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Joseph Carter

Question Box

(24 October 1939)


From Socialist Appeal, Vol. III No. 81, 24 October 1939, p. 4.
Transcribed & marked up by Einde O’ Callaghan for the Encyclopaedia of Trotskyism On-Line (ETOL).

QUESTION: What are the aims of President Roosevelt in the present war?

ANSWER: As the representative of the common interests of American big business, he seeks:

1. To establish monopoly control of the Latin American goods and investment market by replacing German and English trade in the countries to the south, at a time when the latter powers are unable to continue their normal business. In this way the economy and politics of the nations of South and Central America are to be made completely dependent upon Wall Street and Washington.

The recent Panama Conference (for which see Socialist Appeal, Oct. 10, 1939) was a big step in this direction.

2. To prepare for a military struggle against Japan in order to open up the markets of China to American capital and trade.

That is why Roosevelt has concentrated the American Navy in the Pacific Ocean.

3. To give material and moral aid to Anglo-French imperialism against Germany so as to defeat Hitler and thereby reopen the markets of Poland and southeastern Europe (what was once Czechoslovakia, and the Balkans) for American big business.

That is the reason for Roosevelt’s drive to lift the arms embargo; his protest to Russia – the ally of Germany – for its attitude towards Finland; his support of the recent conference of the Baltic countries and the clear cut general pro-Allied policy of the Administration.

4. To utilize the present war situation to achieve what six years of the New Deal failed to accomplish: a serious upturn in industry and business and a decrease in unemployment by supplying the Allies with arms, airplanes, and other goods.

This is another reason for Roosevelt’s campaign to lift the embargo. (In addition he wants by this way to increase the productive capacity of American industry for war materials of all types.)

5. To dictate the terms of peace after the war so as to establish American big business domination over the world, for which purpose he is preparing to throw the military power of the U.S. directly into the war.

That is the most general aim, of the Roosevelt program; the meaning of his tremendous armament expenditures, now to be increased; the significance of the campaign for a “two-ocean” navy which could fight Japan in the Pacific and Germany in the Atlantic.

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