WWII / Origins of The Cold War
Purpose: The purpose of this presentation is to make students aware of the key people, places, and events surrounding World War II. It will also help students to understand the U.S. involvement in the War and U.S. reaction to the War. This presentation also sets up the origins of the Cold War, with an emphasis on important documents and political movements of the era.
11.7, 11.8, 11.9.1-11.9.3
Origins of the War (WWII)
Hitler invades Poland violating The Treaty of Versailles
Japan invades China à U.S. sanctions on Japan
The Depression sharpened international tensions
The Good Neighbor Policy destabilized German and Japanese economic endeavors
The isolationist attitude that was born out of WWI lasted until Pearl Harbor
Significance: It is important to understand the key event preceding the war to fully realize how things unfolded and how and why the U.S. became involved.
U.S Entry into the War
Significance: Because of the attack by Japan the U.S. was forced to enter the war with a strong effort to defeat the axis powers. The American draft is key to understanding the demographic changes at home.
Fighting the War
Midway (June 3-6, 1942)
Battle of the Bulge (December 16, 1944 - January 25, 1945)
Iwo Jima (February 19 - March 16, 1945)
(Movies: Flags of our Fathers and Letters from Iwo Jima)
Normandy: D-Day (June 6 - August 25, 1944)
Battle of Okinawa
Technology as a weapon
WASPS, Radar, Atomic Bomb
Significance: The battle of Midway was the first U.S. resistance against the Japanese and winning gave the U.S. more control over the Pacific. Major battles won by the U.S. helped strengthen the U.S. weaken the axis powers. The technological advances changed the way that war was fought
The Home Front
Images of the enemy
Women during the War
Rosie the Riveter
Significance: Propaganda and changing gender images helped raise morale and gain support for the war.
African-Americans During the War
The Double-Victory Campaign
Jim Crow Restaurants and Theaters:
The Fellowship of Reconciliation's Committee
Washington D.C.-Howard University
African-American Service Members: The Black Eagles
Racists Attitudes Towards Black Defense Jobs
FDR issues executive order forbidding discrimination in defense jobs
Significance: While Anti-African sentiments continued along with the Jim Crow Laws throughout the war many Americans failed to acknowledge the vital role African-Americans played in not only defense jobs but battles as well.
Japanese-American Discrimination Pre-War
Japanese-American Discrimination Post-Pearl Harbor
Executive Order 9066: Japanese-American Internment in February 1942 by FDR
Executive Order 9066
Bataan Death March April 1942
Significance: It is important to understand that there were many Anti-Asian sentiments prior to Pearl Harbor that were only perpetuated by the bombing. Within that, there were still Japanese-Americans willing to fight. Also, comparing and contrasting the Internment Camps to Concentration Camps of Nazi Germany would be helpful.
Japanese-Americans on the Battlefront
Japanese-Americans in the Armed Services During WWII: The 442nd Regimental Combat Team
Japanese Americans During the War
Other Minorities during WWII
Marine Navajo Code Talkers
The “Zoot Suit” Riots PBS: The Press and The Riot
Significance: Understanding that while young Mexican Americans were targeted, Native Americans were one of the few minority groups not discriminated against during the war years and played a major role in American success.
The U.S Reaction to the Holocaust
Hitler’s “Final Solution” is originally met with disbelief then horror
Allies refuse to Bomb Death Camps because too many civilian casualties may occur
After D-Day tons of soldiers and supplies etc. rolled through Normandy many who ended up liberating Nazi Death Camps
PBS: America and the Holocaust
Significance: The U.S. was slow to react to the Holocaust and it is still debated today as to whether or not more could have been done to hinder the length and severity of the Holocaust. The true horrors were not realized until it was over.
Ending the War in the European Theatre
Germany Surrender’s in various place throughout Europe In late April and early May of 1945
May 7th German Unconditional Surrender
Significance: German forces were unable to continue fighting due to lack of resources and manpower, which eventually led to their unconditional surrender.
Ending the War in the Pacific Theatre
Manhattan Project U.S. Department of Energy
Hiroshima “Little Boy”
Nagasaki “Fat Man”
Truman Drops the Bomb
Japanese Surrender on
August 15, 1945
Significance: While the bombings successfully ended the War with Japan, they were the only times the atomic bombs were used due to the detrimental effects then and that are still trying to be understood today.
Building a New World
Churchill, Stalin, and Roosevelt
League of Nations replaced by United Nations
World Bank, GATT, IMF, IDHR
Significance: The Yalta Conference set up the vision for the post-war world. The United Nations was a peace-keeping organization that replaced the League of Nations.
Origins of the Cold War
Ideological competition/Differing Goals in Post-War World
•Grand Alliance to Containment
•U.S. and Soviet Union
Kennan’s Long Telegram
Churchill’s “Iron Curtain”
U.S. Policy of Containment
Significance: The changes in ideology following WWII set up foreign relations and tensions in the post-war world. Also, the growing concern over the spread of communism began to change the political landscape in the U.S. and how the U.S. perceived the world. This eventually led to a major arms race.
Cold War Defense Strategy
Nuclear Strategy throughout Cold War
National Security Act of 1947
Central Intelligence Agency, National Security Council
Significance: U.S. involvement with NATO violated the Washingtonian ideal of isolation. The NSA began to change the way the U.S. interacted globally. The global fight against communism began with the Berlin Airlift and the involvement in the Korean War.
Students will analyze and view different propaganda posters and political cartoons from the World War II era. In groups they will determine the purpose, key themes, possible audience, and significance of the images. Ask students if the images furthered or hindered the war effort or morale.