Freedom Betrayed, by Herbert Hoover
When I first heard of this book, it seemed of no interest to me. The last thing I would read to understand history is the musings of a former president. Then I read a review and some snippets. It seems there is some valuable revisionist history here, with insights from one who spent his life on the inside.
The book represents Hoover’s memoirs and writings regarding U.S. Policy from the early 1930s until the early 1950s. Especially in foreign policy and war, this was a very dynamic period, obviously. During this time he commented both publicly and privately as to U.S. foreign policy. It should be noted, as late as 1940 he was hopeful of another presidential run against Roosevelt, and he had many disagreements with Roosevelt. His comments, therefore, should be kept with this in mind.
I am primarily interested in Hoover’s revisionist views as relates to foreign policy during this time period. Therefore, I will comment little about other areas. For example, I will not spend much time on Hoover’s revisionist views of economic policy, if any. On the whole, he was every bit as activist as any president of the Progressive era – of which he holds charter membership. I will also not spend time on Hoover’s views that correspond to the mainstream, except perhaps to use these views to demonstrate his philosophical inconsistencies.
As I have done with other books and papers, I will comment on this book over several posts.