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Unit 3 – World at War: Lasting Legacy

  • Unit Question - How are things, events, or people connected to each other? What is the cause? The effect? How do they fit together?
  • Historical Context - World War I, World War II, The Cold War
  • Final Assessment - Unit Exams - World War I Test & World War II Test


World War I 

"The Great War"

Read p. 193-196 in your Age of Extremes min-book and answer the World War I:  "The Great War" questions in your COMP books:


When Europe erupted into chaos in 1914, World War I, Americans remained divided on the issue by policy of isolationism won out that is until the sinking of two U.S. boats.  

  1. What does isolationism mean?  Why did the U.S.A. take this early stance?  [HINT:  The answer isn't in your book so try:  Isolationism scroll down to World War I] 
  2. President Woodrow Wilson once called the war, "a distant event" and in fact, ran and won a second presidential election on the slogan HE KEPT US OUT OF WAR.  So what changed?  
  3. Did President Wilson really join the war because of the 128 Americans that lost their lives at the German sinking of the Lusitania?  Tough question I know.  Try this:  History Channel: America Enters WWI
  4. Why did Americans and Europeans believe this would be a short war?  Besides the Spanish-American War this appears to never be the case!
  5. What did our founding fathers, Washington and Jefferson, warn us about Europe?  
  6. What impact did the war have on the U.S. economy before, during, and after?  [HINT:  Try Wilson's quote on p. 196 for a better understanding, but don't worry if you don't fully understand, we will revisit this question]
  7. What was the Zimmerman Telegram? 

World War I:  "The Great War" CONTINUED


Read p. 9-15 in your new War, Peace, and All That Jazz mini-book and answer the WWI: "The Great War" Continued questions in your COMP books:

  1. What was the name of the Black Hand terrorist that killed Archduke Franz Ferdinand?
  2. Explain why this assassination majorly backfired the Serbian cause?
  3. On May, 1 1915, the German Embassy warned?  What happened soon after?
  4. If the Lusitania wasn't enough of a reason for the U.S. to join the war, what finally drew Woodrow Wilson into the conflict in Europe?  Why do you think Germany took this gamble?  [HINT: p.14-15]
  5. What were some of the new weapons of killing?  How do you think these weapons created the myth of "the war to end all wars"?  [HINT:  page 13 and below] 
  6. What side did Italy fight on in the war?  Try this:  Italy in WWI
  7. What was President Woodrow Wilson's goal for Europe and the rest of the world after World War I? 

World War I Webquest/Test Prep (Also See WWI Resources above):


Historical Context: World War I was supposed to be the war that ended all wars.  Instead it set the stage for future conflicts throughout the 20th Century.  The people of the time called the conflict the Great War, and they believed that there would never again be another like it.   Although the United States tried to remain neutral, it was eventually drawn into the conflict.   The war had a profound effect on the nation, and touched upon many aspects of American life.  When the war ended, the United States, and the world, was changed forever.


Your Task: Place all of your answers in your COMP notebook for the following questions.  Please use the links provided and your textbook to answer the following:


Area 1 : Choosing sides and war plans

Using World War I: Beginnings of Major Players answer and/or define the following:

  1. Name the Allied Powers (5 major countries) and the Central Powers (4 major countries).
  2. Name 1 country the successfully remained neutral.                       
  3. What were the central and the allies called before the war?  Try this:  WWI: Alliance System or World War I Alliance (History.com) Video
  4. Which side did the United States eventually join?  Why?
  5. Which country switched sides just before the war started? Why?
  6. List and describe the five major causes of World War I. 
  7. What was the spark!  that led to the immediate cause of World War I?  What is a preventative war? 
  8. Who was General Schlieffen, and what was his plan for World War I?   What was his country trying to avoid by implementing this plan?


Area 2 : Weapons of War & Propaganda

  1. List and describe 4 weapons introduced in World War I. Be sure to explain their  effectiveness and how they were used?  [NOTE:  History Channel: WWI Firsts)
  2. What is Propaganda?  What were four reasons propaganda posters were used?  
  3. What nation produced the most posters throughout WWI?
  4. Go to sidebar to the right and click on a couple of countries; England, U.S. and Germany. Are  they similar? List some symbols, messages, similarities and differences, if any, in the posters.  

Area 3: Life in the Trenches
  1. What is trench foot? What caused trench foot?  
  2. What were the effects of being attack by mustard gas?  What percentage of World War I casualties were poison gas responsible for?
  3. What was No Man's Land?  (Please be sure to describe at least three distinct features)


