the Second Boer War in Britain was modest when the war began on 11 October 1899 and was always less widespread than support for it let alone Popular opposition to the American Civil War, which lasted from 1861 to 1865 was widespread This article concerns Loyalists in the American Revolution. For information on the role of those Loyalists in Canadian history after their emigration see United Empire In order to facilitate organized opposition to war Anti-war activists have often founded anti-war organizations A conscientious objector (CO is an individual who on religious moral or ethical grounds refuses to participate as a combatant in war or in some cases to take any role that would support A draft dodger, draft evader or draft resister, is a person who avoids ("dodges" or otherwise violates the Conscription policies of the A peace movement is a Social movement that seeks to achieve ideals such as the ending of a particular war (or all wars minimize inter-human violence in a particular place or Peace churches are Christian churches groups or communities advocating Christian pacifism. Peace camps are a form of physical Protest camp that is focused on Anti-war activity Anti-imperialism, strictly speaking is a term that may be applied to or movement opposed to some form of Imperialism. Antimilitarism is a doctrine commonly found in the Anarchist and more globally in the Socialist movement which may be both characterized as Internationalist Nonviolence is a philosophy and strategy for social change that rejects the use of physical Violence. Pacificism is the general Ethical opposition to War or Violence, except in cases where force is deemed absolutely necessary to advance the cause of Satyagraha ( Sanskrit: सत्याग्रह satyāgraha) is a philosophy and practice of Nonviolent resistance developed by Mohandas An anti-war book is a book that is perceived as having an Anti-war theme An anti-war film is a Film that emphasizes the pain horror and human costs of armed conflict An Anti-war Song is a Musical composition that either states anti-war sentiments directly or one which is perceived (by the public and/or critics as having An interest group (also advocacy group, lobby group, pressure group or special interest group) is an organized collection of people who seek The United States of America —commonly referred to as the World War II, or the Second World War, (often abbreviated WWII) was a global military conflict which involved a majority of the world's nations, including It may have been the largest anti-war organization in American history. The term anti-war usually refers to the opposition to a particular nation's decision to start or carry on an armed conflict unconditional of a maybe-existing just cause.
AFC was established September 4, 1940 by Yale University law student R. Events 476 - Romulus Augustus, last emperor of the Western Roman Empire, is deposed when Odoacer proclaims himself Year 1940 ( MCMXL) was a Leap year starting on Monday (link will display the full 1940 calendar of the Gregorian calendar. Douglas Stuart, Jr. , along with other students including future President Gerald Ford, Sargent Shriver and future Supreme Court justice Potter Stewart. Gerald Rudolph Ford Jr (July 14 1913 December 26 2006 was the thirty-eighth President of the United States, serving from 1974 to 1977 and the fortieth Vice President Robert Sargent Shriver Jr (born November 9 1915 is an American Democratic Politician and Activist. Potter Stewart ( January 23 1915 &ndash December 7 1985) was an Associate Justice of the United States Supreme Court. At its peak, America First may have had 800,000 members in 650 chapters, located mostly in a 300 mile radius of Chicago. It claimed 135,000 members in 60 chapters in Illinois, its strongest state. The State of Illinois ( roughly ill-i-NOY is a state of the United States of America, the 21st to be admitted to the Union. [Schneider 198] Fundraising drives produced about $370,000 from some 25,000 contributors. Nearly half came from a few millionaires such as William H. Regnery, H. Smith Richardson of the Vick Chemical Company, General Robert E. Wood, publisher Joseph M. Patterson (New York Daily News) and his cousin publisher Robert R. McCormick (Chicago Tribune). Robert Elkington Wood ( June 13, 1879 - November 6, 1969) was an American soldier and businessman best known for his leadership of Joseph Medill Patterson ( January 6, 1879 &ndash May 26, 1946) was an American Journalist and Publisher, grandson of publisher Robert Rutherford McCormick ( July 30, 1880 &ndash April 1, 1955) was a Chicago newspaper baron and owner of the Chicago The Chicago Tribune is a major daily Newspaper based in Chicago, Illinois, United States, and owned by the Tribune Company Future President John F. Kennedy sent a contribution, with a note saying "What you are doing is vital. John Fitzgerald "Jack" Kennedy (May 29 1917&ndashNovember 22 1963 often referred to by his initials JFK, was the thirty-fifth President of "
