Timeline Propaganda Kurt Vonnegut     Flipboard
PHASE 1: US Entrance into the War

Discussion Questions
How does the outbreak of WWII and the US entrance compare with your generation's experience with 9/11 and the subsequent wars in which we have recently been engaged?

Ending Neutrality

FDR and Hitler: A Study in contrasts
Roosevelt's Four Freedoms Speech
Atlantic Charter
Destroyers for Bases
Lend Lease

Pearl Harbor
"A Day that Will Live in Infamy"
Modern History Sourcebook
USS Arizona Memorial
Library of Congress (LoC)

US to Japan, Nov 26, 1941
Japan to the US, Dec 7, 1941

FDR Library


PHASE 2: Conduct of the War

Discussion Questions:
What assessments did Truman and his advisors make regarding Japan and the end of the war? Was Truman justified given the conditions of his time or was the decision short-sighted in establishing the precedent that might one day be used against us?
Why does the controversy that surrounds the decision to drop the atomic bombs not also surround decisions about use of new conventional weapons?
Can wars be waged humanely? Can concerns for human rights, political objectives and economic needs share influence or must one be compromised to achieve another? In other words, how do we balance humanitarian concerns with pragmatic policy and decision-making in times of war?
Two Cities: London & Dresden
London Can Take It (YouTube)

70th Anniversary of London Blitz (YouTube)
London Blitz: Eyewitness to History

File:B-17 Flying Fortress.jpg

BBC on British Bombing Strategy (Dresden)
History Learning Site: Dresden

D-Day: the European Theater
D-Day from Gilder Lehrman
WWII in Photos from The Atlantic
Robert Capa's Longest Day

Poland to Surrender, Animated
Animated Maps of Theatres of War
Google Cultural Institute and more

Island Hopping: the Pacific Theater
The Naked Truth of Battle American Heritage
WWII in Photos from The Atlantic

The Pacific War Animated
Interactive Map of the Pacific Theater
Animated map of the Pacific
Timeline and Campaign Summary from US Army

Ending the War:
Hiroshima and Nagasaki

Hiroshima and Nagasaki from Digital History

The Decision to Drop the Bomb
Google Cultural Institute
and more
PHASE 3: Social Issues and Humanitarian Concerns

Discussion Questions:
To what extent did World War II result in a break down of historic racial and gender barriers?
To what extent was Japanese internment humane? justifiable as a wartime security measure? an aberration in US current and historical policy?

Blacks and the War
WWII, Segregation at Home and Abroad (LoC)
The Double V Campaign

Tuskegee Airmen  from USAF
Tuskegee Airmen and Eleanor Roosevelt

Tuskegee Airmen from FDR Library
The Right to Fight


Women and the War
Women (overview)

Women Come to the Front: Journalists, Photographers, and Broadcasters During WWII
WWII Women's Recruiting Posters
The US and the Holocaust
"America and the Holocaust," William J. Vanden Heuvel

US and the Holocaust
(primary sources from American Experience)
US & the Holocaust (US Holocaust Museum)
US Virtual Holocaust Museum Exhibit

FDR Library

Japanese Internment
Virtual Museum of the City of San Francisco
A More Perfect Union
Images of the Camps
Korematsu v. United States, 1944

Japanese American Relocation Digital Archives (U of California)
FDR Library

PHASE 4: Kurt Vonnegut and Billy Pilgrim

Discussion Questions:
Consider the "Billy Pilgrims" of these experiences of the War; how would Billy make sense of these events and decisions?
Now, consider Vonnegut... how would he come to terms with these events and decisions?
New York Times Review
March 31, 1969
On Fate and Free Will On Banning Slaughterhouse Five
Letters of Note
The Telegraph (UK)
The Atlantic
The Guardian