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  • U.S . History B Chapter 16

    World War Looms

  • 526 CHAPTER 16

    Flanked by storm troopers, Adolf Hitlerarrives at a Nazi rally in September 1934.



    Jesse Owens winsfour gold medals at Olympicsin Berlin, Germany.


    The EmpireState Buildingopens in New York City.


    Delano Roosevelt is elected president.


    Rooseveltis reelected.1936

    Japan con-quers Manchuria,in northern China.

    1931 Adolf Hitler isappointed German chancellor and sets upDachau concentrationcamp.

    1933 Stalin beginsgreat purge in USSR. 1934

    General Francisco Francoleads a fascist rebellion in Spain. 1936

    1931USAWORLD 1931 19331933 19351935

    Ethiopias Haile Selassieasks League of Nations forhelp against Italian invasion.


    Chinese communists flee in the Long March.


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  • World War Looms 527

    1938 1940 19411938 1940 1941

    I N T E R A C TI N T E R A C TW I T H H I S T O R YW I T H H I S T O R Y

    In the summer of 1939, PresidentFranklin Roosevelt addresses an anxious nation in response to atrocities in Europe committed byHitlers Nazi Germany. Rooseveltdeclares in his broadcast that theUnited States will remain a neutralnation. He acknowledges, however,that he cannot ask that everyAmerican remain neutral in thought.

    Why might theUnited States try to remainneutral?Examine the Issues

    How might involvement in a largescale war influence the UnitedStates?

    How can neutral countries part-icipate in the affairs of warringcountries?

    Orson Wellesbroadcasts The Warof the Worlds, a fic-tional alien invasion.


    States entersWorld War II.


    Germanyinvades Poland.Britain andFrance declarewar.

    1939KristallnachtNazis riot,destroying Jewishneighborhoods.

    1938 Japanbombs PearlHarbor.


    Rooseveltis elected to athird term.


    19371937 19391939 19411941

    Amelia Earhart mysteriously disappears attempting solo round-the-world flight.


    Visit the Chapter 16 links for more informationrelated to World War Looms.


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  • Terms & NamesTerms & NamesMAIN IDEAMAIN IDEA

    Joseph StalintotalitarianBenito Mussolinifascism

    Adolf HitlerNazismFrancisco Franco Neutrality Acts

    The rise of rulers with totalpower in Europe and Asia ledto World War ll.

    Dictators of the 1930s and1940s changed the course ofhistory, making world leadersespecially watchful for theactions of dictators today.


    528 CHAPTER 16

    One American's Story

    Martha Gellhorn arrived in Madrid in 1937 to cover the brutal civil war that had broken out in Spain the yearbefore. Hired as a special correspondent for Colliers Weekly,she had come with very little money and no special protec-tion. On assignment there, she met the writer ErnestHemingway, whom she later married. To Gellhorn, a youngAmerican writer, the Spanish Civil War was a deadly strug-gle between tyranny and democracy. For the people ofMadrid, it was also a daily struggle for survival.

    A PERSONAL VOICE MARTHA GELLHORN You would be walking down a street, hearing only the citynoises of streetcars and automobiles and people calling toone another, and suddenly, crushing it all out, would be thehuge stony deep booming of a falling shell, at the corner. There was no place torun, because how did you know that the next shell would not be behind you, orahead, or to the left or right?

    The Face of War

    Less than two decades after the end of World War Ithe war to end allwarsfighting erupted again in Europe and in Asia. As Americans read about dis-tant battles, they hoped the conflicts would remain on the other side of the world.

    Nationalism Grips Europe and AsiaThe seeds of new conflicts had been sown in World War I. For many nations,peace had brought not prosperity but revolution fueled by economic depressionand struggle. The postwar years also brought the rise of powerful dictators drivenby the belief in nationalismloyalty to ones country above all elseand dreamsof territorial expansion.

    Dictators ThreatenWorld Peace

    Martha Gellhorn,one of the firstwomen warcorrespondents,began her careerduring theSpanish Civil War.

