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CHAPTER 26:WORLD WAR II 1939—1945I.THE DILEMMAS OF NEUTRALITYA. Introduction1.Americans in the 1930s wanted no part of another overseas war. According to a 1937 Gallup Poll, 70 percent thought it had been a mistake for the United States to fight in 1917.B.The Roots of War1.The roots of World War II can be found in the after-effects of World War I.2.The peace settlement created a set of small new nations in eastern Europe that were vulnerable to aggression by their much larger neighbors, Germany and the Soviet Union (more formally, the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, or USSR).3.In the 1930s, economic crisis undermined an already shaky political order. Unemployment rose in every country, and the level of international trade dropped by two-thirds. Economic hardship and political instability fueled the rise of right-wing dictatorships that offered territorial expansion by military conquest as the way redress old rivalries, dominate trade, and gain access to raw materials. 4.Japanese nationalists believed that the United States, Britain, and France had treated Japan unfairly after World War I, despite its participation against Germany. They believed that Japan should expel the French, British, Dutch, and Americans from Asia and create a Greater East Asia Co-Prosperity Sphere, in which Japan gave the orders and other Asian peoples complied. 5.Italian aggression embroiled Africa and the Mediterranean. The Fascist dictator Benito Mussolini had sent arms and troops to aid General Francisco Franco’s rightwing rebels in Spain. 6.In Germany, Adolf Hitler mixed the desire to reassert national pride and power after the defeat of World War I with an ideology of racial hatred. 7.Special targets of Nazi hatred were the Jews, who were prominent in German business and professional life but soon faced persecution aimed at driving them from the country. In 1935, the Nuremberg Laws denied civil rights to Jews and the campaign against them intensified. 8.On November 9, 1938, in vicious attacks across Germany that became known as Kristallnacht(“Night of the Broken Glass”) Nazi thugs rounded up, beat, and murdered Jews, smashed property, and burned synagogues.9.Germany and Italy formed the Rome-Berlin Axis in October 1936 and the Tripartite Pact with Japan in 1940, leading to the term Axis Powersto describe the aggressor nations. C.Hitler’s War in Europe1.After annexing Austria through a coup and seizing and slicing up Czechoslovakia, Germany demonstrated the worthlessness of the Munich agreement by invading Poland on September 1, 1939. Britain and France declared war on Germany.