This text presents a carefully selected group of readings that allow students to evaluate primary sources, test the interpretations of distinguished historians, and draw their own conclusions. The volume covers World War II from the homefront and the battlefield, examining both the military and social impact of the war.
Mark A. Stoler is professor of history at the University of Vermont. He earned his Ph.D. from the University of Wisconsin in 1971. His areas of expertise are U.S. diplomatic and military history and World War II. Included among his many publications are The Politics of the Second Front: American Military Planning and Diplomacy in Coalition Warfare, 1941-1943 (1977) and George C. Marshall: Soldier-Statesman of the American Century (1989). His scholarship has earned him the University Scholar Award (1993) and the Dean's Lecture Award (1992), and in 1984 he was recognized for distinguished teaching with the George V. Kidder Outstanding Faculty Award. Melanie S. Gustafson is associate professor of history at the University of Vermont. She received her Ph.D. from New York University in 1993. Her areas of expertise are U.S. social history and 20th-century gender politics. Her publications include We Have Come to Stay: American Women and Political Parties (1999).
1. U.S. Entry into World War II DOCUMENTS 1. The Neutrality Acts Seek to Avoid U.S. Participation in Another War, 1935-1939 2. President Franklin D. Roosevelt Proposes a "Quarantine" of Aggressors, 1937 3. President Franklin D. Roosevelt Proposes Lend-Lease Aid to Great Britain, December 17 and 29, 1940 4. Charles A. Lindbergh Opposes Lend-Lease, February 6, 1941 5. Americans Express Their Opinions on Aid to Britain and Entry into the War, 1940-1941 6. Secretary of State Cordell Hull Responds to Japan's Final Proposal, November 26, 1941 7. Japan Terminates Negotiations and Hull Replies Orally, December 7, 1941 8. President Roosevelt Asks Congress for a Declaration of War, December 8, 1941 ESSAYS Bruce M. Russett, An Unnecessary and Avoidable War Gerhard Weinberg, A Necessary and Unavoidable War 2. America Mobilizes for War DOCUMENTS 1. The Government Institutes and Revises the Draft, 1940 and 1943 2. Conscientious Objectors Explain Their Reasons for Refusing to Register for the Draft, 1941 3. Representative Edith Nourse Rogers Introduces the WAAC Bill, 1941 4. President Roosevelt Explains the Four Freedoms to the American People, 1941 5. The Office of Price Administration Reports on the Consequences of Defense Production, 1942 6. The War Affects Employment and Consumer Prices, 1940-1945 7. The Government Encourages Workers on the Home Front, 1943 8. Roosevelt Orders Japanese Relocation, 1942 ESSAYS Richard Overy, The Successes of Mobilization William L. O'Neill, The Problems of American Mobilization 3. Creating a Global Allied Strategy DOCUMENTS 1. U.S. and British Military Officials Agree to a "Germany-First" Strategy: Admiral Stark's Memorandum and the ABC-1 Accord, November 1940/March 1941 2. Britain and the United States Reach Strategic Agreements at the ARCADIA Conference, Washington, D.C., December 1941-January 1942 3. Admiral Ernest J. King Calls for a Strategic Focus on Japan, March 1942 4. Roosevelt "Promises" the Soviets a Second Front, May-June 1942 5. Churchill Vetoes Crossing the Channel in 1942 and Proposes the North African Alternative, July 8, 1942 6. Admiral Ernest J. King and General George C. Marshall Respond with a "Pacific-First" Proposal, July 10, 1942 7. Roosevelt Rejects the "Pacific-First" Alternative, July 14, 1942 8. Britain and the United States Agree on a 1943 Mediterranean Strategy at the Casablanca Conference, January 1943 9. Stalin Angrily Responds to the Continued Delays in Establishing a Second Front, June 24, 1943 10. Roosevelt, Churchill, and Stalin Debate and Decide Future Allied Strategy at the Tehran Conference, November 29-30, 1943 ESSAYS Hanson W. Baldwin, The Political Shortsightedness of U.S. Strategy Mark A. Stoler, The Political Wisdom of U.S. Strategy Kent Roberts Greenfield, Roosevelt as Commander-in-Chief 4. The War Against Germany: What Was Needed and What Was Done DOCUMENTS 1. Army Ground Versus Air Plans for the War Against Germany: The "Victory Program" (with AWPD-1) of September 1941 2. The Naval and Air Campaigns Against German U-Boats and Cities Receive High Priority at the Casablanca Conference, January 