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The Road to U.S. Involvement in World War II. 1918 – 1941. Legacy of the 1 st World War. Treaty of Versailles Germany severely punished and most of Wilson’s 14 points left out League of Nations U.S., U.S.S.R., & Germany never join Helped settle disputes with small powers

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The Road to U.S. Involvement in World War II


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    1. The Road to U.S. Involvement in World War II 1918 – 1941

    2. Legacy of the 1st World War • Treaty of Versailles • Germany severely punished and most of Wilson’s 14 points left out • League of Nations • U.S., U.S.S.R., & Germany never join • Helped settle disputes with small powers • Less success with major powers • Could not stop Japanese, Italian, or German aggression in the 1930s

    3. U.S. returns to Isolationism • Washington Disarmament Conference (1921 – 1922) • Five Power Treaty meant to reduce the navy power of the U.S., Japan, & Britain • U.S. basically lets Japan get a naval advantage in the Pacific • Locarno Pact (1926) • Western European nations agree to existing boarders • “spirit of Locarno” would mean no more war • Kellogg-Briand Pact (1928) – a.k.a. “Paris Pact” • 62 nations: war illegal except for defensive purposes • No enforcement mechanism

    4. War Debt, Reparations, & the Great Depression • U.S. a creditor nation after WWI (Allies owe $16 billion) • High U.S. tariffs hurt European economies • Dawes Plan (1924) • U.S. banks loaned Germany $, Germany paid Gr. Britain & France, who paid the U.S. • Hoover debt moratorium (1931) • U.S. policies seen as harboring ill-will during the 1930s • World wide Great Depression • Germany has 50%+ unemployment and huge inflation • Japan exports fall by 50%, blame western trade policies • What effect did this have in these countries in the 1930s?

    5. U.S. changes policy in Latin America • Clark Memorandum (1928) – reverses the “Big Stick” policy • FDR’s “Good Neighbor” policy • By 1934, U.S. had removed all troops from Nicaragua, Haiti, Cuba (repealed Platt Amendment) • Stayed out of Mexican oil nationalization (which hurt U.S. oil companies)

    6. U.S. and the World • U.S. avoided London Economic Conference (1933) – Isolationism • FDR (Sec. of State Cordell Hull) begins to lower tariffs and to open free trade agreements with 21 nations • FDR recognized the U.S.S.R. (1933) • Tydings-McDuffie Act (1934) – free the Philippines after 10-year period of economic and political tutelage

    7. Totalitarian States • Fascism • Italy – Mussolini (1922) • Germany – Hitler (1933) • Militarism • Japan – Military Dictatorship (early 1930s) • Communism • U.S.S.R. – ruthless leadership under Stalin (1924)

    8. Fascism and Nazism • Totalitarian • Fascism – glorify the state and expand • Benito “Il Duce” Mussolini Controls Italy • The Blackshirts (fascists) – restore glory of the Roman Empire • Becomes Dictator (1922) • 1935 – Invades Ethiopia • Adolf Hitler Rules Germany • Hitler joins National Socialist German Worker’s Party (Nazis Party) • Attempted to take over Germany in 1923 • Mein Kampf (“My Struggle”) • Blamed Jews for Germany’s problems • Encouraged increase in military • Aryan race • Der Fuhrer (“the leader”) • Nazi party gains strength during the Great Depression • Hitler become dictator (1933)

    9. Germany Expands • 1933 – Germany withdrawals from the League of Nations • Invades the Rhineland (1936) • Testing if anyone would stop them • The German Empire Grows • March 1938, Austria annexed • Sudetenland (Czechoslovakian border) • Munich Conference • France and Britain’s appeasement • Czechoslovakia • Peace agreement with Soviet Union • Poland • September 1, 1939 – Hitler invades Poland • Britain and France declare war on Germany • September 5, 1939 – FDR declares U.S. Neutral

    10. Japan Expands • 1931 – Japan invades Manchuria (China) • 1934 – ends Washington Naval Treaty (1922) & begins a massive naval buildup • 1936 – Anti-Comintern Pact with Nazi Germany (anti-communism/U.S.S.R.) • Why? • Needed raw materials, needed new markets, needed space for population (U.S. anti-Asian immigrant policy), wanted more respect from the world’s powers

    11. U.S. remains Isolated • American people concerned with own economic conditions and not rising totalitarianism • Nye Committee • Concluded that U.S. involvement in WWI was to help banks and munitions makers • Neutrality Acts (1935, 1936, & 1937) • U.S. would not trade weapons or grant loans to belligerent nations at war • No travel on vessels of nations at war (no Lusitania this time) • Cash and Carry Policy for non-military goods • U.S. navy loses relative strength (idea that strong navies cause war)

    12. Europe Goes to War • Blitzkrieg (“lighting war”) • Stalin takes half of Poland for the Soviet Union • Sitzkrieg (“sit-down war”) • French build up the Maginot Line • April 9, 1940 – Hitler attacks Denmark and Norway • May – Germany attacks Netherlands, Belgium, and Luxembourg • Fall of France (June, 1940) • The Battle of Britain • 1st of Hitler’s fatal mistakes • (June, 1941) Hitler invades the Soviet Union (German need for Lebensraum) • 2nd of Hitler’s fatal mistakes

    13. Japan Continues to Expand • 1937 – Japan launches full scale war on southern China • Ends Open Door • Panay Incident (12/12/1937) • Japan bombs a U.S. gunboat & 3 Standard Oil tankers on the Yangtze River (2 killed, 30 wounded) • Japan apologizes and promised no further attacks • 1940 – Tripartite Pact: Rome – Berlin – Tokyo Axis

    14. U.S. response to Expansion • 1937 – FDR’s “Quarantine” speech • Must “quarantine” expansions through economic sanctions • 12/29/1939 – FDR’s “Arsenal of Democracy” speech • Conflict in Europe is a threat to U.S. independence (Nazis want to take over the world) • Congress approves $37 billion for 2-ocean navy and huge air force • Sept. 1940 – Selective Service and Training Act • 21 to 35 registered for a year of military training • 1st ever peace-time draft

    15. America First Committee U.S. protect its own shores if Germany defeats England Charles Lindbergh Most famous of isolationists “Fortress America” Senator Robert A. Taft: defense not intervention Committee to Defend America by Aiding the Allies Use “all methods short of war” to defeat Hitler Destroyer-Bases Deal 9/2/1940: FDR trades 50 destroyers to Britain for 8 bases in the Western Hemisphere Isolationists vs. Internationalism

    16. Election of 1940

    17. FDR moves the U.S. to intervene • 1/6/1941 – “Four Freedoms” Speech • Speech & Expression, Religion, from Want, & from Fear • 4/1941 – American Neutrality Patrol • Patrol Atlantic for German U-boats • 8/1941 – Atlantic Charter • Secret meeting between FDR & Churchill • Basis of alliance (later endorsed by Stalin) • Basis of the United Nations • 9/4/1941 – Shoot-on-sight Policy • End of neutrality, American ships lost and U.S. begins to occupy lands for their protection (Greenland & Iceland)

    18. Japan Attacks Pearl Harbor • U.S. warns Japan about further movements in Asia • Embargo 1940, 1941 • Japanese-U.S. negotiations • Hideki Tojo • December 7, 1941 – “a date which will live in infamy” • U.S. declares war on Japan • U.S. enters World War II • Germany and Italy declare war on the U.S.