Technology and Conferences of WW2

and the
Second World War
Technology & World War 2
The Second World War was a total war, which means
that everything a nation has, literally, is aiming toward
one thing and one thing only… winning the war.
What comes next discusses what a total war looks like
and the roles technology played in determining the
nature of World War Two.
Technology & World War 2
If World War One taught anything, it was that
Industrial production, both quantitatively and
qualitatively, and delivery and deployment technology
were the keys to winning the war.
The facilities for production and distribution were to
become targets
during the war.
Technology & World War 2
The first economic priority of each nation became
production of war materials and making sure the front
had the necessary supplies.
The nations that best managed that, and had the
greatest amounts of resources, were the winners at the
end of combat.
Technology & World War 2
Astronomical amounts of airplanes were made by the
USA, Japan, Britain and the U.S.S.R.
Similarly, the production of ships that the USA made is
mind blowing. During one point in the war a Liberty
Ship, which was a freighter ship, was launched each day
somewhere in
the USA.
Technology & World War 2
Massive bombardment of Industrial centres, planners
learned, did not really have the sought-after effect.
German war production actually increased, despite the
bombing efforts done by the Allies, until 1944.
Technology & World War 2
Establishing naval blockades was an effective way to
limit the enemy’s ability to make war.
If World War 1 suggested that the key to twentieth
century warfare would be economic strength, then
World War 2 made that an absolute rule.
The Tools of War
If the mother of invention is necessity, then the nursery
for new products was most definitely World War II.
In the First World War, the technological weapon of
combat was the machine gun. The machine gun would,
more than any
other weapon,
define the
combat’s nature
in that war.
The Tools of War
The order of the day was defensive strongholds. Battles
became battles of attrition.
Technology in the Second World War also defined the
nature of warfare.
The Tools of War
Stalemates became a thing of the past when the highlymobile airplane and tank came around. These were the
new state of the art.
The Tools of War
Nations in the inter-war years, and especially during the
war, competed, not just to produce the most airplanes,
but the fastest, most manoeuvrable and with the
greatest payload.
The Tools of War
Controlling the air became equal to controlling the seas
in the earlier eras of warfare.
On land, the trenches defended by machine guns and
artillery became irrelevant. The modern tank battalion,
called Panzers in
Germany, could
destroy entrenched
troops in a few
hours, if not in
a few minutes.
The Tools of War
Tanks were necessary to attack, and then defend, the
massive tracts of land that were at stake in Europe and
North Africa.
During World War I, millions of lives were sacrificed for
no land gains.
The Tools of War
During World War II, the casualties were great, but
covered thousands of square miles of terrain.
The sense of useless slaughter created by World War I in
combat was absent in World War II.
The Tools of War
Tanks were clearly not suitable in the Pacific Theatre.
The aircraft though, was so important that the naval
aviation, which was planes on aircraft carriers, became
the key feature of the war.
The Tools of War
As a result of the belligerents’ use of naval aviation
efficiency, some sea battles were lost, or won, almost
Vital to the Battles of Britain and the Atlantic were some
“high tech” developments, like radar and sonar.
The Tools of War
Crucial to victory against the Luftwaffe were the early
warning that came from the radar systems, made by
the RAF.
A key role in the British victory was the
mathematicians’ skill to break the Enigma codes.
The Tools of War
The development of the nuclear bomb was the ultimate
tool of war.
It not only brought a quick end to World War II, but it
helped symbolised how important the technological
development was during the war.
Even more importantly,
it signified the
incredible possibilities
regarding future wars.
Modern means of mass communication grew out of the
1930’s. Leaders like Hitler and Mussolini often used the
tactic of displaying mass rallies.
The Nazis at Nuremburg
taught their followers
with the Nazi view of
the future. Hitler
often used the radio
to his own advantage.
Roosevelt knew the power of mass radio
communication, since he used “fireside chats” to help
restore confidence in the American way during the
Great Depression.
Those same tactics were
used during the war. To
keep the population
“onside” was a feature
of the modern war.
Roosevelt, Churchill, and unfortunately, Hitler, all used
the radio to rally the home front.
During the darkest times of Hitler’s attacks in London,
Churchill’s inspirational
speeches had a special
effect on the people
in Britain.
Information, (sometimes deceptive), that is spread to
influence the opinion of the public, is propaganda.
During the war, propaganda was used on, and by, both
Through radio commercials and posters, people were
encouraged to conserve resources for the war and to
control their gossip…just in case the wrong ears would
hear what they were saying.
War Crimes
For the first time ever, leaders legally charged other
leaders for immoral actions during a war.
The Allies set up a war crimes court in Nuremberg in
1946. For crimes relating
to starting the war, and,
most importantly, for
crimes committed
during the Holocaust,
177 Nazis were charged.
War Crimes
Great care was taken to give the Nazi’s access to the
process of Western law.
