There hasn’t been any more deadly war than World War II. But has anyone thought about why and how this World War II started, besides the leaders what was the main push factor for it?? Why was Hitler so eager to take over the entire world? How did he have so much power to start a war?? And what kind of power did United States and United Kingdom possess that they were able to defeat Hitler and put an end to this World War II?? When we learn about war we tend to think and see the whole situation in general terms. We see in term of who was the villain with bad intentions that started the war, and who were the heroes that actually stopped the war. But there is more to that. Talking in terms of World War II, I see globalization as a main factor to support this whole war for such a long time. Globalization increases urbanization, industrialization, communication, creation of new technologies, mainly it increases power. And power increases the money, money which is used to achieve and accomplish all kinds of goals. We can see with globalization alot of developmental works are being produced at each step, but it is equally important to remember that globalization is very powerful matter itself. It has the capability of destruction too, and World War II is deadliest destructive example of globalization. Uncountable numbers of lives, properties, places, countries have been destroyed during World War II.
First World War had created instability in Europe, which lead to another international conflict- World War II. Unstable Germany was rising to power economically and politically, where Adolf Hitler and his National Socialist (Nazi Party) rearmed the nation. Hitler and Nazi Party signed strategic treaties with Italy and Japan to achieve his ambition of world domination. Hitler had long planned to invade Poland, and Poland had been guaranteed military support from Great Britain and France if it was attacked by Germany. When Hitler invaded Poland in September 1939, France and Great Britain had declared war on Germany, and then onwards the World War II had officially begun. (http://www.history.com/topics/world-war-ii)
As I have made my point that globalization supported and extended this war for so long, here are some main events and wars fought during War World II where we can actually see the role and contributions of globalization for such massive destruction.
- Battle of Britain (1940): British and German air forces fought the war over the skies of United Kingdom, locked in the largest bombing campaign. This was a turning point to World War II because the battle ended when Germany’s Luftwaffe failed to gain superiority over the Royal Air Force. It proved that British air power alone was enough to win the major battle. As we can see fighter planes, planes were eventually developed because of globalization. It was the globalization and the development that took the wars on the grounds to be fought in the air.
- Pearl Harbour (1941): As a shock, on December 7, 1941 hundreds of Japanese fighter planes attacked the American naval base at Pearl Harbour. Alot of American naval vessels, battleships and planes were destroyed. More than that 2,000 American soldiers and sailor died and 1000 were wounded in that attack. The day after that attack President Franklin D, Roosevelt declared war on Japan. Soon after three days the Japanese allies Germany and Italy also declared a war on United States. After more than two years into conflict, American had finally joined World War II. As we can see globalization had form connections, support as well as enmity between different countries. It had created such powerful bombs to destroy millions of lives and property within few minutes of its dropping.
- Battle of Midway (1942): Six months after the attack on Pearl Harbour, the United States had defeated Japan in the naval battles. A great role was played by the code breaking intelligence group who were able to acquire Japanese war plans. Here intelligence groups and code breaking is another contribution of globalization and its new technologies invention. The battle from the ground had now shifted to seas.
The above mentioned points reflect how globalization supported the destructive methods during the war time. But at the same time during the war, the roles of women were taking a new form.
“If you’ve used an electric mixer in your kitchen, you can learn to run a drill press”- American War Manpower Campaign
- Women and World War II: The women were facing the shortage in domestic resources. Many worked outside their home boundaries; they worked in volunteer organization connected with war efforts. The marriage rates increased and the rate of babies born to unmarried women increased by 42%.
More married women, mothers and minority women had found jobs. They took the jobs that were previously reserved for men. They worked in position that supported military efforts. At every war there were some women spies and resistance fighters. Many women nurses were used in the war zones. More than thousands of women were pilots and were associated with US air force. Women were affected in some specific and unconventional ways as the “comfort women” of China and Korea, the Holocaust and Jewish women. Prostitution rose dramatically.
“Near many military bases, reputed “victory girls” could be found, willing to engage in sex with military men without charge”.
As a conclusion, we can see that World War II is one of the most powerful and destructive war in the history which has changed how the world is today. It worked as a great platform for women to realize and achieve their power. And some ways I feel the early feminist have surely been inspired and learned alot from the women who fought World War II. It still matters because it has created the difference and hatred for other races and culture which even after so many years has not been fully washed away. Many still tend to look, judge or hold grudge against other cultures and religions on the basis of what happened in the World War II.
Globalization as I have mentioned before can be a improving or a destructive matter, it just depends upon how and for what we use globalization. At the same time we have learned so much from and about globalization that it is now time that we make the best use of globalization creating beautiful world and not to destroy it. If we have invented globalization, we should be able to control globalization.
You could refer to these websites for more information:
World War 2 Timeline 1939-1945. (2006). Retrieved March 5, 2012, from WORLDWAR-2:
World War II. (2012). Retrieved March 5, 2012, from 20th Century History: