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World War II: Americans At War ( )

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1 World War II: Americans At War (1941-1945)

2 Section 1: Mobilization
After the Pearl Harbor attacks, the U.S. entered a war that they had already been preparing for.

3 Selective Training and Service Act
Even before entering the war, the U.S. was preparing for war. In 1940, Congress authorized the first peacetime draft in American history. Required males aged to register for military service.

4 The GI War Throughout the war, more than 16 million Americans worked in the military in some capacity. Referred to as GIs, abbreviated from “Government Issue.”

5 Diversity in the Armed Forces
25,000 Native Americans participated. Navajo Code Talkers 1 million African Americans joined the military. The Tuskegee Airmen

6 Women and the War 350,000 American women volunteered for military service. Worked as clerks, typists, airfield control tower operators, etc. More commonly, women entered the workforce to fill jobs abandoned by men who went war.

7 War Production In 1942, government set up the War Production Board (WPB). WPB stopped the production of consumer goods and encouraged companies to make goods for war instead.

8 Office of War Mobilization
In 1943, FDR appointed James F. Byrnes the head of the Office of War Mobilization. The office played a powerful role in centralizing resources. Byrnes was often called the “assistant president.”

9 Liberty Ships Henry J. Kaiser introduced mass production techniques to shipbuilding. Cut the time needed to build a ship from 200 days to 40. Called these new vessels Liberty ships.

10 Wartime Work Force Unemployment nearly vanished completely during the war. Working wages rose by 50% Union membership rose Unions initially agreed to refrain from strikes after Pearl Harbor. In 1943, some strikes started again.

11 Financing the War Federal spending
1939: $8.9 billion/year 1945: $95.2 billion/year Gross National Product (GNP) doubled during WWII. Higher taxes paid for 41% of this cost, the rest was borrowed from banks, investors, and the public through war bonds.

12 Shortages and Controls
Consumer goods were scarce, as resources went to make war supplies. In 1941, the Office of Price Administration (OPA) was formed to control inflation by limiting prices. OPA rationed goods during the war by using a point value system.

13 Popular Culture With less available goods, civilians looked for other recreation. Americans began reading more books and magazines. They still flocked baseball games. 60% of the population went to the movies every week.

14 Enlisting Public Support
Government encouraged citizens to support the war. Established the Office of War Information to work with magazines, advertising agencies, and radio stations. Worked to create popular support for the war.

15 Victory Gardens People began planting home vegetable gardens to increase food supply. Became known as victory gardens. People in the cities and suburbs were planting vegetables in their back yard.

16 More WWII Ads/Propaganda

17 Section 2: Retaking Europe
Although attacked by Japan, America focused first on winning the war in Europe.

18 Atlantic Charter Before Pearl Harbor’s attack, FDR met with Churchill to establish the principles for which they fought. Countries shouldn’t seek to expand territory. Countries should allow other countries to choose their own government. All nations of the world must abandon the use of force. Became known as the Atlantic Charter

19 Battle of the Atlantic Britain relied on shipments of food and supplies from the U.S. German U-boats sought to destroy these convoys of shipments. U-boats sunk 175 U.S. ships in June 1942 alone.

20 North Africa Campaign British Troops fought the Italian Army in Egypt and Libya. German forces joined them, led by General Erwin Rommel, “Desert Fox”. In 1942, Britain won a victory at El Alamein, pushing Axis forces back. By 1943, Axis forces surrendered in North Africa.

21 Invasion of Italy U.S. invaded Sicily in July, 1943.
Italians lost faith in Mussolini and his own Fascist council voted him out. Germans freed Mussolini and evacuated him to Northern Italy for protection.

22 Italy Surrenders In September, 1943, Italy’s new government surrendered and, weeks later, even declared war on Germany. German forces stayed in Italy, and continued to fight the Allies as they proceeded to invade the country.

23 Eastern Front: Soviet Union
In 1941, Hitler broke his agreement and attacked the Soviet Union, to gain access to key food and oil fields. Germans surprised and dominated untrained and poorly equipped Soviet soldiers. Germany pushed East rapidly.

24 Destruction Stalin ordered his retreating soldiers to destroy anything that might be useful to the Germans. The Soviet army destroyed fuel, grain, railcars, and buildings as they evacuated.

25 Siege of Leningrad In Soviet City Leningrad, German troops surrounded the city and held it siege, not allowing supplies in. Over 1 million civilians died due to starvation.

