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World War II Part II


									      The US at War -
       World War II
Impact on the Home Front

• How did the nation’s participation in WWII
  impact the nation economically in the short
  run? Long run?
• What effect did the war have on women?
  Japanese Americans?
• To what extent did the US government
  control the economy?
• During and after the War, US
  society was primarily concerned
  with 3 major issues
• 1. Advancement of Big Gov
• 2. The problems with the economy
• 3. Communism at home & abroad
Getting Hitler First
         • US strategy
         • Seen as better for the long run
         • Allowing Germany to continue
           spelled doom for the Allies
         • Logistical issues for the US
         • Japan is still a major problem
            • Korematsu Case illustrates US
  Civil       failure to live up to Constitution
            • 110,000 Japanese-Amer put into
Liberties     camps in the western US
            • Defined as a ‘war measure’
            • Impulsive. The entire West
              Coast was too general of an area
            • Should US citizens lose rights in
              order to preserve the nation? To
              what extent do you refuse to
              offer constitutional protections to
              provide safety?
          What Americans knew?
• 90% couldn’t identify one clause in the Atlantic Charter
  (Can you? What was it?)
• 1/2 had ‘no clear idea what the war was about’
• D.C., then, proceeded with a massive propaganda drive
  to keep up war support
• War Productions Board helped spread that message
Employment, Industry and
                     • Wartime economy = ‘full
                       employment’, something the
                       New Deal programs couldn’t
                       do (constraints didn’t allow
                       for total takeover of the econ)
                     • Many men went to war & left
                       job vacancies…so, women
                       entered the workforce
                     • “Rosie the Riveter” became
                       an Icon
                     • 36% of Workforce = women
                     • More wm in GB workforce
Women Enter the Workforce
    Women at work

• Enola
  works for
  the US,
  welding &
  enemies of
  the US
To what extent did women help America win?
• Great majority of women        The ‘True’
  continued traditional roles
• Most women wouldn’t have
  taken a job even if it were
• Main result: not economic
  liberation but the rush to
  ‘suburban domesticity’ and
  giving birth to the ‘baby
  boomer’ generation once the
  war was over
• Still, set some early
  examples which would
  materialize in the late 60s,
  early 1970s
            • Fed Gov encourages Americans
Sacrifice     to conserve / recycle materials
            • Things around the house that
              could be recycled: Fats, old
              shovels & tools, empty metal
              lipstick tubes
            • War Bonds: Crucial source of
              revenue for war effort
            • The bonds were set to yield
              2.9% after a ten year maturity.
              Not the greatest investment, but
              an investment in your country
            • Gov wanted a cutback on
              American consumption
            • Ration cards to purchase gas,
              sugar, coffee and meat
    War Productions
• Consults US industry
• Halts manufacture of ‘non-
  essential’ items
• Prioritized for transportation &
  raw materials
• Gov set wage ceilings for
  workers (upsetting labor)
• Anti-strike laws put in place,
  making it a crime to strike during
  war time
Dr. Seuss and the War Effort
                  More Dr. Seuss

• What is this
  trying to say
• Would you
  support a tax
  hike of 10%
  for the
  current war
  on terror?
              Sacrifice and Fashion
• War Production’s Board
  began to consult US
  civilian attire
• Wanted to save fabric -
  discard the unnecessary!
• Men lost vests, elbow
  patches, cuffs on pants
• Women’s skirts got shorter
• Bathing suits: patriotic and
  efficient 2 piece
  Some Realizations about the War
• FDR was continuously attacked by Repubs for
  New Deal programs, suspected socialistic
  tendencies and ‘Imperial’ Presidency
• Regardless, the following 4 things were made
  clear from America’s experience with the war…
1. Growth & power of Labor Unions (15 million members),
   for which the IWW was attacked 40 years earlier, were
   now a legitimate & powerful part of American Society
2. America experienced full employment & higher standards
   of living
3. Farm incomes were reaching new heights with many
   farmers leaving the profession, those that stayed did quite
4. Wartime investment and major deficit spending validated
   Keynesian Economics
• Braceros were invited in to help
  w/ labor shortage (ironic?)
• 1000s of Mexican laborers
  brought in to harvest fruit & grain
• The Program outlived the war
• Continued use of immigrant labor
  to fill holes in US econ
                   Demographic Shifts
• War industry---caused major population growth in
  big cities, espec in the West.
• Accelerated southern states growth (huge defense
  contracts, gov funded industry)
• Continued migration out of the South by blacks to N
• With this move, racial tensions developed over
  housing, employment, etc. White society gets scared!
• Early stages of Civil Rights mvmt begins
• FDR responds: executive order forbidding
  discrimination in defense industries (but not the
  military)  Fair Employment Practices Commission (FEPC)
                      Zoot Suit Riots
• Many in LA resented recent influx of
• June 1943  ‘Flashy’ dressed (Zoot Suits)
  Mexican-Americans in LA were attacked by
  drunken Anglo sailors
• Drove around town looking for ‘victims’ –teach
  them ‘proper respect’ & get revenge for a
  recent altercation.
• The police didn’t intervene
• Mex ambassador pleaded for intervention -
  pointed out that GRM could use this in
  propaganda against the US
• Other race riots occurred. Ex  Detriot: 25
  blacks & 9 whites killed.
           So what happened with the
•   Little suffering on the home front for Americans
•   Disposable income (what people can spend) doubled
•   Price controls, wage ceilings had been implemented
•   Once lifted, the gush of consumerism was unleashed (that is the
    theme of the 50s)
•   Gov got very involved in citizens lives (more so than with the New
    Deal)  era of Big Gov intervention (rationing, gov jobs, etc)
•   Unemployment no longer a real issue
•   War = expensive! More had to now pay income taxes. US spent
    $330 bil (10x cost of WWI)! Most $ for WWII was borrowed
    (didn’t come from current revenue)
•   US debt rose from $49 bil to $259 bil!
                        FDR and a 4th Term

• Republicans want a victory! Selected
  the‘liberal’ governor of NY, Thomas Dewey
• Election puts pressure on the war, diverts
• FDR getting old – focused on VP Harry
• FDR won a sweeping victory (despite
  Dewey’s campaign efforts)
• FDR died April 12, 1945 (cerebral
  hemorrhage) - Truman became president
• Russians halt Germans in 1942
• By 1943 the Soviets regain 2/3 of the
  territory lost to GRM
• April 30, 1945 – Hitler committed suicide
  as US & Soviet troops approached Berlin
• May 7, 1945 – GRM officially surrendered
• V-E Day  Victory in Europe
             War in the Pacific
We will address this in another PowerPoint! 
                          Costs of WWII
• Over 40 million dead
• Property of Europe/USSR
  damaged heavily
• Genocide is uncovered.
  Nazis used camps to
  incinerate millions of Jews
• After the war, US & USSR
  emerged as superpowers.
  Both distrusted one another
   starts the Cold War.
• US sets up Marshal Plan 
  economic aid for Europe.
• United Nations set up to
  solve disputes

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