- Germany's one hope for challenging British power at sea lay with a new naval weapon, the submarine.
- Germany answered the British blockade by announcing a blockade of its own and warned that ships attempting to enter the "war zone" risked being sunk on sight by German submarines
- Torpedoing and sinking of a British passenger liner.
- Most of the passengers drowned, including 128 Americans.
- Wilson responded by sending Germany a strongly worded diplomatic message warning that Germany would be held to "strict accountability" if it continued its policy of sinking unarmed ships.
- A German torpedo struck an unarmed merchant ship, injuring several American passengers.
- Wilson threatened to cut off US diplomatic relations with Germany- a step preparatory to war.
- Germany promised not to sink merchant or passenger ships without giving due warning.
- War industries board: Set production priorities and established centralized control over raw materials and prices.
- Food Administration: Encourage Americans households to eat less meat and bread so that more food could be shipped abroad for the French and British troops.
- Fuel Administration: directed efforts to save coal. Nonessential factories were closed, and daylight savings time went into effect for the first time.
- National War Labor Board: Helped arbitrate disputes between workers and employers. Labor won concessions during the war that had earlier been denied. Wages rose, the 8 hour day was more common, and union membership increased.
Espionage and Sedition Act
- Penalty for criticizing the government's way policy, was often a stiff prison sentence.
- Provided imprisonment up to 20 years for persons who either tried to incite rebellion in the armed forces or obstruct the operation of the draft.
- Prohibited anyone from making "disloyal" or "abusive" remarks about the US government.
Selective Service Act
- A democratic method for ensuring that all groups in the population would be called into serve.
American Expeditionary Force
- was commanded by General John Pershing.
- Assumed independent responsibility for one segment of the Western Front
1) Recognition of freedom of the seas
2) An end to the practice of making secret treaties
3) Reduction of national armaments
4) An "impartial adjustment of all colonial claims"
5) Self determination for the various nationalities within the Austro-Hungarian empire
6) "A general association of nations...for the purpose of affording mutual guarantees of political independence and territorial integrity to great and small state alike
Treaty of Versailles
- Every nation that had fought on the Allied side was present.
1) Germany was disarmed and stripped of its colonies in Asia and Africa. Forced to admit guilt for the war. And pay a huge sum of money in reparations to Great Britain and France.
2) Territories once controlled by Germany, Austria-Hungary, and Russia were taken by the Allies.
3) Signers of the treaty would join an international peacekeeping organization, the League of Nations. Called on each member nation to stand ready to protect the independence and territorial integrity of other nations.
- Said they could accept the League if certain reservations were added to the covenant.
- There was widespread unhappiness with the peace process an also growing fears of socialism fueled by the Communist takeover in Russia and labor unrest at home.