The American People Want Peace


By RUSH D. HOLT, U. S. Senator from West Virginia

Over the National Broadcasting Network, October 17, 1940

Vital Speeches of the Day, Vol VII, pp. 153-155.

IF you have a son of military age, you had better secure an atlas to find out where Malacca, Kedag, Panang, Johore or Rangoon are located. It is very likely that your son will be sent to any of those places if our present war-like policy in the Far East is continued.

The secrecy by which the parallel action of the United States and Great Britain has been continued would shock anyone who believed in "open covenants openly arrived at." You are just ordinary people. You are not supposed to know about foreign relations. You are supposed to die or give your son to die if the directors of foreign affairs think it is best. They are educating you for war. It is bad to be fooled but it is worse to be fooled after being warned as to how you will be tricked.

In a book on propaganda for use in military circles of England, not printed for its reading in the United States, Sidney Rogerson states how we are to be involved in the war long before the war began. He tells of Japanese feeling and says—and I quote:

"Japan's distinction is that she is unpopular. She is a commercial danger and therefore the more easily from a propaganda viewpoint saddled with atrocities."

But as to our actual involvement in the war, how is the United States to be involved? Let me quote:

"To persuade the United States to take our part will be much more difficult. . . . It will need a definite threat to America, a threat, moreover, which will have to be brought home by propaganda to every citizen before the republic will again take arms in an external propaganda." Get that—propaganda.

But now, as to Japan, Rogerson states, "this position (speaking of our involvement in war) will naturally be considerably eased if Japan were involved and this might and probably would bring America in without further ado."

The plan has been set. Now, to get us ready, there was to be a process of education to make us forget, to make us get hysterical from fear of invasion. Raymond Moley, well known for his close position with the President while he was serving in the Department of State, noted in his book that as early as March, 1938, there had been a conference called at the White House in which an "educational" program was to get under way to "educate" the people for a more active or as he states "a stronger foreign policy." Remember, this was in March, 1938, a year and a half before the German forces moved into Poland, long before the invasion of Belgium, Holland or Norway. Was that information brought to you as a reader of the newspaper or a listener on the radio? No. It was to be done secretly.

The Lothian founded Round Table, published in London, knew about it and stated in the magazine that the President was to "conduct an educational campaign." For what? It says: "Against the philosophy of staying at home and staying out of trouble." It states that this policy has the support of the newly appointed Secretary of War, Henry Stimson,

of Norman Davis, now Director of the Red Cross and former Ambassador at Large, many of the most important newspapers and various eminent students. What did these individuals want to do? Again referring to the article, it answers the question: "They want to make the world safe for democracy again. They are in about the 1915-1916 American mental state." Most of my listeners remember the 1915-1916 mental state. They remember the slogan of the last invitation to participate in Europe's wars to "make the world safe for democracy." Some have forgotten that. However, others remember the lesson taught. Thousands of the finest young men of America lie buried in France tonight. They died for that ideal but we know what happened at the Treaty of Versailles. It is too late to bring back to life those who died for a cause which the diplomats knew was not the reason for the war but which they knew to be a way to stir up sentiment for our involvement.

What does the March, 1938, issue of the London magazine say as to Japan? Let me quote—it speaks of how "disquieting: it would be if the people knew what was going on behind the scene—and that it was "private" information. It says talks had been already underway about a "long range blockade of Japan." Remember, this was more than two and one-half years ago. It further gives us some interesting information as to why Captain Ingersoll of our Navy Department was then in London. We had been given another story but the article states:

"When the general public comes to know of these goings-on, opinion may well take fright."

The article refers to the real reason for Captain Ingersoll's visit to be "the possibility and ways and means of naval cooperation in the Far East."

You can see that these events in the Far East did not come upon us since Japan signed an agreement with Germany and Italy as the administration propagandists try to make you believe. We were having secret understandings with a country to oppose Japan long before the Rome-Berlin-Tokyo Axis Agreement was signed. The real story will come out but it may be after the American soldiers and sailors are killed.

Two years before the beginning of the German invasion, this magazine, founded by the present British Ambassador to the United States, took great joy to advise its English readers that "the United States is part way along the road to 1917." Part way along the road to war! Part way along to the death of thousands and probably hundreds of thousands of our young men—your sons and your brothers! And yet, you were not told those things. We were told they hated war—yet, the record pointed to the planning for war.

