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WWII

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Here are the notes from the WWII unit.

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  • 1. WWII: Causes & American Involvement
  • 2. Totalitarianism form of government in which the government practices complete control over its citizens
    Fascism  political system based on a centralized autocratic government headed by a dictator
    Nationalistic
    Religion
    Glorious past
    Private business and property
    Racial scapegoats for problems
    Repression of opposition
    1921, Italy
    Benito Mussolini established fascism
    1922, Mussolini and “black shirts” take over government
    Adolf Hitler
    National Socialist German Workers’ Party (Nazi)
    Mein Kampf (1925 & 1927)
    Unite all German-speaking people
    “Aryans” = master race
    Jews blamed for problems
    National expansion, lebensraum
    1932, Nazi’s win elections (not majority)
    1933, Hitler appointed chancellor
    Reichstag fire & decree
    Weimar Republic dismantled
    Third Reich installed
    Communism  economic and political system based on one party government and state ownership of property
    No boundaries (workers of the world)
    Atheistic
    Future revolution
    No privately owned business or property
    No blatant racism
    Repression of opposition
    1922, Soviet Union
    1924, Joseph Stalin took control of USSR
    Make USSR model state
    1927, collectivization of agriculture
    1928, 1933, 1937, “five year plan”
    Turn USSR into industrialized nation
    State-owned factories, mills, plants, etc…
  • 3. Militarists in Japan
    Emperor Hirohito
    Need for more “living space”
    1931, invasion of Manchuria
    Militarists in control
    1941, Hideki Tojo becomes prime minister
    Importance of U. S. supplies and oil
  • 4. Isolationism in U. S.
    North Dakota senator Gerald Nye
    Congressional committee formed to look into charges that banks and arms dealers had dragged America into WWI
    1937 poll  70% of Americans believed that the U.S. should not have entered WWI
    Neutrality Acts, 1935
    Meant to keep U.S. out of foreign affairs
    Outlawed arms sales or loans to nations at war
    Breakdown  Spanish Civil War
  • 5. Spanish Civil War
    Fascist general Francisco Franco attempts to overthrow democratic government, 1936
    Hitler & Mussolini aid Franco
    Saw it as a testing ground for their new forces
    Americans found it difficult not to support democratic government
    3,000 Americans joined Abraham Lincoln Brigade to fight Franco
    Aid from U.S. and other countries too small (fear of larger war outbreak) 1939, Franco took power
  • 6. Europe Aggression
    Mussolini
    1935 invaded Ethiopia to expand new Roman Empire
    1936, Ethiopia fell
    Haile Selassie, “It is us today. It will be you tomorrow.”
    Nazi Aggression
    1933, Germany left LON
    1935, violated Versailles through military buildup
    1936
    Occupied Rhineland (supposed to be demilitarized)
    Signed Rome-Berlin Axis Pact (alliance between Italy and Germany)
    1938
    Hitler unites Austria with Germany
    Hitler threatens Sudetenland
  • 7. Munich Pact
    France and Great Britain had promised to protect Czechoslovakia
    Hitler invited Edouard Daladier and Neville Chamberlain to Munich
    September 30, 1938 signed Munich Pact
    Hitler promised Sudetenland was last territorial acquisition (and it was given to him)
    Chamberlain, “Peace in our time.”
    Winston Churchill disagreed
    Appeasement giving up principles to pacify an aggressor
    p. 550
  • 8. German Offensive
    Czechoslovakia
    March 15, 1939 Hitler invaded
    Poland
    Sizable German-speaking population
    Hitler again charged that the Poles were mistreating these people
    Potential Problems of German Invasion:
    France & Great Britain had pledged to help Poland militarily if invaded
    Would the USSR protect its western neighbor?
