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Cautious Crusade: Franklin D Roosevelt, American public opinion, and the war against Nazi Germany

Steven Casey
Oxford University Press (Dec 2001)

How did Americans view Nazi Germany during World War II? How did the Roosevelt administration portray the Third Reich in its propaganda activities? What impact did public opinion have on US policy between 1941 and 1945?

This book boldly challenges conventional wisdom about America's fight against Hitler. Drawing on a wealth of original documentary sources, the author traces the development of elite and mass attitudes toward Germany, from the early days of the war when attention was focused on ways of destroying Nazism to the end of the conflict when efforts were made to remake and remould the German nation. Casey argues that, contrary to public opinion, the president and the public rarely saw eye to eye on the nature of the enemy, the threat it posed, or the best methods for countering it. By examining the complex relationship between public opinion and policy-making during WWII, this book sheds new light on a crucial era in American history, the Roosevelt administration, and World War II.

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