1943 3. A Mother Questions and General Henry H. "Hap" Arnold's Staff Defends the Bombing of German Cities, 1943 4. The City of Dresden Before and After the Anglo-American Bombing of February 1945 5. The Original OVERLORD Plan Proposes Landing on the Normandy Beaches and Explains the Problems to Be Overcome, July 27, 1943 6. General Dwight D. Eisenhower Addresses Allied Forces on D-Day, June 6, 1944 7. Generals Eisenhower and Montgomery Debate Broad- vs. Narrow-Front Strategies, September 1944 8. General Marshall Explains the Key Military Events in German Defeat as Perceived by Captured Members of the German High Command, September 1945 9. Tuskeegee Airman Lieutenant Alexander Jefferson Recalls His Combat Missions and Imprisonment, 1944 10. Sergeant Bernard Bellush Recalls D-Day on Omaha Beach, November 14, 1944/March 16, 2000 ESSAYS Richard Overy, The Naval and Air Campaigns as Critical to Allied Victory Michael S. Sherry, Strategic Bombing as Technological Fanaticism Michael D. Doubler, The Travails of the American Combat Soldier in Europe 5. The War Against Japan: What Was Needed and What Was Done DOCUMENTS 1. Public Opinion Favors a Japan-First Strategy, 1942-1943 2. The Military Plans for the Defeat of Japan, May 21, 1943 3. Army Nurse Lieutenant Juanita Redmond Describes a Japanese Air Attack on Bataan in the Philippines, April 1942 4. Navy Pilot George Gay Survives the Battle of Midway, May 1942 5. Marine Private E. B. Sledge Remembers the Hellish Battle of Okinawa, 1945 6. Japanese Civilians Tomizawa Kimi and Kobayashi Hiroyasu Live Through the Firebombing of Tokyo, 1945 7. General Joseph Stilwell Bitterly Explains His Problems in China, 1944 8. President Roosevelt Attacks Colonialism in Asia, 1942-1943 9. Foreign Service Officers John Paton Davies and George R. Merrell Warn Against Support of British Colonialism in Asia, 1943 ESSAYS Ronald H. Spector, Strangers in Strange Lands John W. Dower, The Pacific War as a Race War Michael Schaller, The U.S. Failure in China 6. Cooperation and Conflict on the Home Front DOCUMENTS 1. A Call to March on Washington, 1941 2. Rosie the Riveter Becomes a Symbol of Patriotic Womanhood 3. Time Magazine Contrasts Japanese Enemies and Chinese Allies, 1941 4. Newsweek Magazine Reports on Women's Stockings in Wartime, 1943 5. The Turmoil of Wartime Rapidly Changes Detroit, 1943 6. The Government Praises Spanish-Speaking Americans in the War Effort, 1943 7. The "Zoot Suit Riots" and Reveal the Race Tensions on the West Coast, 1943 8. Labor Conflict and Questions of Patriotism Erupt in the Coal Fields, 1943 9. Japanese American Mikiso Hane Remembers His Wartime Internment, 1990 ESSAYS Karen Tucker Anderson, Conflicts Between White Women and Black Women, and Their Employers, in the Wartime Industrial World Edward J. Escobar, Wartime Conflicts Between Sailors, Chicano Youths, and the Police in Los Angeles 7. Challenges and Changes in Wartime American Culture DOCUMENTS 1. Oveta Culp Hobby, Director of the Women's Army Auxiliary Corps, Talks to American Mothers, 1943 2. Robert P. Lane, Director of New York City's Welfare Council, Cites Home Front Concerns About "Victory Girls" and Venereal Disease, 1945 3. John Desmond, New York Times Writer, Praises Entertainers at the War Front, 1944 4. Newsweek Looks Back at Homosexuals in Uniform During Wartime, 1947 5. Wartime and Postwar Conditions Affect Marriage, Divorce, and Birth Rates, 1930-1950 6. Movie Star Ann Sothern Asks, "What Kind of Woman Will Your Man Come Home To?" 1944 7. Newspaper Columnist Ernie Pyle Depicts the Realities of War for Those Americans at Home, 1943 8. Editor and Publisher Henry Luce Proclaims the "American Century," 1941 9. Betty Grable Becomes a Favorite "Pin-up Girl" among Soldiers, 1943 10. Photographer Alfred Eisenstadt Captures the American Spirit of Victory, August 14, 1945 ESSAYS Robert B. Westbrook, The "Pin-up Girls" Taught Americans Less About Sex and More About Political Obligations Leisa D. Meyer, Creating GI Jane 8. The Impact of Science and Intelligence DOCUMENTS 1. A Congressional Committee Assesses Blame for the Pearl Harbor Disaster, 1946 2. Bletchley Park Cryptologist Peter Cavocoressi Explains How ENIGMA Worked During the War 3. Americans Decode and Translate a Japanese Encrypted Message, 1944 4. The Navajo Language Becomes an Unbreakable American Code, 1945 5. Office of Strategic Services Official Allen