Tuesday, June 06, 2017

The LuLac Edition #3525, June 6th, 2017



The last two days, two big historical anniversaries were highlighted. They are set against the back drop of President Trump’s destruction of a 70 year plus relationship with Europe. Europe has always been part of the United States in terms of it being our most staunch ally during the last 7 decades.
12 United States Presidents have always felt our relationship with Europe had to be consistent. Until now.
The anniversary of D Day means this:
June 6 marks the 73rd anniversary of the D-day landings, which saw 156,000 troops from the Allied countries, including the U.K. and the U.S., join forces to launch an audacious attack on the beaches of Normandy, France. Many people gather each year in Normandy to mark the anniversary of this landing, a turning point in the World War II battle for Europe. 
 (Photo: Getty Images)
After the war, America decided to learn from the isolationism of the first WWII and adopted The Marshall Plan to rebuild Europe. This was Harry Truman’s brainchild but he urged General George Marshall to take its name since there would be less political opposition. (history.com, LuLac)
June 5th, 1947 was the start of the Marshall plan. At Harvard, General George Marshall proposed that plan. 

General George Marshall (Photo: Biography.com) 
The Marshall Plan (officially the European Recovery Program, ERP) was an American initiative to aid Western Europe, in which the United States gave over $13 billion (approximately $130 billion in current dollar value as of June 2016) in economic support to help rebuild Western European economies after the end of World War II. The plan was in operation for four years beginning April 8, 1948. The goals of the United States were to rebuild war-devastated regions, remove trade barriers, modernize industry, make Europe prosperous once more, and prevent the spread of communism. The Marshall Plan required a lessening of interstate barriers, a dropping of many regulations, and encouraged an increase in productivity, labour union membership, as well as the adoption of modern business procedures
The Marshall Plan aid was divided amongst the participant states roughly on a per capita basis. A larger amount was given to the major industrial powers, as the prevailing opinion was that their resuscitation was essential for general European revival. Somewhat more aid per capita was also directed towards the Allied nations, with less for those that had been part of the Axis or remained neutral. The largest recipient of Marshall Plan money was the United Kingdom (receiving about 26% of the total), followed by France (18%) and West Germany (11%). Some 18 European countries received Plan benefits. Although offered participation, the Soviet Union refused Plan benefits, and also blocked benefits to Eastern Bloc countries, such as East Germany and Poland. The United States provided similar aid programs in Asia, but they were not part of the Marshall Plan.
The initiative was named after United States Secretary of State George Marshall, who served as the United States Army Chief of Staff during WWII. The plan had bipartisan support in Washington, where the Republicans controlled Congress and the Democrats controlled the White House with Harry S. Truman as president. The Plan was largely the creation of State Department officials, especially William L. Clayton and George F. Kennan, with help from the Brookings Institution, as requested by Senator Arthur H. Vandenberg, chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. (wikipedia, LuLac)
That was a time when in Washington, both parties would work together. Current day REPUBLICANS would want to know how many tax cuts for the rich there were and how we were going to pay for it.
With the current antics of this President toward Europe, we may very well be present for the destruction of what men died for and what men built a mere 7 decades ago.


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