Debating Problems in History Should the United States have entered World War II before the bombing of Pearl Harbor? This lesson developed for the Potomac Association by



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Debating Problems in History

Should the United States have entered World War II before the bombing of Pearl Harbor?

picture1


This lesson developed for the Potomac Association by



Phyllis Goldsmith

UCBHSSP Co-Director & Literacy Specialist



Stephen Johnson

Retired OUSD Teacher



Steven Moreno

Oakland High School



Sarah Suponski

UCBHSSP



Learn more: http://www.usspotomac.org/education/curriculum.phpTable of Contents



Lesson Directions for Teachers………………..................

3







Historical Context ……………………………………….

4







Historical Context KEY …………………………………

5







Timeline …………………………………………………

6







Timeline KEY …………………………………………...

7







Primary Sources …………………………………………

8







Document Analysis Chart 1 …………………………….

13







Primary Source Evidence Chart KEY……………………

14







Writing Prompt ………………………………………….

17







Possible Thesis Statements ………………………………

18







Works Cited ……………………………………………...

19







Bibliography for Further Reading ……………………….

20







Appendices – Literacy Support Strategies ………………

Structuring a Debate

Document Analysis Chart 2

Five Paragraph Essay Outline and Rubric

Primary Source Analysis Worksheet

Scaffolds for Debate

22

DEBATING PROBLEMS IN HISTORY: Should the United States have entered World War II before the bombing of Pearl Harbor?
This lesson developed for the Potomac Association by Phyllis Goldsmith, Stephen Johnson, Steven Moreno, and Sarah Suponski
California State History-Social Science Content Standards: 11.7 Students analyze America's participation in World War II. 11.7.1 Examine the origins of American involvement in the war, with an emphasis on the events that precipitated the attack on Pearl Harbor.


Directions for Teachers


  1. Preparing students for the lesson

    1. Read the lesson focus question to set purpose of this lesson.

    2. Students brainstorm historical events of the 1930s to review historical context.

    3. Read in textbook about the build up to the bombing of Pearl Harbor and fill in the timeline with major events.

    4. Read the Historical Context Document to identify arguments of isolationists and interventionists and fill in the chart.

  2. Present students with documents. Which side of the argument do the documents support?

    1. Students work in groups to analyze documents to identify what argument they support.

    2. Students categorize documents as to which side of the debate they support and fill in the Document Analysis Chart 1.

    3. Students review Document Analysis Chart 1 and circle the most persuasive arguments and evidence on both sides of the debate.

  3. Structuring a Student Debate: Should the United States enter World War II? (prior to the bombing of Pearl Harbor)

    1. Tell students they will be preparing arguments to the Congress to convince them to support the isolationists’ or interventionists’ point of view on whether the U.S. should have entered WWII prior to the bombing of Pearl Harbor.

    2. Assign students sides to debate (Isolationists vs. Interventionists). Students get into teams to prepare arguments for debates.

    3. Students use the Structuring a Debate Chart to choose evidence and decide on arguments for the debate.

  4. Writing an essay: Should the United States have entered World War II before the bombing of Pearl Harbor in 1941?

    1. After completing the debate students choose which side they would like to defend in an essay. Please refer to the Writing Prompt on page 17. Students use Document Analysis Chart 2 to further analyze the primary sources for a written essay and structure their thesis and supporting arguments.

Note: Teacher may want to give students the 5-paragraph outline and three Document Analysis Chart 2s in order to structure each body paragraph.



Focus Question: Should the U.S. have entered World War II before the bombing of Pearl Harbor?
(Standard 11.7.1: Examine the origins of American involvement in the war, with an emphasis on the events that precipitated the attack on Pearl Harbor.)

HISTORICAL CONTEXT
Prior to 1941, the United States was reluctant to enter World War II. Many Americans, called Isolationists, considered the cost of World War I too great and wanted the country to focus on recovering from the Great Depression and implementing President Roosevelt’s New Deal programs. Isolationists did not want to fight another long and costly war. As a result, Congress passed the Neutrality Act of 1935 which outlawed providing funds or supplies to warring countries.
In 1939, Germany invaded Poland. Then, Germany invaded France and Belgium and attacked England, while the Nazis built concentration camps throughout northern Europe. Germany’s aggression towards other European nations made the United States more inclined to action, called intervention. President Roosevelt was an interventionist. He created a military draft and sought money from Congress to build new naval vessels. He also asked Congress to allow the United States to provide supplies, arms, and ammunition to Europe in the Neutrality Act of 1939. Roosevelt called on the U.S. to be an “arsenal of democracy.” However, Isolationists still opposed intervention. Charles Lindbergh and the America First Committee were the leading critics of the U.S. entering World War II and argued that the German military was too strong to defeat.
In 1940, Germany, Italy, and Japan joined together in the Tripartite Pact to form the Axis Powers; they pledged to go to war if any of them were attacked by the United States. In 1941, Roosevelt and Churchill met secretly and drafted the Atlantic Charter in which each country pledged to aid the other. Throughout 1940 and 1941, the United States strengthened its defenses and sent more and more supplies to England and the Soviet Union. U-boat attacks on supply ships increased. Japan sought to control more and more of the western Pacific Ocean and South Asia. Interventionists felt that the U.S. economy would suffer if it were left as the only democratic country because it would not trade freely with totalitarian regimes; trade was already being affected by the Japanese control of the Pacific. Finally, on December 7, 1941, Japanese forces attacked Pearl Harbor. The United States and the Isolationists could no longer resist involvement in World War II.
Answer the question from the positions of the Isolationists and Interventionists using the following criteria.