    Solution: August 23, 1939  nonaggression pact signed between Hitler and Stalin agreeing not to fight one another
    Also agreed to split up Poland
    Threat of two-front war avoided for Hitler
    Blitzkrieg (lightning war)
    Take the enemy by surprise and crush all opposition with overwhelming force
    September 1, 1939 Germany invaded Poland
    Planes bombed bases, airfields, railroads and cities
    Tanks
    September 3, 1939 France & Great Britain declared war on Germany
    Blitzkrieg worked too quickly for French or British forces to arrive and help
  • 9.
  • 10. Germany Turns Attention Westward
    Phony War
    Blitzkrieg gave way to waiting
    French, British, and German troops waited almost 7 months
    Stalin consolidated land in the east (Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, & Finland)
    Denmark & Norway
    April 9, 1940 Germany invades
    Netherlands, Belgium, & Luxembourg
    All fell by May of 1940
    France
    French & British officials feared a German invasion through Belgium and sent forces north
    Hitler anticipated this and sent forces (tanks) through the Ardennes
    Allied forces cut off in the north
    Road to Paris clear
    Italy invaded from the south
    June 21, 1940 Paris fell to Hitler
    France occupied and puppet government set up in Vichy
    General Charles de Gaulle fled to England and set up a government-in-exile
  • 11.
  • 12. Battle of Britain
    August 1940
    Germany assembled an invasion fleet on French coast
    Germany could not compete with British navy
    Luftwaffe (German air force) began bombing runs over Britain
    Targeted military targets first and eventually bombed cities (London)
    Great Britain turns Hitler away
    Winston Churchill became Prime Minister in May 1940
    “We shall defend our island, whatever the cost may be. We shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing-grounds, we shall fight in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills. We shall never surrender.”
    Royal Air Force (RAF)
    Used radar and fought off the Luftwaffe
    September 1940  indefinite suspension of invasion declared by Hitler
  • 13. Holocaust
    The systematic murder of 11 million people across Europe, more than half of whom (6 million) were Jews.
    Began in Germany
    Nuremberg Laws (1935)  stripped Jews of their civil rights and property if they tried to leave Germany
    Star of David patch
    Final Solution
    Meant to rid Germany and the world of its “Jewish problem”
    Genocide deliberate and systematic killing of an entire people
    Death Squads moved behind Hitler’s army
    Set up concentration camps
    Communists, Catholics, Gypsies, Freemasons, Jehovah’s Witnesses, people with disabilities, homosexuals & POW’s also sent
    Auschwitz, Dachau, Buchenwald, Belsen etc…
    Labor, experimentation, extermination
  • 14. America Moves Toward War
    “Cash-and-carry”
    September 1939, Neutrality Acts revised
    Allowed nations to buy American arms as long as they paid cash and carried them back in own ships
    FDR thought providing arms to Britain and France was best way to keep U.S. out of war
    Tripartite Pact
    September 1940
    Japan, Germany, and Italy signed a mutual defense treaty
    Axis Powers
    Implications for U.S.
    FDR supplied British with “all aid short of war”
    FDR & Congress increased military spending and implemented draft
    Election of 1940
    FDR runs for third term and wins
    22nd Amendment (1951) set term limits
  • 15. The Great Arsenal of Democracy
    Lend-Lease Act, 1941
    Lend or lease arms and supplies to “any country whose defense was vital to the United States”
    Importance of Great Britain
    Soviet Union
    Hitler invaded USSR on June 22, 1941
    Scorched-earth policy and Russian winter halt Hitler
    German wolf packs (15-20 U-boats) disrupt supply to Britain
    FDR ordered Navy to protect shipments as far east as Iceland
    Met secretly with Winston Churchill in August 1941 near Newfoundland
    Atlantic Charter
    Declaration of principles regarding why WWII was fought and the Allies’ intentions
    “A Declaration by the United Nations”  formed Allies
  • 16. Japan Attacks the U.S.
