Explain what measures Roosevelt took between 1935 and December 1941 to help defeat Hitler and deal with Japanese aggression.


Before the bombing of Pearl Harbor in 1941, the United States was divided over whether or not to assist the allied countries in World War II. Because of the Neutrality Acts we were limited in how we could help supply other countries in their fight against the Axis powers.

President Roosevelt realized that at some point the United States was going to have to become involved, and he wanted to help other countries in their fight. When Britain began to run out of money to pay for materiel from us, he came up with the Lend-Lease plan. This plan, begun in early 1941 before our entry into the war, helped us supply Britain and other countries without violating the Neutrality Acts.

The United States also implemented an oil embargo against Japan to try to stop or slow down their military expansion in Asia. Believe it or not, Japan at this time got about 80% of its oil from America. This may have slowed Japan down, but it also backed them into a corner. They felt they had to attack our fleet at Pearl Harbor to give themselves a chance to secure more resources by force in Asia.

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