The aggressive wartime strategy of the United States, concerted with its European Allies, into which it launched so promptly and with such a massive deployment of force after 7 December 1941, obscures the fact that its declared military policy before that date was defensive. In November 1938 President Roosevelt enunciated the doctrine that defense of the continental United States required, as the military objective of the nation, defense of the Western Hemisphere. This fixed the official goal for the efforts of the War Department until Pearl Harbor, and, in the view of the authors of these volumes, dominated its plans and preparations during the two years preceding the Destroyer-Base Agreement of September 1940. Even after that the requirements of hemisphere defense defined the framework within which the Army and its Air Forces put into effect the limited preparations and actions that were directed against the aggressions of Nazi Germany and Japanese imperialism. The area covered in these two volumes is vast and so are the topics.
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