President Franklin Delano Roosevelt successfully led the nation through two of its greatest calamities, the Great Depression and World War II.

Yet questions still persist, did Roosevelt have prior knowledge of the impending attack on Pearl Harbor and do nothing?

“The answers are clear-cut and unambiguous,” said Richard Cornelia, a frequent lecturer at the Camden Public Library. Cornelia will give an illustrated talk on Pearl Harbor, 1941: Did Roosevelt Know? Thursday, June 19, at 7 p.m.

World War II began September 1939; by June 1940 France had fallen and Hitler’s Germany dominated all Europe. Britain, standing alone, struggled for survival while Americans were reluctant to again Save Europe. FDR proclaimed, “We must be the arsenal of democracy.” Yet Americans still hesitated. Did President Roosevelt possess advance knowledge and allow the attack to occur knowing it would force our entry into the war?

Cornelia will give an unequivocal answer to this important historical question in his talk June 19.

“The question has been asked over and over, almost endlessly,” said Cornelia. “Did President Roosevelt know about the impending attack and withhold that information? We are going to dispel the many myths surrounding this issue. President Roosevelt’s paramount interest was Europe, not Asia. All parties urged that war with Japan be avoided since it would divert valuable resources away from a struggling Europe. We were supplying both Britain and Soviet Russia. The short answer is no, a definite no. The broader question is, did the US government know?”