Criteria

Isolationist

Interventionist

  1. Effects of World War I








  1. Domestic Economy





  1. Wartime Preparation








  1. National Security






.



Focus Question: Should the U.S. have entered World War II before the bombing of Pearl Harbor?

(Standard 11.7.1: Examine the origins of American involvement in the war, with an emphasis on the events that precipitated the attack on Pearl Harbor.)



HISTORICAL CONTEXT-KEY
Prior to 1941, the United States was reluctant to enter World War II. Many Americans, called Isolationists, considered the cost of World War I too great and wanted the country to focus on recovering from the Great Depression and implementing President Roosevelt’s New Deal programs. Isolationists did not want to fight another long and costly war. As a result, Congress passed the Neutrality Act of 1935 which outlawed providing funds or supplies to warring countries.
In 1939, Germany invaded Poland. Then, Germany invaded France and Belgium and attacked England, while the Nazis built concentration camps throughout northern Europe. Germany’s aggression towards other European nations made the United States more inclined to action, called intervention. President Roosevelt was an interventionist. He created a military draft and sought money from Congress to build new naval vessels. He also asked Congress to allow the United States to provide supplies, arms, and ammunition to Europe in the Neutrality Act of 1939. Roosevelt called on the U.S. to be an “arsenal of democracy.” However, Isolationists still opposed intervention. Charles Lindbergh and the America First Committee were the leading critics of the U.S. entering World War II and argued that the German military was too strong to defeat.
In 1940, Germany, Italy, and Japan joined together in the Tripartite Pact to form the Axis Powers; they pledged to go to war if any of them were attacked by the United States. In 1941, Roosevelt and Churchill met secretly and drafted the Atlantic Charter in which each country pledged to aid the other. Throughout 1940 and 1941, the United States strengthened its defenses and sent more and more supplies to England and the Soviet Union. U-boat attacks on supply ships increased. Japan sought to control more and more of the western Pacific Ocean and South Asia. Interventionists felt that the U.S. economy would suffer if it were left as the only democratic country because it would not trade freely with totalitarian regimes; trade was already being affected by the Japanese control of the Pacific. Finally, on December 7, 1941, Japanese forces attacked Pearl Harbor. The United States and the Isolationists could no longer resist involvement in World War II.
Answer the question from the positions of the Isolationists and Interventionists using the following criteria.

Criteria

Isolationist

Interventionist

  1. Effects of World War I

Felt the cost of WWI as too high and didn’t want the U.S. to get dragged into another European war.

FDR felt the U.S. should be an “arsenal of democracy” and protect the world from aggressive nations.

  1. Domestic Economy

The U.S. was still in the midst of the Great Depression; focus on implementing FDR’s New Deal programs to help lead the country out of the Great Depression

The U.S. economy would suffer surrounded by totalitarian regimes, because it wouldn’t trade freely. Japanese control in the Pacific was already affecting trade.

  1. Wartime Preparation

Lindberg and the America First Committee thought the U.S. military was inferior to German forces

FDR got money from Congress to build more naval vessels and started a draft

  1. National Security

The fighting was not on American soil; the war was a European problem

The U.S. would not be safe in a world dominated by totalitarian governments.



The United States Enters World War II, 1939-1941




Dec. 1941

June 1941

Sept. 1940

___________Act;

1941

Sept. 1941

Aug. 1941
image:atlantic charter.jpeg
Dec. 1940
http://politicalparade.com/catalog/images/fdr102.jpg
June 1940

March 1941

__________Act

1940
http://www.topedge.com/panels/ww2/na/pziiit.jpg
1942

1939

_________

Act of 1939:



http://www.history.navy.mil/pics/bomb_u-117_2.jpg
Sept. 1939

1941
image:atlantic charter.jpeg
Dec. 1940

FDR is re-elected for a third term as president
http://politicalparade.com/catalog/images/fdr102.jpg
June 1940

France surrenders to Germany.