Dulles Explains His Wartime Intelligence Activities, 1941-1945 6. Historian and OSS Official William Langer Describes the Contribution of Scholars to the Intelligence War, 1943-1946 7. Secretary of War Henry L. Stimson Raises Concerns to President Roosevelt about Communist Union Organizing in the Atomic Bomb Project, 1943 8. Office of Scientific Research and Development Director Dr. Vannevar Bush Reports to the President on the Importance of Science During and After the War, 1945 ESSAYS Roberta Wohlstetter, Pearl Harbor and the Limits of Signals Intelligence Williamson Murray, Signals Intelligence As Critical to Allied Victory Gordon Wright, Science Revolutionizes Warfare 9. The United States and the Holocaust DOCUMENTS 1. The National Origins Act Restricts Immigration, 1924 2. Henry Ford's Dearborn Independent, Reveals American Anti-Semitism, 1921-1922 3. Public Opinion Polls Reveal American Attitudes About Jews in Europe, Refugees, and Immigration, 1938-1945 4. The New York Times Reports on the St. Louis Tragedy, 1939 5. Jan Karski of the Polish Underground Gives an Eyewitness Account of the "Final Solution," 1942-1944 6. The State Department Receives and Suppresses News of the "Final Solution," 1942 7. Secretary of the Treasury Henry Morgenthau, Jr., Denounces State Department Behavior to Roosevelt, 1944 8. U.S. Soldier Clinton C. Gardner Remembers the Liberation of Buchenwald Concentration Camp, 1945 ESSAYS Henry L. Feingold, The American Failure to Rescue European Jews William J. Vanden Heuvel, The Successes of American Rescue and The Limits of The Possible 10. Franklin D. Roosevelt and Allied Diplomacy for War and Peace DOCUMENTS 1. The Atlantic Charter States Allied War Aims, 1941 2. Josef Stalin Demands Territorial Settlements, 1941 3. The Allies Announce Formation of the Grand Alliance: The Declaration by the United Nations, 1942 4. Roosevelt Enunciates the Unconditional Surrender Policy, 1943 5. The Allies Agree on Postwar Policies: The Moscow Declaration on General Security, 1943 6. Roosevelt Informs His Allies of His Postwar Plans, 1942 and 1943 7. The Allies Agree to a Postwar International Organization: The Dumbarton Oaks Agreement, 1944 8. Churchill and Stalin Divide Eastern Europe, 1944 9. The Allies Reach Postwar Agreements at the Yalta Conference, 1945 10. Roosevelt Sends Letters to Stalin and Churchill, 1945 ESSAYS Frederick W. Marks III, The Ignorance and Naïve of Roosevelt's Wartime Diplomacy Robert Dallek, The Astuteness and Appropriateness of Roosevelt's Wartime Diplomacy 11. The Atomic Bomb and the End of World War II DOCUMENTS 1. Albert Einstein Informs President Roosevelt of the Potential for an Atomic Bomb, 1939 2. Supreme Court Justice Felix Frankfurter Shares with FDR Physicist Niels Bohr' Suggestion That the Soviets Be Informed of the Atomic Bomb Project, 1944 3. Churchill and Roosevelt Reject Informing the Soviets, 1944 4. President Harry S Truman Recalls How He Learned About the Atomic Bomb Project, 1945 5. The Franck Committee Warns of a Nuclear Arms Race and Calls for a Noncombat Demonstration of the Bomb, 1945 6. The Scientific Panel of the Interim Committee Recommends Combat Use of the Bomb Against Japan, 1945 7. Undersecretary of the Navy Ralph Bard Objects to the Unannounced Use of the Bomb, 1945 8. Manhattan Project Commanding General Leslie Groves Reports the Results of the Alamagordo Test, 1945 9. A Photographer Captures Hiroshima Two Months After the Atomic Bomb of August 6, 1945 10. Public Opinion Polls Show Strong Support for the Atomic Bomb, August, September, and December 1945 11. Secretary of War Henry L. Stimson Has Second Thoughts on Atomic Secrecy, 1945 ESSAYS Gar Alperovitz, Dropping the Atomic Bomb Was Neither Necessary Nor Justifiable Robert P. Newman, Dropping the Bomb Was Necessary and Justifiable Barton J. Bernstein, Were There Viable Alternatives to Dropping the Atomic Bomb? 12. History and Memory: The Legacy of World War II ESSAYS Michael C.C. Adams, Postwar Mythmaking About World War II David M. Kennedy, The World the War Made Alan Brinkley, The War Transformed American Liberalism Roger Daniels, Americans Reevaluate Japanese American Incarceration Richard H. Kohn, Culture War Erupts Over the 1994-1995 Smithsonian Institution's Enola Gay Exhibition Peter Novick, Why Did the Holocaust Become a Major Postwar Issue? Appendix: General World War II Histories and Reference Works