Franklin D. Roosevelt

FDR redirects here. For other uses, see FDR (disambiguation).

Franklin Delano Roosevelt (January 30, 1882 – April 12, 1945), 32nd President of the United States (1933-1945), the longest-serving holder of the office and the only man to be elected President more than twice, was one of the central figures of 20th century history. Born to wealth and privilege, he overcame a crippling illness to place himself at the head of the forces of reform. His family and close friends called him Frank. To the public he was usually known as FDR.

According to many historians, Roosevelt's inspirational leadership helped the U.S. recover from the Great Depression, but others dispute this claim arguing that Roosevelt's economic policies actually slowed recovery. In the build up to the Second World War, he prepared the U.S. to be the "Arsenal of Democracy" against Nazi Germany and the Japanese Empire, but aspects of his leadership, particularly what is seen as his naïve attitude toward Joseph Stalin, are criticised by some historians. Finally, his vision of an effective international organization to preserve peace was brought to fruition as the United Nations after his death.

In his lifetime Roosevelt was a polarizing figure: he was a hero to liberals and a hated figure to conservatives. Today opinions of him are more complex. Some liberals criticise measures such as the internment of Japanese-Americans during World War II and his failure to advance civil rights for African Americans. Some conservatives such as Ronald Reagan have praised his national leadership, while dismantling his social programs. Presidential historians have generally regarded him as one of the greatest presidents.

Early life

Franklin Roosevelt was born on January 30, 1882, at Hyde Park, in the Hudson River valley in upstate New York. His father, James Roosevelt (1828–1900), was a wealthy landowner and vice-president of the Delaware & Hudson Railway. The Roosevelt family (see Roosevelt family tree) had lived in New York for more than 200 years: Claes van Rosenvelt, originally from Haarlem in the Netherlands, arrived in New York (then called Nieuw Amsterdam) in about 1650. In 1788, Isaac Roosevelt was a member of the state convention in Poughkeepsie which voted to ratify the United States Constitution—a matter of great pride to his great-great-grandson Franklin.

In the 18th century the Roosevelt family had divided into two branches, the "Hyde Park Roosevelts", who by the late 19th century were Democrats, and the "Oyster Bay Roosevelts", who were Republicans. President Theodore Roosevelt, an Oyster Bay Republican, was Franklin's fifth cousin. Despite their political differences, the two branches remained friendly: James Roosevelt met his wife at a Roosevelt family gathering at Oyster Bay, and Franklin was to marry Theodore's niece.

Roosevelt's mother Sara Delano (1854–1941) was of French Protestant (Huguenot) descent, her ancestor Phillippe de la Noye having arrived in Massachusetts in 1621. Her mother was a Lyman, another very old American family. Franklin was her only child, and she was an extremely possessive mother. Since James was a rather remote father (he was 54 when Franklin was born), Sara was the dominant influence in Franklin's early years. He later told friends that he was afraid of her all his life (a factor that may have contributed to his inability to stand up to her on matters of race). He received his early education at home under her supervision.

Roosevelt grew up in an atmosphere of privilege. He learned to ride, to shoot, to row and to play polo and lawn tennis. Frequent trips to Europe made him fluent in German and French. He acquired a conventional set of upper class attitudes, and a streak of anti-Semitism from his mother which he was never able to fully shake. The fact that his father was a Democrat, however, set him apart to some extent from most other members of the Hudson Valley aristocracy. The Roosevelts believed in public service, and were wealthy enough to be able to spend time and money on philanthropy.

This was reinforced by Roosevelt's schooling at Groton, an elite Episcopal boarding school in Massachusetts. He was heavily influenced by the headmaster, Endicott Peabody, who preached the duty of Christians to help the less fortunate and urged his students to enter public service—although most of them in fact entered banks and Wall Street law firms. Roosevelt graduated from Groton in 1900, and naturally progressed to Harvard University, where he enjoyed himself in conventional fashion and graduated with an A.B. (arts degree) in 1904 without much serious study. While he was at Harvard his fifth cousin Theodore Roosevelt became President, and his vigorous leadership style and reforming zeal made him Franklin's role model. In 1903 he met his future wife Eleanor Roosevelt, Theodore's niece, at a White House reception. (They had previously met as children, but this was their first serious encounter).

Roosevelt next attended the Columbia Law School. He passed the bar exam and completed the requirements for a law degree in 1907 but did not bother to actually graduate. In 1908 he took a job with the prestigious Wall Street firm of Carter, Ledyard and Milburn, dealing mainly with corporate law. Meanwhile he had become engaged to Eleanor, despite the fierce resistance of Sara Roosevelt, who was terrified of losing control of Franklin. They were married in March 1905, and moved into a house bought for them by Sara, who became a frequent house-guest, much to Eleanor's mortification. Eleanor was painfully shy and hated social life, and at first she desired nothing more than to stay at home and raise Franklin's children, of which they had six in rapid succession: Anna (1906–1975), James (1907–1991), Franklin, Jr. (March to November 1909), Elliott (1910–1990), a second Franklin Jr. (1914–1988), and John (1916–1981).

The five surviving Roosevelt children all led tumultuous lives overshadowed by their famous parents. They had between them fifteen marriages, ten divorces and twenty-nine children. All four sons were officers in World War II and were decorated, on merit, for bravery. Their postwar careers, whether in business or politics, were disappointing. Two of them were elected briefly to the House of Representatives but none attained higher office despite several attempts. One even became a Republican.

Political career

FDR as Assistant Secretary for the Navy

In 1909 Theodore Roosevelt left the White House and was succeeded by the conservative Republican William Howard Taft. Franklin's dislike of Taft's administration drove him into politics. In 1910 he ran as a Democrat for the New York State Senate from the district around Hyde Park, which had not elected a Democrat since 1884. The Roosevelt name, a lot of Roosevelt money and the big Democratic sweep of that year were enough to get him elected. In the state capital Albany, he became leader of a group of reformist Democrats who opposed the Irish-American Tammany Hall machine which dominated the state Democratic Party. Roosevelt was young (30 in 1912), tall, handsome, and well spoken, and soon became a popular figure among New York Democrats. When Woodrow Wilson was elected President in 1912, Roosevelt was offered the post of Assistant Secretary of the Navy. Roosevelt was more interested in elective office: in 1914 he ran for the Democratic nomination for the United States Senate, but was blocked by Tammany Hall. Nevertheless the Navy post was to be the making of his career.

Between 1913 and 1917 Roosevelt campaigned to expand the Navy (in the face of considerable opposition from pacifists in the administration such as the Secretary of State, William Jennings Bryan), and founded the United States Navy Reserve to provide a pool of trained men who could be mobilized in wartime. He was also involved in the frequent American interventions in the affairs of Central American and Caribbean countries: he personally wrote the constitution which the U.S. imposed on Haiti in 1915. When the U.S. entered World War I in April 1917, Roosevelt became the effective administrative head of the United States Navy, since the Secretary of the Navy, Josephus Daniels, had been appointed mainly for political reasons and was widely considered to be not up to the job.

Roosevelt soon developed a life-long affection for the Navy. He also showed great administrative talent, and quickly learned to negotiate with Congress and other government departments to get budgets approved and a rapid expansion of the Navy pushed through. He became an enthusiastic advocate of the submarine, and also of means to combat the German submarine menace to Allied shipping: he proposed building a mine barrage across the North Sea from Norway to Scotland. In 1918 he visited Britain and France to inspect American naval facilities—during this visit he met Winston Churchill for the first time. With the end of the war in November 1918, he was in charge of demobilization, although he opposed plans to completely dismantle the Navy.

In 1919 Roosevelt became an ardent supporter of Wilson's plan for a League of Nations to make future wars impossible. He campaigned tirelessly across the country in support of the League of Nations treaty, which was eventually rejected by the Senate. This made him a favorite of Wilson, and it was mainly due to Wilson's influence that the 1920 Democratic National Convention chose Roosevelt as the candidate for Vice-President of the United States on the ticket headed by Governor James M. Cox of Ohio. After eight years of Democratic government, however, the country was ready for a change, and the Cox-Roosevelt ticket was heavily defeated by the Republican Warren Harding. Roosevelt then retired to a New York legal practice, but few doubted that he would soon run for public office again.

Private crises

Statue of FDR in his wheelchair at the FDR Memorial in Washington D.C

Roosevelt was a charismatic, handsome and socially active man, while his wife Eleanor was shy and retiring, and furthermore was almost constantly pregnant during the decade after 1906. Roosevelt soon found romantic and sexual outlets outside his marriage. One of these was Eleanor's social secretary Lucy Mercer, with whom Roosevelt began an affair soon after she was hired in early 1914. In September 1918, Eleanor found letters in one of Franklin's suits which revealed the affair. Eleanor was both mortified and angry, and confronted him with the letters, demanding a divorce. Franklin's mother Sara Roosevelt soon learned of the crisis, and decisively intervened. She argued that a divorce would ruin Roosevelt's political career, and pointed out that Eleanor would have to raise five children on her own if she divorced him. Since Sara was financially supporting the Roosevelts, this was a strong incentive to preserve the marriage.

Eventually a deal was struck. The facade of the marriage would be preserved, but sexual relations would cease. Sara would pay for a separate home at Hyde Park for Eleanor, and she would also fund Eleanor's philanthropic interests. When Franklin became President—as Sara was always convinced he would—Eleanor would be able to use her position to support her causes. Eleanor accepted these terms, and in time Franklin and Eleanor developed a new relationship as friends and political colleagues, while living separate lives. Franklin continued to see various women, including his secretary Missy LeHand.

In August 1921, while the Roosevelts were vacationing at Campobello Island, New Brunswick, Roosevelt was stricken with poliomyelitis, a viral infection of the nerve fibers of the spinal cord, probably contracted while swimming in the stagnant water of a nearby lake. The result was that Roosevelt was totally and permanently paralyzed from the waist down. At first the muscles of his abdomen and lower back were also affected, but these eventually recovered. Thus he could sit up and, with aid of leg-braces, stand upright, but he could not walk. Unlike in other forms of paraplegia, his bowels, bladder and sexual functions were not affected.

Although the paralysis resulting from polio had no cure (and still does not, although the disease is now very rare in developed countries), for the rest of his life Roosevelt refused to believe that he was permanently paralyzed. He tried a wide range of therapies, but none had any effect. Nevertheless, he became convinced of the benefits of hydrotherapy, and in 1926 he bought a resort at Warm Springs, Georgia, where he founded a hydrotherapy center for the treatment of polio patients which still operates as the Roosevelt Warm Springs Institute for Rehabilitation (with an expanded mission), and spent a lot of time there in the 1920s. This was in part to escape from his mother, who tried to resume control of his life following his illness.

At a time when media intrusion in the private lives of public figures was much less intense than it is today, Roosevelt was able to convince many people that he was in fact getting better, which he believed was essential if he was to run for public office again. (The Encyclopædia Britannica, for example, says that "by careful exercises and treatments at Warm Springs he gradually recovered", although this is quite untrue). Fitting his hips and legs with iron braces, he laboriously taught himself to walk a short distance by swiveling his torso while supporting himself with a walking stick. In private he used a wheelchair, but he was careful never to be seen in it in public, although he sometimes appeared on crutches. He usually appeared in public standing upright, while being supported on one side by an aide or one of his sons. He would certainly have hated the statue of himself in a wheelchair now to be seen at the Franklin Delano Roosevelt Memorial in Washington, D.C..

Governor of New York

By 1928 Roosevelt believed he had recovered sufficiently to resume his political career. He had been careful to maintain his contacts in the Democratic Party. In 1924 he had attended the Democratic Convention and made a nomination speech for the Governor of New York, Alfred E. Smith. Although Smith was not nominated, in 1928 he ran again, and Roosevelt again supported him. This time he became the Democratic candidate, and he urged Roosevelt to run for Governor of New York. To gain the Democratic nomination, Roosevelt had to make his peace with Tammany Hall, which he did with some reluctance. At the November election, Smith was heavily defeated by the Republican Herbert Hoover, but Roosevelt was elected Governor by a margin of 25,000 votes out of 2.2 million. As a native of upstate New York he was able to appeal to voters outside New York City in a way other Democrats could not.

Roosevelt came to office in 1929 as a reform Democrat, but with no overall plan for his administration. He tackled official corruption by sacking Smith's cronies and instituting a Public Service Commission, and took action to address New York's growing need for electricity through the development of hydroelectricity on the St. Lawrence River. He reformed the state's prison administration and built a new state prison at Attica. He had a long feud with Robert Moses, the state's most powerful public servant, whom he sacked as Secretary of State but kept on as Parks Commissioner and head of urban planning. When the Wall Street Crash in October ushered in the Great Depression, Roosevelt showed his usual energy and imagination in responding. The Hoover administration took the traditional Republican view that the state should not interfere with the free operations of the economy, and that the states and cities should carry the burden of unemployment relief. Roosevelt therefore asked the state legislature for $20 million in relief funds, which he spent mainly on public works in the hope of stimulating demand and providing employment. Aid to the unemployed, he said, "must be extended by Government, not as a matter of charity, but as a matter of social duty."

Roosevelt knew little about economics, but he took advice from leading academics and social workers, and also from Eleanor, who had developed a network of friends in the welfare and labor fields and who took a close interest in social questions. On Eleanor's recommendation he appointed one of her friends, Frances Perkins, as Labor Secretary, and there was a sweeping reform of the labor laws. He established the first state relief agency under Harry Hopkins, who became a key advisor, and urged the legislature to pass an old age pension bill and an unemployment insurance bill.

The main weakness of the Roosevelt administration was the blatant corruption of the Tammany Hall machine in New York City, where the Mayor, Jimmy Walker, was the puppet of Tammany boss John F. Curry and where corruption of all kinds was rife. Roosevelt had made his name as an opponent of Tammany, but he needed the machine's goodwill to be re-elected in 1930 and for a possible future presidential bid. Roosevelt fell back on the rather feeble line that the Governor could not interfere in the government of New York City. But as the 1930 election approached Roosevelt acted by setting up a judicial investigation into the corrupt sale of offices. This eventually resulted in Walker resigning and fleeing to Europe to escape prosecution. But Tammany Hall's power was not seriously affected. In 1930 Roosevelt was elected to a second term by a margin of more than 700,000 votes.

First term: the New Deal

Roosevelt gives one of his fireside chats

Roosevelt's immense popularity in the largest state in the country made him an obvious candidate for the Democratic nomination, which was hotly contested since it seemed clear that Hoover would be defeated at the 1932 presidential election. Al Smith also wanted the nomination, and Roosevelt was at first reluctant to oppose his old patron. But the party regulars were convinced that Smith, a Catholic who was closely associated with the illegal liquor industry, was unacceptable, and persuaded Roosevelt to declare his candidacy. At first the delegates at the Chicago convention were deadlocked, but eventually Smith's supporters from the north-eastern states were persuaded to support Roosevelt, and he was nominated on the fourth ballot. During the campaign Roosevelt said: "I pledge you, I pledge myself, to a new deal for the American people", coining a slogan that was later adopted for his legislative program.

