US joining the World War I in 1917 were still winning the Wilson peace initiative as he has intended to have America to make “the world safe for democracy”(Olson, 2007) . Wilson has to secure the US Congress to declare war was push when Germany resumed unrestricted submarine warfare in early 1917 and made a clumsy attempt to enlist Mexico as an ally. Wilson seeming attitude to on not predisposition to war may be evidence by his not signing a formal alliance with Great Britain or France but operated as US then position itself as an "Associated" power.
This is further proved by Wilson’s raising a massive army through conscription but gave command to General John J. Pershing to have a free hand as to tactics, strategy and even diplomacy in executive US participation in the War. Wilson’s purpose of going to war is to end all wars as he found that the war had become a real threat to humanity and that Western civilization itself was in danger of being destroyed. His joining the war not focused in military fighting but in his Fourteen Points position that aims in resolving territorial disputes, ensuring free trade and commerce, and establishing a peacemaking organization.
2. 4 What was he doing at home front while the War is going on? Not all agreed with Wilson policy for peace by using war to end all wars. For Wilson to stop defeatism at home, he caused the enactment of the Espionage Act of 1917 and the Sedition Act of 1918 through Congress for the purpose of suppressing anti-British, pro-German, or anti-war opinions. He has his supporters however from socialists whom he gladly welcomed such as Walter Lippmann, but without tolerating those who tried to impede the war or, worse, assassinate government officials, and pushed for deportation of foreign-born radicals (Avrich, et.
al, 1991). His wartime policies were still pro-people pro-labor, but not for radical unions like the Industrial Workers of the World as evidenced by The American Federation of Labor and other 'moderate' unions witnessing huge growth in membership and wages during his term. His concentration with finance rather than the military during the war was a strategic as evidence by the lack of rationing that cause consumer prices to increase. As a result however on soaring prices, income taxes increased but white-collar workers suffered.
This situation caused appeals to buy war bonds to be highly successful, which had the effect of shifting the cost of the war to the affluent during those times. This therefore had the effect of getting more from the rich to finance the war for America. 2. 5 The Fourteen Points President Wilson expressed in a speech his terms for peace which is know as the ‘Fourteen Points” before US Congress in 1918. Since the points raised were significantly war aims that could be uttered any belligerent nation, the same became the basis for the Treaty of Versailles following World War I.
The points are highly idealistic but translate Wilson’s progressive domestic policy of democracy, self-determination, open agreements and free trade into the international realm and also suggest resolutions for specific disputes in Europe from his foreign policy advisors. The points included among others, abolition of secret treaties, freedom of the seas, free trade, disarmament, adjustment of colonial claims, Russia to be assured independent development and international withdrawal from occupied Russian territory, and establishment of an independent Poland and General association of the nations to enforce the peace.
The speech was controversial in America, and even more so with their Allies since the latter which included France wanting high reparations from Germany due to great demolitions of French agriculture, industry, and lives that had been so demolished by the war, while Britain, being the great naval power, not wanting freedom of the seas.
Wilson made compromises with Clemenceau, Lloyd George, and many other European leaders during the Paris Peace talks to ensure that the fourteenth point and the League of Nations would be established. However, Wilson's own US Congress was not accepting the League and only four of the original Fourteen Points were implemented fully in Europe.