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  • FAILURES OF THE WORLD WAR I PEACE SETTLEMENT Instead of securinga just and secure peace, the Treaty of Versailles caused anger and resentment.Germans saw nothing fair in a treaty that blamed them for starting the war. Nordid they find security in a settlement that stripped them of their overseas coloniesand border territories. These problems overwhelmed the Weimar Republic, thedemocratic government set up in Germany after World War I. Similarly, theSoviets resented the carving up of parts of Russia. (See map, Chapter 11, p. 400.)

    The peace settlement had not fulfilled President Wilsons hope of a worldsafe for democracy. New democratic governments that emerged in Europe afterthe war floundered. Without a democratic tradition, people turned to authoritar-ian leaders to solve their economic and social problems. The new democraciescollapsed, and dictators were able to seize power. Some had great ambitions.

    JOSEPH STALIN TRANSFORMS THE SOVIET UNION In Russia, hopes fordemocracy gave way to civil war, resulting in the establishment of a communiststate, officially called the Soviet Union, in 1922. After V. I. Lenin died in 1924,Joseph Stalin, whose last name means man of steel, took control of the coun-try. Stalin focused on creating a model communist state. In so doing, he madeboth agricultural and industrial growth the prime economic goals of the SovietUnion. Stalin abolished all privately owned farms and replaced them with collec-tiveslarge government-owned farms, each worked by hundreds of families.

    Stalin moved to transform the Soviet Union from a backward rural nation intoa great industrial power. In 1928, the Soviet dictator outlined the first of severalfive-year plans, to direct the industrialization. All economic activity was placedunder state management. By 1937, the Soviet Union had become the worlds sec-ond-largest industrial power, surpassed in overall production only by the UnitedStates. The human costs of this transformation, however, were enormous.

    In his drive to purge, or eliminate, anyone who threatened his power, Stalindid not spare even his most faithful supporters. While the final toll will never beknown, historians estimate that Stalin was responsible for the deaths of 8 millionto 13 million people. Millions more died in famines caused by the restructuringof Soviet society.

    By 1939, Stalin had firmly established a totalitarian government thatmaintained complete control over its citizens. In a totalitarian state, individualshave no rights, and the government suppresses all opposition.

    World War Looms 529



    Germany was expected to pay off hugedebts while dealing with widespreadpoverty. By 1923, an inflating economymade a five-million German mark worthless than a penny. Here children buildblocks with stacks of useless Germanmarks.

    A. Answer A lack of demo-cratic tradition,failure of theTreaty ofVersailles andeconomic dev-astation.

    B. AnswerComplete con-trol over citizensand ruthlesssuppression ofopposition.




    Why did thenew democraciesset up after WorldWar I fail?



    What are thecharacteristics ofa totalitarianstate?

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  • C

    THE RISE OF FASCISM IN ITALY While Stalin was consolidating his power inthe Soviet Union, Benito Mussolini was establishing a totalitarian regime inItaly, where unemployment and inflation produced bitter strikes, some commu-nist-led. Alarmed by these threats, the middle and upper classes demandedstronger leadership. Mussolini took advantage of this situation. A powerful speak-er, Mussolini knew how to appeal to Italys wounded national pride. He played onthe fears of economic collapse and communism. In this way, he won the supportof many discontented Italians.

    By 1921, Mussolini had established the FascistParty. Fascism (fBshPGzQEm) stressed nationalism andplaced the interests of the state above those of individ-uals. To strengthen the nation, Fascists argued, powermust rest with a single strong leader and a small groupof devoted party members. (The Latin fascesa bundleof rods tied around an ax handlehad been a symbol ofunity and authority in ancient Rome.)

    In October 1922, Mussolini marched on Rome withthousands of his followers, whose black uniforms gave them the name BlackShirts. When important government officials, the army, and the police sidedwith the Fascists, the Italian king appointed Mussolini head of the government.

    Calling himself Il Duce, or the leader, Mussolini gradually extended Fascistcontrol to every aspect of Italian life. Tourists marveled that Il Duce had evenmade the trains run on time. Mussolini achieved this efficiency, however, bycrushing all opposition and by making Italy a totalitarian state.

    530 CHAPTER 16

    Italy wants peace,work, and calm. I will give thesethings with love ifpossible, with forceif necessary.BENITO MUSSOLINI








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