The Battle of Britain begins.



March 1941

Lend / Lease

Act enacted to provision Europe for war with Germany

1940
http://www.topedge.com/panels/ww2/na/pziiit.jpg
1942

1939

Neutrality Act of 1939: cash-and-carry

Sept. 1939

Germany invades Poland




Sept. 1941

FDR grants permission for US warships to attack German U-Boats


http://www.history.navy.mil/pics/bomb_u-117_2.jpg
Dec. 1941

Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor

Aug. 1941

FDR & Churchill meet secretly; sign the Atlantic Charter that joins the U.S. and Britain against Hitler.



Sept. 1940

Tripartite Act; establishes the Axis Powers between Germany, Italy, Japan

June 1941

Hitler invades the Soviet Union; FDR sends supplies to the Soviet Union

The United States Enters World War II, 1939-1941



Primary Sources

Should the United States have entered World War II before the bombing of Pearl Harbor?


  1. Sumner Welles, Secretary of State, “Japan and Our National Security,” July 24, 1941: “They [Government of Japan] tend to jeopardize the procurement by the United States of essential materials, such as tin and rubber, which are necessary for the normal economy of this country and the consummation of our defense program.”




  1. Neutrality Act of 1935: “That upon the outbreak or during the progress of war between, or among, two or more foreign states…it shall thereafter be unlawful to export arms, ammunition, or implements of war from any place in the United States…to any port of such belligerent states.” “’Neutrality Act’ of August 31, 1935, Joint Resolution.” http://www.mtholyoke.edu/acad/intrel /interwar/neutralityact.htm




  1. Burton Wheeler, Senator (Oct. 1939) Current History: “We shudder at the ‘blood purge’ in Russia and Germany, and yet those who would involve us in these European wars would purge each generation of our youth on the altar of European stupidity.”




  1. A Real Test for You, Mr. President political cartoon




  1. Election Promises Should be Kept: We Lack Leadership that Places America First by Charles Lindbergh: “We find ourselves unprepared for war, about to enter an action that will require us to cross two oceans and to invade nations with a far greater population than ours, nations with armies that have been trained for years, armies that have been hardened by generations of warfare, armies that are larger now than ours can ever be.”




  1. Fireside chat, May 26, 1940, FDR: “…Our Army by 1933 had very greatly declined in its ratio of strength with the armies of Europe and of the Far East. But, since then, great changes have taken place…Between 1933 and 1940 – these past seven fiscal years – your government will have spent $1,292,000,000 more than it spent on the Army the previous seven years.”




  1. Dr. Seuss cartoon, published July 16, 1941





U.S. Forces




Japanese Forces

9

Battleships

10

3

Carriers

10

13

Heavy Cruisers

18

11

Light Cruisers

17

80

Destroyers

111

55

Submarines

64



*Comparative fleet strengths (Pacific & Asiatic Fleets) 12/1/1941


  1. Cordell Hull, Secretary of State, radio broadcast, May 18, 1941: “The production and transfer of essential supplies to those countries which are actively resisting aggression demand sacrifice of time and substance and making of maximum effort, on the part of each and every American citizen…Our greatest possible national effort must be made, not for the sale of other countries, but primarily for the sake of and to insure our own security...our own national existence.”




  1. Neutrality Act of 1939: “I now ask again that such action be taken in respect to of the act [Neutrality Act of 1935] which is wholly inconsistent with ancient precepts the law of nations – the embargo provisions. I ask it because they are, in my opinion, most vitally dangerous to American neutrality, American security, and American peace.” “Address Delivered by President Roosevelt to Congress. Peace and War: United States Foreign Policy, 1931-1941. Sept. 21, 1939. http://teachingamericanhistory.org/library/index.asp?document=706




  1. Election Promises Should be Kept: We Lack Leadership that Places America First by Charles Lindbergh: “We are divided because we do not want to cross an ocean to fight on foreign continents, for foreign causes, against an entire world combined against us. We believe that we are more likely to lose it [democracy] at home than to spread it abroad by prolonging this war and sending millions of our soldiers to death in Europe and Asia.”




  1. Presidential address, June 2, 1941, FDR: “There are some timid ones among us who say that we must preserve peace at any price – lest we lose our liberties forever. To them I say this: never in the history of the world has a nation lost its democracy by a successful struggle to defend its democracy. We must not be defeated by the fear of the very danger which we are preparing to resist…’ The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.’”




  1. Radio Address from the U.S.S. Potomac, May 29, 1941: “We Americans realize how tenuous would be the existence of our party system, our freedom of elections, our freedom of living, if the doctrines of dictatorship were to prevail. For if they were to prevail, it would not be in Europe alone…How long would it be possible to maintain a semblance of our two-party system, with free elections, in a Nazi-dominated world?”




