Priorities in Demobilization

July 28, 1944

Report Outline
Emerging Problem of Mustering-Out Policy
United States Demobilization After Last War
Lessons from British Demobilization of 1918–19
United States Plans for Postwar Demobilization
Special Focus

Emerging Problem of Mustering-Out Policy

Pledges to Service Men in Party Platforms

Ground for Hope that partial demobilization of American forces in Europe may get under way before the close of 1944 is given by current evidence of a rapid decline in German military power. Prime Minister Churchill said, June 1, that “the months of this summer may … bring full success to the cause of freedom.” President Roosevelt said, June 12, that after the defeat of Germany, Japan might be forced “to unconditional surrender or to national suicide much more rapidly than has been thought possible.” The culminating phases of the war in the Pacific are not expected to require the full military strength now mobilized for the war in Europe.

The platform adopted by the Republican National Convention at Chicago, June 28, included a pledge that: &Ldquo;At the earliest possible time after the cessation of hostilities we will bring home all members of our armed forces who do not have unexpired enlistments and who do not volunteer for further overseas duty.” The Democratic platform, adopted July 20, stressed postwar economic security of veterans, without promising early release from military service. &Ldquo;We make it our first duty,” the platform said, “to assure employment and economic security to all who have served in the defense of our country.”

Obstacles to Rapid Postwar Demobilization

Orderly return to civilian status of members of the armed forces has already demanded the attention of the War and Navy Departments, the War Manpower Commission, and other executive agencies. Discharges from the Army and Navy since the United States entered the war have totaled more than one million men A committee of Congress was told by War Mobilization Director Byrnes, June 12, that: &Ldquo;Looking to the collapse of Nazi Germany, the armed services are already far advanced in programming the orderly demobilization of our soldiers and sailors.”

ISSUE TRACKER for Related Reports
World War II Demobilization
Nov. 18, 1950  Conservation of War Materials
Jan. 04, 1946  Future of Light Metals
Jul. 21, 1945  Aid to Displaced War Workers
Dec. 06, 1944  War Veterans and Employment
Nov. 11, 1944  Reconversion of Agriculture
Jul. 28, 1944  Priorities in Demobilization
May 16, 1944  Termination of War Contracts
Jan. 17, 1944  Lend-Lease Settlements
Nov. 30, 1943  Disposal of Surplus War Materials
Nov. 11, 1943  Military Government of Occupied Territory
Oct. 22, 1943  Government War Plants
Sep. 27, 1943  Termination of War Controls
Aug. 21, 1943  Demobilization
U.S. at War: World War II
War and Conflict
World War II