Area 4: America enters the War

  1. What was the Lusitania? What is the significance of the Lusitania in the War? How many people died and were there any Americans on board?  
  2. How many Allied and Neutral ships were lost to submarines in 1917? How many total number of Allied and Neutral ships were sunk by submarines between 1914-1918? (Scroll down...it's there!)
  3. What is the Zimmerman Telegram and who wrote it? Why did Americans feel threatened by this telegram? (Think Monroe Doctrine).  
  4. In the telegram, what did the German government decide to begin on Feb. 1, 1917?   What was promised to Mexico in the telegram?  
  5. When does the Untied States declare war on Germany?  Who was John J. Pershing?
  6. What was the Brest-Litovsk Treaty?  How did it affect the fighting on the Western Front? (Think Schlieffen Plan)
Area 5: Results of the War
  1. How does the U.S. Congress feel about the League of Nations?  Why is this League set up for failure?
  2. In Articles 231 & 232 of the Treaty of Versailles, what is Germany responsible for?  
  3. What happened to most of Wilson's Points in the final draft of the Treaty of Versailles? Why?
  4. What country lost the most soldiers, and has the most missing, How many American soldiers died and what was the total number of soldiers who died in the war? 
  5. When did the war end? When was the Treaty of Versailles signed?   Why are these dates significant?
  6. Why did this attitude of an unfair peace and US noninvolvement in the League of Nations help set up the foundations for a new world conflict?  What was the name of President Wilson’s  Speech to Congress on January 8, 1918?
  7. Through the points mentioned in the above article, how does Wilson address:
  • Imperialism
  • Militarism
  • Navigation of the seas
  • International trade
  • Self-determination What does this mean?
  • League of Nations

Treaty of Versailles

World War I: Primary Source Diaries Discovery


Select any of the memoirs or diaries from the bottom of First World War website: Memoirs and Diaries answer the questions below and be able to share what life was really like during the "Great War" in class.  NOTE:  "A Letter From Paris, 11 Nov 1918 by Charles S. Normington is NOT permitted


  1. Briefly summarize the memoir or diary.
  2. How does the author feel about the conditions of war? Give a specific example.
  3. How does the author feel about his enemy?  How do you know?  
  4. How would a memoir or diary from the opposing side of the war be different? Similar? 

All Quiet on the Western Front  Movie Questions
"THE GREATEST WAR NOVEL OF ALL TIME" 

All Quiet on the Western Front is a novel by Erich Maria Remarque, a German veteran of World War I. The book describes the German soldiers' extreme physical and mental stress during the war, and the detachment from civilian life felt by many of these soldiers upon returning home from the front.  The novel was first published in November and December 1928 in a German newspaper and in book form in late January 1929. The book and its sequel, The Road Back, were among the books banned and burned in Nazi Germany. It sold 2.5 million copies in 22 languages in its first eighteen months in print.  
The Film, All Quiet on the Western Front is a classic Hollywood adaptation of Erich Remarque's novel.  It takes a hard look at the tragedy of war using World War I as the backdrop.  

As you watch the movie, please answer the following questions:  
  1. Why did students join the Army?
  2. How were conditions at the Western Front different from their expectations in training camp?
  3. What was the impact of the shelling on the new recruits?
  4. Explain the meeting of Paul and the French soldier in the trench after the bombardment: 
  5. At what point in the movie do you see a change in Paul?  Meaning, when does that past nationalism that took him to war officially ends?
  6. What is the opinion of the teacher and old men in the park regarding the war?  How do you know?
  7. What is the symbolism of behind the drawings of the bird?  [HINT: Wait until the end]
  8. How does this novel and movie destroy the past myths of war?  Explain.  

Quiz Question:  The author, Erich Remarque, was a German soldier during World War I.  So why do you suppose his novel becomes so widely read and important in understanding World War I and the German perspective of war?

Woodrow Wilson and his 14 Points 
(Ending of WWI)


Read p. 16-20 in your War, Peace and All That Jazz mini-book and answer the following Woodrow Wilson and his 14 Points (Ending of WWI) questions in your COMP books:   

  1. The main objective of Woodrow Wilson's 14 Points was?
  2. How did his experience growing up in the South impact the 14 Points?
  3. What is self-determination defined by President Wilson?
  4. What are some of the other points of Woodrow Wilson?
  5. How did the 14 Points help end the WorldWar I? [HINT:  See below]
  6. Why didn't Wilson get his just peace?
  7. The treaty that ended World War I is called what?
  8. Why didn't the U.S.A. join the League of Nations? 

Making Sense of the Dawes Plan, 1925-1929

The Dawes Plan was an attempt following World War I for the Triple Entente to compromise and collect war reparations debt from Germany. The Dawes Plan (as proposed by the Dawes Committee, chaired by Charles G. Dawes) was an attempt in 1924 to solve the reparations problem, which had bedeviled international politics following World War I and the Treaty of Versailles.

1) How did the Dawes Plan completely cripple the German economy?
2) How does the Dawes Plan eventually create more problems for Great Britain, France, and the United States?
3)  What role does the Dawes Plan have on the Great Depression?

Dawes Plan Resources:

Prohibition & 

The Women's Suffrage Movement

Whole Country Goes Dry / Nation Will be Bone Dry Within Year From Today

Look over the cover of the newspaper on the right and answer the following questions:

  1. Which headlines include information or topics that we have studied? What do you remember about those topics (name at least two).
  2. What are some differences between this newspaper and a newspaper today?