  1. Address before a joint session of the Senate & House of Representatives by Roosevelt, asking for additional appropriations for national defense, May 16, 1940: “an effective defense by its very nature requires the equipment to attack the aggressor on his route before he can establish strong bases within the territory of American vital interests. I ask for an immediate appropriation of $896,000,000…I should divide approximately as follows:

  1. For the Army……………………………………………………….$546,000,000

  2. For the Navy and Marine Corps………………………………..…..$200,000,000

  3. To the President to provide for emergencies

Affecting the national security and defense………………………..$100,000,000.”


  1. Dr. Seuss cartoon, (Sept. 11, 1941)http://orpheus.ucsd.edu/speccoll/dspolitic/pm/10911cs.jpg



  1. John E. Miles, Governor of New Mexico, (Current History, Oct. 1939): “The United States has still not recovered from the last war in Europe, economically, physically, spiritually. We are still paying the debt. And while we may feel that we owe a debt to principles involved in the present conflict, we owe a greater debt to our own people.”



FRONT



PRACTICE DOCUMENT – Examine and discuss this as a group.


Discussion Questions: Does the cartoon represent the viewpoint of the Isolationists or the Interventionists? What evidence in the cartoon can be used to prove this?


  1. Based on the cartoon above, create an argument using one of the four following criteria:

  1. Effects of World War I

  2. The Domestic (Homeland) Economy

  3. Wartime Preparation

  4. National Security




  1. Then, use evidence from the cartoon to back up your stance.


Practice Document – Example explanation.


Discussion Questions: Does the cartoon represent the viewpoint of the Isolationists or the Interventionists? What evidence in the cartoon can be used to prove this?
Argument: The cartoon above represents the Interventionists’ point of view that the Axis Powers were already well armed and the poorly prepared Allied Powers would not be able to stop them. It is based on wartime preparation (C).
Evidence: The artist uses the story of David and Goliath to represent both sides in the war. The cartoon shows the Axis Powers as a three-headed monster with Hirohito, Hitler, and Mussolini. They are Goliath, and have all of the necessary weapons such as tanks, planes, rifles, ships, and more. Goliath towers over the Allies’ David, which is just a baby who IS NOT PREPARED FOR WAR. The Allies did not prepare themselves and allowed the Axis powers to run all over Europe and Asia; now they have to face the consequences of fighting a much superior force.

Document Analysis Chart 1

Should the U.S. have entered World War II before the bombing of Pearl Harbor?


Side One: Interventionist

Yes, the US should have entered WWII before Pearl Harbor.



Side Two: Isolationist

No, the US had valid reasons for not entering WWII before Pearl Harbor.



Argument:

Evidence 1:

Argument:

Evidence 1:


Argument:

Evidence 2:

Argument:

Evidence 2:


Argument:

Evidence 3:

Argument:

Evidence 3:


Argument:

Evidence 4:

Argument:

Evidence 4:


Argument:

Evidence 5:

Argument:

Evidence 5:



DEBATE STRUCTURE
Team A: The United States should have entered World War II before the attack on Pearl Harbor.

Team B: The United States should not have entered World War II before the attack on Pearl Harbor.

  1. Team A presents their arguments (5 minutes)

  2. Team B explains Team A’s arguments back to them (2 minutes)

  3. Team B presents their arguments (5 minutes)

  4. Team A explains Team B’s arguments back to them (2 minutes)

  5. Team A’s rebuttal (3 minutes)

  6. Team B’s rebuttal (3 minutes)

  7. Round Robin (5 minutes)

  8. Team A’s Closing Arguments / Conclusion (2 minutes)

  9. Team B’s Closing Arguments / Conclusion (2 minutes)


In addition to my normal debate duties, I am in charge of analyzing Document #___ in depth from the isolationist and interventionist points of view. I must explain how this document could be used by one side and also how the opposing side could refute the argument from this piece of evidence.
Document #___ supports the ______________________ side because __________________________

____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________


The opposing side could argue against this by saying _______________________________________

__________________________________________________________________________________

__________________________________________________________________________________
Argument: The United States should / should not (circle one) have entered World War II before the bombing of Pearl Harbor. Provide your three strongest reasons along with evidence to support your claim.

Counter-Argument: Think of what the opposing side would say in response to your arguments.
Sentence Starters: Begin your arguments with a sentence starter and refer to your opponents by name. Extra points will be given for both of these.


Stating Your Opinion

Supporting Your Arguments

One of the main reasons that…

It seems to me that…

Base on…, I infer that…


This is supported by…

This is further evidenced by the fact that…

It is clear that the United States should/not have…because


Restating Your Opponent’s Argument(s)

Counter arguing / Rebuttal

So you are saying that…

In other words, you think…

What I hear you saying is…


While some might believe…

It could be argued…

Critics of this argument might believe that…

Some people may say…, but I believe…





DEBATE NOTES

As you debate, take notes on your opponents’ arguments and evidence.