    Militarism in Japan
    Expansionist desires
    French Indochina, Dutch East Indies, Burma, India, Malaya, Guam, & the Philippines
    July 1941
    Japanese take Indochina
    U.S. placed embargo on Japan
    Importance of American oil
    Hideki Tojo
    Prime Minister, October 1940
    Began planning attack on U.S. in November 1941
    Pearl Harbor
    December 7, 1941
    U.S. had broken Japanese code and knew attack was coming, but didn’t know where
    180 Japanese warplanes launched from 6 aircraft carriers attacked the U.S. Navy base at Pearl Harbor for an hour and a half
    18 American ships badly damaged
    4 sunk
    Oglala, Oklahoma, Arizona, and Utah
    350 planes damaged
    2,400 people dead (1,178 wounded)
    Pacific Fleet crippled
    No aircraft carriers sunk
  • 17.
  • 18.
  • 19. U.S. Declares War
    Japanese Admiral, Isoroku Yamamoto
    “I fear all we have done is to awaken a sleeping giant and fill him with a terrible resolve.”
    FDR addressed Congress December 8, 1941
    “A date which will live in infamy”
    Declaration of war against Japan passed
    Three days later Germany and Italy declared war on U.S.
  • 20. America Increases Forces
    Selective Service
    5 million volunteers
    10 million draftees
    Women & minorities
    Women’s Auxiliary Army Corps (1942)
    250,000 women throughout WWII
    Served in auxiliary roles
    African Americans
    Over 1 million
    Tuskegee Airmen
    Mexican Americans
    Over 500,000
    Native Americans
    Over 25,000
    First opportunity for many to leave reservations
    Asian Americans
    13,000 Chinese Americans
    33,000 Japanese Americans
    Influential as spies/code breakers
  • 21. America Increases Production
    Industrial Production
    February 1942
    Automobile plants shut down
    Reformed for production of tanks, planes, boats, and command cars
    Other plants shut down to begin producing war products as well
    Henry Kaiser
    7 new shipyards
    “a ship a day”
    Laborers
    1944, 18 million workers laboring in war industries
    1945, unemployment < 2%
    Women
    6 million
    Rosie the Riveter
    Minorities
    2 million
    “Second Great Migration”
    A. Philip Randolph
  • 22.
  • 23. Manhattan Project
    Office of Scientific Research and Development (OSRD), 1941
    Improvements in radar and sonar
    Pesticides (DDT) and penicillin
    Atomic Bomb
    Breakthrough in atomic physics by German scientists, 1939
    German refugee scientists draft letter to FDR warning him of this
    Led by Albert Einstein
    FDR sets up department in OSRD to develop atomic bomb
    Offices in NY  Manhattan Project
  • 24. Japanese American Internment
    Executive Order 9066
    February 19, 1942
    Removal of all people of Japanese ancestry from California, Washington, Oregon, and Arizona
    Fear of espionage
    110,000 Japanese Americans interned in WWII
    Pacific War  racial
    European War  liberation
    Similarities and differences to concentration camps
  • 25. Economic Controls
    Office of Price Administration (OPA)
    Fought inflation by freezing wages, prices, rents, and increasing taxes
    Rationed foods such as meat, butter, cheese, vegetables, sugar, and coffee
    Coupon books
    Gas also rationed (carpools)
    Department of Treasury
    Issued war bonds to raise money for the war effort
    “America on Guard” campaign
    War Production Board (WPB)
    Decided which companies would convert from peacetime to wartime production and allocated raw materials to key industries
    Organized nationwide drives to collect scrap iron, tin cans, paper, etc…
  • 26. Europe First
    Churchill & FDR meet after Pearl Harbor
    Decide on a “Europe First” policy
    Reasons
    1) FDR had always considered Hitler the most dangerous threat to the United States
    2) Stalin was desperate for a second front
    Germany had invaded the Soviet Union in 1941
    USSR now an Allied country
    3) Only after Germany was defeated could the United States look to Britain and the Soviet Union for help in defeating Japan
    Decide only to accept unconditional surrender of the Axis powers
    To avoid the situation WWI provided
  • 27. Control of the Atlantic
    1942
    German U-boats sank 87 American ships off Atlantic shore
    Allied convoys protect cargo ships and seek and destroy U-boats
