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"We have listened to isolationists for 20 years when they have said do this and do that to keep out of war. We have done it and are now on the brink of war," said Payson S. Wild, associate professor of Government and widely known expert on international law, in a recent interview.
Contending that the time when neutrality served as an effective instrument of foreign policy among states is long past, Wild asserted that the Lend-Lease Bill is the type of legislation more in step with the times.
"In time of a general war," he said, "it is only possible to be belligerent or non-belligerent. It is not possible to be neutral." He views the Lend-Lease Bill as legislation logically consistent with a state of non-belligerency.
Wild decried isolationist policy and pointed out that it was largely responsible for the present emergency because it had "encouraged others to take advantage of our unwillingness to assume any responsibility."
"The legality of the Lend-Lease Bill with respect to international law," Wild stated, "is purely academic. Secretary Hull expressed it very well when he said let's be realists."
Wild commented that "the Lend-Lease Bill may not be the most perfect piece of legislation that could be drawn up, but at least it may keep us out of war by helping England. It is our last hope, as I see it."
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