Main Arguments Made
(and speaker)


Supporting Evidence Provided

Counter-argument

Example:

Lunch should not be two periods next year because it will harm school clubs. (Billy)



Example:

37% of Oakland High students are members of clubs. This number will drop dramatically because there will be less clubs available next year. Clubs sponsors (teachers) cannot have two separate meetings because they only have one lunch period off. As a result, students will not have enough clubs to meet their needs and might do something unproductive instead.



Example:

Although a two-period lunch would make it difficult to meet, clubs are student-run. As a result, club leaders should organize two club meetings on the meeting day in order to include all students. Another option is for clubs to meet after school.



1.








2.








3.








4.








Primary Source Evidence - KEY

Criteria

Isolationist

Interventionist

  1. Effects of World War I

Stance: Felt the cost of WWI as too high and didn’t want the U.S. to get dragged into European wars. After WWI, it was feared that such wars could be long and costly.

Evidence:

  1. Election Promises Should be Kept: We Lack Leadership that Places America First by Charles Lindbergh: “We are divided because we do not want to cross an ocean to fight on foreign continents, for foreign causes, against an entire world combined against us. We believe that we are more likely to lose it [democracy] at home than to spread it abroad by prolonging this war and sending millions of our soldiers to death in Europe and Asia.”

  2. Neutrality Act of 1935: “That upon the outbreak or during the progress of war between, or among, two or more foreign states…it shall thereafter be unlawful to export arms, ammunition, or implements of war from any place in the United States…to any port of such belligerent states.”

Stance: FDR felt the U.S. should be an “arsenal of democracy” and protect the world from aggressive nations.

Evidence:

  1. Presidential address, June 2, 1941, FDR: “There are some timid ones among us who say that we must preserve peace at any price – lest we lose our liberties forever. To them I say this: never in the history of the world has a nation lost its democracy by a successful struggle to defend its democracy. We must not be defeated by the fear of the very danger which we are preparing to resist…’ The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.’”

  2. Neutrality Act of 1939: Roosevelt’s address to Congress,“I now ask again that such action be taken in respect to of the act [Neutrality Act of 1935] which is wholly inconsistent with ancient precepts the law of nations – the embargo provisions. I ask it because they are, in my opinion, most vitally dangerous to American neutrality, American security, and American peace.”

  1. Domestic Economy

Stance: The U.S. was still in the midst of the Great Depression; focus on implementing FDR’s New Deal programs to help lead the country out of the Great Depression.

Evidence:

  1. A Real Test for You, Mr. President political cartoon

  2. John E. Miles, Governor of New Mexico, (Current History, Oct. 1939): “The United States has still not recovered from the last war in Europe, economically, physically, spiritually. We are still paying the debt. And while we may feel that we owe a debt to principles involved in the present conflict, we owe a greater debt to our own people.”

Stance: The U.S. economy would suffer surrounded by totalitarian regimes, because it couldn’t trade freely. Japanese control in the Pacific was already affecting trade.

Evidence:

  1. Cordell Hull, Secretary of State, radio broadcast, May 18, 1941: “The production and transfer of essential supplies to those countries which are actively resisting aggression demand sacrifice of time and substance and making of maximum effort, on the part of each and every American citizen…Our greatest possible national effort must be made, not for the sale of other countries, but primarily for the sake of and to insure our own security...our own national existence.”

  2. Sumner Welles, Secretary of State, “Japan and Our National Security”, July 24, 1941: “They [Government of Japan] tend to jeopardize the procurement by the United States of essential materials, such as tin and rubber, which are necessary for the normal economy of this country and the consummation of our defense program.”

  1. Wartime Preparation

Stance: Lindberg and the America First Committee thought the U.S. military was inferior to German forces

Evidence:

  1. Election Promises Should be Kept: We Lack Leadership that Places America First by Charles Lindbergh: “We find ourselves unprepared for war, about to enter an action that will require us to cross two oceans and to invade nations with a far greater population than ours, nations with armies that have been trained for years, armies that have been hardened by generations of warfare, armies that are larger now than ours can ever be.”



