The Morgenthau Plan: Soviet Influence on American Postwar Policy

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Algora Publishing, 2013 - Business & Economics - 190 pages
Contrary to what is often reported in history books, the Morgenthau Plan was a major element in postwar planning led by Washington, before the war was even over. This book traces the roles played by Henry Morgenthau, Jr., Secretary of the Treasury to President Roosevelt, and his assistant Harry Dexter White, in the planning for the postwar world. Close attention is given to the discussions leading up to the Second Quebec Conference in 1944 where Winston Churchill's acceptance of the plan was obtained. It is clear that the effects of the policy were understood in advance. The book follows the devastating consequences of the policies based on the plan and their contribution to the postwar collapse of the European economy. Damning evidence shows that the Allies intentionally brought starvation and disease to large civilian populations, while condemning millions of Germans to slave labor in neighboring countries and knowingly sending surrendered Russians to be sent back home for certain execution. The motives of revisionist historians are suspect, as they should be. It is obvious that the conclusions that can be drawn from this account could be abused. They could be used to condemn all Americans for the policies of some of their leaders. They could also be used by people trying to justify the behavior of the National Socialists or by anti-Semites. However, it should be pointed out that the American people paid an extremely high price for their Secretary of Treasurys interference in foreign affairs. It should also be pointed out that one of the severest critics of Western postwar policy was the Jewish publicist Victor Gollancz. This account is based primarily on unclassified information that has been available to the public for decades. Although many accounts of the Morgenthau Plan accept the euphemisms, understatements and outright fabrications offered by the individuals concerned, this account will demonstrate that it was not impossible for a conscientious researcher to uncover a more accurate picture of the truth. However, most scholars have decided to accept at face value statements that on close inspection are obviously false. Some of these misstatements concerning the Morgenthau Plan are understandable. It is less understandable when a respected biographer like Robert E. Sherwood intentionally distorts the historical record. The contradictions between what really happened and what Americans believe and have been told are manifold. It is ironic that Nazis who committed the most terrible crimes frequently received more humane treatment at the hands of the Allies than Germans who had opposed Nationalist Socialism. It is also striking to note the evidence that key individuals had Communist leanings, and it was the Soviet Union that benefited most from the Morgenthau Plan. Many of the subjects dealt with in this manuscript are fertile ground for a researcher wanting to make a name for himself. They are nearly virgin territory. Why have so many of these subjects been treated as taboo? When will our historians feel free to explore the implications that America's progressive establishment was frequently in alignment with Communist goals?

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1 Introduction
2 Harry Dexter White
3 The Origins of the Morgenthau Plan
4 Planning for the Second Quebec Conference Octagon
5 The Second Quebec Conference Octagon
6 The Immediate Consequence of the Quebec Conference
7 German Reaction to the Morgenthau Plan
9 The Economic Consequence of the Morgenthau Plan
10 Food Rationing
11 EnforcedSlave Labor
12 The Ethnic Cleansing of Eastern Europe
13 Conclusion
Selected Bibliography

8 Joint Chiefs of Staff Directive 1067

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