In November, Roosevelt and his Vice Presidential running mate, John N. Garner of Texas, won 57 percent of the vote and carried all but six states. In February 1933, while he was President-elect, Roosevelt had a brief holiday in Florida. In Miami an unemployed bricklayer named Giuseppe Zangara fired five shots at Roosevelt, missing him but killing the Mayor of Chicago, Anton Cermak. Zangara, who was later executed, said he had shot at Roosevelt because "the capitalists killed my life."

When Roosevelt was inaugurated in March 1933 the U.S. was in the depths of the worst depression in its history. Some 13 million people, a third of the workforce, were unemployed. Industrial production had fallen by more than half since 1929. In a country with few government social services, millions were living on the edge of starvation, and two million were homeless. The banking system seemed to be on the point of collapse. There were occasional outbreaks of violence, but most observers considered it remarkable that such an obvious breakdown of the capitalist system had not led to a rapid growth of socialism, communism, or fascism (as happened for example in Germany). Instead of adopting revolutionary solutions, the American people had turned to the Democrats and to a leader who had grown up in privilege.

Roosevelt indeed had no systematic economic beliefs at all. He saw the Depression as mainly a matter of confidence—people had stopped spending, investing and employing labor because they were afraid to do so. As he put it in his inaugural address: "the only thing we have to fear is fear itself." He therefore set out to restore confidence through a series of dramatic gestures. He called a "bank holiday" to prevent a threatened run on the banks and called an emergency session of Congress to stabilize the financial system. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation was created to guarantee the funds held in all banks in the Federal Reserve System, and thus prevent runs and bank failures. Roosevelt's series of radio speeches known as Fireside Chats presented his proposals to the American public.

President Franklin D. Roosevelt signs the TVA Act

During the first hundred days of his administration, Roosevelt used his enormous prestige and the sense of impending disaster to force a series of bills through Congress, establishing and funding various new government agencies. These included the Emergency Relief Administration, which granted funds to the states for unemployment relief; the Works Progress Administration and the Civilian Conservation Corps to hire millions of unemployed to work on local projects; and the Agricultural Adjustment Administration, with powers to increase farm prices and support struggling farmers. Following these emergency measures came the National Industrial Recovery Act which imposed an unprecedented amount of state regulation on industry, including fair practice codes and a guaranteed role for trade unions, in exchange for the repeal of anti-trust laws and huge amounts of financial assistance as a stimulus to the economy. Later came one of the largest pieces of state industrial enterprise in American history, the Tennessee Valley Authority, which built dams and power stations, controlled floods, and improved agriculture in one of the poorest parts of the country. The repeal of prohibition also provided stimulus to the economy, while eliminating a major source of corruption.

After the 1934 Congressional elections, which gave the Democrats large majorities in both houses, there was a fresh surge of New Deal legislation, driven by the "brains trust" of young economists and social planners gathered in the White House, including Raymond Moley, Rexford Tugwell and Adolf Berle of Columbia University, attorney Basil O'Connor, economist Bernard Baruch and Felix Frankfurter of Harvard Law School. Eleanor Roosevelt, Labor Secretary Frances Perkins (the first female Cabinet Secretary) and Agriculture Secretary Henry A. Wallace were also important influences. These measures included bills to regulate the stock market and prevent the corrupt practices which had led to the 1929 Crash; the Social Security Act, which established Social Security and promised economic security for the elderly, the poor and the sick; and the National Labor Relations Act, which established the rights of workers to organize unions, to engage in collective bargaining and to take part in strikes in support of their demands.

The net effect of these measures was to restore confidence and optimism, allowing the country to begin the long process of recovery from the Depression. The popular belief is that Roosevelt's programs, collectively known as the New Deal, cured the Great Depression. Historians and economists debate over the extent to which this is true. The economic theories of John Maynard Keynes were not widely known in the U.S., and it is doubtful that Roosevelt ever knew of them. Even the large appropriations that Roosevelt extracted from Congress and spent on relief and assistance to industry were not enough to provide a sufficient fiscal stimulus to revive so large an economy as that of the United States. The economy remained sluggish throughout the 1930s, and, in fact, after a partial recovery, slid back towards Depression in 1937 and 1938. Some argue that this was mainly because the high tariff barriers erected in response to the Depression were not removed, and without a revival of international trade there could be no full recovery. It took the massive growth in government spending during World War II to restore industrial production to its 1929 level and eliminate unemployment.

The second term

Roosevelt's ebullient public personality did a great deal to help restore the nation's confidence.

At the 1936 election Roosevelt won 61 percent of the vote and carried every state except Maine and Vermont. The New Deal Democrats won enough seats in Congress to outvote both the Republicans and the conservative Southern Democrats (who supported programs which brought benefits for their states but opposed measures which strengthened labor unions). Roosevelt was backed by a coalition of voters which included the urban workers and middle class, small farmers, the "Solid South", northern African-American voters (who had traditionally been Republicans), Jews and other urban ethnic minorities, intellectuals and political liberals. This coalition remained largely intact for the Democratic Party until the 1960s. The Roosevelt ascendancy also prevented the growth of both communism and fascism. Although the Communist Party USA saw some growth during the 1930s, and gained some influence in industrial unions affiliated with the Congress of Industrial Organizations (CIO), it was unable to break into the political mainstream. Roosevelt told Congressman Martin Dies, Chairman of the Dies Committee at a Herald Tribune forum in New York, "There is no menace here in Communism."

Roosevelt's second term agenda included an act creating the United States Housing Authority (1937), a second Agricultural Adjustment Act and the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938, which created the minimum wage. When the economy began to deteriorate again in late 1937, Roosevelt responded with an aggressive program of stimulation, asking Congress for $5 billion for relief and public works programs.

With the Republicans powerless in Congress, the conservative majority on the United States Supreme Court was the only obstacle to Roosevelt's programs. During 1937 the Court ruled that the National Recovery Act and some other pieces of New Deal legislation were unconstitutional. Roosevelt's response was to propose enlarging the Court so that he could appoint more sympathetic judges. This "court packing" plan was the first Roosevelt scheme to run into serious political opposition, since it seemed to upset the separation of powers which is one of the cornerstones of the American constitutional structure. Eventually Roosevelt was forced to abandon the plan, but the Court also drew back from confrontation with the administration by finding the Labor Relations Act and the Social Security Act to be constitutional. Deaths and retirements on the Supreme Court soon allowed Roosevelt to make his own appointments to the bench. Between 1937 and 1941 he appointed eight justices to the court, including liberals such as Felix Frankfurter, Hugo Black and William O. Douglas, reducing the possibility of further clashes.

Foreign policy 1933–41

Secretary of State Cordell Hull

The rejection of the League of Nations treaty in 1919 marked the dominance of isolationism in American foreign policy. Despite his Wilsonian background, Roosevelt and his Secretary of State, Cordell Hull, acted with great care not to provoke isolationist sentiment. The main foreign policy initiative of Roosevelt's first term was the Good Neighbor Policy, a re-evaluation of American policy towards Latin America, which ever since the Monroe Doctrine of 1823 had been seen as an American sphere of influence. American forces were withdrawn from Haiti, and new treaties with Cuba and Panama ended their status as American protectorates. At the Seventh International Conference of American States in Montevideo in December 1933, Roosevelt and Hull signed the Montevideo Convention on the Rights and Duties of States, renouncing the assumed American right to intervene unilaterally in the affairs of Latin American countries. Nevertheless, the realities of American support for various Latin American dictators, often to serve American corporate interests, remained unchanged. It was Roosevelt who made the often-quoted remark about the dictator of Nicaragua, Anastasio Somoza: "Somoza may be a son of a bitch, but he's our son of a bitch."

The rise to power of Adolf Hitler in Germany aroused fears of a new world war. In 1935, at the time of Fascist Italy's invasion of Abyssinia, Congress passed the Neutrality Act, applying a mandatory ban on the shipment of arms from the U.S. to any combatant nation. Roosevelt opposed the act on the grounds that it penalized the victims of aggression such as Abyssinia, and that it restricted his right as President to assist friendly countries, but he eventually signed it. In 1937 Congress passed an even more stringent Act, but when the Sino-Japanese War broke out in 1937 Roosevelt found various ways to assist China, and warned that Fascist Italy, Nazi Germany and Imperial Japan were threats to world peace and to the U.S. When World War II in Europe broke out in 1939, Roosevelt became increasingly eager to assist Britain and France, and he began a regular secret correspondence with Winston Churchill, in which the two freely discussed ways of circumventing the Neutrality Acts.

In May 1940 Germany attacked France and rapidly occupied the country, leaving Britain vulnerable to German air attack and possible invasion. Roosevelt was determined to prevent this and sought to shift public opinion in favor of aiding Britain. He secretly aided a private body, the Committee to Defend America by Aiding the Allies, and he appointed two anti-isolationist Republicans, Henry L. Stimson and Frank Knox, as Secretaries of War and the Navy respectively. The fall of Paris shocked American opinion, and isolationist sentiment declined. In August, Roosevelt openly defied the Neutrality Acts with the Destroyers for Bases Agreement, which gave 50 American destroyers to Britain and Canada in exchange for base rights in the British Caribbean islands. This was a precursor of the March 1941 Lend-Lease agreement which began to direct massive military and economic aid to Britain.

The path to war

Secretary of War Henry L. Stimson Navy Secretary Frank Knox

At the 1938 Congressional elections the Republicans staged their first comeback since 1932, gaining seats in both Houses and reducing Roosevelt's ability to pass legislation at will. Roosevelt's campaign to have conservative Democratic Senators such as Walter F. George of Georgia replaced by pro-Administration candidates was defeated. This increased speculation that Roosevelt would retire in 1940. No American President had ever sought a third term in office, following a precedent set by George Washington (it was to become more than a precedent when Amendment 22, which "limits Presidential service to two terms", was ratified in 1951). During 1940, however, with the international situation growing increasingly threatening, Roosevelt decided that only he could lead the nation through the coming crisis. Republicans (and some others) said that this was a sign of his increasing arrogance. Nevertheless, Roosevelt's huge personal popularity allowed him to be re-elected with 55 percent of the vote and 38 of the 48 states. A shift to the left within the Administration was shown by the adoption of Henry Wallace as his Vice President in place of the conservative Southerner John N. Garner.

Roosevelt's third term was dominated by World War II, first in Europe and then in the Pacific. The massive re-armament program begun in 1938, partly to expand and re-equip the United States Army and Navy and partly to support Britain, France, China and other friendly states, finally provided the Keynesian economic stimulus which was needed to revive the economy. From 1939, unemployment fell rapidly, as the unemployed either joined the armed forces or found work in arms factories. By 1941 there was actually a labor shortage in the arms manufacturing centers of Chicago and Detroit, accelerating the Great Migration of African-American workers from the Southern states.

The most pressing issue was the urgent necessity of assisting Britain, whose financial resources were exhausted by the end of 1940. Congress, where isolationist sentiment was in retreat, passed the Lend-Lease Act in March 1941, allowing Britain to "lease" huge amounts of military equipment on the basis of a promise that they would be paid for after the war. Britain was also forced to agree to dismantle preferential trade arrangements that kept American exports out of the British Empire. This underlined the point that the war aims of the U.S. and Britain were not the same. Roosevelt was a lifelong free trader and anti-imperialist, and ending European colonialism was one of his objectives. This did not prevent the forming of a close personal relationship with Churchill, who became British Prime Minister in May 1940. When Germany invaded the Soviet Union in June 1941, Roosevelt extended Lend-Lease to the Soviets. During 1941 Roosevelt also agreed that the U.S. Navy would escort Allied convoys as far east as Iceland, and would fire on German ships or submarines if they attacked Allied shipping within the U.S. Navy zone. Thus by mid-1941 Roosevelt had committed the U.S. to the Allied side with a policy of "all aid short of war." Roosevelt met with Churchill on August 14, 1941 to develop the Atlantic Charter in what was to be the first of several strategic war conferences.

Pearl Harbor

Roosevelt was much less keen to involve the U.S. in the war developing in East Asia, where Japan occupied French Indo-China in late 1940. He authorized increased aid to China, and in July 1941 he restricted the sales of oil and other strategic materials to Japan, but also continued negotiations with the Japanese government in the hope of averting war. Through 1941 the Japanese planned their attack on the western powers, including the U.S., while spinning out the negotiations in Washington. The "hawks" in the Administration, led by Stimson and Treasury Secretary Henry Morgenthau, were in favor of a tough policy towards Japan, but Roosevelt, emotionally committed to the war in Europe, refused to believe that Japan might attack the U.S. and favored continued negotiations. The U.S. Ambassador in Tokyo, Joseph C. Grew, passed on warnings about the planned attack on the American Pacific Fleet's base at Pearl Harbor in Hawaii, but these were ignored by the State Department.

On 7 December 1941 the Japanese attacked the U.S. fleet at Pearl Harbor, damaging most of it and killing 3,000 American personnel. The American commanders at Pearl Harbor, Admiral Husband E. Kimmel and General Walter Short, were taken completely by surprise, and were later made scapegoats for this disaster. The fault really lay with the War Department in Washington, who since August 1940 had been able to read the Japanese diplomatic codes and had thus been given ample warning of the imminence of the attack (though not of its actual date). The War Department had not passed these warnings on to the commanders in Hawaii, mainly because its analysts refused to believe that the Japanese would really have the effrontery to attack the United States.

It has become a staple of postwar revisionist history that Roosevelt knew all about the planned attack on Pearl Harbor but did nothing to prevent it so that the U.S. could be brought into the war as a result of being attacked. There is no evidence to support this theory. On 5 December the Cabinet discussed the mounting intelligence evidence that the Japanese were mobilizing for war. Navy Secretary Knox told the Cabinet of the decoded messages showing that the Japanese fleet was at sea, but stated his opinion that it was heading south to attack the British in Malaya and Singapore, and to seize the oil resources of the Dutch East Indies. Roosevelt and the rest of the Cabinet accepted this view. There were intercepted Japanese messages suggesting an attack on Pearl Harbor, but delays in translating and passing on these messages through the inefficient War Department bureaucracy meant that they did not reach the Cabinet before the attack took place. There is no evidence that Roosevelt was made aware of them. All contemporary accounts describe Roosevelt, Hull and Stimson as shocked and outraged when they heard news of the attack.

The Japanese took advantage of their pre-emptive destruction of most of the Pacific Fleet to rapidly occupy the Philippines and all the British and Dutch colonies in Southeast Asia, taking Singapore in February 1942 and advancing through Burma to the borders of British India by May, thus cutting off the overland supply route to China. Pearl Harbor was followed immediately by declarations of war on the U.S. by Germany and Italy. Isolationism evaporated overnight and the country united behind Roosevelt as a wartime leader. Despite the wave of anger that swept across the U.S. in the wake of Pearl Harbor, Roosevelt decided from the start that the defeat of Nazi Germany had to take priority. He met with Churchill in late December and planned a broad alliance between the U.S., Britain, and the Soviet Union, with the objectives of, first, halting the German advances in the Soviet Union and in North Africa; second, launching an invasion of western Europe with the aim of crushing Nazi Germany between two fronts, and only third turning to the task of defeating Japan.

