Harry Lloyd Hopkins

Picture of Harry Lloyd Hopkins

Date of Birth: 08/17/1890

Age: 55

Birthplace: Sioux City

Citizenship: United States


When Winston Churchill was asked to name the two Americans (except the President), whose contribution to the defeat of Nazi Germany was the most significant, the British Prime Minister said that the military leaders of those is John Marshall, of the civil parties -. Harry Hopkins. For 12 years he has worked closely with Franklin Delano Roosevelt.

Harry Lloyd Hopkins was born on August 17, 1890 in Sioux City (Iowa). He was the fourth of five children of the saddler David Eldon and Anna Hopkins picket. His father tried many occupations and often moved from place to place. Harry was a good student at school and Grinnellskom kolledzhe.V spare time, he played baseball fan which remained throughout life.

After 1917 the United States entered the First World War, Hopkins decided to go into the army or the navy, but he was not taken for health reasons. Later, he was appointed head of the Red Cross organizations in the south-eastern states with the center in Atlanta.

In 1921, Hopkins returned to New York, where he worked at the Association for the improvement of living conditions of the poor, then - the managing director of the New York Association of tuberculosis.

Hopkins met with Roosevelt in the midst of the election campaign in 1928, when the latter was a candidate for governor. At this meeting, Harry made a great impression.

Up until 1940, Hopkins had no experience of diplomatic work. He became friendly with Roosevelt on the basis of activities in various charities. In 1933 he was promoted to Director of the Federal Office of the unemployed, and five years later he was appointed Minister of Commerce. His diplomatic talent was revealed during the Second World War.

The general outlines of foreign Hopkins concept developed in 1938-1941, respectively. The starting point was the awareness of their threat posed by German fascism for America. In a memorandum dated 12 April 1941 Hopkins wrote: "The German dictator will never be defeated by the old democratic order, which essentially status quo. But the new order of Hitler could be defeated by the new order of democracy, the essence of which - a new course, on the condition that he will receive widespread and universal recognition. just like totalitarianism supports the new order of Hitler, the world democracy is to support the new Deal of Roosevelt. In this case, democracy will find unity and a promising target. "

Many people around the president irked by the fact that Hopkins was actually a member of the Roosevelt family. He lived for months in the White House. After the death of his second wife, Barbara Duncan Hopkins in 1937. The president`s wife Eleanor took care of his daughter. When Harry Lloyd for the third time married (1942), a solemn ceremony was held in the presidential residence with the participation of the FDR. In Washington circles Hopkins was known as joyous, theater-goer and clubbers. Everyone knew that he - the father of four children and live in general, by American standards quite modest. His annual income during the period of stay in the White House was lower than kotoryyon received until 1937.

He was loyal and completely devoted to the president, but at the same time, has always defended their own opinion. The president spoke about it: "Harry - this is an excellent ambassador, working to achieve my goals." Roosevelt presented his foreign leaders as a person, which can be treated "with the same confidence, how you would feel in that case would be talking to me personally."

Hopkins harbored sympathies for diplomats professionals. He believed that the president is obliged to justify the title of "the first diplomat of the country" in a war, and strive to provide the chief executive with everything you need to perform this function. His efforts were directed to strengthen the position of the White House with the help of the executive agency, accountable to the president and able to work abroad. Lend-Lease Administration, the head of which he was, was a trump card in this game.

Several times in responsible negotiation Hopkins served as Secretary of State. But almost all of these negotiations, starting with the Atlantic Conference (1941) and ending with Tehran (1943), either entirely or for the most part focused on the discussion of military issues and various aspects of the coalition diplomacy.

The name is associated Hopkins approval practices of personal diplomacy. During trips abroad, he could act as unofficial face and agree on issues that could hardly be affected if the negotiations were an ambassador, minister, or the president himself. Hopkins, to a greater extent than anyone else of his contemporaries, except, of course, the Heads of State the "big three", contributed to the rapprochement of the main participants of the military alliance.

"Mr. Root Question" - so once called Hopkins, Churchill, and the title and secured him. Assistant to the President Meeting with British Prime Minister took place in January 1941, when Roosevelt sent Hopkins as their emissary to London. Hopkins ordered on the spot to decide whether US policy goals agreed with the support of England.

The almost daily conversations with Churchill for six weeks marked the beginning of a long friendship. Hopkins was one of the few who had the privilege to contact Churchill called. In January 1941, the US diplomat completely changed my mind about the English director and tried to convey to the President that some idealized image.

In turn, Churchill paid American friend many pages in his memoirs, calling him "an extraordinary man" who played great, "and sometimes decisive role in the whole course of the war." "In his frail and sickly body was burning ardent soul ... I always enjoyed his company, especially when things were going badly. Sometimes he could be very unpleasant to say hard and bitter words. The experience of my life and taught me to do the same in If necessary ... ".