AFC was never able to get funding for its own public opinion poll. The New York chapter received slightly more than $190,000, most of it from its 47,000 contributors. Since it never had a national membership form or national dues, and local chapters were quite autonomous, historians suggest the leaders had no idea how many "members" it had. [Cole 1953, 25-33; Schneider 201-2]
Serious organizing of the America First Committee took place in Chicago not long after the September 1940 establishment. Chicago was to remain the national headquarters of the committee. To preside over their committee, America First chose General Robert E. Wood, the 61 year-old chairman of Sears, Roebuck and Co.. Robert Elkington Wood ( June 13, 1879 - November 6, 1969) was an American soldier and businessman best known for his leadership of Sears Roebuck and Company, commonly known as Sears, is an American mid-range chain of International Department stores founded by Richard While Wood would accept only an interim position, he remained at the head of the committee until it was disbanded in the days after the attack on Pearl Harbor. The attack on Pearl Harbor (or Hawaii Operation, as it was called by the Imperial General Headquarters) was a surprise Military strike conducted by
The America First Committee had its share of prominent businessmen as well as the sympathies of political figures like Senator Burton K. Wheeler, Senator Gerald P. Nye, and Socialist Party leader Norman Thomas, with its most prominent spokesman being Charles A. Lindbergh. Burton Kendall Wheeler ( February 27, 1882 &ndash January 6, 1975) was a Montana politician of the Democratic Party and Gerald Prentice Nye ( December 19, 1892 &ndash July 17, 1971) was a United States politician representing North Dakota The Socialist Party of America (SPA was a socialist Political party in the United States. Norman Mattoon Thomas ( November 20, 1884 &ndash December 19, 1968) was a leading American socialist, pacifist WikipediaWikiProject Aircraft. Please see WikipediaWikiProject Aircraft/page content for recommended layout
Other celebrities supporting America First were novelist Sinclair Lewis, poet E. E. Cummings, author Gore Vidal (as a student at Phillips Exeter Academy), Alice Roosevelt Longworth, film producer Walt Disney and actress Lillian Gish. Sinclair Lewis ( February 7, 1885 – January 10, 1951) was an American Novelist, Short-story writer and Edward Estlin Cummings (October 14 1894 &ndash September 3 1962 popularly known as E Gore Vidal (born October 3 1925 ˌgɔər vɪˈdɑːl or /vɪˈdæl/ is an American Novelist, Screenwriter, Playwright, Phillips Exeter Academy (also called Exeter, Phillips Exeter or PEA) is a Co-educational independent Boarding school for grades 9–12 Alice Lee Roosevelt Longworth ( February 12, 1884 &ndash February 20, 1980) was the oldest child of Theodore Roosevelt, the 26th Walter Elias Disney (December 5 1901 – December 15 1966 was a multiple Academy Award -winning American Film producer, director, Screenwriter Lillian Diana Gish ( October 14 1893 – February 27 1993) was an American stage screen and television actress whose Architect Frank Lloyd Wright attempted to join, but the board thought he had a "reputation for immorality". Frank Lloyd Wright (June 8 1867 &ndash April 9 1959 was an American (of Welsh descent Architect, Interior designer, Writer, and educator who
The America First Committee launched a petition aimed at enforcing the 1939 Neutrality Act and forcing President Franklin D. Roosevelt to keep his pledge to keep America out of the war. The Neutrality Acts were a series of laws that were passed by the United States Congress in the 1930s in response to the growing turmoil in Europe and Asia They strongly distrusted Roosevelt, arguing that he was lying to the American people.
On the day after Roosevelt's lend-lease bill was submitted to the United States Congress, Wood promised AFC opposition "with all the vigor it can exert. Lend-Lease (Public Law 77-11 was the name of the program under which the United States of America supplied the United Kingdom, the Soviet Union, The United States Congress is the bicameral Legislature of the federal government of the United States of America, consisting of two houses " America First staunchly opposed the convoying of ships, the Atlantic Charter, and the placing of economic pressure on Japan. The Atlantic Charter was negotiated at the Atlantic Conference (codenamed Riviera) by British Prime Minister Winston Churchill and U In order to achieve the defeat of lend-lease and the perpetuation of American neutrality, the AFC advocated four basic principles:
Despite the onset of war in Europe, an overwhelming majority of the American people wanted to stay out of the new war if they could. [CMH, Chapter 19]. The AFC tapped into this widespread anti-war feeling in the years leading up to the attack on Pearl Harbor and the U. S. entry into the war.