Although Roosevelt was constitutionally the Commander-in-Chief of the United States armed forces, he had never worn a uniform and he did not interfere in operational military matters in anything like the way Churchill did in Britain, let alone take direct command of the forces as Adolf Hitler and Joseph Stalin did. He placed great trust in the Army Chief of Staff, General George Marshall, and later in his Supreme Commander in Europe, General Dwight Eisenhower, and left almost all strategic and tactical decisions to them, within the broad framework for the conduct of the war decided by the Cabinet in agreement with the other Allied powers. He had less confidence in his commander in the Pacific, General Douglas MacArthur, who he rightly suspected of planning to run for President against him. But since the war in the Pacific was mainly a naval war, this did not greatly matter until later in the war. Given his close personal interest in the Navy, Roosevelt tended to intervene more in naval matters, but strong Navy commanders like Admirals Ernest King in the Atlantic theater and Chester Nimitz in the Pacific enjoyed his confidence.

The Japanese-American issue

Following the outbreak of the Pacific War Roosevelt came under immediate pressure to remove or intern the estimated 120,000 people of Japanese origin or descent living in California, two-thirds of them American-born, on the grounds that they were a threat to security. Pressure came from California Governor Culbert Olsen (a Democrat), the Hearst newspapers and General John L. De Witt, the U.S. Army Commander in California, whose simple attitude was that "a Jap is a Jap." Opponents of the suggestion were Interior Secretary Harold L. Ickes, Attorney-General Francis Biddle and FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover, who said that there was no evidence of Japanese-American involvement in espionage or sabotage.

On February 7, 1942 Biddle met with Roosevelt and set out the Justice Department's objections to the proposal. Roosevelt then ordered that a plan be drawn up to evacuate the Japanese-Americans from California in the event of a landing or air attacks on the West Coast by Japan, but not otherwise. But on February 11 he met with Secretary of War Stimson, who persuaded him to approve an immediate evacuation. There was evidence of espionage on behalf of Japan in the U.S. before and after Pearl Harbor; code-breakers decrypted messages to Japan from agents in North America and Hawaii. These MAGIC cables were kept secret from all but those with the highest clearance, such as Roosevelt, lest the Japanese discover the decryption and change their code.

On February 19, Roosevelt signed Executive Order 9066, authorizing the military to relocate people from "combat zones" (such as California) on security grounds, without specifically mentioning the Japanese-Americans. As a result, 120,000 people, half of them U.S. citizens, were interned without charge or trial. Roosevelt also wanted the 140,000 Japanese-Americans in Hawaii deported to the mainland, but the territorial authorities, including the Army, objected on the grounds that they were indispensable to the Islands' economy; thus the plan was dropped. Japanese-Americans continued to serve in the U.S. armed forces throughout the war, although they were not employed in the Pacific theatre. (The 442nd Regimental Combat Team was composed almost entirely of formerly interned Japanese-Americans and remains the most highly decorated unit in U.S. military history.) Conditions in the camps, in Idaho, Wyoming, Utah, and Colorado, were tolerable by most accounts (and quite pleasant according to others), but detainees naturally resented being detained and there were repeated disturbances in the camps, which resulted in 15,000 people being interned in a higher-security center at Tule Lake, California. In 1944 the Supreme Court upheld the legality of the executive order, which remained in force until December of that year.

By contrast, there was no mass internment of German-Americans or Italian-Americans. Out of 60 million Americans of German descent, only 11,000, all German-born, were placed in internment camps. As well, about 4,000 German nationals were deported from Central American countries for internment in the U.S., because the U.S. felt that these countries lacked the capacity to deal with possible German espionage.

Interior Secretary Ickes lobbied Roosevelt through 1944 to release the Japanese-American internees, but Roosevelt did not act until after the November presidential election. A fight for Japanese-American civil rights would have meant a fight with influential Democrats, the Army, and the Hearst press and would have endangered Roosevelt's chances of winning California in 1944. Critics of Roosevelt's actions believe they were motivated in part by racism. In 1925 he had written about Japanese immigration: "Californians have properly objected on the sound basic grounds that Japanese immigrants are not capable of assimilation into the American population... Anyone who has traveled in the Far East knows that the mingling of Asiatic blood with European and American blood produces, in nine cases out of ten, the most unfortunate results." But when activating the 442nd RCT on February 1, 1943, Roosevelt said, "No loyal citizen of the United States should be denied the democratic right to exercise the responsibilities of his citizenship, regardless of his ancestry. The principle on which this country was founded and by which it has always been governed is that Americanism is a matter of the mind and heart; Americanism is not, and never was, a matter of race or ancestry."

Civil rights and refugees

A. Philip Randolph

Roosevelt's attitudes to race were also tested by the issue of African-American (or "Negro", to use the term of the time) service in the armed forces. The Democratic Party at this time was dominated by Southerners who were opposed to any concession to demands for racial equality. During the New Deal years, there had been a series of conflicts over whether African-Americans were eligible for the various government benefits and programs. Typically, the young idealists who ran the programs tried to make these benefits available regardless of race. Southern Governors or Congressmen would then complain to Roosevelt, who would to keep his party together intervene to uphold segregation. The Works Progress Administration and the Civilian Conservation Corps, for example, segregated their work forces by race at Roosevelt's insistence after Southern governors protested at unemployed whites being required to work alongside blacks. Roosevelt's personal racial attitudes were conventional for his time and class. He was not a visceral racist, but he accepted the common stereotype of African-Americans (whom he had little contact with in his entire life) as lazy, if good-natured, children just as they were shown in popular entertainment. He did little to advance civil rights, despite prodding from Eleanor and liberals in his Cabinet such as Frances Perkins.

Roosevelt explained his reluctance to support anti-lynching legislation in a conversation with Walter White of the NAACP. "I did not choose the tools with which I must work. Had I been permitted to choose then I would have selected quite different ones. But I've got to get legislation passed by Congress to save America. The Southerners by reason of the seniority rule in Congress are chairmen or occupy strategic places on most of the Senate and House committees. If I come out for the anti-lynching bill now, they will block every bill I ask Congress to pass to keep America from collapsing. I just can't take that risk."

Despite Roosevelt's apparent inability to support civil rights, he was still perceived as a black-friendly threat in the American South. A popular anti-Roosevelt song declared: "You kiss the niggers / I'll kiss the Jews / We'll stay in the White House / As long as we choose"

The war brought the issue to the forefront. The armed forces had been segregated ever since the Civil War. African-Americans in the Army served only in rear-echelon or service roles, the Navy was almost entirely white and the Marine Corps wholly so. Neither the Secretary of War, Henry Stimson, nor the Navy Secretary, Frank Knox, were Southerners (Stimson came from a New York abolitionist family), but they were aware that the officer corps of both services were drawn heavily from Southern military families, and feared disturbances or even mutiny if integration of the armed forces were imposed. "Colored troops do very well under white officers," said Stimson, "but every time we try to lift them a little beyond where they can go, disaster and confusion follow." Knox was blunter: "In our history we don't take Negroes into a ship's company."

But by 1940 the African-American vote had shifted almost totally from Republican to Democrat, and African-American leaders like Walter White of the NAACP and T. Arnold Hill of the Urban League had become recognized as part of the Roosevelt coalition. In June 1941, at the urging of A. Philip Randolph, the leading African-American trade unionist, Roosevelt signed an executive order establishing the Fair Employment Practice Commission and prohibiting discrimination by any government agency, including the armed forces. In practice the services, particularly the Navy and the Marines, found ways to evade this order—the Marine Corps remained all-white until 1943. In September 1942, at Eleanor's instigation, Roosevelt met with a delegation of African-American leaders, who demanded full integration into the forces, including the right to serve in combat roles and in the Navy, the Marine Corps and the United States Army Air Force. Roosevelt, with his usual desire to please everyone, agreed, but then did nothing to implement his promise. It was left to his successor, Harry S. Truman, to fully desegregate the armed forces.

Roosevelt's complex attitudes to American Jews were even more well-chronicled. Franklin's mother Sara was well known for being a anti-Semite, an attitude common among Eastern Americans at a time when Jewish immigrants were flooding into the U.S. and their children were advancing rapidly into the business and professional classes alarmed those already there. Roosevelt aparently inherited some of his mother's attitudes, and at times expressed them in private. Paradoxicaly some of his closest political associates, such as Felix Frankfurter, Bernard Baruch and Samuel I. Rosenman, were Jewish, and he happily cultivated the important Jewish vote in New York City (much as TR had done). He appointed Henry Morgenthau, Jr. as the first Jewish Secretary of the Treasury and appointed Frankfurter to the Supreme Court. But he once told Morgenthau and a Catholic economist, Leo T. Crowley: "This is a Protestant country, and the Catholics and the Jews are here on sufferance."

Roosevelt's anti-Semitism was a possible factor in his deciding government policy on the Jewish refugee issue before and during World War II The other being his fear of of provoking isolationists.

During his first term Roosevelt condemned Hitler's persecution of German Jews, but said "this is not a governmental affair" and refused to make any public comment. As the Jewish exodus from Germany increased after 1937, Roosevelt was asked by American Jewish organizations and Congressmen to allow these refugees to settle in the U.S. At first he suggested that the Jewish refugees should be "resettled" elsewhere, and suggested Venezuela, Ethiopia or West Africa—anywhere but the U.S. Morgenthau, Ickes and Eleanor pressed him to adopt a more generous policy but he was afraid of provoking the isolationists—men such as Charles Lindbergh who exploited anti-Semitism as a means of attacking Roosevelt's policies. In practice very few Jewish refugees came to the U.S.—only 22,000 German refugees were admitted in 1940, not all of them Jewish. The State Department official in charge of refugee issues, Breckinridge Long, was a visceral anti-Semite who did everything he could to obstruct Jewish immigration. Despite frequent complaints, Roosevelt failed to remove him.

After 1942, when Roosevelt was made aware, by Rabbi Stephen Wise, the Polish envoy Jan Karski and others, of the Nazi extermination of the Jews, he refused to allow any systematic attempt to rescue European Jewish refugees and bring them to the U.S. In May 1943 he wrote to Cordell Hull (whose wife was Jewish): "I do not think we can do other than strictly comply with the present immigration laws." In January 1944, however, Morgenthau succeeded in persuading Roosevelt to allow the creation of a War Refugee Board in the Treasury Department. This allowed an increasing number of Jews to enter the U.S. in 1944 and 1945. By this time, however only a fragment of the European Jewish communities had survived Hitler's Holocaust. In any case after 1945 the focus of Jewish aspirations shifted from migration to the U.S. to settlement in Palestine, where the Zionist movement hoped to create a Jewish state. But Roosevelt was also opposed to this idea. When he met King Ibn Saud of Saudi Arabia in February 1945, he assured him he did not support a Jewish state in Palestine. He suggested that since the Nazis had killed three million Polish Jews, there should now be plenty of room in Poland to resettle all the Jewish refugees. President Roosevelt's attitudes towards Americans of Japanese origin, African heritage and Jewish faith remain in striking contrast with the generosity of spirit he displayed, and the social liberalism he practiced in other realms.

Strategy and diplomacy

Chiang Kai-shek of China, Roosevelt, and Winston Churchill of Britain at the Cairo Conference in 1943

As Churchill rightly saw, the entry of the U.S. into the war meant that victory of the Allied powers was assured. Even though Britain was exhausted by the end of 1942, the alliance between the manpower of the Soviet Union and the industrial resources of the U.S. was bound to defeat Germany and Japan in the long run. But mobilizing those resources and deploying them effectively was a difficult task. The U.S. took the straightforward view that the quickest way to defeat Germany was to transport its army to Britain, invade France across the English Channel and attack Germany directly from the west. Churchill, wary of the huge casualties he feared this would entail, favored a more indirect approach, advancing northwards from the Mediterranean, where the Allies were fully in control by early 1943, into either Italy or Greece, and thus into central Europe. Churchill also saw this as a way of blocking the Soviet Union's advance into east and central Europe, a political issue which Roosevelt and his commanders refused to take into account.

Since the U.S. would be providing most of the manpower and funds, Roosevelt's views prevailed, and through 1942 and 1943 plans for a cross-Channel invasion were advanced. But Churchill succeeded in persuading Roosevelt to undertake the invasions of French Morocco and Algeria (Operation Torch) in November 1942, of Sicily (Operation Husky) in July 1943, and of Italy (Operation Avalanche) in September 1943). This entailed postponing the cross-Channel invasion from 1943 to 1944. Following the American defeat at Anzio, however, the invasion of Italy became bogged down, and failed to meet Churchill's expectations. This undermined his opposition to the cross-Channel invasion (Operation Overlord), which finally took place in June 1944. Although most of France was quickly liberated, the Allies were blocked on the German border in December 1944, and final victory over Germany was not achieved until May 1945, by which time the Soviet Union, as Churchill feared, had occupied all of eastern and central Europe as far west as the Elbe River in central Germany.

Meanwhile in the Pacific the Japanese advance reached its maximum extent by June 1942, when Japan sustained a major naval defeat at the hands of the U.S. at the Battle of Midway. The Japanese advance to the south and south-east was halted at the Battle of the Coral Sea in May 1942 and the Battle of Guadalcanal between August 1942 and February 1943. MacArthur and Nimitz then began a slow and costly progress through the Pacific islands, with the objective of gaining bases from which strategic air power could be brought to bear on Japan and from which Japan could ultimately be invaded. In the event, this did not prove necessary, because the almost simultaneous declaration of war on Japan by the Soviet Union and the use of the atomic bomb on Japanese cities brought about Japan's surrender in September 1945.

By late 1943 it was apparent that the Allies would ultimately defeat Nazi Germany, and it became increasingly important to make high-level political decisions about the course of the war and the postwar future of Europe. Roosevelt met with Churchill and the Chinese leader Chiang Kai-shek at the Cairo Conference in November 1943, and then went to Tehran to confer with Churchill and Stalin. At the Tehran Conference Roosevelt and Churchill told Stalin about the plan to invade France in 1944, and Roosevelt also discussed his plans for a postwar international organization. Stalin was pleased that the western Allies had abandoned any idea of moving into the Balkans or central Europe via Italy, and he went along with Roosevelt's plan for the United Nations, which involved no costs to him. Stalin also agreed that the Soviet Union would enter the war against Japan when Germany was defeated. At this time Churchill and Roosevelt were acutely aware of the huge and disproportionate sacrifices the Soviets were making on the eastern front while their invasion of France was still six months away, so they did not raise awkward political issues which did not require immediate solutions, such as the future of Germany and eastern Europe.

By the beginning of 1945, however, with the Allied armies advancing into Germany, consideration of these issues could not be put off any longer. In February, Roosevelt, despite his steadily deteriorating health, traveled to Yalta, in the Soviet Crimea, to meet again with Stalin and Churchill. This meeting, the Yalta Conference, is often portrayed as a decisive turning point in modern history, but in fact, most of the decisions made there were retrospective recognitions of realities which had already been established by force of arms. The decision of the western Allies to delay the invasion of France from 1943 to 1944 had allowed the Soviet Union to occupy all of eastern Europe, including Poland, Romania, Bulgaria, Czechoslovakia and Hungary, as well as eastern Germany. Since Stalin was in full control of these areas, there was little Roosevelt and Churchill could do to deter him imposing his will on them, as he was rapidly doing by establishing Communist-controlled governments in all these countries.

