It is always easier to criticize the past and not the present. To take a stance in the present would require courage and sacrifice. To state an opinion about the past simply requires vocal chords. What is the point of studying the past, then? It's simple: the past is one of the keys to a door with numerous locks. Studying the past is one of the things we can use to guide us in the future. Hence, one is undoubtedly entitled to their own opinion about the timing of America's entrance into WWII. The figurative "key" would then be channeling these ideas into beneficial guidance for decisions of the future. In my opinion, the United States waited much too long to declare war upon the Axis. It is feasible to also hypothesize that the scale of war could have been smaller, less lives might have been lost, and less damage might have been inflicted had the U.S. acted sooner. What was the greatest lesson, then? Simple one (society, a nation, an individual) must always be aware of their surroundings.
The concept of isolationism is based upon ideals. These ideals assume certain things such as those around you will not abuse your policies. They also assume that a society that is isolated from chaos will not eventually be affected by that chaos. It took the near annihilation of the American Pacific Fleet docked in Pearl Harbor to stir the war machine inside of the previously lonely America. By this time Hitler had cut up the Versailles Treaty for use as scratch paper and was beginning his Blitzkrieg across Europe. Though it isn't obvious, it is possible that had America joined at much earlier date, for instance, the invasion of Poland, the help of American forces could have slowed Hitler down. It is rather debatable, though, because Hitler still had Russia on his side at this time. But with the obvious potential that had become the American war machine, it is very possible that the war could have been limited to a much lesser extent than it came out to be.
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