An American Viceroy For Europe?

In 1922, four years after World War I ended, P.W. Wilson wrote a New York Times Magazine column advocating for American occupation of Europe — like how the Allies would later occupy Japan and Germany for several years after World War II.

Mere military, money, and moralities will never save Europe. Like the Phillippines, she must be governed.

If Europe is to be saved, she must be annexed. She must be united under an American Viceroy. Senator Borah, for instance, Colonel Harvey, or somebody of that kind.

“Senator Borah” referred to Sen. William Borah (R-ID) — although, interestingly, he would not ascend to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee chair position until 1924. “Colonel Harvey” referred to Harvey Weir Cook, the World War I flying ace.

Ultimately, Wilson’s idea of an American-occupied Europe was never adopted, but a similar idea was adopted after the next world war. The Allies occupied Japan from 1945-52, primarily under Douglas MacArthur. The Allies also occupied Germany from 1945-49, at first under Dwight Eisenhower and then under Lucius Clay.

An American Viceroy For Europe?

Published: Sunday, March 11, 1922

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