In this lesson, our instructor Elizabeth Turro gives an introduction on World War II. She talks about isolationist foreign policy of 1930s, the Nye commission, the aggressive militarism and Fascism abroad, Nazi Germany, the time before U.S. enters war, the four freedoms by Norman Rockwell, the attack on Pearl Harbor and organizing for total war. She also explains wartime propaganda, the slogan we can do it, how the depression-era unemployment disappeared, the internal migration, civil rights concerns and double V, Civil Rights and effects on minorities. The other key points she illustrated are Japanese internment, map of relocation camps, Manzanar Today, the instructions posters, major military events during WWII, Pacific theatre, the European theatre, the VE Day, the end of War in Europe, the Holocaust and in the Pacific.
Despite efforts to follow an isolationist policy, Japan’s aggressive policy in Manchuria and Germany’s aggressive policy in Europe triggered the outbreak of WWII.
The policy of appeasement and the weak response from the League of Nations failed. Germany annexed Austria in 1938; France and Britain allowed Germany to annex the Sudetenland (Czechoslovakia) if Hitler pledged to seek no more territory; Hitler continued his march into Czechoslovakia toward Poland; in 1939, Hitler and Stalin signed a nonaggression pact; Hitler invaded Poland on September 1, 1939; on September 3, Britain and France declared war.
The “cash and carry” policy put an end to the US arms embargo that stemmed from isolationist sentiment and it allowed the US to help the British yet appeared to keep the nation out of war in Europe
In March 1941, the Lend-Lease Act was passed to aid Britain; Atlantic Charter between U.S. and Britain was released: it called for economic collaboration, national self-determination, and political stability after the war.
Eventually, the bombing of Pearl Harbor forces the U.S. to enter the war on December, 7, 1941: “a date which will live in infamy”
Several laws were passed that bolstered U.S. efforts to prepare for a total war effort.
Civil rights concerns during the war: segregation in the military, segregation and discrimination in the U.S., “Double V” campaign, Zoot suit riots, relocation of Japanese Americans led to internment.
The war was fought mainly in two theatres: in Europe and in the Pacific (and in Africa as well).
After Germany’s last offensive in the Battle of the Bulge, the Allied forces moved in towards Berlin & Hitler committed suicide on April 30, 1945 & on May 7th, the US celebrated V-E (Victory in Europe) Day
World War II
Lecture Slides are screen-captured images of important points in the lecture. Students can download and print out these lecture slide images to do practice problems as well as take notes while watching the lecture.