26 Stalingrad In 1942, Germany firebombed the city of Stalingrad for two months. Germany gained most of the city. In the harsh winter that followed, Soviet forces launched a successful counterattack.

27 Stalingrad Cut off from supplies, German forces began to starve and freeze. In January, 90,000 Germans surrendered after roughly 330,000 Germans had died. Soviet death estimates at Stalingrad are 1,100,000. Stalingrad was the turning point of the war on the Eastern Front.

28 Allied Air War By 1943, Britain’s Royal Air Force (RAF) developed a technique called carpet bombing, scattering lots of bombs across a wide area. Bombed German infrastructure, factories, and railway lines so that they wouldn’t have access to new supplies.

29 Invasion of Western Europe
After experiencing some success in North Africa, Italy, and the USSR, the allies decided it was time to recapture France and take control of mainland Europe.

30 D-Day On June 6, 1944 the Allies launched the largest landing by sea invasion in world history. 150,000 soldiers landed on Normandy Beach; 23,000 parachuted in behind German lines. 2,000 people died, but the Allies took control of the beach and soon had 2 million troops in France.

31 Battle of the Bulge Hitler began drafting soldiers as young as 15.
In one massive counterattack in 1944, Germany pushed the U.S. Army back, forming a “bulge” in the Allied line. General Eisenhower sent in more troops and eventually pushed the Germans back.

32 Soviet Forces Advance There was much more action on the Eastern Front than the Western Front. After the turning point at Stalingrad, Soviet Forces continued to push Germans back. By April, 1945, they reached Berlin and began to destroy it.

33 Germany Surrenders Losing the war on both fronts, Hitler chose to commit suicide on April 30, 1945. Days later, on May 8, 1945, Germany officially surrendered. Known as V-E Day, Victory in Europe.

34 Yalta Conference In February 1945, months before the end of the war, FDR, Churchill, and Stalin met at Yalta, in the Soviet Union. They met to agree on the terms at the conclusion of war. Agreed to divide Germany into four zones, each under the control of a major Allied country.

35 Section 3: The Holocaust
Under Nazi Germany, 6 million European Jews were killed, 2/3 the European Jewish population.

36 8 Stages of Genocide (Gregory Stanton)
1. Classification People are divided into "us and them". 2. Symbolization "When combined with hatred, symbols may be forced upon unwilling members of pariah groups..." 3. Dehumanization "One group denies the humanity of the other group. Members of it are equated with animals, vermin, insects, or diseases." 4. Organization "Genocide is always organized... Special army units or militias are often trained and armed..." 5. Polarization "Hate groups broadcast polarizing propaganda..." 6. Preparation "Victims are identified and separated out because of their ethnic or religious identity..." 7. Extermination "It is 'extermination' to the killers because they do not believe their victims to be fully human". 8. Denial "The perpetrators... deny that they committed any crimes..."

37 Anti-Semitism (classification, polarization)
Anti-Semitism is opposition, discrimination, or hostility towards Jews. At the time of WWII, Europe, not merely Hitler, or even Germany, was highly anti-Semitic. Jews have historically been a persecuted people group.

38 Hitler and Anti-Semitism (classification, dehumanization, polarization)
Hitler reflected and intensified anti-Semitism in his book, Mein Kampf. “Let the desolation which Jewish hybridization daily visits on our nation be clearly seen, this blood-poisoning that can be removed from our body national only after centuries or nevermore; let it be pondered, further, how racial decay drags down, indeed often annuls, the final Aryan values of our German nation” –Adolf Hitler, excerpt from Mein Kampf

39 Symbolization, Polarization

40 Nazi Policies (Classification, Dehumanization, Polarization)
Nazi’s first began excluding German Jews from all aspects of life. 1933- Nazis ordered a one-day boycott of Jewish businesses. 1935- Stripped Jews of German citizenship, outlawed marriage between Jews and non-Jews. 1938- Forced Jews to give up their businesses, students were expelled from public schools.

41 The Star (Symbolization)
Jews were forced to follow rigid identification laws. Eventually, all Jews in Germany or German-occupied countries were forced to sew yellow stars marked “Jew” on their clothing.

42 Hitler’s Police (Organization)
Hitler formed… The Gestapo- secret police The SS, or Schutzstaffel- a private army of the Nazi party By 1939, the Gestapo was a part of the SS. The main role of the SS was to weed out “undesirables” of society. Jews, homosexuals, Jehovah’s Witnesses, Gypsies, and homeless.