Handout:  Read the article “Nation Will be Bone Dry Within Year From Today.” (Back of newspaper)

1.     Annotate the article using the following:  

  1. Use ! for things that surprised you or are interesting.
  2. Use  * for things that are important.
  3. Use + or a ✔ for things that you agree with or already knew.
  4. Use X for things that you disagree with or contradict things you knew.

2.     Include thumbprint notes (few words or phrases for each section to help you remember what it is about).

3.     Using your annotations, what do you think were the concerns of the people at this time? (What did the newspaper feel was important for them to know?)

Ken Burns' Prohibition [Episode 1 & 2] Video Discussion Questions: 

  1. How was alcohol a big part of American society?
  2. According to the video, how often did men and boys drink?
  3. What changed about alcohol in the 1800s?  What were the consequences of this?
  4. What do you think is meant by "degradation of Saturday night"? 
  5. What is the relationship between Prohibition and World War I? Why do you think the increase in immigration from Europe in the 19th century led prohibitionists and reformers to focus on controlling the use of alcohol in the early 20th century
  6. Why did women of the early Temperance movement shift their views from moderation to prohibition?
  7. Explain the role of one of the following women regarding Prohibition:  Frances Willard, Carrie "Molly Hatchet" Nation, Mable Walker Willebrant, Lois Long, or Pauline Sabin. 
  8. How did immigrants’ alcohol-drinking habits raise Americans’ suspicions about them by the early 20th century? 
  9. What was the importance of the passing of the 16th Amendment on the passing of the 18th Amendment (Prohibition)?
  10. Why did Southern whites support Prohibition?
  11. What was the name of the law enacted to enforce Prohibition?
  12. Explain one example of how Americans broke the Prohibition and the Volstead Act?
  13. How did Prohibition lead to the rise of organized crime?

Prohibition Resources:  

 

Analyzing Propaganda 

Quick Discussion Questions:


  1. What is the message?  
  2. Who is being caricatured as being responsible?
  3. How accurate is the message?  

Prohibition:  Blame it on the Women! Questions

"The moment we begin to fear the opinions of others and hesitate to tell the truth that is in us, and from motives of policy are silent when we should speak, the divine floods of light and life no longer flow into our souls."
- Elizabeth Cady Stanton  

Read p. 25-33 in your War, Peace, and All That Jazz mini-book and answer the Prohibition:  Blame it on the Women questions in your COMP books. 

  1. Why does the camel become a symbol of Prohibition party supporters?
  2. What is the difference between temperance and prohibition?
  3. Congress does not have the ability or power to prohibit the consumption of anything; poison or alcohol.  So how does this Prohibition happen?
  4. What year is the 18th Amendment (Prohibition) passed as a Federal law?
  5. Overall, the consumption of alcohol decreased, but why do you suppose that newcomers, like women and young people, decided to try it?
  6. Prohibition created a whole new economy or market for gangsters.  What are bootleggers, rumrunners, and speakeasies?
  7. What amendment in 1933 finally ended the Prohibition experiment?
  8. What did we learn from Prohibition?
  9. What were women protesting or demanding in 1917 with slogans like 20 MILLION AMERICAN WOMEN ARE NOT SELF-GOVERNED?
  10. Why were the Suffragists often arrested?  What does some time in prison do to the movement?
  11. What is the Susan B. Anthony amendment? Why is it given this nickname? 
  12. What year was the 19th Amendment finally ratified?

BONUS:
  • Has Elizabeth Cady Stanton received her proper place in U.S. History?  Did you notice how very little is mentioned about her in your mini-book?  Try this article before you decide: National Women's History Museum: Elizabeth Cady Stanton
  • How could you make the argument that Prohibition created modern American popular culture? 

The Rise of Organized Crime

Organized crime had been in the United States well before the 18th Amendment created the Prohibition Era in the 1920s. By making alcohol illegal, Prohibition, however, did create a new and easily exploited market.  Thus, making organized crime, well more organized, more wealthy, more powerful, and hard to police.  Even after the Prohibition experiment was over, these gangsters still wheeled extraordinary power and wealth.  That power often influenced police, government officials, judges, and politicians.  Their power, especially the Mafias, was often too much for even the F.B.I. Director, J. Edgar Hoover.  It wasn't until the 1960s, and the Attorney General, Robert F. Kennedy's relentless crusade against the Mafia, often disagreeing with J. Edgar Hoover, that organized crime would face fierce pushback.  During President John F. Kennedy's short tenure, convictions against the Mafia and other organized crime members rose 800 percent.  Organized crime still exists today, but it often looks very different and well, less organized.  The debate on whether it is more or less powerful still persists, but you must decide on how powerful. If you need help deciding, try Moving Forward: Frequently Asked Questions.


Directions:  Decide between the Italian, Irish, Jewish, or African-American gangsters (below) and then select one individual to research.  Each of the names below are links to the Biography Channel or Blackpast.org with short biographies and videos or articles from various websites.  If you need further information, please check the Organized Crime Resources below and search on your own.  Then answer all of the discussion questions below in your COMP books.  Each student will be presenting their findings in class, so be prepared.  