Churchill, aware that Britain had gone to war in 1939 in defense of Polish independence, and also of his promises to the Polish government in exile in London, did his best to insist that Stalin agree to the establishment of a non-Communist government and the holding of free elections in liberated Poland, although he was unwilling to confront Stalin over the issue of Poland's postwar frontiers, on which he considered the Polish position to be indefensible. But Roosevelt was not interested in having a fight with Stalin over Poland, for two reasons. The first was that he believed that Soviet support was essential for the projected invasion of Japan, in which the Allies ran the risk of huge casualties. He feared that if Stalin was provoked over Poland he might renege on his Tehran commitment to enter the war against Japan. The second was that he saw the United Nations as the ultimate solution to all postwar problems, and he feared the United Nations project would fail without Soviet cooperation.

Towards posterity

The "Big Three" Allied leaders at Yalta: Churchill, Roosevelt and Stalin

Although Roosevelt was only 63 in 1945, his health had been in decline since at least 1940. The strain of his paralysis and the physical exertion needed to compensate for it for over 20 years had taken their toll, as had many years of stress and a lifetime of chain-smoking. He had been diagnosed with high blood pressure and long-term heart disease, and was advised to modify his diet (though not to stop smoking). Had it not been for the war, he would certainly have retired at the 1944 elections, but under the circumstances both he and his advisors felt there was no alternative to his running for a fourth term. Aware of the risk that Roosevelt would die during his fourth term, the party regulars insisted that Henry Wallace, who was seen as too pro-Soviet, be dropped as Vice President. Roosevelt at first resisted but finally agreed to replace Wallace with the little known Harry S. Truman. In the November elections Roosevelt and Truman won 53 percent of the vote and carried 36 states. After the elections, Cordell Hull, the longest serving Secretary of State in American history, retired and was succeeded by Edward Stettinius Jr..

After the Yalta conference relations between the western Allies and Stalin deteriorated rapidly, and so did Roosevelt's health. When he addressed Congress on his return from Yalta, many were shocked to see how old, thin and sick he looked. He spoke from his wheelchair, an unprecedented concession to his physical incapacity. But he was still mentally fully in command. "The Crimean Conference," he said firmly, "ought to spend the end of a system of unilateral action, the exclusive alliances, the spheres of influence, the balances of power, and all the other expedients that have been tried for centuries—and have always failed. We propose to substitute for all these, a universal organization in which all peace-loving nations will finally have a chance to join." Many in his audience doubted that the proposed United Nations would achieve these objectives, but there was no doubting the depth of Roosevelt's commitment to these ideals, which he had inherited from Woodrow Wilson.

Roosevelt is often accused of being naively trusting of Stalin, but in the last months of the war he took an increasingly tough line. During March and early April he sent strongly worded messages to Stalin accusing him of breaking his Yalta commitments over Poland, Germany, prisoners of war and other issues. When Stalin accused the western Allies of plotting a separate peace with Hitler behind his back, Roosevelt replied: "I cannot avoid a feeling of bitter resentment towards your informers, whoever they are, for such vile misrepresentations of my actions or those of my trusted subordinates."

Death

On March 30, 1945, Roosevelt went to Warm Springs to rest before his anticipated appearance at the April 25 San Francisco founding conference of the United Nations. Among the guests was Lucy Mercer, his lover from 30 years previously (by then Mrs. Lucy Rutherford), and the artist Elizabeth Shoumatoff, who was painting a portrait of him. On the morning of April 12 he was sitting in a leather chair signing letters, his legs propped up on a stool, while Shoumatoff worked at her easel. Just before lunch was to be served, he dropped his pen and complained of a sudden headache. Then he slumped forward in his chair and lost consciousness. A doctor was summoned and he was carried to bed—it was immediately obvious that he had suffered a massive cerebral hemorrhage. At 3:31 pm he was pronounced dead. The painting by Mrs. Shoumatoff was not finished and is known as the Unfinished Portrait.

Roosevelt's death was greeted with shock and grief across the U.S. and around the world. At a time when the press did not pry into the health or private lives of Presidents, his declining health had not been known to the general public. Roosevelt had been President for more than 12 years, much longer than any other man, and had led the country through some of its greatest crises to the brink of its greatest triumph, the complete defeat of Nazi Germany, and to within sight of the defeat of Japan as well. Although in the decades since his death there have been many critical reassessments of his career, few commentators had anything but praise for a commander-in-chief who had been robbed by death of a victory which was only a few weeks away. On May 8, the new president, Harry Truman, who celebrated his 61st birthday that day, dedicated V-E Day to Roosevelt's memory, paying tribute to his commitment towards ending the war in Europe.

Roosevelt's legacies to the U.S. were a greatly expanded role for government in the management of the economy, an expectation that the state would intervene to protect the poor and the disadvantaged from adversity, a Social Security system promising protection from cradle to grave, a greatly strengthened trade union movement, and a coalition of voters supporting the Democratic Party which would survive intact until the 1960s and in part until the 1980s, when it was finally shattered by Ronald Reagan, a Roosevelt Democrat in his youth who became a conservative Republican. To this day, however, many conservatives detest Roosevelt's reforms as "big government", and support more private than government involvement in social affairs. Internationally, Roosevelt's monument was the United Nations, an organization whose history would certainly have disappointed him in many respects, but which offered at least the hope of an end to the international anarchy which led to two world wars in his lifetime.

Majority support for the essentials of the Roosevelt domestic program survived their author by 35 years. The Republican administrations of Dwight Eisenhower and Richard Nixon did nothing to overturn the Roosevelt-era social programs. It was not until the administration of Ronald Reagan (1981–1989) that this was reversed, although Reagan was generous in his praise of Roosevelt personally. Bill Clinton, with his program of welfare reform, was the first Democratic president to repudiate elements of the Roosevelt program, and this has continued under George W. Bush. But this has not undermined Roosevelt's posthumous reputation as a great president. A 1999 survey of academic historians by CSPAN found that historians consider Abraham Lincoln, George Washington, and Roosevelt the three greatest presidents by a wide margin.[1]. A 2000 survey by The Washington Post found Washington, Lincoln, and Roosevelt to be the only "great" Presidents.

Cabinet members


Supreme Court appointments


. Crick was an outspoken advocate of Drug Reform and even founded a group called SOMA to legalize cannabis.[15]. A 2000 survey by The Washington Post found Washington, Lincoln, and Roosevelt to be the only "great" Presidents. Rumors have circulated that Crick told a colleague that he had taken small doses of the hallucinogenic drug LSD at the time of the discovery of the structure of DNA in order to boost his deductive powers. A 1999 survey of academic historians by CSPAN found that historians consider Abraham Lincoln, George Washington, and Roosevelt the three greatest presidents by a wide margin.[1]. To be sure, he leaves them as anonymous aliens showering seed rather than Zeus adopting the form of a swan, but nevertheless Dr Crick’s hyper-rationalism took 50 years to lead him round to embracing a belief in a celestial creator of human life, indeed a deus ex machina.". But this has not undermined Roosevelt's posthumous reputation as a great president. The man of science who confidently dismissed God at Mill Hill School half a century earlier appears not to have noticed that he’d merely substituted for his culturally inherited monotheism a weary variant on Graeco-Roman-Norse pantheism – the gods in the skies who fertilise the earth and then retreat to the heavens beyond our reach.

Bush. “We do not know… uncertain… not too far out… we do not know for certain… we suspect… chances are…” And thus the Nobel prize winner embraces the theory that space aliens sent rocketships to seed the earth. Bill Clinton, with his program of welfare reform, was the first Democratic president to repudiate elements of the Roosevelt program, and this has continued under George W. They can be stored almost indefinitely at very low temperatures, and the chances are they would multiply easily in the ‘soup’ of the primitive ocean…'. It was not until the administration of Ronald Reagan (1981–1989) that this was reversed, although Reagan was generous in his praise of Roosevelt personally. Since they are small, many of them can be sent. The Republican administrations of Dwight Eisenhower and Richard Nixon did nothing to overturn the Roosevelt-era social programs. For such a job, bacteria are ideal.

Majority support for the essentials of the Roosevelt domestic program survived their author by 35 years. Could life have first started much earlier on the planet of some distant star, perhaps eight to 10 billion years ago? If so, a higher civilization, similar to ours, might have developed from it at about the time that the Earth was formed… Would they have had the urge and the technology to spread life through the wastes of space and seed these sterile planets, including our own?.. Internationally, Roosevelt's monument was the United Nations, an organization whose history would certainly have disappointed him in many respects, but which offered at least the hope of an end to the international anarchy which led to two world wars in his lifetime. Although we do not know for certain, we suspect that there are in the galaxy many stars with planets suitable for life…. To this day, however, many conservatives detest Roosevelt's reforms as "big government", and support more private than government involvement in social affairs. Its exact age is uncertain but a figure of 10 to 15 billion years is not too far out…. were a greatly expanded role for government in the management of the economy, an expectation that the state would intervene to protect the poor and the disadvantaged from adversity, a Social Security system promising protection from cradle to grave, a greatly strengthened trade union movement, and a coalition of voters supporting the Democratic Party which would survive intact until the 1960s and in part until the 1980s, when it was finally shattered by Ronald Reagan, a Roosevelt Democrat in his youth who became a conservative Republican. The universe began much earlier.

Roosevelt's legacies to the U.S. Exactly how it started we do not know…. On May 8, the new president, Harry Truman, who celebrated his 61st birthday that day, dedicated V-E Day to Roosevelt's memory, paying tribute to his commitment towards ending the war in Europe. As he put it, bouncing along a tenuous chain of probabilities: 'The first self-replicating system is believed to have arisen spontaneously in the ‘soup,’ the weak solution of organic chemicals formed in the oceans, seas, and lakes by the action of sunlight and electric storms. Although in the decades since his death there have been many critical reassessments of his career, few commentators had anything but praise for a commander-in-chief who had been robbed by death of a victory which was only a few weeks away. Concerned by the narrow time frame – to those of a non-creationist bent - between the cooling of the earth and the rapid emergence of the planet’s first life forms, Crick determined to provide another explanation for the origin of life. Roosevelt had been President for more than 12 years, much longer than any other man, and had led the country through some of its greatest crises to the brink of its greatest triumph, the complete defeat of Nazi Germany, and to within sight of the defeat of Japan as well. As the key to the mystery of life, DNA seems a small answer to the big picture, so Crick pushed on, advancing the theory of “Directed Panspermia”, which is not a Clinton DNA joke but his and his colleague Leslie Orgel’s explanation for how life began.

At a time when the press did not pry into the health or private lives of Presidents, his declining health had not been known to the general public. To quote political analyst Mark Steyn, "His militant atheism was good-humoured but fierce, and it drove him away from molecular biology. and around the world. At 12, Crick decided he was an atheist[14] and spent much of the rest of his life trying to disprove the existence of the psyche. Roosevelt's death was greeted with shock and grief across the U.S. His personality combined with his scientific accomplishments produced many opportunities for Crick to stimulate reactions from others, both inside and outside of the scientific world that was the center of his intellectual and professional life. Shoumatoff was not finished and is known as the Unfinished Portrait. Crick has widely been described as talkative, brash and lacking modesty.

The painting by Mrs. Kari Olcott RN was his nurse at the time. At 3:31 pm he was pronounced dead. Crick died of colon cancer at The University of California, San Diego Thornton Hospital, San Diego. A doctor was summoned and he was carried to bed—it was immediately obvious that he had suffered a massive cerebral hemorrhage. He was elected a fellow of CSICOP in 1983 and a Humanist Laureate of the International Academy of Humanism in the same year. Then he slumped forward in his chair and lost consciousness. Starting in 1976, Crick worked at the Salk Institute in La Jolla, California.

Just before lunch was to be served, he dropped his pen and complained of a sudden headache. In 1995, Francis Crick was also one of the original endorsers of the Ashley Montagu Resolution to petition for an end to the genital mutilations of children. On the morning of April 12 he was sitting in a leather chair signing letters, his legs propped up on a stool, while Shoumatoff worked at her easel. He was a well-known atheist who also advocated directed panspermia as a hypothesis for how life started on Earth. Lucy Rutherford), and the artist Elizabeth Shoumatoff, who was painting a portrait of him. Crick's book The Astonishing Hypothesis makes the argument that neuroscience now has the tools required to begin a scientific study of how brains produce conscious experiences. Among the guests was Lucy Mercer, his lover from 30 years previously (by then Mrs. His autobiographical book What Mad Pursuit includes a description of why he left molecular biology and switched to neuroscience.

On March 30, 1945, Roosevelt went to Warm Springs to rest before his anticipated appearance at the April 25 San Francisco founding conference of the United Nations. He later left molecular biology for his other interest, consciousness. When Stalin accused the western Allies of plotting a separate peace with Hitler behind his back, Roosevelt replied: "I cannot avoid a feeling of bitter resentment towards your informers, whoever they are, for such vile misrepresentations of my actions or those of my trusted subordinates.". Crick's view of the realationship between science and religion would continue to play a role in his work as he made the transition from molecular biology research into theoretical neuroscience. During March and early April he sent strongly worded messages to Stalin accusing him of breaking his Yalta commitments over Poland, Germany, prisoners of war and other issues. Crick's suggestion that there might some day be a new science of "biochemical theology" seems to have been realized under an alternative name, there is now the new field of Neurotheology[13]. Roosevelt is often accused of being naively trusting of Stalin, but in the last months of the war he took an increasingly tough line. Crick may have been imagining substances such as dopamine that are released by the brain under certain conditions and produce rewarding sensations.

We propose to substitute for all these, a universal organization in which all peace-loving nations will finally have a chance to join." Many in his audience doubted that the proposed United Nations would achieve these objectives, but there was no doubting the depth of Roosevelt's commitment to these ideals, which he had inherited from Woodrow Wilson. He speculated that there might be a detectable change in the level of some neurotransmitter or neurohormone when people pray. "The Crimean Conference," he said firmly, "ought to spend the end of a system of unilateral action, the exclusive alliances, the spheres of influence, the balances of power, and all the other expedients that have been tried for centuries—and have always failed. Crick suggested that it might be possible to find chemical changes in the brain that were molecular correlates of the act of prayer. But he was still mentally fully in command. Crick wrote, "So many people pray that one finds it hard to believe that they do not get some satisfaction from it....". He spoke from his wheelchair, an unprecedented concession to his physical incapacity. He also discussed what he described as a possible new direction for research, what he called "biochemical theology".

When he addressed Congress on his return from Yalta, many were shocked to see how old, thin and sick he looked. Near the end of the article, Crick briefly mentioned the search for life on other planets, but he held little hope that extraterrestrial life would be found by the year 2000. After the Yalta conference relations between the western Allies and Stalin deteriorated rapidly, and so did Roosevelt's health. His speculations were later published in Nature[12]. After the elections, Cordell Hull, the longest serving Secretary of State in American history, retired and was succeeded by Edward Stettinius Jr.. Crick attempted to make some predictions about what the next 30 years would hold for molecular biology. In the November elections Roosevelt and Truman won 53 percent of the vote and carried 36 states. In October 1969, Crick participated in a celebration of the 100th year of the journal Nature.

