The USA and World War Two

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World War Two broke out in September 1939- Hitler invade Poland

America gets involved in December 1941

War in Europe ends May 1945- VE Day

War ends in Japan August 1945- VJ Day

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The Build up to the War and Isolationism

After WW1, America adopted a policy of isolationism, this is seen by the fact that it does not join the League of Nations

In the 1920's disputes were settled with diplomacy

In the 1930's America's main problem was getting out of the Depression rather than dealing with Hitler

However they would always side with the allies rather than Hitler

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Allied Sympathies

The Lead-Lease Programme, allowed them to help ally countries by supplying them with arms and food

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The Threat from the East

America did not fear Germany it feared Japan in 1939

This was because Japan was vastly closer than Germany. Alongside this they were both in competition for the control of the Pacific Ocean

Japan was controlled by its army, which meant it was agressive. It needed to be aggressive to other countries in order to get resources to sustain itself.

Japan was ruled by Emperor Hirohito, the people had unswayed loyalty to him

Kamikaze- divine winds. Pilots crashed their planes on purpose to destroy enemy ships

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Pearl Harbor

Pearl Harbor- 7th December 1941

Biggest Naval base- in Hawaii

Japan attacked it without warning, blowing up ships. The did this to stop America from attacking them first/ being ready to fight

'Pre-emptive strike'

The day after the attack Roosevelt declared war on Japan and Germany

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Government Agencies

The War Production Board- This oversaw the drive to increase production

The reconstruction finance corporation- This oversaw the distribution of vital goods and services

The war manpower commission- This exercised authority over the allocation of labour

The office of price administration- This controlled the prices of consumer goods

The office of war mobilisation- This super agency by James Byrnes tried to co-ordinate all the other agencies

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