In summer 1941, the US continued to pursue a policy of rapprochement with England. Immediately after the June 22, 1941 there was a question about the possible involvement of the Soviet Union. Roosevelt expressed willingness to support the proposal in late July Hopkins - go to Moscow. Hopkins`s visit to Moscow in late July - early August 1941 can be seen as a clear breakthrough in US-Soviet relations. Daily flight Hopkins, most of which he spent in the tail compartment of the aircraft in the gunner seat, of course, was the act of a brave man. Hopkins after surgery to remove a cancerous tumor in the stomach in 1938, could maintain a life only with a special diet and timely medication.

In Moscow, Hopkins met with Stalin and other leaders of the Soviet state. He wanted to know, "how long will Russia". The Soviet side to learn more about him on the progress and prospects of the hostilities on the Soviet-German front, he had a list of weapons and materials needed in the Soviet Union first.

The talks Hopkins said that the government of the USA and the UK do not want to send heavy weapons on the Soviet-German front before they will be a meeting of representatives of the three governments to explore the strategic interests of each of the front world war and each of the three countries. Stalin approved the idea of ??convening such a meeting.

The Soviet leaders made a great impression on the Hopkins that Roosevelt said: "I am very sure about this front ... Here there is a strong determination to win." Hopkins`s visit helped to improve US-Soviet relations and paved the way for holding in Moscow in October 1941, a conference of representatives of the USSR, the USA and the UK.

November 7, 1941 as a result of further negotiations between the USSR and the United States to the Soviet Union was extended the law the Lend-Lease.

Many US diplomats noted the special attitude of Stalin to Roosevelt`s assistant. Bohlen recalled that in one of the conversations Stalin called Hopkins "the first American who came to his liking." Hopkins, in turn, came to the conclusion that Stalin might close cooperation within the framework of the anti-fascist alliance. The American diplomat saw him as a potential ally, without which victory over the fascist militarist "axis" seemed inconceivable that a decisive impact on the image of his actions. Perhaps it is Hopkins impressions from meetings in the Kremlin led Roosevelt to start "diplomacy courtship" of Stalin.

Thus, the winter - summer of 1941, Hopkins was able in a short time to establish a close relationship with such diverse leaders like Churchill and Stalin. He built his foreign policy program based on the recognition of "prioritizing cooperation with Britain." With the participation of Hopkins on the Anglo-American talks in July 1942, it was decided to postpone the opening of a second front in Europe for an indefinite period and replace it with the landing of the Allied forces in North Africa, creating opportunities for the implementation of the Mediterranean Strategy Churchill. Finally, it was he who finally convinced Roosevelt to open the secrets of the British nuclear weapons.

Hopkins was a constant participant in all meetings of the "big three" are actively preparing these meetings, supervised conversation between the leaders of the coalition powers. It was he who convinced Roosevelt to adopt Stalin`s proposal to hold a conference in the Crimea, despite the fact that Churchill believed Yalta "most unsuitable place to meet."

In early 1944, the state of health has deteriorated sharply Hopkins. Within a few months, he did not rise from his bed. For active work assistant to the president he returned only in late summer.

On the eve of the Yalta Conference, he did a great job.

Overall, the US delegation has acted in accordance with the recommendations of Hopkins. Being behind Roosevelt, he skillfully maneuvered, tried to reconcile the increasingly drifting apart the political program of Roosevelt, Stalin, and Churchill. As a result, at a conference in Yalta on four of the five main positions the United States took a middle position, which made it possible to bring the discussions to the final results.

April 12, 1945 Roosevelt died. "Russia has lost its biggest friend in America," - wrote in a telegram to Stalin Hopkins.

Hopkins` second visit to the USSR, this time as an emissary Truman, was rather long (25 May - 7 June 1945). The main attention was paid to the problem of post-war settlement in Europe. The Soviet side also reaffirmed the commitment to join the war against Japan. According to the instructions of President, Hopkins had to do everything possible to overcome the crisis of confidence in US-Soviet relations, using any method - "diplomatic language, a baseball bat or anything that he considered appropriate."

During the talks with Stalin revealed profound differences between the two sides in their views on the fate of post-war Europe. The stumbling block was the Soviet concept of national security require the creation along the western border of the USSR "friendly" regimes and the "free hand" in Eastern Europe, especially in Poland. Despite this, Hopkins brought the negotiations to the end: controversy over the voting procedure in the Security Council have been eliminated, as well as identified by the Conference in Potsdam.

Hopkins talks with Stalin "breathed new life into the spirit of Yalta," - said the historian D. Mack Jims. Summer of 1945, the results of the mission to Moscow viewed as a great success. It was the last diplomatic victory for Hopkins. July 2, 1945, he finally took leave of the public service.

In the autumn of 1945, Harry was a staunch supporter of diplomatic cooperation. However, Hopkins could not hide the concern about the future of Poland. Neither the Potsdam Conference, no subsequent events did not assuage his fears.

Harry Lloyd Hopkins died January 29, 1946 at the age of 55 years. His son Robert, met with Truman shortly after the funeral, said: "You know, the only thing that could save him from death - it`s your decision to send him somewhere with a foreign mission."