Why was America hesitant at first to get involved in foreign affairs in the 1930s?

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mkoren | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Senior Educator

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The United States was hesitant to get involved in world affairs in the 1930s. There are several reasons for this. One factor was we were dealing with our worst depression ever. At the height of the Great Depression, we had 25% of our population unemployed. We had so many economic problems. We really couldn’t worry about world affairs at this time.

We were also concerned about reports that we entered World War I so our businesses could profit. This was the conclusion of the Nye Committee. This angered many people who didn’t want this to happen again. Congress passed several neutrality laws to reduce the likelihood this would occur again.

We were also tired of dealing with world problems. This feeling developed in the 1920s and continued into the 1930s. Getting involved in world affairs carried risk. We could end up being dragged into another conflict so soon after World War I ended. Nobody in our country was ready to possibly go to war again so soon.

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