OCTOBER 5, 1943
HYDE PARK, Monday —I begin again today to write you of happenings here in the United States. In a way, I am sorry that what I have been able to tell you daily of my trip has come to an end, because there is so much more that I should like you to understand about this war in the Southwest Pacific.
Sometimes I see criticism that we are concentrating on finishing the European war before we put the whole of our strength into the Pacific. That criticism is largely, I think, from people who have little understanding of the complications of this war. The more power we eventually put against the Japanese, the fewer the men we shall lose. It seems to me, as an uninitiated layman, that this power must be largely air and naval.
The actual taking of land must always be done by land forces, but the preparations and support must be given by the air and sea forces. The greater that support is, the less human lives it will cost us.
General MacArthur has done and is doing a magnificent job. He is turning a defensive war into an offensive one. Admiral Halsey and Admiral Nimitz have done the same fine job in their areas of command, and these coordinated movements are making life very uncomfortable for the Japanese. I hope that we at home realize how much depends on our work in producing all the supplies possible, in producing the ships in which to transport those supplies, and in inventing new weapons to meet the new inventions made by our enemies.
This is a war of the people as a whole. We, at home, are just as much a part of it as the soldiers in the field. What we eat, save, give and do for each other at home, has an effect on the men in the field. No man should wonder whether his family is being cared for. He should know that their neighbors are concerned for them and will do whatever is necessary for them. No man should ask what our plans are for the demobilization period. The Australians and the New Zealanders have told their men. We should shortly do the same.
However, since this is a democracy, the people have to see that this is done. They must insist that plans be made, discussed and passed by Congress, and they must make their own acquiescence known to their representatives. We are a democracy and we cannot be indifferent to any move by our government today.