The three most important groupsrnwho have been pressing this countryrntoward war are the British, thernJewish, and the Roosevelt Administration.rnBehind these groups, butrnof lesser importance, are a numberrnof capitalists, anglophiles, and intellectuals,rnwho believe that theirrnfiiture, and the future of mankind,rndepend upon the domination ofrnthe British Empire. Add to thesernthe Communistic groups whornwere opposed to intervention untilrna few weeks ago, and I believe Irnhave named the major war agitatorsrnin this country.rnThis simple truism, easily demonstrablernboth then and now, caused such a stormrnof outrage that its echoes reverberaterneven today.rnTo most Americans, the memory ofrn”Lucky Lindy” is associated with thernheroic history of aviation and somehowrnbound up with the concept of heroism itselfrnTo the opinion-making elites, however,rnthe memory of Lindbergh evokesrnimages of an American Quisling who acceptedrna medal from Goering and openlyrnincited antisemitism. While effectivelyrndemolishing the smear about thernmedal—it was a surprise to Lindbergh asrnwell as to the U.S. officials who accompaniedrnhim on his intelligence missionrnto Germany—Berg is careful not to challengerntoo much. While acknowledgingrnthat Lindbergh “had bent over backwardrnin being kind about the Jews,” Berg arguesrnthatrnin suggesting the American Jewsrnwere “other” people and that theirrninterests were “not American,” hernimplied exclusion, thus underminingrnthe very foundations of thernUnited States.rnNo one questions that we harbor withinrnour borders a wide variety of ethnicrngroups whose loyalty to the “old country”rnis organized and effective in shapingrnU.S. foreign policy. Greek-Americans,rnArmenian-Americans, Turkish-Americans,rnhyphenates of every descriptionrnmake their case in the corridors of power.rnAre Jewish-Americans any different?rnIf so, this would distinguish them forrntheir (self-)exclusion from the oldestrngame in Washington. If not, Lindberghrnreasoned, then why not name them?rnLindbergh stood like a rock againstrnthe wave of vituperation that crestedrnand crashed down upon his head: The issuernraised in his speech was a valid one,rnhe maintained, and the choice wasrnwhether or not you are going to letrnyour country go into a completelyrndisastrous war for lack of couragernto name the groups leading thatrncountry to war—at the risk of beingrnLindberghrna In that moment, when Lindbergh lost all contact with earth and climbedrnabove the fog to ten thousand feet, he was also ascending in the public consciousnessrnto Olympian heights. His success would reflect well on the entire humanrnrace, placing him in the unique position of overshadowing every other livingrnhero…. On May 20, 1927—as night fell—modem man realized nobody had everrnsubjected himself to so extreme a test of human courage and capability as Lindbergh.rnNot even Christopher Columbus sailed alone.rn” . . . . It would be almost three decades before Lindbergh would discuss it publicly,rnbut after almost twenty-four hours of his ordeal—at around five o’clock in thernmorning by his clock—the fuselage behind him filled with phantoms—’vaguelyrnoudined forms, transparent, moving, riding weightiess with me in the plane.’ Hernlater recorded that these ghosts were benign, vaporous presences. They permeatedrnthe fabric walls of the plane, coming and going at will. With human voicesrnthey spoke to him above the noise of the engine, advising him on his flight and givingrnhim ‘messages of importance unattainable in ordinary life.’ They were humanrnin shape but devoid of real form. With years of hindsight, Lindbergh wouldrngrant that these visions would normally have startled him; ‘but on this fantasticrnflight,’ he would recall of the close encounter, ‘I’m so far separated from the earthlyrnlife that I know that I accept whatever circumstances may come.”‘rn—A. Scott Bergrncalled “anh-Semihc” simply byrnnaming them.rnBerg does not, however, mention thernone legitimate criticism of the DesrnMoines speech, made by John T. Flynn.rnIn a letter to Lindbergh, the intrepid organizerrnof America First and leader ofrnthe New York chapter confessed his “utterrndistress”: Flynn was certain that Lindberghrnwas “as completely without anti-rnSemitism as I am,” but be pointed outrnthat “shadings of meaning” are lost inrnbattles such as these. While Flynn hadrnbeen struggling against overwhelmingrnodds to deflect the intrigues of both organizedrnantisemites and British intelligencernto smear the AFC with the Nazirnbmsh, Lindbergh had been “tagged withrnthe anti-Jewish label.” Flynn agreedrnwith Lindbergh that Jewish leaders hadrnbeen in the forefront of the war agitahonrnand smeared their opponents as antisemites.rn”It has seemed,” he wrote,rnthat their responsibility for thisrnshould be brought home to them.rnBut this is a far different matterrnfrom going out upon the publicrnplatform and denouncing “thernJews” as the warmakers. No manrncan do that without incurring thernguilt of religious and racial intolerance.rnFlynn was right: The smear campaignrnaccelerated and popular sentimentrnturned against Lindbergh and the AFC.rnAfter Pearl Harbor, Lindbergh withdrewrnfrom public life. Insulated by his wealthrnand fame from the worst effects of thernanti-isolationist witch-hunt, the seditionrntrials, the economic persecution, and thernoutright suppression that felled otherrnAmerica Firsters such as Flynn and Jeffers,rnhe was nonetheless frustrated by thernRoosevelt adminishation’s rehisal to letrnhim serve during the war. FDR is said tornhave remarked: “I’ll clip that youngrnman’s wings.” But not for long: Lindberghrnwas soon flying bombing missionsrnin the South Pacific. Berg credits himrnwith increasing the radius of Americanrnbombers and himing the tide decisivelyrnagainst the Japanese.rnA. Scott Berg has rescued Lindberghrnfi-om the smear artists who muddied hisrnname and restored an American hero tornhis rightful place in the pantheon of notables.rnIn spite of the flaws his book contains,rnthat is an achievement for whichrnwe should be grateful. <€rn30/CHRONICLESrnrnrn