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Americans in WW2 Section 1 “Early Difficulties” Axis Advantages Germany and Japan: Both had secured the areas that they had invaded Both were prepared.

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Presentation on theme: "Americans in WW2 Section 1 “Early Difficulties” Axis Advantages Germany and Japan: Both had secured the areas that they had invaded Both were prepared."— Presentation transcript:

1 Americans in WW2 Section 1 “Early Difficulties” Axis Advantages Germany and Japan: Both had secured the areas that they had invaded Both were prepared for the war: airfields, ships, barracks, training areas Germany- German economy was based on military production Japan had a military-led government

2 Chapter 18 Section 1 Allies Advantages 1.The Axis forces were spread over a huge area 2.The Germans had not defeated either the British or the Russians and had to fight on two fronts 3.The Russians had a HUGE army 4.The United States had a tremendous production capacity

3 Chapter 18 Section 1 Mobilizing for War A Production Boom 1940 (before Pearl Harbor): 22,000- workers producing weapons WW2 Ended the Great Depression 1943: 486,000 workers Produced: 300,000 aircraft 88,000 landing craft 147 aircraft carriers, 215 submarines, 5,200 merchant ships, 952 warships

4 $Personal Impact of War Production$ Workers at Home Unemployment dropped from 14.6% to 1.2% Earnings nearly doubled 4,000,000 people moved to where the jobs were Even with less workers the US food production soared People primarily moved to the Pacific and Gulf coasts, Midwest and West

5 Government Expansion Mobilizing for war meant the government needed to expand by 300% from 1940 to 1945 *Two huge government agencies directed the war effort* 1.War Production Board (1942)- The WPB converted existing factories and built new ones for war production. It also assigned raw materials to industry from factories and homes 2.Office of War Mobilization(1943)- The OWM coordinated all gov’t agencies involved in the war effort. It also coordinated the production and distribution of civilian goods- try buying a pair of nylons in 1944 or a new car

6 Directing the Economy To pay for the war the gov’t took a very active role in the economy 9 Times as many Americans had to pay taxes- many more medium to lower income taxpayers Borrowed lots of money- mainly from War Bonds War bonds also reduced some inflationary pressure- people spent their excess money on war bonds rather than on the few goods available Office of Price Administration- (OPA) Which set prices on consumer goods and rationed items like gas, tires and food items. The OPA also froze wages

7 Raising an Army 1.Summer of Called the National Guard to active duty 2.Passed the Selective Service Act (draft) – Originally required all males ages to register – Later this went to ages – The number of soldiers went from about 450,000 to 12,000,000-2/3’s drafted, 1/3 were volunteers 3. Women volunteered also- – WAAC’s, WASP’s and WAVES- around 300,000 total

8 War in the Pacific After Pearl Harbor the Japanese took over the Philippines, Burma, Borneo, Wake Island, Hong Kong, Midway Island Early on the Japanese seemed invincible and on 2/27/42 they crushed an allied naval force in the Battle of the Java Sea. The Philippines US General Douglas MacArthur was in charge of the Philippines and he was outnumbered and out gunned. He had to retreat to the Bataan Peninsula. In a battle of attrition the US lost and Mac was ordered to flee to Australia-”I shall return” 10,000 of the 70,000 prisoners perished during the “Bataan Death March

9 Halting the Japanese Advance The Battle of the Coral Sea The Japanese wanted to take Australia and US Pacific Fleet Admiral Chester Nimitz,along with some British ships, intercepted them and in fierce fighting one Japanese carrier was sunk and another damaged by airplanes The Battle of Midway After breaking their codes we ambushed the Japanese fleet and sank 4 carriers and shot down a bunch of planes- the Japanese navy never recovered Guadalcanal The battle took more than 6 months and was horribly vicious. The turning point was the US Naval defeat of the Japanese

10 European and Mediterranean Theaters The Axis powers were in control of most of Europe and German U-Boats had a stranglehold in the Atlantic- More than 500 ships were sank off the US coast alone North Africa Italian forces first invaded North Africa in 1940 and the British pounded them. Hitler sent the Afrika Korps in with the brilliant general Erwin Rommel. British general Bernard Montgomery eventually defeated them at the Battle of Al Alamein. The Germans wanted to control the Suez Canal and the Mideast oil fields.

11 European and Mediterranean Theaters Continued Stalingrad The German troops had rampaged through Russia after their initial assault in They had captured grain field and laid siege to important cities like Moscow and Leningrad. Their most important goal was Stalingrad- a rich oil field. The Russians refused to surrender and in late January of 1943 the Russians surrounded the Germans and took out about 200,000 German soldiers. This caused a HUGE momentum shift from which the Germans never recovered.


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