The Legacies Of World War Ii

932 words - 4 pages

World War II LegaciesIn World War II, there were more deaths and destruction than any other war before or after it. At the height of the war, civilians of the surrounding nations of Germany and the Soviet Union feared the Nazi armed troops and Red Army troops. It was because these troops brought destruction, looting, rape, and death. It seemed that no good would come out of the war, but after Germany's and Japan's defeat at the hands of the United States that idea shifted. Steven Ambrose, a historian, wrote that there were 3 main legacies that World War II left behind. These legacies were the spread of democracy, the destruction of imperialism, and the atomic bomb.The spread of democracy, which is the most important although Steve Ambrose does not say it is, was the complete counterpart to Hitler's dictatorship during World War II. At the turn of the 19th century, totalitarianism was on the rise. Japan and Germany were threatening to control the world. During the invasions Hitler's troops pillaged and enslaved. In contrast American troops handed out candy, food rations, and medicine while they liberated the fallen nations. However, it was when the American's were in Berlin that the idea of democracy spread among the Germans. It was because the troops didn't treat the German people like enemies. Instead they were treated like liberated people, with the candy, cigarettes, and food passed to them like the liberated nations before them. This kindness was completely unexpected and it made the people of Germany and surrounding nations want to set a up a democratic government. Eisenhower, the commander of the American zone in Germany, assisted the democracy in every way he could saying, "the success or failure of this occupation can only be judged fifty years from now. If by then the Germans had a flourishing, stable democracy, we will have succeeded. One example of his assistance was he told the German press corps to have a free press and to write in its newspapers anything. He even told them to write down their disagreements with him and be critical of him. Eisenhower believed Germany had to have a free press if it wanted to become a democracy. It was no different on the other side of the world with Japan. With the totalitarian governments torn down and the new democratic ones set up, the new nations prospered with the help of America. However, America's counterpart in every way, the Soviet Union forced its communism upon the nations it conquered. These nations envied the democratic ones set up near by which propelled them to revolt and set up a democratic government of its own. Eventually this led to a revolt in the Soviet Union itself, destroying the last major...

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