Of the 177, three were set free. The rest were all
declared guilty. Many were placed in prison for a long
period of time, while others were hanged.
Wartime Conferences
Allied leaders met all over the world to talk about war
aims and strategy during the war. A list of the
conferences is coming…
The most important conferences were the ones that
included the Big Three Nations:
Wartime Conferences
In August, 1941, Churchill and Roosevelt met on a
battleship off the coast of Newfoundland to talk about
common war aims. At that time, the US was not at war.
At the end of the conference, a statement of common
aims came about.
It is known as
the Atlantic
Wartime Conferences
... Which, for the United Nations, would later become
the model.
This statement of war aims were the Fourteen Points of
World War II.
The Grand Alliance between USA and Great Britain had
now begun.
Wartime Conferences
In January, 1943, Roosevelt and Churchill met at
Casablanca and agreed that Germany must be forced to
surrender unconditionally.
This decision may have
prolonged the war in
the long run, since it
put Germany in the
position that it had
nothing to lose.
Wartime Conferences
Churchill did not want to repeat the mistakes that were
made in 1918 and 1919, so he was adamant that it be
Roosevelt wanted the
Declaration, which
dealt with
Wartime Conferences
They met again in August of 1943, in Quebec City, to
discuss the (secret) progress of the A-Bomb.
Roosevelt, Churchill and a
Chinese leader, Chiang,
met up to discuss the
Eastern War.
Wartime Conferences
This was the first of the Big Three conferences. To
establish cordial relations between the Soviet dictator
and western leaders was the first accomplishment.
Decisions about Germany
were pushed aside for a
later conference.
The following, however,
was decided:
Wartime Conferences
1. Polish Frontiers would be formed by the Curzon Line
in the East
Frontiers in the west would
be moved westward to
help compensate for losses
to the U.S.S.R. The new
western frontier was to
be the Oder-Neisse Line.
Wartime Conferences
The U.S.S.R was taking back what had been lost to
Poland in 1921.
The Second Front.
The Second Front
was agreed upon
by the USA and
Britain. Later, this
would become the
basis for the
Normandy landings.
Wartime Conferences
3. The Pacific War
The Soviets agreed to take part in the Pacific War.
The Big Three met from February 4-11, 1945 in Yalta,
which is in the southern
U.S.S.R. This was the
most important
conference of the war.
Wartime Conferences
For some of his positions, Roosevelt dealt with much
criticism. The decisions fall into 2 categories:
a) Europe-related decisions:
1: Formalized the approach
to dividing Germany. The
Morgenthau Plan (1944),
which suggested to divide
Germany into small states,
was dropped during this.
Wartime Conferences
2: After the war was over agreed to War Criminals Trials
at Nuremburg,
3: Stalin promised to participate in the Pacific War.
4: Approved the idea of
disarming Germany.
How to come about
that was to be
determined at
Wartime Conferences
5: Stalin promised that, after the war in Soviet liberated
Europe, there would be free elections.
A lot of controversy
appeared over this.
Roosevelt so badly
wanted Stalin’s help in
the Pacific that he
did not press him on
the issue of the status
of eastern Europe after
Soviet liberation.
Wartime Conferences
(Remember that Roosevelt had no idea if the A-Bomb
would work or not, or the potential it might have)
6: Regarding Poland, decisions were finalized.
Wartime Conferences
United Nations decisions:
1: The Dumbarton Oaks organizational plan for the
United Nations (August-October 1944) was approved.
2: Agreed to meet in San
Francisco in April to
make a United Nations
Wartime Conferences
This conference was different, since Roosevelt had died
and was replaced by Harry Truman, and Potsdam was in
For Britain, Churchill had been
attending the conference during
a British election, that he ended
up losing. He got replaced part
way through the conference by
the newly elected P.M.,
Clement Attlee.
Wartime Conferences
During the Conference, the following was accomplished:
Steps to disarm Germany and deprive her the ability to
make war by…
1: Dismantling her war industries
2: War reparations
Wartime Conferences
3: Denazification
4: War Criminals Trial
5: The Allied Control Council,
which was to govern Germany,
was defined.
The above discussion was to lead up to a Peace
Conference…but it was never held. Potsdam then
became the framework for peace.
Wartime Conferences
The Americans at first tended to turn a blind eye to
Easter European issues, in an attempt to get Soviet help
in the Pacific.
Americans believed that another 12 months of
conventional war was needed to defeat Japan. They had
many doubts concerning the A-Bomb.
Once the test in new
Mexico proved it
successful, all of the
above was changed.
Wartime Conferences
And… that’s the end of that…
Now it’s all Peace, Prosperity, and Puppies….
For about 15 minutes. Then we find new people to hate.