Truman. The details of the code came mostly from work by Marshall Nirenberg and others who synthesized synthetic RNA molecules and used them as templates for in vitro protein synthesis[11]. Roosevelt at first resisted but finally agreed to replace Wallace with the little known Harry S. Proof that the genetic code is a degenerate triplet code finally came from genetics experiments, some of which were performed by Crick[10]. Aware of the risk that Roosevelt would die during his fourth term, the party regulars insisted that Henry Wallace, who was seen as too pro-Soviet, be dropped as Vice President. Crick had by this time become a dominant, if not the dominant, theoretical molecular biologist. Had it not been for the war, he would certainly have retired at the 1944 elections, but under the circumstances both he and his advisors felt there was no alternative to his running for a fourth term. Crick was focused on this third component (information) and it became the organizing principle of what became known as molecular biology.

He had been diagnosed with high blood pressure and long-term heart disease, and was advised to modify his diet (though not to stop smoking). In his thinking about the biological processes linking DNA genes to proteins, Crick made explicit the distinction between the materials involved, the energy required and the information flow. The strain of his paralysis and the physical exertion needed to compensate for it for over 20 years had taken their toll, as had many years of stress and a lifetime of chain-smoking. Some critics thought that by using the word "dogma" Crick was implying that this was a rule that could not be questioned, but all he really meant was that it was a compelling idea without much solid evidence to support it. Although Roosevelt was only 63 in 1945, his health had been in decline since at least 1940. Crick also used the term “central dogma” to summarize an idea that implies that genetic information flow between macromolecules would be essentially oneway:
. The second was that he saw the United Nations as the ultimate solution to all postwar problems, and he feared the United Nations project would fail without Soviet cooperation. Experimental results were needed; theory alone could not decide the nature of the code.

He feared that if Stalin was provoked over Poland he might renege on his Tehran commitment to enter the war against Japan. Crick also explored other codes in which for various reasons only some of the triplets were used, “magically” producing just the 20 needed combinations. The first was that he believed that Soviet support was essential for the projected invasion of Japan, in which the Allies ran the risk of huge casualties. Some amino acids might have multiple triplet codes. But Roosevelt was not interested in having a fight with Stalin over Poland, for two reasons. Such a code might be “degenerate”, with 4x4x4=64 possible triplets of the four nucleotide subunits while there were only 20 amino acids. Churchill, aware that Britain had gone to war in 1939 in defense of Polish independence, and also of his promises to the Polish government in exile in London, did his best to insist that Stalin agree to the establishment of a non-Communist government and the holding of free elections in liberated Poland, although he was unwilling to confront Stalin over the issue of Poland's postwar frontiers, on which he considered the Polish position to be indefensible. In his 1958 article, Crick speculated, as had others, that a triplet of nucleotides could code for an amino acid.

Since Stalin was in full control of these areas, there was little Roosevelt and Churchill could do to deter him imposing his will on them, as he was rapidly doing by establishing Communist-controlled governments in all these countries. None of this, however, answered the fundamental theoretical question of the exact nature of the genetic code. The decision of the western Allies to delay the invasion of France from 1943 to 1944 had allowed the Soviet Union to occupy all of eastern Europe, including Poland, Romania, Bulgaria, Czechoslovakia and Hungary, as well as eastern Germany. An important step was later (1960) realization that the messenger RNA was not the same as the ribosomal RNA. This meeting, the Yalta Conference, is often portrayed as a decisive turning point in modern history, but in fact, most of the decisions made there were retrospective recognitions of realities which had already been established by force of arms. The “adaptor molecules” were eventually shown to be tRNAs and the catalytic “ribonucleic-protein complexes” became known as ribosomes. In February, Roosevelt, despite his steadily deteriorating health, traveled to Yalta, in the Soviet Crimea, to meet again with Stalin and Churchill. By 1958 Crick’s thinking had matured and he could list in an orderly way all of the key features of the protein synthesis process[9].

By the beginning of 1945, however, with the Allied armies advancing into Germany, consideration of these issues could not be put off any longer. During the mid-to-late 50s Crick was very much intellectually engaged in sorting out the mystery of how proteins are synthesized. At this time Churchill and Roosevelt were acutely aware of the huge and disproportionate sacrifices the Soviets were making on the eastern front while their invasion of France was still six months away, so they did not raise awkward political issues which did not require immediate solutions, such as the future of Germany and eastern Europe. He also explored the many theoretical possibilities by which short nucleic acid sequences might code for the 20 amino acids. Stalin also agreed that the Soviet Union would enter the war against Japan when Germany was defeated. Crick proposed that there was a corresponding set of small adaptor molecules that would hydrogen bond to short sequences of a nucleic acid and also link to one of the amino acids. Stalin was pleased that the western Allies had abandoned any idea of moving into the Balkans or central Europe via Italy, and he went along with Roosevelt's plan for the United Nations, which involved no costs to him. In this article, Crick reviewed the evidence supporting the idea that there was a common set of about 20 amino acids used to synthesize proteins.

At the Tehran Conference Roosevelt and Churchill told Stalin about the plan to invade France in 1944, and Roosevelt also discussed his plans for a postwar international organization. In 1956 Crick wrote an informal paper about the genetic coding problem for the small group of scientists in Gamow’s RNA group[8]. Roosevelt met with Churchill and the Chinese leader Chiang Kai-shek at the Cairo Conference in November 1943, and then went to Tehran to confer with Churchill and Stalin. It was clear to Crick that there had to be a code by which a short sequence of nucleotides would specify a particular amino acid in a newly synthesized protein. By late 1943 it was apparent that the Allies would ultimately defeat Nazi Germany, and it became increasingly important to make high-level political decisions about the course of the war and the postwar future of Europe. George Gamow established a group of scientists who were interested in the role of RNA as an intermediary between DNA as the genetic storage molecule in the nucleus of cells and the synthesis of proteins in the cytoplasm. In the event, this did not prove necessary, because the almost simultaneous declaration of war on Japan by the Soviet Union and the use of the atomic bomb on Japanese cities brought about Japan's surrender in September 1945. However, Crick was quickly drifting away from continued work related to his expertise in the interpretation of X-ray diffraction patterns of proteins.

MacArthur and Nimitz then began a slow and costly progress through the Pacific islands, with the objective of gaining bases from which strategic air power could be brought to bear on Japan and from which Japan could ultimately be invaded. Crick engaged in several X-ray diffraction collaborations such as one with Alexander Rich on the structure of collagen[7]. The Japanese advance to the south and south-east was halted at the Battle of the Coral Sea in May 1942 and the Battle of Guadalcanal between August 1942 and February 1943. After his short time in New York, Crick returned to Cambridge where he worked until moving to California in 1976. at the Battle of Midway. Crick then worked in the laboratory of David Harker at Brooklyn Polytechnic Institute where he continued to develop his skills in the analysis of X-ray diffraction data for proteins, working primarily on ribonuclease. Meanwhile in the Pacific the Japanese advance reached its maximum extent by June 1942, when Japan sustained a major naval defeat at the hands of the U.S. thesis: "X-Ray Diffraction: Polypeptides and Proteins" and received his degree at the age of 37.

Although most of France was quickly liberated, the Allies were blocked on the German border in December 1944, and final victory over Germany was not achieved until May 1945, by which time the Soviet Union, as Churchill feared, had occupied all of eastern and central Europe as far west as the Elbe River in central Germany. In 1953, Crick completed his Ph.D. This undermined his opposition to the cross-Channel invasion (Operation Overlord), which finally took place in June 1944. In 1953, Watson and Crick published another article in ‘’Nature’’ which stated: “it therefore seems likely that the precise sequence of the bases is the code that carries the genetical information”[6]. Following the American defeat at Anzio, however, the invasion of Italy became bogged down, and failed to meet Churchill's expectations. After the discovery of the double helix model of DNA, Crick’s interests quickly turned to the biological implications of the structure. This entailed postponing the cross-Channel invasion from 1943 to 1944. This includes work on the nature of the genetic code and the mechanisms of protein synthesis.

But Churchill succeeded in persuading Roosevelt to undertake the invasions of French Morocco and Algeria (Operation Torch) in November 1942, of Sicily (Operation Husky) in July 1943, and of Italy (Operation Avalanche) in September 1943). Francis Crick also made significant contributions in laying the foundations of the now mature field of molecular biology. would be providing most of the manpower and funds, Roosevelt's views prevailed, and through 1942 and 1943 plans for a cross-Channel invasion were advanced. The Watson and Crick discovery of the DNA double helix structure was made possible by their correct interpretation of the significance of experimental results that had been obtained by others. Since the U.S. Crick did tentatively attempt to perform some experiments on nucleotide base pairing, but he was more of a theoretical biologist than one who would perform experiments. Churchill also saw this as a way of blocking the Soviet Union's advance into east and central Europe, a political issue which Roosevelt and his commanders refused to take into account. As important as Crick’s contributions to the discovery of the double helical DNA model were, he stated that without the chance to collaborate with Watson, he would not have found the structure by himself.

Churchill, wary of the huge casualties he feared this would entail, favored a more indirect approach, advancing northwards from the Mediterranean, where the Allies were fully in control by early 1943, into either Italy or Greece, and thus into central Europe. After the discovery of the A:T and C:G pairs, Watson and Crick soon had their double helix model of DNA with the hydrogen bonds at the core of the helix providing a way to unzip the two complementary strands for easy replication: the last key requirement for a likely model of the genetic molecule. took the straightforward view that the quickest way to defeat Germany was to transport its army to Britain, invade France across the English Channel and attack Germany directly from the west. Watson’s recognition of the A:T and C:G pairs was aided by information from Jerry Donohue[5] about the likely structures of the nucleotides. The U.S. The base pairs are held together by hydrogen bonds, the same non-covalent interaction that stabilizes the protein α helix. But mobilizing those resources and deploying them effectively was a difficult task. In particular, the length of each base pair is the same.

was bound to defeat Germany and Japan in the long run. The significance of these ratios for the structure of DNA were not recognized until Watson, persisting in building structural models, realized that A:T and C:G pairs are structurally similar. Even though Britain was exhausted by the end of 1942, the alliance between the manpower of the Soviet Union and the industrial resources of the U.S. A visit by Erwin Chargaff to England in 1952 helped keep this important fact in front of Watson and Crick. into the war meant that victory of the Allied powers was assured. Another key to finding the correct structure of DNA was the so-called Chargaff ratios, experimentally determined ratios of the nucleotide subunits of DNA: the amount of guanine is equal to cytosine and the amount of adenine is equal to thymine. As Churchill rightly saw, the entry of the U.S. Watson and Crick made use of information from unpublished X-ray diffraction images (shown at meetings, described by Wilikins, and included in administrative progress reports) to determine some basic features of the DNA helical structure such as some key dimensions and the fact that there were anti-parallel chains.

President Roosevelt's attitudes towards Americans of Japanese origin, African heritage and Jewish faith remain in striking contrast with the generosity of spirit he displayed, and the social liberalism he practiced in other realms. Crick described the failure of Maurice Wilkins and Rosalind Franklin to cooperate and work towards finding a molecular model as a major reason why he and Watson persisted in their efforts. He suggested that since the Nazis had killed three million Polish Jews, there should now be plenty of room in Poland to resettle all the Jewish refugees. Having failed once, Watson and Crick were now somewhat reluctant (for a while Crick was ‘’forbidden’’) to make further efforts to find a molecular model of DNA. When he met King Ibn Saud of Saudi Arabia in February 1945, he assured him he did not support a Jewish state in Palestine. thesis and Watson was supposed to be trying to obtain crystals of myoglobin for X-ray diffraction experiments. But Roosevelt was also opposed to this idea. Crick was writing his Ph.D.

to settlement in Palestine, where the Zionist movement hoped to create a Jewish state. Watson and Crick were not officially working on DNA. In any case after 1945 the focus of Jewish aspirations shifted from migration to the U.S. They knew they were competing against Pauling and feared that as for the protein α helix, Pauling would probably again win the race to discover the structure of DNA. By this time, however only a fragment of the European Jewish communities had survived Hitler's Holocaust. Crick and Watson produced and showed off an erroneous first model of DNA that mainly served to show how little they knew and how desperate they were to solve the structure of DNA. in 1944 and 1945. Watson and Crick talked endlessly about DNA and the idea that it might be possible to guess a good molecular model of its structure.

This allowed an increasing number of Jews to enter the U.S. The images indicated to Crick, one of the few experts in helical diffraction theory, that DNA had a helical structure. In May 1943 he wrote to Cordell Hull (whose wife was Jewish): "I do not think we can do other than strictly comply with the present immigration laws." In January 1944, however, Morgenthau succeeded in persuading Roosevelt to allow the creation of a War Refugee Board in the Treasury Department. A key piece of experimentally-derived information came from X-ray diffraction images that had been obtained by Maurice Wilkins and his student, Raymond Gosling. After 1942, when Roosevelt was made aware, by Rabbi Stephen Wise, the Polish envoy Jan Karski and others, of the Nazi extermination of the Jews, he refused to allow any systematic attempt to rescue European Jewish refugees and bring them to the U.S. They shared an interest in the fundamental problem of learning how genetic information might be stored in molecular form. Despite frequent complaints, Roosevelt failed to remove him. When James Watson came to Cambridge, Crick was a 35 year old graduate student and Watson was only 23, but already had a Ph.D.

The State Department official in charge of refugee issues, Breckinridge Long, was a visceral anti-Semite who did everything he could to obstruct Jewish immigration. Building on the X-ray diffraction results of Maurice Wilkins, Raymond Gosling and Rosalind Franklin, they together developed the proposal of the helical structure of DNA, which they published in 1953[3], and for which they were awarded the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1962, together with Maurice Wilkins of University College, London[4]. In practice very few Jewish refugees came to the U.S.—only 22,000 German refugees were admitted in 1940, not all of them Jewish. Watson at Cavendish Laboratory at the University of Cambridge in England. Morgenthau, Ickes and Eleanor pressed him to adopt a more generous policy but he was afraid of provoking the isolationists—men such as Charles Lindbergh who exploited anti-Semitism as a means of attacking Roosevelt's policies. In 1951, he started working with James D. At first he suggested that the Jewish refugees should be "resettled" elsewhere, and suggested Venezuela, Ethiopia or West Africa—anywhere but the U.S. For example, he learned the importance of the structural rigidity that double bonds confer on molecular structures which is relevant both to peptide bonds in proteins and the structure of nucleotides in DNA.

As the Jewish exodus from Germany increased after 1937, Roosevelt was asked by American Jewish organizations and Congressmen to allow these refugees to settle in the U.S. Crick was witness to the kinds of errors that his co-workers made in their failed attempts to make a correct molecular model of the α helix, these turned out to be important lessons that could be applied to the helical structure of DNA. During his first term Roosevelt condemned Hitler's persecution of German Jews, but said "this is not a governmental affair" and refused to make any public comment. Pauling was the first to identify the 3.6 amino acids/turn ratio of the α helix. Roosevelt's anti-Semitism was a possible factor in his deciding government policy on the Jewish refugee issue before and during World War II The other being his fear of of provoking isolationists. During this time when Crick was learning about X-ray diffraction, researchers in the Cambridge lab were attempting to determine the most stable helical conformation of amino acid chains in proteins (the α helix). Crowley: "This is a Protestant country, and the Catholics and the Jews are here on sufferance.". This theoretical result matched well with X-ray data obtained for proteins that contain sequences of amino acids in the Alpha helix conformation (published in Nature in 1952)[2].

