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Atlantic Charter

Franklin D Roosevelt

Atlantic Charter: Franklin D Roosevelt was the 32nd American President who served in office from March 4, 1933 to April 12, 1945. One of the important events during his presidency was the Atlantic Charter.

Definition and Summary of the Atlantic Charter
Summary and definition:
The Atlantic Charter was the result of the Atlantic Conference, an historic meeting between President Franklin D. Roosevelt and the British Prime Minister Winston Churchill. The top secret Atlantic Conference took place between August 9-12, 1941, aboard American and and British warships in which the general strategy of the war against the Axis Powers of Germany, Italy and Japan were discussed.

The Atlantic Charter was issued by President Franklin D. Roosevelt and Winston Churchill on August 14, 1941 and detailed the common principles of the national policies of Great Britain and the United States and their hopes for a better future for the world. The Atlantic Charter was later used to form the basis of the United Nations Charter.

Facts about Atlantic Charter
The following fact sheet contains interesting facts and information on Atlantic Charter.

The Lend-Lease Act was passed on March 11, 1941 removing the cash requirement of the Neutrality Acts allowing the British continued access to American arms, munitions and supplies despite their rapidly deteriorating financial situation as a result of the British war effort.

The British had declared war on Germany on September 3, 1939 following the invasion of Poland and the British Battle of the Atlantic was in full swing.

The US was still technically neutral so FDR was unable to order the US Navy to protect the British cargo ships. He therefore declared the western half of the Atlantic as neutral and ordered the US Navy to patrol what he called the 'Hemispheric Defense Zone' and then report the location of German U-Boat submarines to the British.

President Franklin D. Roosevelt and the British Prime Minister Winston Churchill met face to face in great secrecy between August 9-12, 1941 on board the U.S. cruiser USS Augusta and the British cruiser HMS Prince of Wales anchored near Newfoundland.

The series of meetings were referred to as the Atlantic Conference when the two great leaders, and their staff, discussed the general strategy of the war that was being fought against the Axis Powers of Germany, Italy and Japan and their ideas for world peace in the future.

The result of the meetings was the text of the Atlantic Charter.

The Atlantic Charter was a joint proclamation issued by President Roosevelt and British Prime Minister Winston Churchill on August 14, 1941 detailing the common principles of the national policies of Britain and the US and their hopes for a better future for the world.

The Atlantic Charter was not an official document, but rather a joint statement expressing the war aims of the two countries - one technically neutral and the other at war.

The agreed aim of the two countries was to "ensure life, liberty, independence and religious freedom and to preserve the rights of man and justice."

The two leaders discussed the dangers to democracy arising from the aggressive and expansionist policies of the Totalitarian governments through military domination by conquest and the rise of Fascism and Nazism.

The Atlantic Charter committed FDR and Churchill to the principles of democracy and asserted their intentions not to increase the power, wealth and prestige of their respective countries.

They agreed to non aggression and to oppose expansionism by conquest from those who sought territorial changes and power over oppressed people

FDR and Churchill agreed to a post war world of democracy and to respect the right of all people to choose the form of government in their country

They agreed to the principles of free international trade with access to the raw materials needed for economic advancement with improved labor standards and social security.

FDR and Churchill agreed to the destruction of the Nazi tyranny and a world in which people could live in freedom from fear

They asserted their belief in the freedom of the seas and to adopt the policies of disarmament of nations who threatened other countries.

The joint declaration was issued by President Franklin D. Roosevelt and Prime Minister Winston Churchill on August 14, 1941 and is often cited by historians as one of the first significant steps towards the formation of the United Nations.

US American History
1929-1945: Depression & WW2

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