This is from an old friend of my dad from the E.F. Hutton days:
In my WW1 class last year, I quoted George Washington’s foreign policy excerpted from his Farewell Address.
“The great rule of conduct for us in regard to foreign nations is in extending our commercial relations, to have with them as little political connection as possible. Europe has a set of primary interests which to us have none; or a very remote relation. Hence she must be engaged in frequent controversies, the causes of which are essentially foreign to our concerns. Hence, therefore, it must be unwise in us to implicate ourselves by artificial ties in the ordinary vicissitudes of her politics, or the ordinary combinations and collisions of her friendships or enmities.”
Then 45 years later, John Quincy Adams reiterates this policy thus . . .
“Wherever the standard of freedom and independence has been or shall be unfurled there will her heart, her benediction and her prayers be. But she goes not abroad in search of monsters to destroy. She is the well wisher to the freedom and independence of all.”
After Wilson’s reelection as a “peace candidate,” he changed our foreign policy, unfortunately, forever in this statement, “Our object now has been to vindicate the principles of peace and justice in the life of the world as against selfish and autocratic power, and to setup a most free and self governed people of the world. Such a concert of purpose in the action will henceforth ensure the observance of those principles. Neutrality is no longer feasible or desirable where the peace of the world is involved . . .”
I have studied WW1 and it is clear that Britain and France would have won that war without our help. The German army was drawing its last breath by the summer of 1918 and their civilian population was crushed into starvation and it was that summer that Americans began arriving in big numbers. We, no doubt, hastened the end but the end was already defined.
There is another parallel between now and 1918 – 1923 inflation in Germany who was forced to print money to make their WW1 reparation payments. In late 1923 the Deutsche Mark became worthless save for the heat it generated when burned in a furnace. Trump scared the crap out of me when, at the beginning of this crisis, he said, “Don’t worry about the availability of cash, we will print all the money needed. or something to that effect. They have been kicking that money supply can down the road for years and their response to this crises just shortened that road. This process began when Nixon took us off the gold standard in 1971.