Lend Lease Repayment

Hi all,

Stumbled on this http://money.guardian.co.uk/news_/story/0,,1768039,00.html

In praise of… lend-lease …

Britain is about to make the last payment on the lend lease deal from WWII. As a US American, I think that Britain never should of been made to pay this back. You know standing shoulder to shoulder, brother to brother as we did and still do today. I am embarrased that the US accepts this payment.

Whats your humble opion?

My humble opinion is that the US Congress would never have initiated the program if it was a gift instead of a loan.

I have a brother who is a good guy, but can’t seem to get his act together. He can’t keep a job, he can’t take care of himself very well, and he’s kind of a perpetual drain on my mother.

I love him, but I don’t give him money. He found himself in a bad situation, and he’s getting sued for about $1000. I wouldn’t lend him the money (if I had it) because I know that he would pay his debt, and then go right back to being a leach and getting in bad situations again.

My best friend several years ago found himself in a bad situation. He needed $450 for about 3 days. He lived at home, but he worked, paid rent, and was one of the most stable people I knew. I happened to have it, I gave it without a thought. 3 days later he gave it all back, and bought me lunch.

Money given as a gift can create ill feelings.
Money given as a loan can create feelings of self sufficiency and pride when it is paid back.

Maybe the British would rather pay it back than accept charity? Keeping the transaction at an impersonal business level helps keep things from getting huffy and damaging international relations.

It seems fine to me. By the OP’s standard, Cuba is a noble nation because Castro doesn’t cash our checks for the U.S. lease on Guantanamo Bay. I think loan of that type is about as admirable as they come on both sides. Besides, $45 million a year is a pittance for a wealthy nation.

I was interested by this bit:
But it came at a price and the Americans drove a hard bargain. At one point Washington pressed for the transfer of the British West Indies in return. Though that proposal fell through, Britain did agree to give up the rights to and royalties on innovations such as radar, antibiotics, jet aircraft and nuclear research to the US…
I never knew that. I hope they aren’t still sore about it.

I wonder if they’ll make a big ceremonial deal over the last payment. Like, having the UK treasury guy personally hand the check to the Secretary of the Treasury. That would be kinda neat.

I think America should have written off the final payments in exchange for Britain taking Madonna off our hands.

I think the part that chafes the brits about that whole deal was that they had no choice because they desperately needed war materiel to fight off the Germans and Japanese. Then after all the shooting was over Japan, Germany, Italy and all those countries that got overrun by the Axis got rebuilt with US money, no repayment necessary, while the only country that had fought against the Axis non-stop from 1939 to 1945 was economically castrated by repayments and got nothing except a discounted loan for its troubles.
Rationing in the UK didn’t end until 1954

Of course it’s not that simple, because politics and international relations never are. Germany was paying reparations as well as receiving aid, and the Bundesrepublic’s economic success was probably down to it being better run than the UK, and it would be foolish to expect that the US was ever going to let the UK reassert itself as a potential rival in interesting parts of the world.