Germans and World War i

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1.) Woodrow Wilson justifies his support for American involvement in world war 1 by stating that the U.S. are not joining the war to gain any selfish beneficial like the German government was, but for peace, safety, and democracy in the world. Wilson also justifies American involvement in the war by stating that the goal of the U.S. in this war is not for revenge, or for the U.S. to set a statement physically to other nations, but to protect the world’s freedom against Germany’s autocratic government. Another way Wilson justified American involvement in world war 1 was by stating that the U.S. are not only fighting for Americans, but for the neutral and friendly nations, even the citizens of Germany. Wilson had problems with the German government, not necessarily their citizens. He didn’t have a problem with the German citizens because Wilson knew that Germany’s government did what they did, without telling their own citizens.

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2.) Eugene V. Debs justifies his opposition of World War 1 by stating that wars only benefit people of power, they don’t benefit the people who actually risk and lose their lives in these wars at all. Debs states that these people and groups with power declare war with one another to benefit themselves only. These people with power declare war, not the people, but the people are the ones who risk their lives while the people with power do absolutely nothing. These regular people are brainwashed to believe it is their job to fight in the war and make the people with power content to be considered as patriotic. Debs also justifies his opposition of world war 1 by claiming that the people have no voice at all and that they never have when it comes to declaring and ending wars. Debs goal with this is to discourage the people from wanting to go to war because they don’t benefit and gain anything from it, only the people with power do.

3.) The main elements of the image that reflect the ideas from documents 1 and 2 are the gorilla, what the gorilla is holding, the title of the poster, and what the gorilla is standing on. These elements all symbol how the U.S. feel about Germany. The gorilla in the poster looks angry, it is holding a woman in one hand, and a stick on the other hand, it is also wearing a cap with militarism written on it. This symbols Germany’s military during this time because they were attacking, without warning, the merchant ships of any nation they saw near the Mediterranean. The gorilla in the poster is also standing on a surface with America written. I believe this symbols that Germany plans on doing something physical on the U.S. The title of the poster is also “Destroy the brute”, I believe this is to give Americans the idea that they must destroy Germany. I think imagery like this affected American perceptions about Germans and World War I by making them believe that Germany is a threat to them, and that the U.S. must handle them before Germany does something to the U.S.

4.) The main reasons why the U.S. intervened in World War 1 was because Germany sank several American merchant ships and because of the Zimmerman Telegram. The reason why Germany destroyed American merchant ships was because in 1915 Germany had launched submarine warfare against ships entering and leaving British Ports (Foner 743). Germany then suspended this in 1916. A year later Germany once again resumed this submarine warfare, and American ships continued to enter and leave British ports and for this reason Germany sank and destroyed these American ships. America how ever did not join the war yet; it was till British spies leaked a note between Arthur Zimmerman, a German foreign secretary, and Mexico (Foner 743). Zimmerman in this note was basically bribing Mexico to become allies with Germany in the coming War with America, in return Germany would help Mexico re-gain the territory they had lost to America. After this note was leaked, Woodrow Wilson then declared War against Germany, and the U.S. were officially involved in World War 1.

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