The Irish Gangsters

The Jewish Gangsters

  • Arnold Rothstein, 1882-1928, New York City, Mediator of the 5 Families, Various Gangs 
  • Benjamin"Bugsy" Siegel, 1906-1947, New York City, Bugs-Meyer Gang, Luciano Family
  • Meyer Lansky, 1902-1983, New York City, Jewish Mob, Bugs-Meyer Gang, Italian "Mob Accountant"

The African-American Gangsters

The Italian Mafia (Sicilian: for The Bold Ones)

Discussion Questions: Use the Organized Crime Resources below

  1. What factors in the gangster's life and community led to his rise of power?
  2. What crimes is your gangster suspected of committing?
  3. Does your gangster serve any time in prison?  For what? 
  4. What role does Prohibition play in the gangster's wealth and power?  If a more modern gangster:  What role did Prohibition play in the gangsters organized crime's (family, gang, mob, or mafia) future?  If Prohibition was over at the height of the gangster, what supplemented their wealth?
  5. Explain the downfall of your gangster.  How did your gangster's life end?
  6. How did organized crime lead to the failure of Prohibition in the 1920s?
  7. Amongst the list of notorious gangsters above, why are so many from New York City and Chicago?  NOTE:   Try using the links below to help answer this question. 
  8. Why are so many Italians, especially the Sicilians, on this list above?  NOTE:  Need help?  Try this FBI Reports: Italian Organized Crime.
  9. What is the connection between the Homicides per 100,000 population graph (below) and your gangster?
  10. Critical Thinking: Should your gangster be remembered as famous or infamous?  NOTE:  Please think about this before answering. Can a Hollywood movies turn gangsters into celebrities and is that okay?  When are actions justified as a means to an end?

Baseball becomes America's Pastime 

(For Some)! 


"I'm not concerned with your liking or disliking me... All I ask is that you respect me as a human being." - Jackie Robinson


Read p. 47-54 in your War, Peace, and All That Jazz mini-book and answer the Baseball becomes America's Pastime (For Some)! questions below in your COMP books:


  1. What is the nickname of George Herman Ruth?
  2. What was Babe Ruth's childhood like?
  3. Babe Ruth started his professional career with what team?  How was his 1918 season with that team?
  4. Known as the Curse, the Red Sox sold Babe Ruth to the Yankees for how much?  HINT: This Day in History: New York Yankees announce purchase of Babe Ruth
  5. What impact did the Babe have on the popularity of the game?
  6. How many homeruns did the Babe hit in 1927?  What was the record before Babe Ruth played professional baseball?
  7. Baseball didn't start as a segregated sport, so what happened?  
  8. It's obvious that hundreds of African Americans could have and should have been allowed to play Major League Baseball.  So prior to Jackie Robinson breaking the color barrier in 1945, who was the best Negro League baseball player?  Give some stats to back your opinion.  NOTE: See Baseball Resources below, but Mr. Streit's vote is Josh Gibson (pictured just left).
  9. Name at least two African Americans that proved the Aryan myth created by Adolf Hitler was false?  How did they do that? HINT: Berlin, Olympics. 
  10. Who was the boxer, Jack Johnson? What did it mean in the U.S.A. when he beat James Jefferies in 1910? NOTE:  See Baseball Resources below.

BONUS:  How did Jack Johnson end up in jail in Chicago and the lawsuit of United States v. John Arthur Johnson against him?

The Great Depression

The Great Depression was the worst collapse in the history of American capitalism. Throughout the 1930s, neither the free market nor the federal government was able to get the country working again. The American people endured a full decade of almost unbelievable economic misery. While a much-feared revolution—of either Communist or fascist persuasion—thankfully never materialized, Americans flirted with a number of radical alternatives to the status quo. Some of those radical alternatives faded into memory, while others were incorporated—in watered-down fashion—into the New Deal, where a few remain with us even today.  Read more:  Shmoop: Great Depression

What caused the Great Depression?  What was life like?  Let's find out: DBQ - Great Depression.doc


Read p.78-91 in your War, Peace, and All That Jazz mini-book and answer The Great Depression Questions in your COMP book: 

  1. What is a stock?  
  2. Stock Boom!  Why did so many people buy stocks, most of which they couldn't afford (speculate)?
  3. How much did the stock prices of Montgomery Ward drop from September to November of 1929?
  4. How does the depression and 12 million people without a job start to create questions on capitalism and democracy? HINT: p.83 & 90
  5. How did the depression affect the farmers?
  6. What caused the Dust Bowl?
  7. What were "Hoovervilles"?
  8. What was the "Bonus Army"?
  9. Give an example that President Herbert Hoover didn't understand the complexities or depth of problems the Great Depression had created?

