The Roosevelt Administration : Prioritizing Domestic Over Foreign Policy

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The Franklin D. Roosevelt Administration: Prioritizing Domestic over Foreign Policy

Juna Kalo
Charles Kraus
HIST 2340W
November 5, 2014

Franklin Delano Roosevelt, the 32nd President of the United States, was elected into office in 1932, a time of economic recession as a result of the New York stock market crash of 1929. During his vice presidential campaign, FDR had run on a platform that endorsed the League of Nations. However as a newly inaugurated President Roosevelt had to face the nation’s rampant unemployment and poverty rates that guided him towards a detached foreign policy approach. Following an anti-interventionist policy proved beneficial for the United States as Roosevelt prioritized domestic economic recovery and reform and political stability, rather than totalitarianism and aggression containment in Europe and Asia from 1931-1941. The key issue with the terms “isolationism” and “anti-interventionism” is the implication of each word. “Isolationism” refers to non- involvement in war overseas and lack of participation in “entangling alliances” of collective security, just as mentioned by Jefferson centuries ago. There is a negative connotation associated with the word “isolationism”, because it can be interpreted as indifference, naiveté, and dictatorial appeasement. On the other hand, “anti-interventionism” is regarded as neutral and nationalistic (Doenecke 4), and FDR was very determined towards the implementation of anti-interventionist

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