Keith D. Dickson

Keith D. Dickson

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The Spanish Republican government, made up of Socialists, fought a civil war from 1936 to 1939 to retain power against the rebellion of Spanish Nationalist forces led by General Francisco Franco, who refused to accept control by the leftists. This civil war essentially became a war between Fascism and Socialism, and other nations became involved. With Italian and German assistance, Franco defeated the Republicans and set up his own fascist-style military dictatorship.
Secure between two vast oceans, America didn’t need any allies; it needn’t rely on any other nation, and it could pursue its interests regardless of what happened anywhere else. This approach to foreign policy was called isolationism.  It was also naïve.
The darkest and most troubling of these mobilization efforts involved the use of slave labor in Nazi Germany, the Soviet Union, and Imperial Japan.
When Hitler first took power in Germany in 1933, he sent a personal message to Mussolini expressing his desire for closer relations with Italy. Hitler admired Mussolini, even keeping a picture of Il Duce (see Chapter 2) on his desk for inspiration. The two dictators first met in Venice in 1934. Mussolini, who was seen as the senior statesman, overshadowed Hitler. Mussolini had tried to read Mein Kampf (see Chapter 2) but found it too boring and never finished it.
Stalin committed the Soviet Union to participate in the war against Japan after Germany was defeated. (This was the only commitment Stalin made.)
With the collapse of the U.S. stock market in October 1929, prices, wages, employment, trade, and investment all fell in an ever-deepening spiral, and economic distress became worldwide.
In the crisis of 1941, Zhukov was one of the few officers who could speak his mind to Stalin without fear of being arrested and killed.
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Keith D. Dickson
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