But he once told Morgenthau and a Catholic economist, Leo T. Vand he worked out a mathematical theory of X-ray diffraction by a helical molecule. as the first Jewish Secretary of the Treasury and appointed Frankfurter to the Supreme Court. Cochran and V. He appointed Henry Morgenthau, Jr. Together with W. Rosenman, were Jewish, and he happily cultivated the important Jewish vote in New York City (much as TR had done). Crick taught himself the mathematical theory of X-ray crystallography.

Paradoxicaly some of his closest political associates, such as Felix Frankfurter, Bernard Baruch and Samuel I. X-ray crystallography theoretically offered the opportunity to reveal the molecular structure of proteins, but there were serious technical problems then preventing X-ray crystallography from being applicable to such large molecules. Roosevelt aparently inherited some of his mother's attitudes, and at times expressed them in private. Crick was in the right place, in the right frame of mind, at the right time (1949) to join Max Perutz’s project at Cambridge University, and he began to work on the X-ray crystallography of proteins. and their children were advancing rapidly into the business and professional classes alarmed those already there. However, other evidence was interpreted as suggesting that DNA was structurally uninteresting and possibly just a molecular scaffold for the apparently more interesting protein molecules. Franklin's mother Sara was well known for being a anti-Semite, an attitude common among Eastern Americans at a time when Jewish immigrants were flooding into the U.S. Oswald Avery and his collaborators showed that a phenotypic difference could be caused in bacteria by providing them with a particular DNA molecule.

Roosevelt's complex attitudes to American Jews were even more well-chronicled. In the 1940’s some evidence had been found pointing to another biological molecule, DNA, the other major component of chromosomes, as a candidate genetic molecule. Truman, to fully desegregate the armed forces. However, it was well known that proteins are “doers”, macromolecules that carry out the many enzymatic reactions of cells. It was left to his successor, Harry S. It was clear that some macromolecule such as protein was likely to be the genetic molecule. Roosevelt, with his usual desire to please everyone, agreed, but then did nothing to implement his promise. In Crick’s view, Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution by natural selection, Gregor Mendel’s genetics and knowledge of the molecular basis of genetics, when combined, reveal the secret of life.

In September 1942, at Eleanor's instigation, Roosevelt met with a delegation of African-American leaders, who demanded full integration into the forces, including the right to serve in combat roles and in the Navy, the Marine Corps and the United States Army Air Force. It only remained as an exercise of experimental biology to discover exactly which molecule was the genetic molecule. In practice the services, particularly the Navy and the Marines, found ways to evade this order—the Marine Corps remained all-white until 1943. It was clear in theory that covalent bonds in biological molecules could provide the structural stability needed to hold genetic information in cells. Philip Randolph, the leading African-American trade unionist, Roosevelt signed an executive order establishing the Fair Employment Practice Commission and prohibiting discrimination by any government agency, including the armed forces. It was at this time of Crick’s transition from physics into biology that he was influenced by both Linus Pauling and Erwin Schroedinger. In June 1941, at the urging of A. He realized that his background made him more qualified for research on the first topic and the field of biophysics.

Arnold Hill of the Urban League had become recognized as part of the Roosevelt coalition. First, how molecules make the transition from the non-living to the living, and second, how the brain makes mind. But by 1940 the African-American vote had shifted almost totally from Republican to Democrat, and African-American leaders like Walter White of the NAACP and T. Crick was interested in two fundamental unsolved problems of biology. "Colored troops do very well under white officers," said Stimson, "but every time we try to lift them a little beyond where they can go, disaster and confusion follow." Knox was blunter: "In our history we don't take Negroes into a ship's company.". Crick felt that this attitude encouraged him to be more daring than typical biologists who mainly concerned themselves with the daunting problems of biology and not the past successes of physics. Neither the Secretary of War, Henry Stimson, nor the Navy Secretary, Frank Knox, were Southerners (Stimson came from a New York abolitionist family), but they were aware that the officer corps of both services were drawn heavily from Southern military families, and feared disturbances or even mutiny if integration of the armed forces were imposed. Crick had to adjust from the “elegance and deep simplicity” of physics to the “elaborate chemical mechanisms that natural selection had evolved over billions of years.” He described this transition as, “almost as if one had to be born again.” According to Crick, the experience of learning physics had taught him something important -hubris- and the conviction that since physics was already a success, great advances should also be possible in other sciences like biology.

African-Americans in the Army served only in rear-echelon or service roles, the Navy was almost entirely white and the Marine Corps wholly so. This migration was made possible by the newly won influence of physicists such as John Randall who had helped win the war with inventions like radar. The armed forces had been segregated ever since the Civil War. After the war, Crick became part of an important migration of physical scientists into Biology research. The war brought the issue to the forefront. Andrade but with the outbreak of World War II, Crick was deflected from a possible career in physics. A popular anti-Roosevelt song declared: "You kiss the niggers / I'll kiss the Jews / We'll stay in the White House / As long as we choose". da C.

Despite Roosevelt's apparent inability to support civil rights, he was still perceived as a black-friendly threat in the American South. N. I just can't take that risk.". research project in the laboratory of E. If I come out for the anti-lynching bill now, they will block every bill I ask Congress to pass to keep America from collapsing. Crick began a Ph.D. The Southerners by reason of the seniority rule in Congress are chairmen or occupy strategic places on most of the Senate and House committees. degree in physics in from University College London.

But I've got to get legislation passed by Congress to save America. At the age of 21, Crick earned a B.Sc. Had I been permitted to choose then I would have selected quite different ones. He was educated at Northampton Grammar School and, after the age of 14, Mill Hill School in London (on scholarship) where he learned mathematics, physics and chemistry. "I did not choose the tools with which I must work. Crick preferred the scientific search for answers over belief in any traditional religious dogma. Roosevelt explained his reluctance to support anti-lynching legislation in a conversation with Walter White of the NAACP. As a child he was taken to church (Congregationalist) by his parents, but by about age 12 he told his mother that he no longer wanted to attend[1].

He did little to advance civil rights, despite prodding from Eleanor and liberals in his Cabinet such as Frances Perkins. At an early age he was attracted to science and what he could learn about it from books. He was not a visceral racist, but he accepted the common stereotype of African-Americans (whom he had little contact with in his entire life) as lazy, if good-natured, children just as they were shown in popular entertainment. Crick was born and raised in the town of Northampton where Crick’s father and uncle ran the family’s shoe factory. Roosevelt's personal racial attitudes were conventional for his time and class. He began studying biology in 1947 after the war's end. The Works Progress Administration and the Civilian Conservation Corps, for example, segregated their work forces by race at Roosevelt's insistence after Southern governors protested at unemployed whites being required to work alongside blacks. During World War II, he worked on magnetic and acoustic mines.

Southern Governors or Congressmen would then complain to Roosevelt, who would to keep his party together intervene to uphold segregation. in 1937. Typically, the young idealists who ran the programs tried to make these benefits available regardless of race. Born in Northampton, England as a son of Harry Crick and Annie Elisabeth Crick, he studied physics at University College London, and became a B.Sc. During the New Deal years, there had been a series of conflicts over whether African-Americans were eligible for the various government benefits and programs. . The Democratic Party at this time was dominated by Southerners who were opposed to any concession to demands for racial equality. Professor Francis Harry Compton Crick, OM FRS (June 8, 1916 – July 28, 2004) was a British physicist, molecular biologist and neuroscientist, most noted for being one of the discoverers of the structure of the DNA molecule.

Roosevelt's attitudes to race were also tested by the issue of African-American (or "Negro", to use the term of the time) service in the armed forces. Watson (Mitchell Lane Publishers, Inc., 2002) ISBN 1584151226. The principle on which this country was founded and by which it has always been governed is that Americanism is a matter of the mind and heart; Americanism is not, and never was, a matter of race or ancestry.". Francis Crick and James Watson: Pioneers in DNA Research by John Bankston, Francis Crick and James D. Anyone who has traveled in the Far East knows that the mingling of Asiatic blood with European and American blood produces, in nine cases out of ten, the most unfortunate results." But when activating the 442nd RCT on February 1, 1943, Roosevelt said, "No loyal citizen of the United States should be denied the democratic right to exercise the responsibilities of his citizenship, regardless of his ancestry. The book also formed the basis of the award winning television dramatisation Life Story by BBC Horizon (also broadcast as Race for the Double Helix). In 1925 he had written about Japanese immigration: "Californians have properly objected on the sound basic grounds that Japanese immigrants are not capable of assimilation into the American population.. Watson, The Double Helix: A Personal Account of the Discovery of the Structure of DNA, Atheneum, 1980, ISBN 0689706022 (first published in 1968) is a very readable first hand account of the research by Crick and Watson.

Critics of Roosevelt's actions believe they were motivated in part by racism. James D. A fight for Japanese-American civil rights would have meant a fight with influential Democrats, the Army, and the Hearst press and would have endangered Roosevelt's chances of winning California in 1944. Edward Edelson, Francis Crick And James Watson: And the Building Blocks of Life Oxford University Press, 2000, ISBN 0195139712. Interior Secretary Ickes lobbied Roosevelt through 1944 to release the Japanese-American internees, but Roosevelt did not act until after the November presidential election. The Astonishing Hypothesis: The Scientific Search For The Soul (Scribner reprint edition, 1995) ISBN 0684801582. felt that these countries lacked the capacity to deal with possible German espionage. Of Molecules and Men (Prometheus Books, 2004; original edition 1967) ISBN 1591021855.

As well, about 4,000 German nationals were deported from Central American countries for internment in the U.S., because the U.S. Life Itself (Simon & Schuster, 1981) ISBN 0671255622. Out of 60 million Americans of German descent, only 11,000, all German-born, were placed in internment camps. ^ Online at hallucinogens.com: Nobel Prize genius Crick was high on LSD when he discovered the secret of life by Alun Rees. By contrast, there was no mass internment of German-Americans or Italian-Americans. Crick's description of his religious views (as given in What Mad Pursuit, see Chapter 1 of reference #1, above) after having told his mother that he no longer wished to attend church services: "...from then on I was a skeptic, an agnostic with a strong inclination toward atheism.". In 1944 the Supreme Court upheld the legality of the executive order, which remained in force until December of that year. ^ See The Twentieth-Century Darwin by Mark Steyn published in The Atlantic Monthly October 2004.

military history.) Conditions in the camps, in Idaho, Wyoming, Utah, and Colorado, were tolerable by most accounts (and quite pleasant according to others), but detainees naturally resented being detained and there were repeated disturbances in the camps, which resulted in 15,000 people being interned in a higher-security center at Tule Lake, California. Entrez PubMed 14594742. (The 442nd Regimental Combat Team was composed almost entirely of formerly interned Japanese-Americans and remains the most highly decorated unit in U.S. Farde in The American Journal of Psychiatry (2003) Volume 160, pages 1965-1969. armed forces throughout the war, although they were not employed in the Pacific theatre. Soderstrom and L. Japanese-Americans continued to serve in the U.S. Andree, H.

Roosevelt also wanted the 140,000 Japanese-Americans in Hawaii deported to the mainland, but the territorial authorities, including the Army, objected on the grounds that they were indispensable to the Islands' economy; thus the plan was dropped. Borg, B. citizens, were interned without charge or trial. ^ "The serotonin system and spiritual experiences" by J. As a result, 120,000 people, half of them U.S. ^ "Molecular Biology in the Year 2000" by Francis Crick in Nature Volume 228 (1970) pages 613-615. On February 19, Roosevelt signed Executive Order 9066, authorizing the military to relocate people from "combat zones" (such as California) on security grounds, without specifically mentioning the Japanese-Americans. Crick in Proc R Soc Lond B Biol Sci. (1967) Volume 167 pages 331-347.

These MAGIC cables were kept secret from all but those with the highest clearance, such as Roosevelt, lest the Japanese discover the decryption and change their code. H. before and after Pearl Harbor; code-breakers decrypted messages to Japan from agents in North America and Hawaii. The genetic code" by F. There was evidence of espionage on behalf of Japan in the U.S. ^ "The Croonian lecture, 1966. But on February 11 he met with Secretary of War Stimson, who persuaded him to approve an immediate evacuation. Watts-Tobin in Nature (1961) Volume 192 pages 1227-1232.

Roosevelt then ordered that a plan be drawn up to evacuate the Japanese-Americans from California in the event of a landing or air attacks on the West Coast by Japan, but not otherwise. J. On February 7, 1942 Biddle met with Roosevelt and set out the Justice Department's objections to the proposal. Brenner and R. Edgar Hoover, who said that there was no evidence of Japanese-American involvement in espionage or sabotage. Barnett, S. Ickes, Attorney-General Francis Biddle and FBI Director J. Crick, L.

Army Commander in California, whose simple attitude was that "a Jap is a Jap." Opponents of the suggestion were Interior Secretary Harold L. H. De Witt, the U.S. ^ "General nature of the genetic code for proteins" by F. Pressure came from California Governor Culbert Olsen (a Democrat), the Hearst newspapers and General John L. Crick in Symp Soc Exp Biol. (1958);12:138-63. Following the outbreak of the Pacific War Roosevelt came under immediate pressure to remove or intern the estimated 120,000 people of Japanese origin or descent living in California, two-thirds of them American-born, on the grounds that they were a threat to security. H.

Given his close personal interest in the Navy, Roosevelt tended to intervene more in naval matters, but strong Navy commanders like Admirals Ernest King in the Atlantic theater and Chester Nimitz in the Pacific enjoyed his confidence. ^ "On protein synthesis" by F. But since the war in the Pacific was mainly a naval war, this did not greatly matter until later in the war. ^ "On Degenerate Templates and the Adaptor Hypothesis: A Note for the RNA Tie Club" by Francis Crick (1956). He had less confidence in his commander in the Pacific, General Douglas MacArthur, who he rightly suspected of planning to run for President against him. Crick in Nature (1955) Volume 176, pages 915-916. He placed great trust in the Army Chief of Staff, General George Marshall, and later in his Supreme Commander in Europe, General Dwight Eisenhower, and left almost all strategic and tactical decisions to them, within the broad framework for the conduct of the war decided by the Cabinet in agreement with the other Allied powers. H.

Although Roosevelt was constitutionally the Commander-in-Chief of the United States armed forces, he had never worn a uniform and he did not interfere in operational military matters in anything like the way Churchill did in Britain, let alone take direct command of the forces as Adolf Hitler and Joseph Stalin did. ^ "The structure of collagen" by A Rich and F. He met with Churchill in late December and planned a broad alliance between the U.S., Britain, and the Soviet Union, with the objectives of, first, halting the German advances in the Soviet Union and in North Africa; second, launching an invasion of western Europe with the aim of crushing Nazi Germany between two fronts, and only third turning to the task of defeating Japan. Crick (1953) in Nature Volume 171 pages 964-967. in the wake of Pearl Harbor, Roosevelt decided from the start that the defeat of Nazi Germany had to take priority. H. Despite the wave of anger that swept across the U.S. Watson and F.

Isolationism evaporated overnight and the country united behind Roosevelt as a wartime leader. D. by Germany and Italy. ^ "Genetical implications of the structure of deoxyribonucleic acid" by J. Pearl Harbor was followed immediately by declarations of war on the U.S. ^ See Chapter 3 of The Eighth Day of Creation: Makers of the Revolution in Biology by Horace Freeland Judson published by Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press (1996) ISBN 0879694785. The Japanese took advantage of their pre-emptive destruction of most of the Pacific Fleet to rapidly occupy the Philippines and all the British and Dutch colonies in Southeast Asia, taking Singapore in February 1942 and advancing through Burma to the borders of British India by May, thus cutting off the overland supply route to China. ^ Francis Crick's 1962 Biography from the Nobel foundation.

