America then, placed foreign policy on the back burner, along with military spending, which was a mistake.
Pulling America out of the Great Depression was important, it was job 1,
but it was no excuse for America to stick its head in the sand over what was going on in Europe.
By 1936, the losers of Versailles, Japan and Germany, were bidding for empires.
Japan had conquered Manchuria, Germany had reconquered the Rhineland.
Together with Italy, which had managed to conquer Ethiopia, they created the Anti-Comintern Pact.
The Axis, as Germany, Japan and Italy was also called, was anti-communist mainly at name.
What they really wanted was world domination.
The Spanish civil war of 1936 to 1939 became a proxy war between the Axis and the Soviet Union.
In 1938 Hitler pushed the envelope by annexing Austria along with pieces of Czechoslovakia.
Britain and France continued trying to buy time.
The USSR agonized over whether to side with the Axis or with the west.
Meanwhile the United States maintained strict neutrality.