U.S. Forces




Japanese Forces

9

Battleships

10

3

Carriers

10

13

Heavy Cruisers

18

11

Light Cruisers

17

80

Destroyers

111

55

Submarines

64

*Comparative fleet strengths (Pacific & Asiatic Fleets) 12/1/1941


Stance: FDR got money from Congress to build more naval vessels and started a draft

Evidence:

  1. Address before a joint session of the Senate & House of Representatives by Roosevelt, asking for additional appropriations for national defense, May 16, 1940: “An effective defense by its very nature requires the equipment to attack the aggressor on his route before he can establish strong bases within the territory of American vital interests. I ask for an immediate appropriation of $896,000,000…I should divide approximately as follows:

  1. For the Army…………………….…$546,000,000

  2. For the Navy and Marine Corps………$200,000,000

  3. To the President to provide for emergencies affecting the national security and defense…….$100,000,000.”

  1. Fireside chat, May 26, 1940, FDR: “…Our Army by 1933 had very greatly declined in its ration of strength with the armies of Europe and of the Far East. But, since then, great changes have taken place…Between 1933 and 1940 – these past seven fiscal years – your government will have spent $1,292,000,000 more than it spent on the Army the previous seven years.”

  1. National Security




Stance: The fighting was not on American soil; the war was a European problem

Evidence:

  1. Dr. Seuss cartoon (July 16, 1941):



  1. Burton Wheeler, Senator (Oct. 1939) Current History: “We shudder at the ‘blood purge’ in Russia and Germany, and yet those who would involve us in these European wards would purge each generation of our youth on the altar of European stupidity.”

Stance: The U.S. would not be safe in a world dominated by totalitarian governments.

Evidence:

  1. Dr. Seuss cartoon, (Sept. 11, 1941)



  1. Radio Address from the U.S.S. Potomac, May 29, 1941: “We Americans realize how tenuous would be the existence of our party system, our freedom of elections, our freedom of living, if the doctrines of dictatorship were to prevail. For it they were to prevail, it would not be in Europe alone…How long would it be possible to maintain a semblance of our two-party system, with free elections, in a Nazi-dominated world?”http://orpheus.ucsd.edu/speccoll/dspolitic/pm/10911cs.jpg


Writing Prompt

Following World War I, tensions in Europe grew as Hitler and other fascist leaders came into power. Soon, many European countries fell to the German armies while Japan’s power grew in Asia and the Pacific Ocean. While Roosevelt feared the events in Europe and Asia would probably draw the United States into a war, there were strong feelings that the US should not get involved in another European war and there was concern about recovering from the Great Depression. By 1941, Axis powers had attacked U.S. supply ships and the Nazis controlled most of Europe. On December 7, 1941, Japanese forces attacked Pearl Harbor prompting the United States entry into World War II.



Writing Question: Should the United States have entered World War II before the bombing of Pearl Harbor in 1941?

Choose between an Isolationist or Interventionist argument and write from that position. Use the information from the readings and the attached primary sources.



Expectations: Construct a written argument in a multi-paragraph essay which has:

  1. A multi-paragraph format with an introduction, body paragraphs, and a conclusion.

  2. A clear thesis statement which is your answer to the above question

  3. At least three body paragraphs which support your claim about whether the United States should have entered WWII before Pearl Harbor. At least two paragraphs should support your claim and the third should address the counter-argument.

