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Objective: To examine the causes of America’sinvolvement in World War I.
American Neutrality· Officially, the U.S.was a neutralcountry.· However, we tradedfood, weapons, oil, steel, and other goodsfar more with theAllied Powers thanwith the CentralPowers.
· Both the Allied Powers andCentral powers usedpropaganda in order tosupport their cause by makingtheir enemies seem savage.
Freedom of the Seas· The U.S., as aneutralnation, claimed theright to trade witheither side in thewar.· However, Britainand Germany set upblockades around theBritish and Germancoasts.
· German submarines, called U-boats, torpedoed enemy shipsand neutral ships trading with the enemy.
A German U-boat Torpedoes a Steamer, circa 1916
· In 1915, a German submarine torpedoed the Lusitania, aBritish passenger ship, killing approximately 1,200 people,including 128 Americans.
· Americans were infuriated with the destruction of theLusitania.
Moving Toward WarZimmermann telegram:– secret message fromGermany to Mexicourging Mexico to attackthe U.S. if the U.S.declared war onGermany– Germany promised tohelp Mexico regain landit lost to the U.S. in theMexican War.* The U.S. declared waron the Central Powersin 1917.
(above) Zimmermann Telegram asReceived by the German Ambassador toMexico, 01/19/1917 (right) decoded words
“Over There” Chorus by George M. Cohan Over there, over there, Send the word, send theJohnnie, get your gun, word over there -Get your gun, get your gun, That the Yanks are coming,Take it on the run, The Yanks are coming,On the run, on the run. The drums rum-tummingHear them calling, you and me, Evrywhere.Every son of liberty. So prepare, say a prayr,Hurry right away, Send the word, send theNo delay, go today, word to beware.Make your daddy glad Well be over, were comingTo have had such a lad. over,Tell your sweetheart not to pine, And we wont come back tillTo be proud her boys in line. its over(chorus sung twice) Over there.
Johnnie, get your gun, ChorusGet your gun, get your gun, Over there, over there,Johnnie show the Hun Send the word, send theWhos a son of a gun. word over there -Hoist the flag and let her fly, That the Yanks are coming,Yankee Doodle do or die. The Yanks are coming,Pack your little kit, The drums rum-tummingShow your grit, do your bit. Evrywhere.Yankee to the ranks, So prepare, say a prayr,From the towns and the Send the word, send thetanks. word to beware.Make your mother proud of Well be over, were comingyou, over,And the old Red, White and And we wont come back tillBlue. its over(chorus sung twice) Over there.