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A few days ago England proudly announced that it had laid mines across its enemy's life-line to Swedish iron ore. Norway protested, and Germany struck. This time there were no press campaigns, flying diplomatic visits, or ultimatums. In the old familiar pattern of war, the front has been widened into Scandinavia, and again America wonders what this move means for her.
The war in Finland proved that there are strong ties between America and Scandinavia, for American sympathy for Finland was by no means confined to a few theatre benefits in New York City. For the Midwest, though a traditional incubator of isolation, fairly teems with Andersens, Svensens and Berensens, all Americans proud of their Baltic forbears, Scandinavian isolationists who put aside their isolation mantle when the fatherland is in danger. This was a new force working toward American intervention, though a wholly understandable one. Its effect may increase with the latest incidents in Scandinavia.
In the last few weeks, the Gallup Poll has shown that anti-German feeling has been waning. There have been less people who have felt that America should or would eventually go to war. Mr. Cromwell's speech in Canada, if it was meant for a trial balloon on American sentiment, found that it was definitely non-interventionist. But it seems that every fresh German move kindles the old fires, and appears to lend weight to the myth that Hitler is the only power in the world that can bring America into another World War. So it is with the invasion of Denmark and Norway.
The United States should admit to itself that a war is going on, and in reasserting its determination to stay out of it, face the fact that neutral countries in Europe will be crushed in a vise, whether economic, diplomatic, or military. We cannot stop this. If only blood can wash away the strange quirks in the human mind that breed war, as some have said in justification of the present conflict, there is still no reason why it must be done with American blood.
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