All contemporary accounts describe Roosevelt, Hull and Stimson as shocked and outraged when they heard news of the attack. Nature 171, 737–738 (1953). There is no evidence that Roosevelt was made aware of them. Crick. There were intercepted Japanese messages suggesting an attack on Pearl Harbor, but delays in translating and passing on these messages through the inefficient War Department bureaucracy meant that they did not reach the Cabinet before the attack took place. Watson and Francis H. Roosevelt and the rest of the Cabinet accepted this view. ^ Molecular structure of Nucleic Acids by James D.

Navy Secretary Knox told the Cabinet of the decoded messages showing that the Japanese fleet was at sea, but stated his opinion that it was heading south to attack the British in Malaya and Singapore, and to seize the oil resources of the Dutch East Indies. Crick's scientific publications and letters are in the list of Francis Crick's Papers from the Wellcome Library at the National Library of Medicine. On 5 December the Cabinet discussed the mounting intelligence evidence that the Japanese were mobilizing for war. ^ See "Evidence for the Pauling-Corey alpha-Helix in Synthetic Polypeptides" (1952) Nature Volume 169 pages 234-235 (download PDF). There is no evidence to support this theory. ^ Chapters 1 and 2 of What Mad Pursuit: A Personal View of Scientific Discovery by Francis Crick (Basic Books reprint edition, 1990 ISBN 0465091385) provide Crick's description of his early life and education. could be brought into the war as a result of being attacked. ribonucleic-protein complexes that catalyze the assembly of amino acids into proteins according to the messenger RNA.

It has become a staple of postwar revisionist history that Roosevelt knew all about the planned attack on Pearl Harbor but did nothing to prevent it so that the U.S. adaptor molecules (“they might contain nucleotides”) to match short sequences of nucleotides in the RNA messenger molecules to specific amino acids. The War Department had not passed these warnings on to the commanders in Hawaii, mainly because its analysts refused to believe that the Japanese would really have the effrontery to attack the United States. a “messenger” RNA molecule to carry the instructions for making one protein to the cytoplasm. The fault really lay with the War Department in Washington, who since August 1940 had been able to read the Japanese diplomatic codes and had thus been given ample warning of the imminence of the attack (though not of its actual date). genetic information stored in the sequence of DNA molecules. Kimmel and General Walter Short, were taken completely by surprise, and were later made scapegoats for this disaster.

The American commanders at Pearl Harbor, Admiral Husband E. fleet at Pearl Harbor, damaging most of it and killing 3,000 American personnel. On 7 December 1941 the Japanese attacked the U.S. Grew, passed on warnings about the planned attack on the American Pacific Fleet's base at Pearl Harbor in Hawaii, but these were ignored by the State Department.

Ambassador in Tokyo, Joseph C. The U.S. and favored continued negotiations. The "hawks" in the Administration, led by Stimson and Treasury Secretary Henry Morgenthau, were in favor of a tough policy towards Japan, but Roosevelt, emotionally committed to the war in Europe, refused to believe that Japan might attack the U.S.

Through 1941 the Japanese planned their attack on the western powers, including the U.S., while spinning out the negotiations in Washington. He authorized increased aid to China, and in July 1941 he restricted the sales of oil and other strategic materials to Japan, but also continued negotiations with the Japanese government in the hope of averting war. in the war developing in East Asia, where Japan occupied French Indo-China in late 1940. Roosevelt was much less keen to involve the U.S.

to the Allied side with a policy of "all aid short of war." Roosevelt met with Churchill on August 14, 1941 to develop the Atlantic Charter in what was to be the first of several strategic war conferences. Thus by mid-1941 Roosevelt had committed the U.S. Navy zone. Navy would escort Allied convoys as far east as Iceland, and would fire on German ships or submarines if they attacked Allied shipping within the U.S.

During 1941 Roosevelt also agreed that the U.S. When Germany invaded the Soviet Union in June 1941, Roosevelt extended Lend-Lease to the Soviets. This did not prevent the forming of a close personal relationship with Churchill, who became British Prime Minister in May 1940. Roosevelt was a lifelong free trader and anti-imperialist, and ending European colonialism was one of his objectives.

and Britain were not the same. This underlined the point that the war aims of the U.S. Britain was also forced to agree to dismantle preferential trade arrangements that kept American exports out of the British Empire. Congress, where isolationist sentiment was in retreat, passed the Lend-Lease Act in March 1941, allowing Britain to "lease" huge amounts of military equipment on the basis of a promise that they would be paid for after the war.

The most pressing issue was the urgent necessity of assisting Britain, whose financial resources were exhausted by the end of 1940. By 1941 there was actually a labor shortage in the arms manufacturing centers of Chicago and Detroit, accelerating the Great Migration of African-American workers from the Southern states. From 1939, unemployment fell rapidly, as the unemployed either joined the armed forces or found work in arms factories. The massive re-armament program begun in 1938, partly to expand and re-equip the United States Army and Navy and partly to support Britain, France, China and other friendly states, finally provided the Keynesian economic stimulus which was needed to revive the economy.

Roosevelt's third term was dominated by World War II, first in Europe and then in the Pacific. Garner. A shift to the left within the Administration was shown by the adoption of Henry Wallace as his Vice President in place of the conservative Southerner John N. Nevertheless, Roosevelt's huge personal popularity allowed him to be re-elected with 55 percent of the vote and 38 of the 48 states.

Republicans (and some others) said that this was a sign of his increasing arrogance. During 1940, however, with the international situation growing increasingly threatening, Roosevelt decided that only he could lead the nation through the coming crisis. No American President had ever sought a third term in office, following a precedent set by George Washington (it was to become more than a precedent when Amendment 22, which "limits Presidential service to two terms", was ratified in 1951). This increased speculation that Roosevelt would retire in 1940.

George of Georgia replaced by pro-Administration candidates was defeated. Roosevelt's campaign to have conservative Democratic Senators such as Walter F. At the 1938 Congressional elections the Republicans staged their first comeback since 1932, gaining seats in both Houses and reducing Roosevelt's ability to pass legislation at will. This was a precursor of the March 1941 Lend-Lease agreement which began to direct massive military and economic aid to Britain.

In August, Roosevelt openly defied the Neutrality Acts with the Destroyers for Bases Agreement, which gave 50 American destroyers to Britain and Canada in exchange for base rights in the British Caribbean islands. The fall of Paris shocked American opinion, and isolationist sentiment declined. Stimson and Frank Knox, as Secretaries of War and the Navy respectively. He secretly aided a private body, the Committee to Defend America by Aiding the Allies, and he appointed two anti-isolationist Republicans, Henry L.

Roosevelt was determined to prevent this and sought to shift public opinion in favor of aiding Britain. In May 1940 Germany attacked France and rapidly occupied the country, leaving Britain vulnerable to German air attack and possible invasion. When World War II in Europe broke out in 1939, Roosevelt became increasingly eager to assist Britain and France, and he began a regular secret correspondence with Winston Churchill, in which the two freely discussed ways of circumventing the Neutrality Acts. In 1937 Congress passed an even more stringent Act, but when the Sino-Japanese War broke out in 1937 Roosevelt found various ways to assist China, and warned that Fascist Italy, Nazi Germany and Imperial Japan were threats to world peace and to the U.S.

Roosevelt opposed the act on the grounds that it penalized the victims of aggression such as Abyssinia, and that it restricted his right as President to assist friendly countries, but he eventually signed it. to any combatant nation. In 1935, at the time of Fascist Italy's invasion of Abyssinia, Congress passed the Neutrality Act, applying a mandatory ban on the shipment of arms from the U.S. The rise to power of Adolf Hitler in Germany aroused fears of a new world war.

It was Roosevelt who made the often-quoted remark about the dictator of Nicaragua, Anastasio Somoza: "Somoza may be a son of a bitch, but he's our son of a bitch.". Nevertheless, the realities of American support for various Latin American dictators, often to serve American corporate interests, remained unchanged. At the Seventh International Conference of American States in Montevideo in December 1933, Roosevelt and Hull signed the Montevideo Convention on the Rights and Duties of States, renouncing the assumed American right to intervene unilaterally in the affairs of Latin American countries. American forces were withdrawn from Haiti, and new treaties with Cuba and Panama ended their status as American protectorates.

The main foreign policy initiative of Roosevelt's first term was the Good Neighbor Policy, a re-evaluation of American policy towards Latin America, which ever since the Monroe Doctrine of 1823 had been seen as an American sphere of influence. Despite his Wilsonian background, Roosevelt and his Secretary of State, Cordell Hull, acted with great care not to provoke isolationist sentiment. The rejection of the League of Nations treaty in 1919 marked the dominance of isolationism in American foreign policy. Douglas, reducing the possibility of further clashes.

Between 1937 and 1941 he appointed eight justices to the court, including liberals such as Felix Frankfurter, Hugo Black and William O. Deaths and retirements on the Supreme Court soon allowed Roosevelt to make his own appointments to the bench. Eventually Roosevelt was forced to abandon the plan, but the Court also drew back from confrontation with the administration by finding the Labor Relations Act and the Social Security Act to be constitutional. This "court packing" plan was the first Roosevelt scheme to run into serious political opposition, since it seemed to upset the separation of powers which is one of the cornerstones of the American constitutional structure.

Roosevelt's response was to propose enlarging the Court so that he could appoint more sympathetic judges. During 1937 the Court ruled that the National Recovery Act and some other pieces of New Deal legislation were unconstitutional. With the Republicans powerless in Congress, the conservative majority on the United States Supreme Court was the only obstacle to Roosevelt's programs. When the economy began to deteriorate again in late 1937, Roosevelt responded with an aggressive program of stimulation, asking Congress for $5 billion for relief and public works programs.

Roosevelt's second term agenda included an act creating the United States Housing Authority (1937), a second Agricultural Adjustment Act and the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938, which created the minimum wage. Roosevelt told Congressman Martin Dies, Chairman of the Dies Committee at a Herald Tribune forum in New York, "There is no menace here in Communism.". Although the Communist Party USA saw some growth during the 1930s, and gained some influence in industrial unions affiliated with the Congress of Industrial Organizations (CIO), it was unable to break into the political mainstream. The Roosevelt ascendancy also prevented the growth of both communism and fascism.

This coalition remained largely intact for the Democratic Party until the 1960s. Roosevelt was backed by a coalition of voters which included the urban workers and middle class, small farmers, the "Solid South", northern African-American voters (who had traditionally been Republicans), Jews and other urban ethnic minorities, intellectuals and political liberals. The New Deal Democrats won enough seats in Congress to outvote both the Republicans and the conservative Southern Democrats (who supported programs which brought benefits for their states but opposed measures which strengthened labor unions). At the 1936 election Roosevelt won 61 percent of the vote and carried every state except Maine and Vermont.

It took the massive growth in government spending during World War II to restore industrial production to its 1929 level and eliminate unemployment. Some argue that this was mainly because the high tariff barriers erected in response to the Depression were not removed, and without a revival of international trade there could be no full recovery. The economy remained sluggish throughout the 1930s, and, in fact, after a partial recovery, slid back towards Depression in 1937 and 1938. Even the large appropriations that Roosevelt extracted from Congress and spent on relief and assistance to industry were not enough to provide a sufficient fiscal stimulus to revive so large an economy as that of the United States.

The economic theories of John Maynard Keynes were not widely known in the U.S., and it is doubtful that Roosevelt ever knew of them. Historians and economists debate over the extent to which this is true. The popular belief is that Roosevelt's programs, collectively known as the New Deal, cured the Great Depression. The net effect of these measures was to restore confidence and optimism, allowing the country to begin the long process of recovery from the Depression.

These measures included bills to regulate the stock market and prevent the corrupt practices which had led to the 1929 Crash; the Social Security Act, which established Social Security and promised economic security for the elderly, the poor and the sick; and the National Labor Relations Act, which established the rights of workers to organize unions, to engage in collective bargaining and to take part in strikes in support of their demands. Wallace were also important influences. Eleanor Roosevelt, Labor Secretary Frances Perkins (the first female Cabinet Secretary) and Agriculture Secretary Henry A. After the 1934 Congressional elections, which gave the Democrats large majorities in both houses, there was a fresh surge of New Deal legislation, driven by the "brains trust" of young economists and social planners gathered in the White House, including Raymond Moley, Rexford Tugwell and Adolf Berle of Columbia University, attorney Basil O'Connor, economist Bernard Baruch and Felix Frankfurter of Harvard Law School.

The repeal of prohibition also provided stimulus to the economy, while eliminating a major source of corruption. Later came one of the largest pieces of state industrial enterprise in American history, the Tennessee Valley Authority, which built dams and power stations, controlled floods, and improved agriculture in one of the poorest parts of the country. Following these emergency measures came the National Industrial Recovery Act which imposed an unprecedented amount of state regulation on industry, including fair practice codes and a guaranteed role for trade unions, in exchange for the repeal of anti-trust laws and huge amounts of financial assistance as a stimulus to the economy. These included the Emergency Relief Administration, which granted funds to the states for unemployment relief; the Works Progress Administration and the Civilian Conservation Corps to hire millions of unemployed to work on local projects; and the Agricultural Adjustment Administration, with powers to increase farm prices and support struggling farmers.

During the first hundred days of his administration, Roosevelt used his enormous prestige and the sense of impending disaster to force a series of bills through Congress, establishing and funding various new government agencies. Roosevelt's series of radio speeches known as Fireside Chats presented his proposals to the American public. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation was created to guarantee the funds held in all banks in the Federal Reserve System, and thus prevent runs and bank failures. He called a "bank holiday" to prevent a threatened run on the banks and called an emergency session of Congress to stabilize the financial system.

As he put it in his inaugural address: "the only thing we have to fear is fear itself." He therefore set out to restore confidence through a series of dramatic gestures. He saw the Depression as mainly a matter of confidence—people had stopped spending, investing and employing labor because they were afraid to do so. Roosevelt indeed had no systematic economic beliefs at all. Instead of adopting revolutionary solutions, the American people had turned to the Democrats and to a leader who had grown up in privilege.

There were occasional outbreaks of violence, but most observers considered it remarkable that such an obvious breakdown of the capitalist system had not led to a rapid growth of socialism, communism, or fascism (as happened for example in Germany). The banking system seemed to be on the point of collapse. In a country with few government social services, millions were living on the edge of starvation, and two million were homeless. Industrial production had fallen by more than half since 1929.

Some 13 million people, a third of the workforce, were unemployed. was in the depths of the worst depression in its history. When Roosevelt was inaugurated in March 1933 the U.S. Zangara, who was later executed, said he had shot at Roosevelt because "the capitalists killed my life.".

In Miami an unemployed bricklayer named Giuseppe Zangara fired five shots at Roosevelt, missing him but killing the Mayor of Chicago, Anton Cermak. In February 1933, while he was President-elect, Roosevelt had a brief holiday in Florida. Garner of Texas, won 57 percent of the vote and carried all but six states. In November, Roosevelt and his Vice Presidential running mate, John N.