Depression and Dust:  

The Dust Bowl

The Dust Bowl, or the "dirty thirties", was a period of severe dust storms causing major ecological and agricultural damage to American and Canadian prairie lands from 1930 to 1936 (in some areas until 1940). Severe drought coupled with decades of intensive farming without crop rotation or other techniques to prevent erosion led to this wide-spread disaster.  Read more:  Encyclopedia of the Earth


What caused the Dust Bowl?  What was life like?  Let's find out:   DBQ - The Dust Bowl.doc


Mini-Task: 
Surviving the Dust Bowl Video (see Great Depression and Dust Bowl Resources above)

  1. What role did World War I have on creating the Dust Bowl problem?
  2. What was the Great Plow Up?
  3. Who is chiefly responsible for the Dust Bowl disaster? Farmers or Government? Why?
  4. What is the resolution to the Dust Bowl problem? 

President Franklin Delano Roosevelt (FDR)


Read p. 101-110 in your War, Peace, and All That Jazz mini-book and answer the President Franklin Delano Roosevelt (FDR) Questions in your COMP books:


  1. What disease took away FDR's ability to stand by himself and for awhile put in him in a wheelchair (look left)?  How did he try to conquer the disease?
  2. Very few people knew of FDR's struggles and pains regarding his legs.  Why do you think FDR kept this a secret to the American public?  Why do you think the press kept his secret?  Do you think a secret this large, would have any chance at remaining a secret in today's modern world?  HINT: FDR: Living with a Disability
  3. FDR certainly had timing on his side when running for President.  Most Americans blamed the Republicans and President Herbert Hoover for the Depression.  How many states voted Democratic in 1932?
  4. FDR may have conquered polio, but he still had many medical complications. While dealing with these problems, one doctor was quoted, "The only thing you have to fear is fear itself."  FDR liked the quote so much he uses it when?  HINT: FDR "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself."
  5. FDR's first 100 days of office have become legendary for everything that was accomplished.  These plans and achievements became know as FDR's New Deal.  What is the New Deal?
  6. Why was FDR called "a traitor to his class"?
  7. Prior to Pearl Harbor, FDR considered World War II to be Europe's problem.  He refused to help the British, despite countless requests from Prime Minister Winston Churchill.  Why do you think that is?  PBS: FDR Foreign Affairs
  8. Critical Thinking:  Did the New Deal really work to get the U.S. out of the Great Depression or does the WAR! graph (look right) explain the real reason?

World War II (WWII)

The Rise of Evil and Beginning of The Holocaust 


Let's analyze the policy of appeasement: DBQ - World War II- The Road to War (Appeasement).doc (class work/homework)


Read p.111-125 in your War, Peace, and All That Jazz mini-books and answer The Rise of Evil and The Holocaust Questions in your COMP books:

  1. While in prison Adolf Hitler wrote Mein Kampf (My Struggle), which proved to be a literal outline for his objectives and plans for the Nazi Party.  So why was he in jail?  HINT: History.com: Beer Hall Putsch
  2. On the same date of Franklin D. Roosevelt's first inauguration as president, what was Germany deciding to do?  EERIE!  
  3. In 1933, why did most Americans not care about Adolf Hitler or the politics of Germany?
  4. Why did the German people support Adolf Hitler?  
  5. What is inflation?  How much did a Hershey chocolate bar cost in Germany?
  6. What is meant by, "Militant nationalism was a 20th-century disease"?
  7. Why did Japanese dictator Hideki Tojo start attacking China?  What was the effect on China?  WARNING:  Images are extremely graphic:  Time Magazine:  The Nanjing Massacre or Nanking Massacre/The Rape of Nanking or Pintrest: 17 Graphic Images - Rape of Nanking
  8. Who took power of Spain?
  9. Who took power of Italy?  Why did he send Italian troops to attack the African country of Ethiopia?
  10. What is communism?  Russia didn't finish World War I because of the Bolshevik Revolution in 1917, which placed communist dictator Vladimir Lenin in charge of the newly created Union of Soviet Socialist Republic (U.S.S.R).  Lenin survived countless assassination attempts, which was one of the reasons extreme stress that eventually led three strokes he suffered and his eventual death. After his death and during World War II  who was in charge of the U.S.S.R.? 
  11. What is anti-Semitism?  What were the reasons for the German anti-Semitism blame and policies against the Jews? Give some examples of Hitler's blame of the Jews?

12.  Besides Jews, what other types of people were sent to German Concentration (Killing Factories) Camps?
13.  As news of these atrocities leaked back into the U.S., perception slowly changed regarding the U.S. entering World War II.  To further explain, what is meant by "He who permits evil, commits evil."? 
14.  Early in Nazi Germany, Hitler allowed thousands of "undesirables" to flee the country.  So why did the U.S. not welcome these new immigrants?  
15.  What famous scientist escaped Germany?  Why did he need to meet with President Roosevelt? 

History Channel:  The Third Reich (The Rise & Fall)

The Rise of the Third Reich Video Part 1 Discussion Questions: (Pick any 3)

  • Name some reasons for the rise of the Nazi party.
  • What lands did Germany loose as a result of World War I?
  • Why was the Nazi party often identified with young men of the lower middle class? Is there a similar pattern among racist groups today?
  • What was the social climate and significant events that ultimately led to the state sponsored genocide in Nazi Germany?
  • Describe the techniques Hitler used to organize a large majority of German people to accept and promote Nazi ideology.
  • How did Germans perceive Hitler? Why was he followed so loyally and by so many?