Charles Lindbergh had been actively involved in questioning the motives of the Roosevelt administration well before the formation of the AFC. WikipediaWikiProject Aircraft. Please see WikipediaWikiProject Aircraft/page content for recommended layout Lindbergh adopted an anti-war stance even before the Battle of Britain and before the advent of the lend-lease bill. The Battle of Britain (German ''Luftschlacht um England'' is the name given to the sustained strategic effort by the German Luftwaffe during the summer and His first radio speech was broadcast on September 15, 1939 over all three of the major radio networks (Mutual, National, and Columbia). Events 668 - Eastern Roman Emperor Constans II is assassinated in his bath at Syracuse Italy. Year 1939 ( MCMXXXIX) was a Common year starting on Sunday (link will display the full calendar of the Gregorian calendar. The Mutual Broadcasting System ( MBS) was an American Radio network, in operation from 1934 to 1999 The National Broadcasting Company ( NBC) is an American Television network headquartered in the GE Building in New York City's CBS Broadcasting Inc ( CBS) is an American radio and Television network. Lindbergh urged listeners to look beyond the speeches and propaganda they were being fed and instead look at who was writing the speeches and reports, who owned the papers and who influenced the speakers. Propaganda is a concerted set of messages aimed at influencing the opinions or behaviors of large numbers of people
The heart of Lindbergh's arguments then, as it would be in his America First speeches, was his advocacy of a hemispheric defense. He was convinced that the barriers posed by the Atlantic and the Pacific Oceans would keep any potential attacker at bay. The Pacific Ocean is the largest of the Earth 's Oceanic divisions He urged the strengthening of American air power and the establishment of coastal defenses for good measure. The best hope for preserving America's peace was a strong American defense in its own hemisphere. He also routinely pointed out that Americans had not been able to vote on the issues at hand and that they were being asked to become involved in issues that were not their own but Europe's.
Throughout 1940 and 1941 Lindbergh emerged as the most recognizable of America First's spokesmen. However, while his personal fame brought a measure of potency to the movement, there were shadows of his past that served, along with other elements, to marginalize the movement's message. Despite increasing controversy about their intentions, most Americans still agreed with America First's isolationist message and continued to respect Lindbergh until public opinion slowly began to turn against him in 1941. "As each side fought for the soul of the nation," explains Pulitzer Prize winning Lindbergh biographer A. Scott Berg, "the argument boiled down to eleven months of oratory between Franklin Roosevelt and Charles Lindbergh. The Pulitzer Prize, ˈpʊlɨtsɚ PULL-it-sər is an American award regarded as the highest national honor in Newspaper journalism, Andrew Scott Berg (born December 4 1949 is a Pulitzer Prize -winning American biographer. " Although he was eventually forced to step down from the debate that left his public reputation "henceforth contaminated," Berg notes that members of the Roosevelt Administration admitted Lindbergh was one of their most formidable rivals.
