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The Political History of American Food AidAn Uneasy Benevolence$
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Barry Riley

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780190228873

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2017

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780190228873.001.0001

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Herbert Hoover

Herbert Hoover

Chapter:
(p.12) 2 Herbert Hoover
Source:
The Political History of American Food Aid
Author(s):

Barry Riley

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/oso/9780190228873.003.0003

With the German invasion of Belgium and France came economic chaos and the near total disruption of agriculture and the marketing of basic foodstuffs to the nearly 10 million residents now behind enemy lines. Herbert Hoover, a young mining executive, was tapped by the American ambassador to Britain to lead an American effort to establish, as a matter of highest urgency, a system to feed these people—otherwise threatened with starvation—until the war was ended. This chapter relates how he succeeded in what was widely believed to be an impossible task. When the United States entered the war in 1917, Hoover’s difficulties only multiplied. Now he had to convince the American people to consume far less, so that there might be food enough to keep the populations of the allied states from starvation.

Keywords:   Herbert Hoover, Belgium, Commission for the Relief of Belgium, CRB, World War I, Germany, food aid

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