BONUS:  The KKK vs. Superman! 

Meanwhile in the United States, this crazy but true story is taking place on radios all over America.
Use the following resources and then share with the class your response to the bonus questions.  
  1. How did the KKK become so popular in the 20th Century?
  2. Who was Stetson Kennedy?  What book did he author on this subject?
  3. Why did he decide on the radio to tell his story?  
  4. How did Superman defeat the KKK?
World War II Webquest (The Battles & More)


Political and economic instability in Europe led to the rise of Adolf Hitler and the Nazi Party in Germany. By the late-1930s Europe was, once again, engulfed in conflict as Germany’s war machine began to overwhelm the entire continent. The following Webquest explores various features of the Second World War, from Germany’s expansion in the mid-1930s to the final days of the conflict. You will examine several interactive activities, videos, articles, and images as you complete this Webquest. Follow the instructions and complete each activity or task as you proceed through the Webquest. See World War II (WWII) Resources below for additional help if needed. Have fun and good luck!

 
 
 

#1 - Nazi Expansion: History Channel: Interactive WWII

This is an interactive activity that explores WWII in three regions: North America, Europe/Africa, and Asia.  Click to explore “Europe and Africa,” then click on the box near the bottom that reads “Nazi Expansion.”  Read the first paragraph of the article.

  • Why did Hitler wish to expand his empire?
  • When did Great Britain & France declare war against Germany, and why?

Examine the pictures from the Nazi invasion, then examine the map depicting the Nazi occupation of Europe.

  • As you watch the simulation, list the regions of Europe invaded by Nazi Germany from 1936 through 1941.


#2 - The Battle of BritainHistory Channel: Interactive WWII and History Channel: Battle of Britain

After taking control of France, Hitler turned his attention toward Great Britain. In the interactive activity, zoom out and click on the box that reads “Battle of Britain.” Read the first paragraph of the article.

  • After Hitler took control of France, how did he hope to force Great Britain’s surrender?

Click on the box that reads “Churchill rallies the British” and listen to the speech he gives to his citizens.

  • What is the main message of Churchill’s speech?

Click on the box that reads “Battle of Britain” and examine the images and their captions.  

  • Write three key facts about the Battle of Britain:
  • What did the London citizens go through? How did they survive the attacks?


#3 - Winston Churchill Response: BBC History: Winston Churchill and WWII or Winston S Churchill: We Shall Fight Them on the Beaches

Use the link above and listen to the first speech on the page by Churchill:

  • What is the main message of Churchill’s speech?
  • How would you describe Churchill as a speaker?


#4 - Lend-Lease Act: History Channel: Interactive WWII

Click to explore “North America,” then click on the box on the left that reads “Lend-Lease Act.”  Read the first paragraph of the article.

  • What was the difference between the cash-and-carry payments and the lend-lease payments?
  • What was the main purpose of the Lend-Lease Act?

Click on the icon on the right that reads “Lend Lease Distributions.”

  • Which nation received the most from the U.S.? 


#5 - The Battle of the Atlantic: History Channel: Interactive WWII

The Nazis had a devastating underwater strategy they used during the war. Click to explore “North America,” then click on the box in the middle that reads “The U-Boat Peril.”  Read the first paragraph of the article.


#6 - Battle of Stalingrad: History Channel: Battle of Stalingrad

As the U.S. was joining the war, Germany was attacking Russia and advancing on the capital city of Moscow. Nazi forces met Soviet troops in the pivotal Battle of Stalingrad, a major turning point of the war. Click the link above and watch the video clip about the Battle of Stalingrad.

  • When and how does the battle begin?
  • What is the state of the Nazi forces by November of 1942?
  • When does the battle end? How many casualties were caused by the battle?


#7 - The North Africa Campaign: BBC History Animated: WWII in North Africa or BBC History: North Africa Campaign Map in Video (YouTube) or The Atlantic: North Africa Campaign

With much of Europe in the hands of the Axis Powers, Hitler aimed to expand his empire into Africa. Using the link above follow the major battles in North Africa:

  • Who were the main generals for the British and the Germans?
  • How would you characterize the fighting from 1940 to 1942?
  • What major battle took place in October of 1942? What was the effect of this battle?
  • What was the name of the operation as American forces join the fighting in November of 1942?
  • When and how does the North Africa campaign end?
  • What does the victory in North Africa allow the Allies to do?


#8 - The Italian Campaign: BBC History: WWII The Italian Campaign

  • Why do the British and the Americans both agree that the Allies should invade Italy?
  • Where do Allied forces begin their attack of Italy? Who is leading the Allied troops?
  • When do the Allied forces capture Rome? What is the ultimate fate of Mussolini?


#9 - The Tuskegee Airmen:  History Channel: Tuskegee Airmen Exclusive

Before the Allied forces were prepared to launch a second front in France, Allied fighter pilots began bombing German targets. An all-black squadron—known as the Tuskegee Airmen—was a part of the bombing campaign against strategic targets in Germany. Click on the link above to learn about the experience of one Tuskegee Airmen.