  4. Accuracy, using evidence from the primary sources to support your arguments.

  5. An analysis of each piece of evidence explaining why it is relevant and significant.

  6. A concluding paragraph that restates the thesis.

Possible Thesis Statements
Interventionist:
The United States should have entered World War II prior to Pearl Harbor because the United States’ inaction allowed the Axis powers to strengthen and expand. Germany had already taken over Poland and France, they had bombed Great Britain, and Japan had invaded China which threatened the world balance of power and the United States on its western frontier.
The United States should have officially entered World War II prior to Pearl Harbor because the United States was already part of the war. Before Pearl Harbor, the United States was sending supplies to Britain and the Soviet Union, U.S. supply boats were being attacked by German forces, and the U.S. was strengthening its own military. These are the actions of a country at war, not isolation.
Isolationist:
Despite the military actions of Germany and Japan, the United States was right in not entering World War II because the United States had suffered unnecessary losses in World War I. The United States was not prepared militarily and the fighting did not directly affect U.S. citizens.
The United States was right in not entering World War II until forced to do so by the Japanese bombing of Pearl Harbor because the United States was still trying to recover from the Great Depression. Unemployment rates were still high in the late 1930s and early 1940s and extra spending by the government should have been used for domestic problems such as feeding and housing unemployed families, rather than sending supplies to Europe.
Works Cited
“Address Delivered by President Roosevelt to Congress. Peace and War: United States Foreign Policy, 1931-1941. Sept. 21, 1939. http://teachingamericanhistory.org/library/index.asp?document=706 (Source 10)
“A Real Test for You, Mr. President.” Cartoon. FDR Cartoon Archive. http://www.nisk.k12.ny.us/fdr /fdr foreign /33032402.GIF (Source 4)
“Comparative fleet strengths (Pacific & Asiatic Fleets).” Historical Text Archive. December 1, 1941. http://historicaltextarchive.com/. (Source 8)
Denny, George F., ed. “What’s Your Opinion?” Current History. October 1939: 42-43. (Source 3, 16)
Dr. Seuss. “Biding time” Cartoon. A Catalog of Poltical Cartoons by Dr. Seuss. September 11, 1941. http://orpheus.ucsd.edu/speccoll/dspolitic/Frame.htm. (Source 15)
Dr. Seuss. “The Isolationist.” Cartoon. A Catalog of Political Cartoons by Dr. Seuss. July 16, 1941. http://orpheus.ucsd.edu/speccoll/dspolitic/Frame.htm. (Source 7)
Hull, Cordell. “Radio Address by the Secretary of State.” May 18, 1941. http://www.ibiblio.org/pha/ policy/1941/410518a.html (Source 9)
Lindbergh, Charles. “Election Promises Should be Kept: We Lack Leadership that Places America First.” May 23, 1941. http://www.charleslindbergh.com/pdf/speech7.pdf (Source 5, 11)
“’Neutrality Act’ of August 31, 1935, Joint Resolution.” http://www.mtholyoke.edu/acad/intrel /interwar/neutralityact.htm (Source 2)
Roosevelt, Franklin D. “Address before a joint session of the Senate and House of Representatives asking additional appropriations for national defense.” May 16, 1940. http://www.ibiblio.org/pha/7-2-188/188-16.html (Source 14)
Roosevelt, Franklin D. “Address of the President Delivered by Radio from the White House.” May 26, 1940. http://www.mhric.org/fdr/chat15.html (Source 6)
Roosevelt, Franklin D. “Presidential Address.” Moments in Time DBQ. June 2, 1941: 6. (Source 12)
Roosevelt, Franklin Delano. “Radio Address from the U.S.S. Potomac for Jackson Day Dinners.” The American Presidency Project. March 29, 1941. http://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/ (Source 13)
Welles, Sumner. “Japan and Our National Security, A Menace in the Pacific Ocean.” Vital Speeches of the Day. August 15, 1941: 664-665. (Source 1)
Bibliography for Further Reading
Current History, October 1939
Divine, Robert A. The Reluctant Belligerent: American Entry Into World War II. Second Edition. New York: John Wiley & Sons, 1979.
Doenecke, Justus. Storm on the horizon : The Challenge to American Intervention, 1939-1941. Lanham, MD. Rowman & Littefield, 2000. 
Doenecke, Justus. The Battle Against Intervention, 1939-1941. Malabar, Fl: Frieger Publishing, 1997.  
Doenecke, Justus. From Isolation to War, 1931-1941. Arlington Heights: Harlan Davidson, 1991
Doenecke, Justus. In danger Undaunted : The Anti-interventionist Movement of 1940-1941 as Revealed in the Papers of the America First Committee. Stanford, CA.: Hoover Institution Press, 1990.

Doenecke, Justus. Anti-intervention : A Bibliographical Introduction to Isolationism and Pacifism from World War I to the Early Cold War. New York : Garland, 1987.

Doenecke, Justus. The Literature of Isolationism; A Guide to Non-interventionist Scholarship, 1930-1972. Colorado Springs, R. Myles, 1972.
Heinrichs, Waldo. Threshold of War: Franklin D. Roosevelt and American Entry into World War

II. New York: Oxford University Press, 1988.
Hess, Gary R. The United States at War, 1941-1945. Second Edition. Wheeling, IL: Harlan

Davidson, Inc., 2000.


Kennedy, David M. Freedom From Fear: The American People in Depression and War, 1929 –

1945. New York: Oxford University Press, 1999.
Porter, David L. The Seventy-sixth Congress and World War Ii, 1939-1940. Columbia:

University of Missouri Press, 1979.


Schuman, Frederick, “The Case for War,” New Republic, July 8, 1940, pp. 55-57.
“Shall We Go to War?” New Republic, July 8, 1940, pp. 46-47
Internet Sources

“Chronology of International Events, March 1938 to December 1941” Department of State Bulletin December 27, 1941, pg. 590. http://www.ibiblio.org/pha/events/events.html



Events Leading Up to World War II. Chronological History of certain major international events leading up to and during World War II with the ostensible reasons advanced for their occurrence, 1931-1944. 78th Congress, 2nd Session. House Document No. 541. http://www.ibiblio.org/pha/ events/index.html

Fireside Chats of Franklin D. Roosevelt. http://www.mhric.org/fdr/

Fireside Chat of Franklin D. Roosevelt. September 3, 1939. http://www.mhric.org/fdr/chat14.html

Fireside Chat of Franklin D. Roosevelt. May 26, 1940. http://www.mhric.org/fdr/chat15.html

Fireside Chat of Franklin D. Roosevelt. May 27, 1941. http://www.mhric.org/fdr/chat17.html