On June 20, 1940 Lindbergh spoke to a rally in Los Angeles billed as "Peace and Preparedness Mass Meeting". Events 451 - Battle of Chalons: Flavius Aetius ' defeats Attila the Hun. Year 1940 ( MCMXL) was a Leap year starting on Monday (link will display the full 1940 calendar of the Gregorian calendar. Los Angeles (lɑˈsændʒələs los ˈaŋxeles in Spanish) is the largest City in the state of California and the American West In his speech of that day, Lindbergh criticized those movements he perceived as leading America into the war. He proclaimed that the United States was in a position that made it virtually impregnable and he pointed out that when interventionists said "the defense of England" they really meant "defeat of Germany. England is a Country which is part of the United Kingdom. Its inhabitants account for more than 83% of the total UK population whilst its mainland Germany, officially the Federal Republic of Germany ( ˈbʊndəsʁepuˌbliːk ˈdɔʏtʃlant is a Country in Central Europe. " Lindbergh's presence at the Hollywood Bowl rally was overshadowed, however, by the presence of fringe elements in the crowd. The Hollywood Bowl is a famous modern Amphitheatre in the Hollywood area of Los Angeles California, USA, that is used primarily for music Performances
However, nothing did more to escalate the tensions than the speech he delivered to a rally in Des Moines, Iowa on September 11, 1941. Events 9 - The Battle of the Teutoburg Forest ends 506 - The Bishops of Visigothic Gaul Year 1941 ( MCMXLI) was a Common year starting on Wednesday (the link will display 1941 calendar of the Gregorian calendar. In that speech he identified the forces pulling America into the war as the British, the Roosevelt administration, and the Jews. The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, commonly known as the United Kingdom, the UK or Britain,is a Sovereign state located PLEASE TAKE NOTE************ While he expressed sympathy for the plight of the Jews in Germany, he argued that America's entry into the war would serve them little better. He said in part:
|“||It is not difficult to understand why Jewish people desire the overthrow of Nazi Germany. The persecution they suffered in Germany would be sufficient to make bitter enemies of any race. No person with a sense of the dignity of mankind can condone the persecution the Jewish race suffered in Germany. But no person of honesty and vision can look on their pro-war policy here today without seeing the dangers involved in such a policy, both for us and for them. |
Instead of agitating for war the Jewish groups in this country should be opposing it in every possible way, for they will be among the first to feel its consequences. Tolerance is a virtue that depends upon peace and strength. History shows that it cannot survive war and devastation. A few farsighted Jewish people realize this and stand opposed to intervention. But the majority still do not. Their greatest danger to this country lies in their large ownership and influence in our motion pictures, our press, our radio, and our government. [Cole 1953, p 144]
Lindbergh was later forced onto the defensive, claiming that his words had been misunderstood and that he was not an anti-Semite. Antisemitism (alternatively spelled anti-semitism or anti-Semitism; also rarely known as judeophobia) is the Prejudice against or hostility The deeper problem of the AFC was that it had never really moved beyond the radio and rally format in getting its message across. There were few local chapters that worked the neighborhoods and tried to shape public opinion at the grass roots level. Still, despite its ultimate ineffectiveness, the America First committee had been potent enough to delay the passage of lend-lease and keep the Roosevelt administration from obtaining its goals without opposition for almost two years.
With the formal declaration of war against Japan following the bombing of Pearl Harbor, the Committee chose to disband. For a topic outline on this subject see List of basic Japan topics. On December 11 the committee leaders met and voted for dissolution. Events 359 - Honoratus, the first known Prefect of the City of Constantinople, takes office In the statement they released to the press was the following:
|“||Our principles were right. Had they been followed, war could have been avoided. No good purpose can now be served by considering what might have been, had our objectives been attained. . .||”|
Conservative commentator Pat Buchanan has frequently praised America First and often uses its name as a slogan. Patrick Joseph "Pat" Buchanan (born November 2 1938 is an American Political commentator, Author, syndicated Columnist "The achievements of that organization are monumental," writes Buchanan, "By keeping America out of World War II until Hitler attacked Stalin in June of 1941, Soviet Russia, not America, bore the brunt of the fighting, bleeding and dying to defeat Nazi Germany. " For this reason the movement is still an icon to paleoconservatives and other Americans who wish to return to a foreign policy of non-intervention. Paleoconservatism (sometimes shortened to paleo or paleocon when the context is clear is a term for an anti-communist and Anti-authoritarian
Philip Roth's novel The Plot Against America (2004) is based on an alternative history developed by Roth, in which America First's ideology prevailed in the early 1940s and a Lindbergh presidency saw the growth of Anti-Semitism in the United States. Philip Milton Roth (born March 19, 1933, Newark New Jersey) is an American novelist The Plot Against America A Novel (ISBN 0-618-50928-3 is a novel by Philip Roth published in 2004 The 1940s decade ran from 1940 to 1949 Events and trends The 1940s was a period between the radical 1930s and the conservative 1950s which also leads the period to be Antisemitism (alternatively spelled anti-semitism or anti-Semitism; also rarely known as judeophobia) is the Prejudice against or hostility
The America First Committee was revived in 1980 and has existed through 2006 with little activity. In 2006 the chairman of the America First Committee, Art Jones ran for 3rd congressional district congressman in Chicago, Illinois. Mr. Jones is also running in the current, 2008 congressional race for office. As of 2008, the America First Committee is more active than it has been in over 30 years.