  • What was the specific mission of the Tuskegee Airmen?
  • Was the “Tuskegee Experiment” successful? Why or why not?


#10 - The Philippines and the Bataan Death March: History Channel: Interactive WWII

While American troops found early success fighting in North Africa, Americans were not so successful during the early battles in the Pacific. Using the link above, click to explore “Asia,” then click on the box in the top right that reads “Death at Bataan.” Read the article.

  • Approximately how many soldiers died during the Bataan Death March?
  • Why did this battle represent a disastrous start to the war in the Pacific for the U.S.?
  • What were the conditions like for the troops as they traveled? List ways the Japanese forces intimidated the Filipino and American soldiers?


#11 - The Doolittle Raid: History Channel: Battle 360-The Doolittle Raid

Though American morale was low after Pearl Harbor and the defeat at Bataan, the tide began to turn in the Pacific after the Doolittle Raid. Click and link above and watch a video clip about the Doolittle Raid.

  • What was the goal of the Doolittle Raid?
  • What had to happen for the Raid to be successful?
  • What was the psychological effect of the Doolittle Raid?
  • What becomes Japan’s goal after the Doolittle Raid? This leads to what battle?


#12 - The Battle of Midway: Battle of Midway Article and Battle of Midway: WWII in Colour (Real Footage)

  • When does this battle occur?
  • Who are the Japanese generals leading the attack? How many destroyers, carriers, and planes did Japan have?
  • Who was the American general during the battle? How many destroyers, carriers, and planes did the U.S. have?
  • How did the U.S. ultimately win the Battle of Midway?
  • What was the effect of the battle?


#13 - America on the offensive in the Pacific – The U.S.S. Enterprise: History Channel: Interactive WWII

After defeating the Japanese at Midway, U.S. troops go on the offensive in the Pacific. Using the link above, explore “Asia,” then click on the box on the right that reads “USS Enterprise.” Read the first paragraph 

  • List three significant statistics about the U.S.S. Enterprise.

Click the box on the right that reads “Inside the USS Enterprise” and watch the video that follows.

  • What was the weight, range, and cruising speed of “The Big E?”
  • What weapons does the USS Enterprise hold?
Pearl Harbor - U.S.A. Enters WWII

Read p. 129-133 in your War, Peace, and All That Jazz mini-book and answer the Pearl Harbor - U.S.A. Enters WWII questions in your COMP books:  

  1. What event on December 7th, 1941, prompted President Roosevelt to make the statement, "A date which will live in infamy" and then ask Congress for a formal declaration of war?
  2. What does appeasement mean?  Why did France and Britain have a policy of appeasement towards Nazi Germany?  HINT:  History.com: Appeasement
  3. When did France and Britain join the war?
  4. What does blitzkrieg mean?  NOTE:  Yes, that is where football gets the term blitz. 
  5. What happened to France shortly after the fall of Poland?  HINT: Churchill's Deadly Decision Does this give you an idea of how horribly tense the situation was for the Allies in Europe?
  6. How devastating was the attack on Pearl Harbor?  What else did the Japanese attack on the very same day? HINT: Check out the Chicago Tribune (look right).
  7. CONSPIRACY TIME! Did President Roosevelt know of the attack on Pearl Harbor before it took place and ignore it to justify a cause to enter the war?  HINT: BBC History: Pearl Harbor - A Rude Awakening

A New Definition of Total War

Read p. 134-142 & 148-152 in your War, Peace, and All That Jazz mini-book and answer the A New Definition of Total War questions in your COMP notebooks:
  1. What member of Parliament, before becoming Prime Minister of Britain, knew the danger of Hitler during the Appeasement period? HINT:  Remember your DBQ-WWII Road to War (Appeasement) 
  2. Who was the French General that kept the conquered country's army and navy from German occupation?  In other words, he kept the fight going for the French!
  3. Originally, Germany and Russia (U.S.S.R.) agreed to a Nazi-Soviet Non-Aggression Pact until Hitler double-crossed Stalin. Before the Nazi invasion across Russian borders, where did the Nazi's attack that proved to Stalin, Hitler was no longer an ally? 
  4. What stopped the Nazis from conquering Russia?  How many Russians died?  HINT: Foreign Affairs: Napoleon and Hitler
  5. Many Historians credit the Russians for truly winning the war.  Do you agree?  HELP? Try this: Moscow Times: Who Really Won WWII?
  6. Name some of the new Allied technology that helped change the tide of war? HINT: p.140 but also try this: Churchill's Mulberry Harbour
  7. What is an enigma? What did the British call an "enigma" during the war?
  8. Where were the Japanese-Americans sent during the war? What does Nisei mean? What Amendment in our Constitution was ignored?  How many Nisei served in the U.S. armed forces? HINT:  Start reading p.148
  9. How many Japanese-Americans were convicted of spying for Japan?
  10. Who is the image of on the LIFE magazine (above)?  HINT:  Try this Library of Congress: Rosie the Riveter
  11. Describe 3 interesting facts of American industrialization during World War II?  HINT: Try this: PREZI: World War 2 American Industrialization
  12. Death toll: How many people died as a result of World War II?  Americans?  Russians?  British?  German? Japanese?  Jews?  Total Civilians?  HINT:  Try this National WWII Museum: Deaths by Country