“Franklin D. Roosevelt’s Broadcast on Independence Day, Hyde Park, New York, July 4, 1941,” Department of State Bulletin, July 4, 1941 http://www.ibiblio.org/pha/policy/1941/4107 04a .html

“Franklin D. Roosevelt’s Message to Congress Urging the Arming of American Flag Ships Engaged in Foreign Commerce, October 9, 1941,” Department of State Bulletin, October 11, 1941. http://www.ibiblio.org /pha/policy/1941/411009a.html

Franklin D. Roosevelt’s “Navy Day Address” on the Attack on the Destroyer KEARNEY. October 27, 1941. [White House press release] http://www.ibiblio.org/pha/policy/1941/411027a.html



Peace and War: United States Foreign Policy, 1931-1941. Department of State Publication 1983. U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, D.C., 1941 http://www.ibiblio.org/pha/paw/index.html

Radio Address Delivered by President Roosevelt From Washington, December 29, 1940 (“Arsenal of Democracy” Speech) http://www.mtholyoke.edu/acad/intrel/WorldWar2/arsenal.htm

Radio Address from the U.S.S. Potomac for Jackson Day Dinners. March 29, 1941. http://www.presidency.ucsb .edu/ws/index.php?pid=16095

World War II in the Pacific: Menu to the Early Years. http://www.ww2pacific.com/

World War II Resources. Primary source materials on the Web. Original documents regarding all aspects of the war. Pearl Harbor Associates, Inc. Hosted by ibiblio.http://www.ibiblio.org/pha/

Dec. 1941

Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor
Appendices – Literacy Support Strategies

Structuring a Debate Chart


A Proponent of ________________________


Vs

An Opponent of ________________________

POSITION

I feel strongly that ______________________

______________________________________

______________________________________

______________________________________







I disagree. I feel strongly that _______________

________________________________________

________________________________________

________________________________________



SUPPORT

First, _________________________________

______________________________________

______________________________________
Also, _________________________________

______________________________________

______________________________________
Finally, _______________________________

______________________________________

______________________________________





First, ___________________________________

________________________________________

________________________________________
Also, ___________________________________

________________________________________

________________________________________
Finally, _________________________________

________________________________________

________________________________________


COUNTERARGUMENTS

The other side says ______________________

_____________________________________,


but I still feel ___________________________

______________________________________


Some people say ________________________

______________________________________,


but isn’t it more important that ___________

_____________________________________?







The other side says ________________________

_______________________________________,


but I still feel _____________________________

________________________________________


Some people say __________________________

________________________________________,


but isn’t it more important that ______________

_______________________________________?



DRAWING THE LINE (STATING A CONCLUSION)

If we went to war, the outcome would be

______________________________________

______________________________________

______________________________________


which is more important than our opponent’s argument that __________________________

______________________________________

______________________________________





If we went to war, the outcome would be

________________________________________

________________________________________

________________________________________


which is more important than our opponent’s argument that __________________________

______________________________________

______________________________________



Document Analysis Chart 2
Essay Question: Should the United States have entered World War II before the bombing of Pearl Harbor in 1941?
Thesis/Assertion:
Topic Sentence:


Source/Context of Evidence

What is the document, Who wrote it, brief summary

Evidence: Facts, Quotes from document

Analysis

This means that ….

This shows ……

Relevance to Thesis

This proves that ….

This is relevant because …..





































Thesis/Assertion: Answers the question or prompt and makes a claim about the issue.

Context: What is the document? Who wrote the document? Where and when was it published? What’s it about?

Evidence: Details about the topic: definitions, examples, dates, & names.

Analysis: This answers the question: “So what?” or “Why is this significant or important?”.

Relevance: How does this evidence support your thesis?

Position: Isolationism v. Interventionism

The position I will support in this essay is isolationism/interventionism (circle one).

Why? ____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
The United States should/should not (circle one) have entered WWII before the bombing of

Pearl Harbor because (give one reason from the criteria worksheet) __________________________________________________________________________________________

____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________.



Counter-argument: Think of what would the opposite side would say in response to your argument.

Isolationists/Interventionists would argue that: __________________________________________________________________________________________

____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

___________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________.

Other sentence starters for counter-argument

Some might contend …

It could be argued …

Opponents might say…

Critics of this argument might believe that…
Rebuttal: However, this is incorrect because (why is your argument stronger?):

____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

___________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________.

Other sentence starters for rebuttal

However…


Contrary to what opponents believe…

The fact of the matter is this…




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hssplessons -> Uc berkeley History-Social Science Project 2013 Modern Israel Summer Institute
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hssplessons -> Asian Art Museum uc berkeley History-Social Science Project 2012 Medieval Japan Summer Institute
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hssplessons -> Asian Art Museum uc berkeley History-Social Science Project 2012 Medieval Japan Summer Institute


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