Explain what impact the First World War and the Bolshevik revolution in Russia had on politics and society in the USA in the years 1914 to 1929.
Published: March 21, 2017
When the First World War began, Wilson pledged to keep USA out of the war and remain neutral. On this note he won the elections of 1916. Soon after becoming President Wilson declared war on Germany because of the unrestricted submarine warfare. For the war Wilson called for one million men but only 73,000 came forward so congress voted for compulsory military service. After this decision the socialist party condemned the participation in the war. Seeing this increasing popularity of socialists among Americans, Congress passed the Espionage Act in 1917 to make refusal to join army an offence. Anyone who was against this and war were sent to jail.
When the October revolution took place in 1917 in Russia, Lenin and the Bolsheviks came to power. As a result they ordered their troops to fall back and started peace talks with Germany. The move of cease fire caused distress among Russian allies and Bolsheviks were termed as agents of Prussian imperialism. As a result American authorities launched a campaign against socialist party and the Industrial Workers of the World (IWW), both were termed as pro-German. This led to destruction of IWW.
From the policy to remain neutral to participation in war then the Bolshevik revolution in Russia led to the destruction of IWW and decline in popularity of socialist party and in a short period of time in which USA was involved in the war, lost 50,000 soldiers.
Model Questions Category: 013 - Cold War and Other Major Events of 20th Century