navigation bar U.S. Diplomatic Mission to Germany About the USASitemapSearch Deutsch

History of German-American Relations >
1939-1945 - World War II

German-American Relations Timeline - 1939-1945
1683-1900 1901-1939 1939-1945 1945-1955 1956-1988 1989-1994 1994-2000 2001-
Germans in America | The German Language in the United States | German-American Relations

What kind of information materials are available?
CD: Texts available on CD version.Texts available in multiple languages.

A Brief History of the U.S. Army in World War II
Casablanca Conference, Demand for "Unconditional Surrender", 1943 CD
European Theater of Operations.
Der Morgenthau-Plan
The U.S. Army in the Occupation of Germany 1944-1946
World War II Experiences of Staff Sergeant Albert R. Panebianco
Yalta Conference

Teacher Resources
Germany and America in the 20th Century A Hypertext Timeline
The Last Days of WWII: The Spoils of War
The Last Days of WWII: Death of the Reich
The Net's Educational Resource Center, World War II
Teaching With Documents: "A Date Which Will Live In Infamy": The First Typed Draft of Franklin D. Roosevelt's War Address
The World War II - Holocaust

Original Documents
Declaration Regarding the Defeat of Germany and the Assumption of Supreme Authority by Allied Powers CD
Documents on WWII
Documents Related to WWII
FDR Library and Digital Archives: German Diplomatic Files
The German Surrender Documents of World War II
JCS 1067, Directive of Occupation, 1945 CD
Memorandum to the President, 10. January, 1945. Henry Morgenthau's plan for Germany after the War
Presidential Proclamation on the Surrender of Germany, 1945 CD
Telegram by Franklin D. Roosevelt to Adolf Hitler, 1939 CD
U.S. Declaration of War against Germany, 1941 CD
Yalta Conference, 1945 CD

Omar Bradley, Commander, U.S. 1st Army Europe
Dwight D. Eisenhower, Supreme Commander, Allied Expeditionary Force | Deutsch
George C. Marshall, Army Chief of Staff |  Deutsch
Henry Morgenthau, U.S. Secretary of the Treasury (1934-1945)
George S. Patton, Jr, Commander, U.S. 3rd Army Europe
Franklin D. Roosevelt, U.S. President (1933-1945) | Deutsch

Bradley, Eisenhower, Patton
Bradley, Eisenhower and Patton

Neutrality was the official American response up to the outbreak of war in Europe in 1939. Legislation, enacted from 1935 to 1937, had prohibited trade with or credit to any of the warring nations. With the fall of France and the air war against Britain in 1940, the debate intensified between those who favored joining the war affort and the isolationists. The United States joined Canada in a Mutual Board of Defense, and aligned with the Latin American republics in extending collective protection to the nations in the Western Hemisphere. Congress voted immense sums for rearmament and in early 1941 approved the Lend-Lease Program, which enabled President Roosevelt to transfer arms and equipment to any nation (notably Great Britain, the Soviet Union and China) deemed vital to the defense of the United States. By 1941, there was an undeclared war between the United States and Germany in the Atlantic -- with U.S. warships protecting supply convoys from attacks by German submarines.

On December 7, 1941, the Japanese bombed the U.S. Pacific fleet at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. On December 8, Congress declared a state of war with Japan; three days later its allies, Germany and Italy, declared war on the United States.

The western Allies decided that their essential military effort was to be concentrated in Europe. As a result of Germany's strong land forces, however, Great Britain and the United States postponed a cross-channel attack until June 1944. On D-Day, June 6, 1944, Allied forces landed in Normandy. On August 25, Paris was liberated. By February and March 1945, troops advanced into Germany and on May 7, Germany surrendered.

The Allies insisted on an unconditional surrender. Roosevelt also considered, but then backed away from, the enactment of the 1944 Morgenthau Plan which envisaged the permanent dismemberment of Germany and the destruction of all heavy industry.

See also:
About the USA > History of the United States - World War II (1941 - 1945)

Texts are abridged from U.S. State Department IIP publications and other U.S. government materials.
Any reference obtained from this server to a specific commercial product, process, or service does not constitute or imply an endorsement by the United States Government of the product, process, or service, or its producer or provider. The views and opinions expressed in any referenced document do not necessarily state or reflect those of the United States Government.
US Embassy
U.S. Diplomatic Mission to Germany
/Public Affairs/ Information Resource Centers 
Updated: June 2008