Consider the 5 Ws when thinking about history: Who, What, When, Where, & Why/How is it important?
Ch 36 America in World War II, 1941-1945 (Ch 36 is Ch 35 in the 13th edition)
Fundamental strategic decision of WWII made by FDR & British (Churchill) at the very beginning was – to concentrate on war in Europe first & hold Pacific war against Japan as a delaying and holding action (until Germany was defeated, then full weight of force vs. Japan) Once at war, USA’s first great challenge was to – retool its industry for all out (total) war (production)
*Mobilization on Homefront for war abroad
Overall most ethnic groups in the USA during WWII – were further assimilated into American society Japanese-Americans were placed in concentration camps during WWII – as a result of anti-Japanese prejudice & fear (especially on W coast)
* FDR’s Executive Order #9066 – Issei & Nisei – camps Ex. Manzanar in CA – loss of $ & property – 100th Battalion – “Purple Heart” Battalion – 442nd Regimental Combat Team – fought in Italy, France, Germany – Most decorated combat unit in US history for proportion of length of service – “Buddha Heads” – Most Japanese-Americans served as soldiers in Europe while interpreters and such went to the Pacific – obvious racism/discrimination
Minority group most adversely affected by Washington DC’s wartime policies was – Japanese-Americans
* Internment – costs – effects – camps – prejudice – military service – Nisei born in USA, so citizens The general attitude toward WWII was – less idealistic & ideological & more practical than the outlook in WWI
(This is according to the textbook – What would Zinn say in Ch 16?) In the period of 1885 to 1924, the Japanese immigrants who came to the USA were – a select group (representing Japan abroad, so Japan cared who was sent) who was/were better prepared & educated than most European immigrants (so they were middle class & usually had $)
Ex. Japan felt represented – wanted to avoid Chinese bachelors of 19th century – so “picture brides” When the USA entered WWII in December (7th attack at Pearl, war declared on 8th), 1941, - a majority of Americans had no clear idea of what the war was about - * WWI had campaigned (but many people didn’t know in WWI either – Ex. Sergeant York & Gallipoli) During WWII, the US gov’t commissioned the production of synthetic rubber in order to offset the loss of access to prewar supplies in E. Asia (ex. French Indochina/Vietnam, Cambodia, & Loas) Wartime agencies & functions:
War Production Board – assign priorities w/respect to use of raw materials & transportation facilities
Office of Price Administration – controlled inflation by rationing essential goods
War Labor Board – imposed ceilings (maximums) on wage increases
Fair Employment Practices Commission (FEPC) – saw to it that no hiring discrimination practices were used against Af-Am’s seeking employment in war industries * A Philip Randolph – 1941 threatened to march on Wash DC to demand equality in hiring – FDR feared march so made a deal to announce Executive Order #8802 for Af-Am’s fair employment in wartime industries
* Randoplh was leader of Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters union (mostly Af-Am’s but some whites too – began in 1920s) While most US workers were strongly committed to the war effort, wartime production was disrupted by strikes led by the – United Mine Workers (Why? Exploitation w/unequal distribution of wartime profits.)
* Coal mining is almost as risky as war – in fact they die more than any other industrial workers, both back then and today – only crab fishing is truly more hazardous by proportion – although they are much safer today During WWII –...