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Defend America First Paperback – January 1, 2003
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In October, just a couple weeks before the 1940 presidential election, FDR said "The United States is at peace and will remain at peace. We will not participate in foreign wars. There is no secret plan or agreement that would or could involve the nation in any war." FDR was elected on that platform, with polls showing the vast majority of Americans declining to get sucked into another war to rescue the Europeans from the marauding criminals like Hitler, Stalin, Mussolini, or Japan. Of course history has shown that to be an enormous lie. This book shows how FDR cleverly inched us into the war, first with "Lend Lease" then armed convoys, then the oil embargo of Japan, which forced Japan's hand and made Pearl Harbor inevitable.
Unlike the shrill accusations against Bush today, Garrett only points to established facts, and not second guessing about whether there may have been intelligence failures. And he did this while events were unfolding in a world that most of us have forgotten ever existed. The loans to the Europeans to keep them from starving to death after WW I were repudiated and American generosity was turned against us by Europeans who thought we were just greedy to want our loans repaid.Read more ›
When we look back today at the "good war" and "the greatest generation," we are blinded to what was going on in America before Pearl Harbor and before the shocking discoveries of the concentration camps. There was another war going on right here in America--a war against our Constitution and against the very economic system that made this country so great and which was being challenged by European socialism. We have never yet fully recovered from those lost battles and most citizens today are completely unaware.
Garrett was not only a very capable writer, but also a rational-thinking economist and patriotic historian. He understood the principals of our founders and their fear of the tendency toward centralization of political power. When fighting to make the world safe for "democracy," Garrett would have us ask first, what kind of democracy? `Totalitarian Democracy' and `Elective Despotism' are a couple of the thought-provoking terms I picked up from reading these articles. Garrett also scrutinizes terms and phrases used by the Roosevelt administration (such as "methods short of war") to lure the American people into an undeclared war against the consent of the governed while simultaneously provoking our enemies abroad.Read more ›
He also challenges conventional wisdom: for example, he maintains that essentially America aggressed against Japan and Germany first, and explains why. You may not find his facts and thesis so easy to overthrow as you might think. This man was an editorial writer for the Saturday Evening Post (which editorials make up most of this book under review) for years and didn't let the idiocies and tyrannies of his day pass unnoticed.
As a neutralist ("isolationist" being nothing more than an unfounded slur) Garrett has much to say to us today. Given our endless wars and interventions which have made the world less safe, not more, and our 700 military bases flung across the globe, we could do much worse than sit down and consider what this great writer said.
Whether many of those who picked up the Post read Garrett’s turgid, windy screeds is another matter. Only the committed would have kept reading them, but Garrett was indefatigable. Although there were other issues facing America in those days -- arguably none as momentous as going to war, though -- Garrett wrote about the same one every week.
Circumstances changed dramatically between the first screed in March 1939 and the last in January 1942 (when he was fired), but Garrett never wavered. His hatred for Franklin Roosevelt, which he had cultivated as an anti-New Dealer before coming to the Post, shines through.
He also hated democracy, unions, and -- so he claimed -- aggressors. But he was firm: not till the aggressors had landed on the beaches of New Jersey was it right to do anything about them. Garrett was mighty aggrieved that the warmongers lumped him together with the pro-nazis (who he contended, wrongly, were almost non-existent), but after slogging through every one of his editorials, it is impossible to find any difference in policy between him and the out-and-out nazis.
Except one. Garrett did not, like the popes, think the Nazis were all that stood between godless communism and Christian Europe. Garrett is remarkable in paying no attention to the reds, or to the Japanese. For him, the world being lost was well lost. What had we to do with those creepy foreigners?Read more ›