Tom Goldstein, "A Tale of Three Cities: How the United States Won World War II"


campaign. According to Dr. Kennedy, this was a primitive and futile response to a prolonged war of attrition that the Japanese could not win. The United States in turn was using advanced industrial weapons against balloons - America was, as Dr. Kennedy put it, at the pinnacle of the world.

The floor was then opened up for questions and comments, of which there were many. The first question asked to Dr. Kennedy was, "What if Hitler did not declare war on the United States on December 11, 1941?" Dr. Kennedy answered, saying that it would have made sense for Hitler to wait because he had no treaty obligations to help Japan. He supposed that Hitler probably assumed that the United States would become involved with the Pacific theater to the point where it could not devote as many resources to fight in Europe.

Next, University of Maryland history professor Jeffrey Herf commented on Dr. Kennedy's hypothesis, criticizing his America-centric point of view. Herf stated that most European historians would say the United States could not have won World War II without Europe. He cited historian Gerhard Weinberg who argued that the United Nations defeated Germany, not just the United States. Dr. Kennedy responded saying that he should have titled his talk, "How the United States Emerged Victorious" not "How the United States Won" and agreed that Europe had paid the greatest price in achieving Allied victory. He then said that he meant to show that the United States fought a very different kind of war than everyone else. Hearing this Dr. Herf urged Dr.

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