During the campaign Roosevelt said: "I pledge you, I pledge myself, to a new deal for the American people", coining a slogan that was later adopted for his legislative program. At first the delegates at the Chicago convention were deadlocked, but eventually Smith's supporters from the north-eastern states were persuaded to support Roosevelt, and he was nominated on the fourth ballot. But the party regulars were convinced that Smith, a Catholic who was closely associated with the illegal liquor industry, was unacceptable, and persuaded Roosevelt to declare his candidacy. Al Smith also wanted the nomination, and Roosevelt was at first reluctant to oppose his old patron.

Roosevelt's immense popularity in the largest state in the country made him an obvious candidate for the Democratic nomination, which was hotly contested since it seemed clear that Hoover would be defeated at the 1932 presidential election. In 1930 Roosevelt was elected to a second term by a margin of more than 700,000 votes. But Tammany Hall's power was not seriously affected. This eventually resulted in Walker resigning and fleeing to Europe to escape prosecution.

But as the 1930 election approached Roosevelt acted by setting up a judicial investigation into the corrupt sale of offices. Roosevelt fell back on the rather feeble line that the Governor could not interfere in the government of New York City. Roosevelt had made his name as an opponent of Tammany, but he needed the machine's goodwill to be re-elected in 1930 and for a possible future presidential bid. Curry and where corruption of all kinds was rife.

The main weakness of the Roosevelt administration was the blatant corruption of the Tammany Hall machine in New York City, where the Mayor, Jimmy Walker, was the puppet of Tammany boss John F. He established the first state relief agency under Harry Hopkins, who became a key advisor, and urged the legislature to pass an old age pension bill and an unemployment insurance bill. On Eleanor's recommendation he appointed one of her friends, Frances Perkins, as Labor Secretary, and there was a sweeping reform of the labor laws. Roosevelt knew little about economics, but he took advice from leading academics and social workers, and also from Eleanor, who had developed a network of friends in the welfare and labor fields and who took a close interest in social questions.

Aid to the unemployed, he said, "must be extended by Government, not as a matter of charity, but as a matter of social duty.". Roosevelt therefore asked the state legislature for $20 million in relief funds, which he spent mainly on public works in the hope of stimulating demand and providing employment. The Hoover administration took the traditional Republican view that the state should not interfere with the free operations of the economy, and that the states and cities should carry the burden of unemployment relief. When the Wall Street Crash in October ushered in the Great Depression, Roosevelt showed his usual energy and imagination in responding.

He had a long feud with Robert Moses, the state's most powerful public servant, whom he sacked as Secretary of State but kept on as Parks Commissioner and head of urban planning. He reformed the state's prison administration and built a new state prison at Attica. Lawrence River. He tackled official corruption by sacking Smith's cronies and instituting a Public Service Commission, and took action to address New York's growing need for electricity through the development of hydroelectricity on the St.

Roosevelt came to office in 1929 as a reform Democrat, but with no overall plan for his administration. As a native of upstate New York he was able to appeal to voters outside New York City in a way other Democrats could not. At the November election, Smith was heavily defeated by the Republican Herbert Hoover, but Roosevelt was elected Governor by a margin of 25,000 votes out of 2.2 million. To gain the Democratic nomination, Roosevelt had to make his peace with Tammany Hall, which he did with some reluctance.

This time he became the Democratic candidate, and he urged Roosevelt to run for Governor of New York. Although Smith was not nominated, in 1928 he ran again, and Roosevelt again supported him. Smith. In 1924 he had attended the Democratic Convention and made a nomination speech for the Governor of New York, Alfred E.

He had been careful to maintain his contacts in the Democratic Party. By 1928 Roosevelt believed he had recovered sufficiently to resume his political career. He would certainly have hated the statue of himself in a wheelchair now to be seen at the Franklin Delano Roosevelt Memorial in Washington, D.C.. He usually appeared in public standing upright, while being supported on one side by an aide or one of his sons.

In private he used a wheelchair, but he was careful never to be seen in it in public, although he sometimes appeared on crutches. Fitting his hips and legs with iron braces, he laboriously taught himself to walk a short distance by swiveling his torso while supporting himself with a walking stick. (The Encyclopædia Britannica, for example, says that "by careful exercises and treatments at Warm Springs he gradually recovered", although this is quite untrue). At a time when media intrusion in the private lives of public figures was much less intense than it is today, Roosevelt was able to convince many people that he was in fact getting better, which he believed was essential if he was to run for public office again.

This was in part to escape from his mother, who tried to resume control of his life following his illness. Nevertheless, he became convinced of the benefits of hydrotherapy, and in 1926 he bought a resort at Warm Springs, Georgia, where he founded a hydrotherapy center for the treatment of polio patients which still operates as the Roosevelt Warm Springs Institute for Rehabilitation (with an expanded mission), and spent a lot of time there in the 1920s. He tried a wide range of therapies, but none had any effect. Although the paralysis resulting from polio had no cure (and still does not, although the disease is now very rare in developed countries), for the rest of his life Roosevelt refused to believe that he was permanently paralyzed.

Unlike in other forms of paraplegia, his bowels, bladder and sexual functions were not affected. Thus he could sit up and, with aid of leg-braces, stand upright, but he could not walk. At first the muscles of his abdomen and lower back were also affected, but these eventually recovered. The result was that Roosevelt was totally and permanently paralyzed from the waist down.

In August 1921, while the Roosevelts were vacationing at Campobello Island, New Brunswick, Roosevelt was stricken with poliomyelitis, a viral infection of the nerve fibers of the spinal cord, probably contracted while swimming in the stagnant water of a nearby lake. Franklin continued to see various women, including his secretary Missy LeHand. Eleanor accepted these terms, and in time Franklin and Eleanor developed a new relationship as friends and political colleagues, while living separate lives. When Franklin became President—as Sara was always convinced he would—Eleanor would be able to use her position to support her causes.

Sara would pay for a separate home at Hyde Park for Eleanor, and she would also fund Eleanor's philanthropic interests. The facade of the marriage would be preserved, but sexual relations would cease. Eventually a deal was struck. Since Sara was financially supporting the Roosevelts, this was a strong incentive to preserve the marriage.

She argued that a divorce would ruin Roosevelt's political career, and pointed out that Eleanor would have to raise five children on her own if she divorced him. Franklin's mother Sara Roosevelt soon learned of the crisis, and decisively intervened. Eleanor was both mortified and angry, and confronted him with the letters, demanding a divorce. In September 1918, Eleanor found letters in one of Franklin's suits which revealed the affair.

One of these was Eleanor's social secretary Lucy Mercer, with whom Roosevelt began an affair soon after she was hired in early 1914. Roosevelt soon found romantic and sexual outlets outside his marriage. Roosevelt was a charismatic, handsome and socially active man, while his wife Eleanor was shy and retiring, and furthermore was almost constantly pregnant during the decade after 1906. Roosevelt then retired to a New York legal practice, but few doubted that he would soon run for public office again.

After eight years of Democratic government, however, the country was ready for a change, and the Cox-Roosevelt ticket was heavily defeated by the Republican Warren Harding. Cox of Ohio. This made him a favorite of Wilson, and it was mainly due to Wilson's influence that the 1920 Democratic National Convention chose Roosevelt as the candidate for Vice-President of the United States on the ticket headed by Governor James M. He campaigned tirelessly across the country in support of the League of Nations treaty, which was eventually rejected by the Senate.

In 1919 Roosevelt became an ardent supporter of Wilson's plan for a League of Nations to make future wars impossible. With the end of the war in November 1918, he was in charge of demobilization, although he opposed plans to completely dismantle the Navy. In 1918 he visited Britain and France to inspect American naval facilities—during this visit he met Winston Churchill for the first time. He became an enthusiastic advocate of the submarine, and also of means to combat the German submarine menace to Allied shipping: he proposed building a mine barrage across the North Sea from Norway to Scotland.

He also showed great administrative talent, and quickly learned to negotiate with Congress and other government departments to get budgets approved and a rapid expansion of the Navy pushed through. Roosevelt soon developed a life-long affection for the Navy. entered World War I in April 1917, Roosevelt became the effective administrative head of the United States Navy, since the Secretary of the Navy, Josephus Daniels, had been appointed mainly for political reasons and was widely considered to be not up to the job. When the U.S.

imposed on Haiti in 1915. He was also involved in the frequent American interventions in the affairs of Central American and Caribbean countries: he personally wrote the constitution which the U.S. Between 1913 and 1917 Roosevelt campaigned to expand the Navy (in the face of considerable opposition from pacifists in the administration such as the Secretary of State, William Jennings Bryan), and founded the United States Navy Reserve to provide a pool of trained men who could be mobilized in wartime. Nevertheless the Navy post was to be the making of his career.

Roosevelt was more interested in elective office: in 1914 he ran for the Democratic nomination for the United States Senate, but was blocked by Tammany Hall. When Woodrow Wilson was elected President in 1912, Roosevelt was offered the post of Assistant Secretary of the Navy. Roosevelt was young (30 in 1912), tall, handsome, and well spoken, and soon became a popular figure among New York Democrats. In the state capital Albany, he became leader of a group of reformist Democrats who opposed the Irish-American Tammany Hall machine which dominated the state Democratic Party.

The Roosevelt name, a lot of Roosevelt money and the big Democratic sweep of that year were enough to get him elected. In 1910 he ran as a Democrat for the New York State Senate from the district around Hyde Park, which had not elected a Democrat since 1884. Franklin's dislike of Taft's administration drove him into politics. In 1909 Theodore Roosevelt left the White House and was succeeded by the conservative Republican William Howard Taft.

One even became a Republican. Two of them were elected briefly to the House of Representatives but none attained higher office despite several attempts. Their postwar careers, whether in business or politics, were disappointing. All four sons were officers in World War II and were decorated, on merit, for bravery.

They had between them fifteen marriages, ten divorces and twenty-nine children. The five surviving Roosevelt children all led tumultuous lives overshadowed by their famous parents. (1914–1988), and John (1916–1981). (March to November 1909), Elliott (1910–1990), a second Franklin Jr.

Eleanor was painfully shy and hated social life, and at first she desired nothing more than to stay at home and raise Franklin's children, of which they had six in rapid succession: Anna (1906–1975), James (1907–1991), Franklin, Jr. They were married in March 1905, and moved into a house bought for them by Sara, who became a frequent house-guest, much to Eleanor's mortification. Meanwhile he had become engaged to Eleanor, despite the fierce resistance of Sara Roosevelt, who was terrified of losing control of Franklin. In 1908 he took a job with the prestigious Wall Street firm of Carter, Ledyard and Milburn, dealing mainly with corporate law.

He passed the bar exam and completed the requirements for a law degree in 1907 but did not bother to actually graduate. Roosevelt next attended the Columbia Law School. (They had previously met as children, but this was their first serious encounter). In 1903 he met his future wife Eleanor Roosevelt, Theodore's niece, at a White House reception.

While he was at Harvard his fifth cousin Theodore Roosevelt became President, and his vigorous leadership style and reforming zeal made him Franklin's role model. (arts degree) in 1904 without much serious study. Roosevelt graduated from Groton in 1900, and naturally progressed to Harvard University, where he enjoyed himself in conventional fashion and graduated with an A.B. He was heavily influenced by the headmaster, Endicott Peabody, who preached the duty of Christians to help the less fortunate and urged his students to enter public service—although most of them in fact entered banks and Wall Street law firms.

This was reinforced by Roosevelt's schooling at Groton, an elite Episcopal boarding school in Massachusetts. The Roosevelts believed in public service, and were wealthy enough to be able to spend time and money on philanthropy. The fact that his father was a Democrat, however, set him apart to some extent from most other members of the Hudson Valley aristocracy. He acquired a conventional set of upper class attitudes, and a streak of anti-Semitism from his mother which he was never able to fully shake.

Frequent trips to Europe made him fluent in German and French. He learned to ride, to shoot, to row and to play polo and lawn tennis. Roosevelt grew up in an atmosphere of privilege. He received his early education at home under her supervision.

He later told friends that he was afraid of her all his life (a factor that may have contributed to his inability to stand up to her on matters of race). Since James was a rather remote father (he was 54 when Franklin was born), Sara was the dominant influence in Franklin's early years. Franklin was her only child, and she was an extremely possessive mother. Her mother was a Lyman, another very old American family.

Roosevelt's mother Sara Delano (1854–1941) was of French Protestant (Huguenot) descent, her ancestor Phillippe de la Noye having arrived in Massachusetts in 1621. Despite their political differences, the two branches remained friendly: James Roosevelt met his wife at a Roosevelt family gathering at Oyster Bay, and Franklin was to marry Theodore's niece. President Theodore Roosevelt, an Oyster Bay Republican, was Franklin's fifth cousin. In the 18th century the Roosevelt family had divided into two branches, the "Hyde Park Roosevelts", who by the late 19th century were Democrats, and the "Oyster Bay Roosevelts", who were Republicans.

In 1788, Isaac Roosevelt was a member of the state convention in Poughkeepsie which voted to ratify the United States Constitution—a matter of great pride to his great-great-grandson Franklin. The Roosevelt family (see Roosevelt family tree) had lived in New York for more than 200 years: Claes van Rosenvelt, originally from Haarlem in the Netherlands, arrived in New York (then called Nieuw Amsterdam) in about 1650. His father, James Roosevelt (1828–1900), was a wealthy landowner and vice-president of the Delaware & Hudson Railway. Franklin Roosevelt was born on January 30, 1882, at Hyde Park, in the Hudson River valley in upstate New York.

. Presidential historians have generally regarded him as one of the greatest presidents. Some conservatives such as Ronald Reagan have praised his national leadership, while dismantling his social programs. Some liberals criticise measures such as the internment of Japanese-Americans during World War II and his failure to advance civil rights for African Americans.

Today opinions of him are more complex. In his lifetime Roosevelt was a polarizing figure: he was a hero to liberals and a hated figure to conservatives. Finally, his vision of an effective international organization to preserve peace was brought to fruition as the United Nations after his death. to be the "Arsenal of Democracy" against Nazi Germany and the Japanese Empire, but aspects of his leadership, particularly what is seen as his naïve attitude toward Joseph Stalin, are criticised by some historians.

In the build up to the Second World War, he prepared the U.S. recover from the Great Depression, but others dispute this claim arguing that Roosevelt's economic policies actually slowed recovery. According to many historians, Roosevelt's inspirational leadership helped the U.S. To the public he was usually known as FDR.

His family and close friends called him Frank. Born to wealth and privilege, he overcame a crippling illness to place himself at the head of the forces of reform. Franklin Delano Roosevelt (January 30, 1882 – April 12, 1945), 32nd President of the United States (1933-1945), the longest-serving holder of the office and the only man to be elected President more than twice, was one of the central figures of 20th century history. Jackson.

Robert H. James Francis Byrnes (SC) July 8, 1941–October 3, 1942. Harlan Fiske Stone (Chief Justice, NY) July 3, 1941–April 22, 1946. Frank Murphy (MI) February 5, 1940–July 19, 1949.

Douglas (CT) April 17, 1939–November 12, 1975. William O. Felix Frankfurter (MA) January 30, 1939–August 28, 1962. Stanley Forman Reed (KY) January 31, 1938–February 25, 1957.

Hugo Black (AL) August 19, 1937–September 17, 1971.

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