    Liberty ships
    “a ship a day”
    1943
    140 Liberty ships each month produced
    1943
    Allies controlled the Atlantic
  • 28. Eastern Front
    German invasion of USSR stalled in winter 1941/1942
    Hitler changed focus from Moscow to Stalingrad in summer 1942
    Control of Stalingrad would give Germans ability to cut the movement of military supplies along the Volga River to Moscow
    Battle of Stalingrad
    Lasted from July 1942 to February 1943
    By September 1942, Germans controlled 9/10 of the city
    November 1942, Soviets launched massive counterattack defending “Stalin’s city”
    Russian winter affected Germans worse
    February 2, 1943, 91,000 Germans surrendered
    German invading force totaled 330,000 in July ’42
    Soviets lost 1,250,000 soldiers and civilians in defending city
    Significance not known at the time
    Ended Hitler’s offensive capabilities
    USSR pushes westward toward Germany now
  • 29. North Africa
    Stalin pleaded for second front during Stalingrad
    Allies not ready yet for invasion across English Channel into France
    Operation Torch, November 1942—May 1943
    Invasion of Axis controlled North Africa
    General Dwight D. Eisenhower commanded Allied forces
    German forces led by “Desert Fox” General Erwin Rommel
    Landed in Casablanca, Oran, and Algiers
    Chased Rommel eastward
    May 1943, Afrika Korps surrendered
  • 30.
  • 31. Italian Campaign
    Americans wanted invasion across English Channel through France into Germany
    Churchill still thought Allies weren’t ready yet
    Compromise: Began planning D-Day while Allied troops invaded Italy (Churchill, “the soft underbelly of the Axis”)
    Captured Sicily in summer of 1943
    Hitler seized control of the rest of Italy and dug forces in
    Battle of Rome, May/June 1944
    Germans surrendered Italy, May 1945
    60,000 Allied casualties
    50,000 German casualties
  • 32. Operation Overlord
    Allied invasion of Nazi-controlled Europe
    D-Day
    June 6, 1944
    Planned for two years
    Paratroopers  June 5
    Americans faced brutal resistance on Utah and Omaha beach
    Despite heavy casualties, Allies eventually held the beach, allowing for invasion force to arrive
    1 million troops & 170,000 vehicles
    Largest land-sea-air operation in history
    150,000 troops
    11,000 planes
    4,000 landing craft
    600 warships
    U.S. Third Army under General George Patton pushed forward into France
    August 25, 1944 liberated Paris and thus France
  • 33.
  • 34. Hitler’s Last Push in the West
    November 1944  FDR elected to fourth term, Harry Truman new VP
    Battle of the Bulge
    December 16, 1944
    German tank (panzer) divisions broke through weak American defenses along the Ardennes
    Pushed Americans back to Bastogne, Belgium
    Demanded American surrender
    Brigadier General Anthony McAuliffe, commander of the 101st Airborne, “Nuts!”
    By the end of January, 1945 American forces had pushed the Germans back
    120,000 German casualties
    70,000 American casualties
    Largest engagement/loss by American forces in WWII
  • 35.
  • 36. Unconditional Surrender
    Allied forces in the west and Soviet forces in the east pushed towards Berlin
    Liberated death camps
    April 25, 1945
    Soviets reached Berlin first and stormed city
    Hitler committed suicide April 30, 1945
    May 8, 1945
    V-E Day (Victory in Europe Day)
    Third Reich unconditionally surrendered to Dwight D. Eisenhower
  • 37. The War in the Pacific
    Japanese consolidate empire
    Simultaneous attacks with Pearl Harbor
    General Douglas MacArthur eventually left the Philippines
    April 18, 1942
    American retaliation
    Hornet launched air raids on Tokyo
    The Battle of Midway
    June 1942
    Americans had intercepted/decoded Japanese message that an invasion force (over 110 ships) was headed to Midway
    Set trap
    Admiral Chester Nimitz
    Aircraft carriers launched planes
    Four Japanese aircraft carriers sunk and 322 planes destroyed
    Turning point in the Pacific (without knowing it at the time)
    Japanese losses irreplaceable
    Japan made 6 more aircraft carriers during the war
    U.S. made 20 more aircraft carriers
    U.S. established naval base at Midway submarines
  • 38.
