U. S. Wars Name of War

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Name _______________________________________________ Period ___________________
U.S. Wars

Name of War


Who involved?


Historical circumstances



American Revolution

pg. 34-39


British colonists vs. Great Britain

North America
First shot fired at Lexington and Concord
Great Britain surrendered at the Battle of Yorktown

The British colonies in North America wanted independence from Great Britain.

British attempts to tax American colonists caused tensions that finally led to the American Revolution.


Stamp Act, Boston Massacre, Tea Act, Intolerable Acts

1. Britain recognizes the U.S. as an independent nation

2. Native Americans are pushed farther west

3. Ideas of freedom and natural rights inspire some people to begin opposing slavery

4. The idea of liberty inspires struggles for freedom around the world.

War of 1812

pg. 70-71


Great Britain and Native Americans vs. United States


Britain and France were at war. The U.S. wanted to maintain the right to trade with France.

U.S. thought that Britain encouraged attacks by the Native Americans.

1. American’s belief that Britain encouraged Native American attacks.

2. British policy of impressment – stopping American ships at sea and forcing sailors into the British army.

1. Strengthens U.S. policy of neutrality in foreign affairs

2. Native American tribes less able to stand up to American expansion

3. Manufacturing grows when imports from England decreased

4. British stay out of U.S. affairs

5. “Star Spangled Banner” written

Mexican – American War

pg. 93


U.S. vs. Mexico

U.S. invaded Mexico

Manifest Destiny – Americans thought the U.S. should spread from coast to coast

1. The U.S. annexed (added) the region of Texas that was part of Mexico and there was conflict over the new border.

1. Texas, New Mexico and California were added to the U.S.

2. Issue of slavery in the new territories develops

3. Manifest Destiny is achieved-

Civil War

pg. 97-99


Northern States vs. Southern States (Confederate States of America)
War between Northern States that remained in the Union and Southern states that had seceded (broke away to form a new country)-


The Northern and Southern states had very different economies. The North was industrial and the South was agricultural.
The Southern states had slavery and the Northern states did not. There were disagreements about slavery in new territories.
The Southern states were concerned with their rights versus the rights of the Federal government.
The South thought that the newly –elected President Lincoln was anti-slavery and pro-North.

1. Regional differences between the North and South
2. Question of slavery in the new territories causes a divide between the North and South
3. Abraham Lincoln, am antislavery Republican, is elected President

1. The North wins and the Union is persevered
2. Slavery is abolished
3. Over a half a million soldiers died
4. Southern farms and cities left ruined

Spanish-American War

pg. 178-181


U.S. vs. Spain

Caribbean Sea

Pacific Ocean

A revolution in Cuba led to a demand for U.S. economic and humanitarian intervention
Expansionist /Imperialist attitude of Americans - want to expand U.S. territory

1. U.S. wants to expand in Latin America and Pacific

2. In Cuba and Philippines, people rebel against Spanish rule

3. Yellow Journalism – Explosion sinks the U.S.S. MAINE. The cause is unknown but newspapers blame it on Spain

4. Demands for involvement from expansionists

1. U.S. defeats Spain in less than 4 months

2. Spain recognizes Cuba’s independence and begins to control Cuban economy and politics

3. Puerto Rico, Philippines and Guam became U.S. territories

4. U.S. is recognized as a world power

World War I

pg. 185-195

U.S. joins the war in 1917

Central Powers: Germany, Austria-Hungry, Turkey
Allies: Great Britain, U.S. France, Italy


War in Europe started because of the MAIN causes:




Assassination of Archduke of Austria-Hungary

The U.S. entered the war because of:
1. Cultural links with the Allies

2. Economic ties to Europe

3. Allied propaganda campaign

4. German submarine warfare

5. Zimmerman telegraph

1. Allies win the war

2. Treaty of Versailles/ League of Nations

3. Germany forced to pay reparations

World War II

pg. 251-266

U.S. joins the war in 1941

Axis Powers: Germany, Italy, Japan
Allied Powers: Great Britain, Soviet Union, United States, France


Rise of fascist dictators/totalitarian governments in Europe
Appeasement of Hitler

1. Germany invaded Poland in 1939 starting WWII
2. U.S. enters the war in 1941 after the Japanese attach Pearl Harbor
3. U.S. defending freedom and democracy

1. Allied Powers win the war

2. Millions of Jews die in Nazi death camps during the Holocaust

3. U.S. economy improves and women enter the workforce

4. Death of generation of young men and destruction in Europe

5. Death and destruction caused by the U.S. dropping of Atomic Bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki Japan

Korean War

pg. 274-275


North Korea (occupied by the communist Soviet Union) vs. South Korea (occupied by the democratic U.S.)


After WWII, it was agreed that the Soviet Union would control North Korea and the U.S. would control South Korea.
Cold War tensions caused conflict between the Soviet Union/communism and the U.S./democracy
US followed a policy of containment – to keep communism to where it was already located

1. Communist North Korea invaded South Korea. United Nations and U.S. troops wanted to push the communists back to keep communism from spreading

1. Korea remained divided in the same location

2. Americans were frustrated with the war

3. 34,000 Americans and one million Chinese and Koreans died

4. Cost of $15 billion

Vietnam War

pg. 319-325


Communist North Vietnam vs. South Vietnam and the U.S.
Vietcong = Communist Vietnamese


Vietnam had been a French colony that gained its independence. The country was divided into North Vietnam let by a communist leader (Ho Chi Minh) and South Vietnam led by an anti-communist leader (Ngo Dinh Diem)

1. U.S. wanted to keep communism from spreading

2. U.S. wanted to try and help the South Vietnamese keep the communists out

1. Widespread resistance to the war among Americans

2. American men were drafted (forced) to serve in the military

3. War Powers Act of 1973: limited the power of the President to commit troops to a conflict

4. Longest and least successful war – In 1975, North Vietnam defeated South Vietnam.

Cold War

pg. 292-295


Soviet Union and communist countries vs. U.S. and democratic countries

At the end of WWII, tensions between the U.S. and the Soviet Union grew into a “Cold War” without any real battles
Policy of containment

Iron Curtain

Dominoes Theory

1. U.S. wanted to keep communism from spreading

1. Red Scare at home /McCarthyism

2. Korean and Vietnam wars

3. Build up of nuclear weapons - brinkmanship

4. Space race

5. Soviet Union falls apart

Persian Gulf War

pg. 342


Iraq vs. U.S. & Saudi Arabia

Middle East

Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein invaded the oil-rich nation of Kuwait

1. U.S. wanted to protect oil supplies in the Middle East

2. U.S. wanted to supports its ally - Kuwait

1. United Nations and U.S. forces liberated Kuwait in 42 days

War in Iraq

pg. 348-350


U.S. vs. Iraqi government led by Saddam Hussein


Terrorists attack on September 11, 2001

1. Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction

1. Saddam Hussein was put to death after he was found guilty of multiple murders

2. U.S. currently is trying to rebuild Iraq and help the new government

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