Day 2a – Learning About The War
Emma Mulhern, Highland Park Senior High School, Minnesota
This morning we had two lectures. The first lecture, The Geopolitical Origins and Unfoldings of World War II, was presented by Dr. Charles Chadbourn of the U.S. Naval War College. This topic is a long and complex one, but there was one point that really stuck out in my mind. One point made was that the United States had “free” security for much of its history. Because the United States had the Pacific Ocean to its west, the Atlantic Ocean to its east and bordering countries that it did not have to be too worried about, the United States enjoyed their “free” security. This “free” security caused the United States to not become involved in the World Wars until later on, because we did not feel threatened, as the war was 4,000 miles away.
The second lecture, The Homefront in World War II, was given to us by Dr. Claudine Ferrell of the University of Mary Washington. One point that I found interesting to learn more about was the people who worked on farms rather than in factories to help out with the war effort. As soldiers and people on the homefront needed food, farmers and their farms were considered critical in winning the war. When many sons of farmers volunteered or were drafted into the military, there were fewer people to work on the farm. Because of this, the government encouraged people to help out on these farms to help the war effort. Many people did so which helped greatly on the homefront and for the war.