Attitude of the U.S. Before Pearl Harbor. Public opinion in the United States was divided. Although most Americans favored the Allied cause, there was strong opposition to even indirect involvement in the war. The German-American Bund and the America First movement were especially active in opposing aid to the Allies. The American Communists also opposed aid—until Germany attacked the Soviet Union; then they demanded immediate intervention.
This World War II timeline highlights important dates during January 1931 to August 1939. This time period saw Japan and Italy break away from the League of Nations and the rise of the Nazi Party in Germany. Follow the events of World War II.
In 1939, a group of scientists, many having recently arrived in the United States after fleeing Nazi persecution in Germany, informed government officials that recent experiments conducted in Germany had demonstrated the feasibility of building an atomic weapon.