43 Kristallnacht (polarization, preparation)
In 1938, Nazi thugs looted and destroyed countless Jewish stores, houses, and synagogues. Called Kristallnacht, “Night of the Broken Glass” Most synagogues were destroyed, and Jews themselves were given a fine to pay for the event.

44 Refugees Seek to Escape
During the 1930s, many Jews sought to leave Germany. Most moved to neighboring European countries. Some tried to go overseas, but most countries, including the U.S. refused immigrants due to the Depression.

45 Ghettos (Organization, Preparation, Extermination)
Early on, Nazis plan was to force all Jews into sealed, overcrowded ghettos. In Warsaw, Poland, they put 400,000 Jews into an area where 50,000 people had lived. They sealed it with a wall and barbed wire, guarded the perimeter, and let very little food in.

46 Einstazgruppen (extermination)
While invading the USSR, Hitler ordered the Einsatzgruppen, killing squads, to shoot all Jews and communist leaders. Rounded up victims, had them dig pits, then shot them into the pits. Shot 33,000 Jews in two days.

47 Death Camps (extermination)
To exterminate the Jews more discretely and efficiently, the Nazis implemented death camps. Death camps had large gas chambers disguised as shower rooms. Large numbers of Jews were squeezed into these chambers, gassed, and killed.

48 Death Camps: Auschwitz
Until they were gassed, prisoners worked forced to work in terrible conditions. Life expectancy at Auschwitz, the largest of all death camps, was only several months. Auschwitz alone gassed and cremated 12,000 people/day.

49 Liberation In 1944, Roosevelt created the War Refugee Board (WRB) to help people threatened by the Nazis. Aid was minimal, until the war ended in 1945, and Allied soldiers arrived to liberate the death camps.

50 Nuremberg Trials The Holocaust was more expansive than anyone had known during the war. After the war, an International Military Tribunal held the Nuremberg Trials, to try Nazi soldiers involved in the genocide. The soldiers argued that they were merely following orders. The trials set a precedent of personal responsibility even during war.

51 Section 4: War in the Pacific
With the conclusion of the war in Europe, the U.S. turned all of its attention to the war with Japan in the Pacific.

52 Japanese Advancement After the attack of Pearl Harbor, Japan invaded
Hong Kong and Singapore Dutch East Indies and Malaya Burma In 1942, Japan turned their focus to controlling the Philippines.

53 The Philippines Fall Fighting took place on the Bataan Peninusula of the Philippines. Facing starvation, and running out of ammunition, American and Filipinos surrendered to Japan on May 6, 1942.

54 Bataan Death March Those who surrendered became Japanese prisoners of war (POWs). 76,000 Filipinos and Americans were forced to march on a 6-12 day journey to an army camp. They were beaten, tortured, withheld food and water, and killed. 10,000+ died on this Bataan Death March.

55 War at Sea The war with Japan relied on aircraft carriers.
Japan failed to destroy America’s 3 aircraft carriers at Pearl Harbor. Air battle turned ships into plane carriers instead of destroyers.

56 Battle of Midway In June 1942, at the island of Midway, the U.S. destroyed a large percentage of Japan’s naval fleet. Sank all four Japanese aircraft carriers. 250 Japanese planes After Midway, Japan couldn’t launch any more offensives.

57 Island-Hopping The U.S., under General Douglas MacArthur began an “island-hopping” campaign. Seized one island, then used it as a base to launch attacks on other local islands controlled by Japan. Slowly moved closer towards Japan.

58 Philippines Campaign Executive orders were to bypass the Philippines and push straight toward Japan. MacArthur disagreed, FDR reversed the decision. The battle took longer than anticipated. Japanese used kamikaze fighters, suicide pilots. Of 80,000 Japanese soldiers, only 1,000 were alive to surrender.

59 Battle of Iwo Jima American troops dropped 7,000 tons of bombs on Iwo Jima (700 miles from Japan) for 74 days before taking control of the island. 25,000 Japanese fought to the death, only 216 remained alive after being taken prisoner.

60 Battle of Okinawa Okinawa, 350 miles from Japanese mainland, was the last island before reaching the mainland. In desperation, kamikaze attacks increased. In June 1945, Okinawa fell to the U.S. Only 7,200 of Japan’s initial 100,000 soldiers remained alive.

