|1. "We came to Europe twice in twenty-five years to save the French."
We didn't come to Europe to save the the French, either in 1917 or in 1944. We didn't come to to Europe to do anyone any favors. We came to Europe because we in America were threatened by a hostile, aggressive and very dangerous power.
In this war, France fell in June of 1940. We didn't invade Europe until June of 1944. We didn't even think of "saving the French" through military action until after Pearl Harbor - after the Germans declared war on us. We came to Europe, in two wars, because it was better to fight our enemy in Europe than in America. Would it have been smarter to fight the Battle of the Bulge in Ohio? Would it have been smarter if D-Day had meant a hop across the Atlantic Ocean, instead of the English Channel, in order to get at an enemy sending rocket bombs into our homes? Would it have been smart to wait in America until V bombs, buzz bombs, rocket bombs, and - perhaps - atomic bombs had made shambles of our cities? Even the kids in Germany sang this song: "Today Germany, tomorrow the world." We were a part of that world. We were marked for conquest.
When France fell, our last defense on the Continent was gone. France was the "keystone of freedom" on land from the Mediterranean to the North Sea; it was a bulwark against German aggression. France guarded the Atlantic, and the bases the Germans needed on the Atlantic for submarine and air warfare.
American security and American foreign policy have always rested on this hard fact: we cannot permit a hostile power on the Atlantic Ocean. We can not be secure if we are threatened on the Atlantic. That's why we went to war in 1917; that's why we had to fight in 1944. And that's why, as a matter of common sense and the national interest, President Roosevelt declared (November 11, 1941): "The defense of any territory under the control of the French Volunteer Forces (the Free French) is vital to the defense of the United States."