  • 39. Island Hopping
    Japanese empire stretched thousands of miles
    U.S. adopted policy of Island Hopping
    Bypassed Japanese strongholds and hopped from one island to the next
    Seized less fortified islands, built airfields/bases to stage attacks on other islands and cut off enemy supplies
    Guadalcanal
    August 1942
    First land offensive/first land loss for Japanese
    Return to the Philippines
    October 1944
    MacArthur returns
    Japanese employ kamikaze (suicide-plane)
  • 40.
  • 41. Yalta Conference
    February 1945
    FDR, Churchill, & Stalin meet at Yalta
    Set up U.N.
    Stalin agreed to enter the war against Japan after Germany surrendered
    Also agreed to set up democracies in territories taken in Eastern Europe
  • 42. Iwo Jima and Okinawa
    Iwo Jima
    February 19—March 17, 1945
    Importance
    U.S. could set up base for bombers that could reach Japan
    20,700 Japanese defended the island
    6,000 marines died taking it
    Okinawa
    Last island between Allies and Japan
    April 1—June 22, 1945
    FDR died on April 12, 1945
    Inexperienced Truman came to power during the middle of the operation
    1,900 kamikaze attacks
    7,600 American casualties
    110,000 Japanese casualties
  • 43.
  • 44. The War in the Pacific Ends
    Manhattan Project
    600,000 Americans worked on the project
    J. Robert Oppenheimer
    Truman learned of MP and Yalta only after becoming president
    July 16, 1945
    Alamogordo, New Mexico
    First successful atomic bomb test
    Debate over using the bomb
    AGAINST
    Immoral
    Demonstration
    FOR
    Problems with a demonstration (3)
    Save American lives  no need for invasion  high casualties from Iwo Jima and Okinawa
    Needed to use weapon to justify the cost ($2 billion)
    Defeat Japan without the Soviet Union
    Distrust already forming
    August 6, 1945
    Little Boy (fission bomb) dropped over Hiroshima
    August 8, 1945
    Soviet Union declared war on Japan
    August 9, 1945
    Fat Man (fission bomb) dropped over Nagasaki
    Estimated 200,000 people died in the blast or from radiation
    September 2, 1945
    Japan surrendered (V-J Day, August 15, 1945)
  • 45. Postwar Germany
    July 1945
    Truman, Churchill, & Stalin met at Postdam, Germany
    Decide Nazis must face “stern justice”
    Nuremberg trials
    22 Nazi leaders tried by international tribunal
    12 sentenced to death
    200 additional Nazis given jail time in lesser trials
    Germany divided into four zones
    U.S., U.K., France, and Soviet Union each occupied and administered one zone
    Berlin also divided into four zones (despite being in Soviet territory)
  • 46. Postwar Japan
    Japan was occupied by U.S. forces for 6 years under General Douglas MacArthur’s command
    Japanese officials tried
    Hideki Tojo
    7 sentenced to death
    MacArthur worked to change Japanese society
    Free market economic principles
    New democratic constitution
    MacArthur Constitution
  • 47. Postwar America
    Great Depression ended by war spending
    “Second Great Migration”
    GI Bill of Rights (1944)
    Provided for education and training for veterans, paid for by the federal government
    Opportunity and Discrimination
    New opportunities for minorities in military
    Segregation still existed
    Korematsu v. United States (1944)
    Supreme Court ruled that the government’s policy of removing Japanese Americans was justified by “military necessity”
    1965, Congress paid $38 million in compensation
    New Threat
    Communism
    “Iron Curtain” and the Truman Doctrine

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