From: (unknown)
Subject: [azpeace] What We Can Learn from World War II
Date: Thu, 21 Nov 2002 18:54:34 EST

What We Can Learn from World War II

    by Harry Browne

World War II is supposedly the one "just" war 
America has fought. Even critics of the Vietnam War 
or the so-called War on Terrorism feel obliged to 
say that WWII was necessary.

And that war provided a justification for all sorts 
of military adventures afterward. In fact, whenever 
I write that Americans shouldn't be bombing Iraq or 
Serbia or Afghanistan or some other hapless 
third-world country, I get emails from critics 
saying such things as:

 * "You would have turned the other cheek after 
    Pearl Harbor."

 * "Munich showed you have to stop a dictator 
    _before_ he's too strong to resist."

 * "If you'd been in charge in the 1940s, we'd all 
    be speaking Japanese or German today."

World War II has always been of great interest to 
me. I've known for decades that it was just one 
more war the politicians suckered us into. But I 
still learned a great deal from reading Richard 
Maybury's new book "World War II: The Rest of the 

Maybury provides no startling evidence. But he 
sifts through the known facts -- which nearly all 
historians agree on -- and assembles the evidence 
to show irrefutably that:

 * The U.S. could had stayed out of the war, 
   because Hitler had no chance of conquering 
   England -- let alone America. (His doom was 
   sealed the moment his troops invaded Russia 
   in August 1941.)

 * The Pearl Harbor attack was neither a 
   surprise nor "unprovoked." (The Japanese code 
   had been broken 16 months before, and 
   Roosevelt had bullied the Japanese in order 
   to provoke a war. On November 26, 1941, 
   Secretary of War Stimson wrote in his diary, 
   "The question was how we should maneuver them 
   into firing the first shot without allowing 
   too much danger to ourselves.")

 * There was no military reason to drop atomic 
   bombs on Japan. They were used as terrorist 
   weapons -- killing innocent people to influence 
   other people. (Japan was already offering to 
   surrender, their homeland was blockaded, and the 
   Japanese couldn't have survived six months even 
   without an invasion.)

There's much more, of course. But the main point is 
that America should never have intervened in the 
age-old quarrels of Europe and Asia. If our 
politicians had minded their own business, 292,131 
Americans wouldn't have died -- died thinking they 
were defending American freedoms, but actually 
sacrificing for the benefit of politicians.

    The Roosevelt Myth

Why _did_ America get in the war?

Because Franklin Roosevelt thought it was to his 
personal advantage. 

In 1939 most people considered the New Deal to be 
an abject failure. The unemployment rate was still 
at 17%, with no end in sight to the Depression.

Roosevelt still managed to be reelected in 1940 
because he had great personal charisma, and because 
he was running against a typical me-too Republican, 
Wendell Wilkie -- a man with no solution for the 
economic crisis. Roosevelt insisted he would keep 
America neutral, proclaiming "I have said this 
before, but I shall say it again and again and 
again: your boys are not going to be sent into any 
foreign wars."

But in reality Roosevelt saw getting into the war 
as a way to redeem his reputation and join the 
ranks of the "great" Presidents -- wartime leaders 
like Washington, Lincoln, and Wilson.

    Making the World Logical Again

Maybury writes in a lucid, easy-to-follow style. 
He explains how Hitler made impressive early 
victories in the war, but still never had a chance 
once he decided to invade Russia. His sources of 
information are the same available to anyone else, 
but many of his insights and conclusions are 
original and refreshing.

He ties what happened in World War II to what is 
happening today in the so-called War on Terrorism. 
In fact, he shows that today's crises are simply 
an extension of one century-long war. 

Reading this book may help you see the world as a 
logical place again. It answers a question that 
might concern any lover of liberty: Why did a 
nation devoted to freedom and small government 
-- blessed by being isolated from the age-old 
turmoils of the Old World -- cross two oceans, 
sacrifice a quarter-million Americans, and become 
embroiled in everyone else's affairs?

The answer: it was done to satisfy the personal 
ambitions of politicians -- not to save America 
from tyranny.

It's too much to expect tens of millions of 
Americans to understand that our wars are just 
a political racket -- not when their historical 
knowledge consists of the one-liners fed to them 
in government schools. But it _is_ important that 
_you_ understand -- if you hope to be effective 
in restoring liberty to America. 

If you want to know more about World War II, I 
urge you to read "World War II: The Rest of the 
Story," which you can obtain at Maybury's website,

Harry Browne is Director of Public Policy for the
American Liberty Foundation. His op-ed's are
published weekly on the largest conservative news 
site on the web.

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