The Second World War II

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The Second World War is one of the most familiar wars to the everyday person because of its massive effect on the global community’s future. It is arguably the first and only total war in the history of the war. Hew Strachan believes that it is because of its totality, which is seen through all of the components and scale of World War II. His fellow historian Robert Messer agrees saying “That first truly global conflict mobilized economies and populations of the world on a scale and degree that, if not total, was unprecedented in history.” They both agree, that World War II is the best example of total war for basically the same reasons, but Strachan will go more in depth. While, Messer dives into the morality of dropping the atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. I will first review Strachan’s essay and then will explain how Strachan and Messer both agree that the Second World War was total in nature. First, we will examine Strachan’s essay, “Total War”. He gives a very good and detailed argument for how total war was perceived before and after the war. He explains that total war was used before the war as a means to fully mobilize a nation, but after the war it was used to describe the carnage inflicted on the enemy. This argument gives total war two definitions, which may be fair, because how can something abstract have a truly rigid definition. In reality, the combination of the two definitions lead to a viable single definition of the process of total war.
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