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U.S. Enters WW1. The Grim Cost of War “We set to work to bury people. We pushed them into the sides of the trenches but bits of them kept getting uncovered.

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Presentation on theme: "U.S. Enters WW1. The Grim Cost of War “We set to work to bury people. We pushed them into the sides of the trenches but bits of them kept getting uncovered."— Presentation transcript:

1 U.S. Enters WW1

2 The Grim Cost of War “We set to work to bury people. We pushed them into the sides of the trenches but bits of them kept getting uncovered and sticking out, like people in a badly made bed. Hands were the worst; they would escape from the sand, pointing, begging—even waving! There was one which we all shook when we passed, saying, “Good morning,” in a posh voice. Everybody did it. The bottom of the trench was springy like a mattress because of all the bodies underneath…” Leonard Thompson, quoted in Akenfield

3 Causes of WWI Nationalism: one nation is superior over others Imperialism: global expansion Militarism: building an army Alliances: secrets partnerships amongst countries intended to increase power (got each other’s backs)

4 Alliances Austro-Hungarian Archduke Franz Ferdinand assassinated while in Bosnia Alliances begin forming, war breaks out Triple Entente (Allies) France, Russia, Great Britain, and Italy (eventually U.S. as well) Triple Alliance (Central Powers) Germany, Austria-Hungary, Ottoman Empire, and Bulgaria

5 American Neutrality Wilson declares the US to be neutral Britain uses propaganda to gain US support Also cut transatlantic cable to limit media coverage US businesses and banks support Allies

6 Lusitania May 1915 British passenger ship, Lusitania, sank by German U-Boat (128 Americans on board)

7 Sussex U-boat shot at French ship, Sussex Results in “Sussex Pledge” President Wilson issued Germans a warning Germany promised not to fire on merchant ships without warning- kept US out of war for a little longer

8 Zimmermann Telegram Zimmerman Telegram Secret telegram from Germany to Mexico asking them to fight against the U.S.— intercepted by the British, angers the U.S. US declares war on Germany

9 Building up the Military National Defense Act: increased the size of the army and trained officers through conscription and selective service (2.8 million drafted) Women and African Americans served in the armed forces Women in non-combat positions African Americans faced discriminations and prejudice

10 Organizing Industry War Industries Board- coordinated production of war materials Victory Gardens Liberty/Victory Bonds

11 Ensuring Public Support Set up Committee on Public Information/George Creel Hired writers to create propaganda to swing public opinion in favor of the war Espionage Act of made it illegal to spy or interfere with government Sedition Act of no public opposition of war Schenck v. the United States- Supreme Court rules that a persons freedom of speech is limited when the words constitute a “clear and present danger” Ex.: Yelling “fire!” in a crowded theatre

12 WW1 and Modern Warfare

13 Combat in WWI Rapid fire machine guns “No man’s land”- space between opposing trenches, covered with barbed wire, landmines, etc. Poison gas British introduce the tank 1 st use of airplanes

14 Poison Gas Germans were 1 st to use chlorine gas in 1915 (Battle of Ypres) Caused a burning sensation to the throat and chest pains. Painful death by suffocation Weather had to be just right—any wind could blow gas back on your own men Mustard gas was most deadly weapon used Fired into the trenches in shells—colorless and takes 12 hours to begin working (death can take up to 5 weeks) Effects include blistering skin, vomiting, sore yes, internal and external bleeding

15 Move Toward Peace Peace conference begins January 1919 in Paris Big Four President Wilson, British Prime Minister David Lloyd George, French Premier Georges Clemenceau, Italian Prime Minister Vittorio Orlando Fourteen Points President Wilson’s plan for peace League of Nations- help to prevent wars

16 Fourteen Points Allies felt it was too easy on Germany Required Germany to disband armed forces Had to accept blame and pay reparations Many members of Congress opposed the Treaty of Versailles (thought the League of Nations would drag the U.S. into conflict) Wilson suffers a stroke Senate refuses Treaty of Versailles, signs individual treaties with the Central Powers League of Nations starts without the U.S.

17 The War’s Impact Inflation leads to an increase in the cost of living Increase of labor strikes in 1919 A “general strike” takes place in Seattle that results in riots

18 The Red Scare Strikes cause fear of Communist revolution within the U.S. U.S. Attorney General A. Mitchell Palmer’s house is damaged by a bomb (Communists are blamed) Palmer sets up General Intelligence Division, headed by J. Edgar Hoover (later became the FBI) Palmer Raids- Raids on private homes and businesses conducted by the GIB to investigate communists


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