61 The Manhattan Project In 1939, Albert Einstein wrote a letter to FDR warning that Germany might build an all-powerful atomic bomb. Einstein himself was a German Jew who had moved to America to escape Hitler in 1933. FDR organized a top secret Manhattan Project to develop the atomic bomb before Germany.

62 Atomic Bomb On July 16, 1945, they tested the first atomic bomb in the New Mexican desert. Watching, J. Robert Oppenheimer, supervisor of the project spoke from the Hindu holy book, Bhagavad Gita, “Now I am become Death, the destroyer of worlds.”

63 Decision In deciding to drop the bomb, several alternatives were considered.. A massive invasion of Japan, expected to cost millions of Allied casualties A naval blockade to starve Japan, with continued bombing A demonstration of the weapon on a nearby deserted island, to pressure Japan to surrender A softening of Allied demands for unconditional surrender

64 Harry S. Truman FDR died in April, 1945, just before the end of the war. Vice President, Harry S. Truman, became president. Ultimately, the final decision regarding the atomic bomb was up to Truman; he decided to use it.

65 Hiroshima On April 6, 1945, American plane, Enola Gay dropped an atomic bomb on Hiroshima. The blast damaged or totally destroyed 90% of the city’s buildings. Killed an estimated 80,000 people from the blast alone.

66 Aftermath

67 Nagasaki: The End Three days later, August 9th, another bomb was dropped on Nagasaki. On August 14th, Japan accepted American terms for surrender. August 15th was celebrated as V-J Day, Victory in Japan.

68 Section 5: Social Impact of War
War brought about social changes on the home front, particularly for women and minorities.

69 African American Employment
African American unemployment rate was 20% in 1941. In 1941, Roosevelt banned discrimination in workforce. 2 million African Americans moved from the South to cities in the North to find jobs. Most found jobs, but many lived in substandard housing and were resented and feared by whites.

70 Soldiers and Segregation
African Americans fought in the war, but remained segregated even in the military. Many thought it contradictory that the U.S. would fight for freedom while practicing racial segregation.

71 “Double V” An African American newspaper launched a “Double V” campaign. Referred to victory against the Axis powers, and the victory of racial equality at home.

72 Mexican Americans A shortage of farm laborers led the U.S. to begin providing transportation, food, and shelter for thousands of braceros, Mexican farm laborers brought to work in the U.S. More than 200,000 braceros came to the U.S., largely the Southwest, between

73 Zoot Suit Riots Some young Mexican Americans in Los Angeles wore “zoot suits”, long jackets and baggy pants. This look offended many, and navy sailors on leave often looked to beat up “zoot-suiters” In 1943, street fighting broke into full-scale rioting until Army officials intervened.

74 Japanese Americans In 1941, there were 127,000 Japanese Americans in the U.S., most on the West Coast. Roughly two thirds had been born in the U.S. Suffered extreme racism, hatred, and paranoia from the rest of American during the war.

75 Japanese Internment Fearing Japanese Americans could be spies, the government set up the War Relocation Authority to intern, or confine, Japanese to guarded camps in remote areas. 110,000 Japanese were forced into these internment camps.

76 Internment Camps Some Japanese legally challenged internment.
In Korematsu v. United States (1944), the Supreme Court ruled that the relocation was not based on race.

77 Japanese Internment Camps
In 1945, Japanese Americans were allowed to leave the internment camps. In time, the internment came to be seen as a great injustice. In 1988, Congress awarded each surviving internee $20,000 and the U.S. government officially apologized for the internment.

78 Japanese Americans in Military
Military refused to accept Japanese Americans until 1943. Ironically, more than 17,000 eventually volunteered to fight, even from internment camps. Most were Nisei, 2nd generation immigrants. An all-Japanese unit won more medals than any other unit in U.S. history.

79 Working Women The war brought women into different parts of the work force. Traditional women’s jobs, secretaries, household servants, and sales clerks, were abandoned for factor work and defense manufacturing. By 1944, women made up 35% of the total labor force.

80 Rosie the Riveter Fictional character
Rosie worked in a defense plant, driving rivets into metal planes, while her boyfriend fought at war. Popular icon that encouraged women to enter the labor force. The government used Rosie in posters and recruitment ads.

81 After the War Many women wanted to continue working at the war’s end.
There was intense pressure to leave their jobs and return home so that returning soldiers could get their jobs back.

82 Aftermath: Death Toll


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