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American History

March 24, 2016 | Author: | Posted in american history, history

American History

13 October 2006

The Role That the United States Played in World Wars I and II

Introduction

Within all of American history , few events have shaped the course of events as did World Wars I and II , due to the United States ‘ involvement in both conflicts . In this essay , the role that the U .S . played in both wars will be examined , as well as why the U .S . entered them in the first place , whether or not it was in America ‘s best interest to do so , how [banner_entry_middle]

the conflicts affected the U .S . and what America ‘s biggest contributions were to end them

The United States in World War I

When World War I first broke out in Europe , the United States to passively observe as the battles raged , rather than get directly involved , as President Woodrow Wilson held the opinion that no good could come of American involvement , and the price to be paid for involvement would be extremely high . The sentiments of Wilson , and indeed the majority of Americans changed on May 7 , 1915 when the British ship Lusitania was sunk off of the coast of Great Britain by German submarines , killing over 1 ,000 innocent people , 128 of them being Americans (Byrne , et al , 1996 . Though tensions between the U .S . and Germany were high after the Lusitania tragedy , no entry into World War I took place on the part of America until it was learned that Germany was plotting to entice Mexico to attack the U .S . if action was taken against Germany . Faced with such a threat , America took sides against Germany and entered World War I

Although the battles of World War I actually took place many miles from American soil , the war took its toll on all Americans . Aside from the obvious sorrow of lost loved ones and the financial expense , World War I affected the U .S . in the final analysis because it proved that the relatively young nation (by European standards ) had grown into a world power to be respected , and this power is perhaps America ‘s biggest contribution to end the war itself

Finally , the question of whether it was in America ‘s best interest to enter World War I , in retrospect , is easily answered . It was in America ‘s best interest to enter World War I , as American might prevented Europe from being fragmented and improved American-British relations , which would be important for both nations decades later during World War II

The United States in World War II

World War II bears some striking similarities to World War I especially for the United States . American involvement in the war came once again as the result of provocation when on December 7 , 1941 Japanese fighter planes attacked the American military installation at Pearl Harbor , Hawaii (Byrne , et al , 1996 . While Japan claimed this was in response to increasing American interference in Japanese territories like the Phillipines , the brutal attack was seen by the U .S… [banner_entry_footer]

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