Most people don’t realize the US was involved in combat long before our official declaration of war after Pearl Harbor on December 7th, 1941.
The Japanese attack on the USS Panay in 1937 was arguably the first shots fired against the country in W W 2.
Only a few months before America’s official entry into the war, the USS Greer was attacked by a German submarine. What Franklin Roosevelt left out of the story, when he informed the American public, was that the ship had been actively helping a British plane try and sink the German submarine. So, like in many instances in US history from the Gulf Of Tonkin “attack” in Vietnam, to the alleged nuclear weapons Iraq had before our invasion of that country; America had gone to war partly on a lie.
Roosevelt, realizing the ultimate evil in Hitler’s Germany, was determined to stretch the truth and use almost any means to combat Germany and deter Japan despite an American public desiring neutrality at almost any price; and strict laws passed by Congress tying his hands.
These efforts included “neutrality patrols” that covered almost the entire Atlantic Ocean, and were directed against Germany. Use of British spies to operate on US soil with particular knowledge of German methods and operations; and the “lending” of military equipment to England.
Author Marc Wortman discusses the above, how unprepared the US was for war, and other subjects in this interview; including the motivations behind Charles Lindbergh who so virulently opposed any involvement against Hitler’s Germany.