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Abstract

Examining World War II, the overwhelming support for America's entry into war can be traced back to a specific event, on a specific day-December 7, l94l-"A day that will live in infamy." For President Roosevelt, the daunting task of rallying an entire nation bent on isolationism for war was made simple. But for presidents before and after him, the task would be more difficult and require a much higher level of tact in portraying the realities of war. This paper argues that Woodrow Wilson and John F. Kennedy paved the way for involvement in World War I and Vietnam, respectively, by laying a rhetorically solid foundation based on moral Christian language and patriotic imagery.

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