The educational campaign continued. Isn't it ironic to talk about educating a people for war? We think of education as something constructive, something beneficial, and then to have secret meetings to develop an educational campaign for involvement! I wish I had time to tell you about the present war profits and how these individuals making "blood money" are active in the cause.

By the spring of 1939, long before declaration of war in the present terrible European slaughter, the English magazine states and I quote:

"Far indeed, by degrees that have sometimes gone unperceived"—may I hesitate there and repeat, "by degrees that have sometimes gone unperceived"—and the article continues, "has the administration led the American people actively into the world crisis."

They were telling the people of their peaceful intentions and how they hated war.

They were watching public opinion in the United States. The article stated that the people of our country were six to one against sending American troops abroad but may I quote their reaction to this view, "Here, perhaps, public opinion does not realize the consequence of its own un-neutrality and gives way to wishful thinking."

When war broke out in September, 1939, this same publication, very close to the foreign office in London, stated:

"How, when or whether the United States would actually be drawn into the conflict, is naturally, a question that cannot be answered but if one is estimating the possibilities, they are that the history of 1914-1917 would be foreshortened and repeated."

What does the history of 1914-1917 mean? Ask any mother who lost her son on the battlefields of France. Ask some crippled veteran who had his arms and legs torn off in Flanders. Go to the veterans' hospitals and see the shell shocked and gassed soldiers and you will recall the history of that period, the period which they note will be "foreshortened and repeated."

They continue to talk of peace and their speeches call for "hating war." Yes, solemn assurances of peace have been given the people only hours after private conversations have been about entrance in the war. In some circles in official Washington, the actual date of our going in the war is being used.

More than a year and a half ago, it was stated in London and I quote:

"The fleet (speaking of the American fleet) is tailored for long range work. It is already based at Pearl Harbor, almost in mid-Pacific. And there is Singapore to be remembered. There is little doubt that part of the (American) fleet would move to Singapore in the event of a Far Eastern threat, and might even go there if Japan made any overt action against the Dutch or British possessions in Malaya."

How true that points to what we are planning to do? But did you know it? How and when did the officials of England get that information? Should not you—the men who have to die—have a right to know these things? Shall you be called upon to die for "dear old Dong Dang," Sumatra, Rangoon or the Dutch East Indies?

What are the reasons they give for our involvement?

We are told Japan is an aggressor. But when did we become the "policeman of the world?" By what authority were we given the special privilege to pass upon the actions of other nations? They may not like our lynchings and our past activities in Nicaragua and Haiti but we are to protect the English Empire in Asia. And I ask, where did England get her territory in Asia? Was it by aggression? The Burma Road, as you probably know, was opened today. War profits will increase as a result. How was Burma acquired by Great Britain? Have you forgotten the three wars of England in the 19th century over Burma? The English people did not originate in Burma or Singapore. How did they get there? Oh—but they say, England has reformed. She is now purified. We recall the stories of her purification preceding our entrance in the last World War when we were asked "to make the world safe for democracy." We were told to forget the Boer Wars, to forget the atrocities in Ireland, to forget the incidents of India. Again—we are supposed to forget. They say this is another war for civilization and democracy. My mind goes to the great fight made by India for her freedom and how the democracy of England is used in India. Yes, I have been told of the stories of the head hunters in Borneo, an English possession in this territory. I am sure they are interested in our fighting for their democracy. They then say that the Chinese are being mistreated. But my mind recalls the well known opium wars of China in which this terrible drug habit was saddled on China. Was it done by Japan? No, it was done by Great Britain. We are told we must protect our trade. This may interest you to know that our exports to Asia, excluding Japan, are approximately three hundred and thirty million dollars for an entire year. That amount alone would not begin to pay the cost of a few weeks' war. Shall your son be killed for the tin and rubber of the Dutch East Indies? Shall your brother be shot to protect the oil business in China? Shall your husband be shell shocked to protect the Malay Peninsula? They say Japan has violated her treaties. What country is known as Perfidious Albion? Not Japan. I believe every possible defense should be made against

our possible attack from any source. Let us have the world's best air force, over American land; the world's best navy, in American waters; the world's best army, on American land. But, do not send any American soldiers or sailors to protect the English Empire in Asia or require them to die for Singapore, Burma or Indo-China, because some governmental official may have secretly agreed to parallel action.

The great danger in America today is that the President through the handling of foreign affairs can enter into secret alliances or promote acts of undeclared war that would involve America. This means war whether declared by Congress or not. We must watch these actions if we are to remain at peace and the American people want peace. They do not want war with Japan.