Beginning of the 

End (D-Day)

Read p.158-170 in your War, Peace, and All That Jazz mini-book and answer the Beginning of the End (D-Day) questions in your COMP books: 


  1. What was the name of the enigma of code used by the German navy that the U.S. finally cracked in 1943?
  2. How many airplanes at Willow Run (in Michigan) were produced in the first year of production?  What is meant by, "many historians say the Second World War was won in America's factories and laboratories"?  Do you agree?
  3. The Russians defeated the Germans at the Battle of __________, then marched on the offensive to through Germany into Berlin.  HINT:  Remember WWII Webquest (The Battles)
  4. Where did Allied troops first invade Europe? What was the military code name for this invasion?  What was the result? HINT: Remember WWII Webquest (The Battles)
  5. What was the code name for the invasion of France?
  6. The End of the Road:  How did the wartime journalist Ernie Pyle die?
  7. Setting the Stage for D-Day.  What was Operation Fortitude?  Did it work?  HINT: Look right and try this Princeton: Operation Fortitude
  8. After Operation Fortitude, what was the next steps of the D-Day invasion?  Where was General Erwin Rommel during the invasion?
  9. What were the code names of the French beaches the Allies landed on?  Describe the conflict that ensued during the D-Day invasion. 
  10. What was the Yalta Conference?  Office of the Historian: Yalta Conference
  11. Remember, Woodrow Wilson's 14 points and his concept of the League of Nations at the end of World War I?  Of course you do, well it finally happens and is called the United Nations.  Who donated $8.5 million to buy land in New York City as the permanent home for the United Nations?  
  12. What was V-E Day, on May 8, 1945? HINT: Try this History.com: V-E Day
  13. What were the Nuremberg Trials?  HINT:  Try this History.com: Nurember Trials  

War in the Pacific (The Fight Against Japan)

Japanese expansion in East Asia began in 1931 with the invasion of Manchuria and continued in 1937 with a brutal attack on China. On September 27, 1940, Japan signed the Tripartite Pact with Germany and Italy, thus entering the military alliance known as the "Axis." Seeking to curb Japanese aggression and force a withdrawal of Japanese forces from Manchuria and China, the United States imposed economic sanctions on Japan. Faced with severe shortages of oil and other natural resources and driven by the ambition to displace the United States as the dominant Pacific power, Japan decided to attack the United States and British forces in Asia and seize the resources of Southeast Asia.  Read more: World War II in the Pacific

Read p. 143-147, 153-157, & 184-187 in your War, Peace, and All That Jazz mini-book and answer the War in the Pacific (The Fight Against Japan) questions in your COMP books: 

  1. What is a two-front war?  From the American perspective is it accurate?
  2. After Pearl Harbor, Japan conquered what countries within a few months?
  3. Name three key victories for U.S. against the Japanese in the Pacific theater.
  4. Who was the general, later president, in charge of the U.S. armed forces?  HINT:  Start reading p.153 
  5. What obscure island turned out to be the key turning point for the U.S. armed forces in the Pacific theater?
     Describe the island and the 6 month battle that took place there.
  6. What was the nickname for the B-29 airplanes?  HINT:  Start reading p.184
  7. Who was the U.S. president at the end of World War II (look left)?  BONUS:  FDR's former Vice President was a liberal and socialist named Henry Wallace.  How might things have been different after the war if he became President after the death of FDR?  Would President Henry Wallace have decided to use the Atomic Bomb?  A lot of "What Ifs", I know, but certainly interesting.  For more, read this:  Truth-Out:  Henry Wallace, America's Forgotten Visionary
  8. Why was Hiroshima of Japan selected as the first target of the atomic bomb?
  9. How many Japanese died from the second atomic bomb on Nagasaki, Japan?  Was the second bomb necessary?  HINT:  Try this US History: The Decision to Drop the Bomb
BONUS:  What did Churchill and Stalin have in mind regarding post-war Europe?  Try these:  Churchill's Naughty Document (Percentages Agreement) Video or Churchill Central: Percentages Agreement  (see image to your right) 

World War II (WWII) Resources:

BONUS:  Nazi (Jewish) Avengers - Extra Credit

Discover these amazing stories using the Nazi (Jewish) Avengers resources below to answer the following questions and be able and willing to share with the class:
  1. Who were the Nazi (Jewish) Avengers?
  2. Tell us the story of one of the Avengers. HINT: See List of Jewish Resistance Fighters (below)
  3. Was the hunting down of Nazis legal for the Avengers?
  4. Tell us what movie(s) and/or book(s) that are based on the Avengers and their stories.  

Nazi (Jewish) Avengers Resources: 

Abba Kovner with members of the Fareynikte Partizaner Organizatsye (United Partisan Organization)