Why did the United States move toward war?

January 6, 2018 | Author: Anonymous | Category: History, US History
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From Neutrality to War Chapter 24, Section 2

• How did President Wilson try to bring about peace? • Why did the United States move toward war? • How did the government prepare for and manage the war effort? • How did Americans on the home front respond to the war?

Wilson’s Efforts to Bring About Peace Chapter 24, Section 2

• President Wilson tried to bring both sides to peace talks. He believed that the United States, as a neutral nation, could lead warring nations to “peace without victory.” • At the same time, Wilson began to lobby for a stronger army and navy in case of war. • When Wilson ran for reelection in 1916, the Democrats portrayed his opponent, Charles Evans Hughes, as a warmonger, or person who tries to stir up war. Their slogan was “He (Wilson) kept us out of war!” • In January 1917, Wilson issued his final plea for peace.

The United States Moves Toward War Chapter 24, Section 2

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Germany warned neutral nations that after February 1, 1917, its U-boats would sink any ship nearing Britain. German leaders were gambling that they could defeat the Allies before American troops could reach Europe. Wilson broke off diplomatic relations with Germany. In February, Wilson learned that Arthur Zimmermann, Germany’s foreign secretary, had sent a secret note to Mexico. The Zimmermann telegram told the German minister to urge Mexico to attack the United States if the United States declared war on Germany. Germany would help Mexico get back their lost territory in the Southwest. The telegram stirred anti-German feelings in the United States. In early 1917, German submarines sank several American merchant ships. A revolution in Russia drove Czar Nicholas II from power. The czars, or Russian emperors, had absolute power. When Russia suffered heavy losses in the war and severe hardships at home, riots over food shortages turned into revolution. Wilson firmly believed in democracy. Now that the czar, an absolute ruler, was gone, it was easier for Wilson to back the Allied cause. On April 2, 1917, Wilson went before Congress to ask for a declaration of war. “The world must be made safe for democracy,” he declared. On April 6th he signed a declaration war against Germany.

The United States Moves Toward War Chapter 24, Section 2

•Public opinion was split on whether the United States should go to war.

Preparing for War Chapter 24, Section 2

The United States had to prepare for war quickly. Raising an army

• Congress passed the Selective Service Act, which required all men from ages 21 to 30 to register for the military draft. A draft is a law requiring people of a certain age to serve in the military. • Many people volunteered for the armed forces, including many recent immigrants, Native Americans, and nearly 400,000 African Americans. Altogether about 4 million Americans served in the military during World War I.

Educating the troops

• About 25 percent of the recruits were illiterate—unable to read and write. The army taught millions of young men how to read, as well as how to fight. It also taught them about health needs. Many had never left home before nor ever used indoor plumbing before. • The shocking illiteracy rates fueled a drive to reform public education. Measures included lengthening the school day, requiring students to spend more years in school, and raising teacher-training standards.

Managing the Fight Chapter 24, Section 2

A huge bureaucracy emerged to manage the war effort. A bureaucracy is a system of managing government through departments run by appointed officials.

Managing the food supply

• Encouraged by rising food prices, farmers grew more crops. Citizens planted “victory gardens” to raise their own vegetables. • Wilson chose Herbert Hoover as head of the Food Administration. Hoover’s job was to boost food production in order to feed the troops and send food to the Allies.

Managing industry & labor

• The government had a bureaucracy, system of managing departments with appointed official, to meet war needs. President Wilson set up the War Industries Board. The board told factories what they had to produce, set prices, and shared out scarce resources. • Wilson also created the War Labor Board. It settled disputes over hours and wages and tried to prevent strikes. During the war, union membership rose and labor unrest declined.

On the Home Front Chapter 24, Section 2

Liberty Bonds

Movie stars helped sell Liberty Bonds. By buying bonds, American citizens were lending money to the government to pay for the war.

Women workers As men joined the armed forces, women stepped into their jobs. By

performing in jobs once reserved for men, women helped change the view that they were fit only for “women’s work." They became police officers, drove trolleys, assembled weapons, delivered the mail, and more.

Anti-German prejudice

German Americans endured suspicion and intolerance. Such prejudice led some families to change their names. Schools stopped teaching the German language.

Migrations

• As the draft drained cities of workers, nearly a half million African Americans and thousands of Mexican Americans migrated from the South and Southwest to find work in war industries in cities in the North. • Ranchers in the Southwest pressed the government to let more Mexicans into the country to work on farms. Most worked on farms in California and Texas.

On the Home Front Chapter 24, Section 2

Opposition to the war

• Some Americans opposed the war. Many of these critics were pacifists or people who refuse to fight in any war because they believe that war is evil. • Antiwar feeling was also strong among Socialists and radical labor groups. A Socialist believes that the people as a whole rather than private individuals should own all property and share the profits from all businesses. Socialists argued that the war benefited factory owners but not workers. • Congress passed laws making it a crime to criticize the government or interfere with the war effort.

Section 2 Assessment Chapter 24, Section 2

The United States broke off diplomatic relations with Germany after a) Germany started the Russian Revolution. b) Germany swore to invade Mexico. c) Germany warned that it planned to sink any ship headed for Britain. d) Wilson’s rival, Charles Evans Hughes, said he favored war with Germany. During the war, a great migration took place within the United States when a) many German Americans headed to the Midwest to avoid the antiGerman prejudice of the East. b) African Americans and Mexicans left jobs in the South and Southwest for jobs in war industries in the North. c) women moved from the suburbs to the city to take over factory jobs. d) blacks embarked on a great migration from the North and Northeast to take jobs in cities in the South. Want to connect to the American History link for this section? Click here.

Section 2 Assessment Chapter 24, Section 2

The United States broke off diplomatic relations with Germany after a) Germany started the Russian Revolution. b) Germany swore to invade Mexico. c) Germany warned that it planned to sink any ship headed for Britain. d) Wilson’s rival, Charles Evans Hughes, said he favored war with Germany. During the war, a great migration took place within the United States when a) many German Americans headed to the Midwest to avoid the antiGerman prejudice of the East. b) African Americans and Mexicans left jobs in the South and Southwest for jobs in war industries in the North. c) women moved from the suburbs to the city to take over factory jobs. d) blacks embarked on a great migration from the North and Northeast to take jobs in cities in the South. Want to connect to the American History link for this section? Click here.

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