Military Review

World War I turned the United States into a leading world power

17
World War I turned the United States into a leading world power

The sending of American soldiers to the European military theater began only in June 1917 of the year, and in October 1917 of the year only one American division took up positions at the front. By this time, about 1 million people were called up for the US Army. In the summer of 1918, the US Congress several times expanded the military contingent. According to the law of 31 August 1918, all men between the ages of 18 and 45 were subject to registration. The number of registered people reached 24 million, which was up to 44% of the male population of the country.


The human resources of the United States were determined at that time 2,5 times more than the human resources of Great Britain and France combined. However, during the entire war, the Americans actually called on about 4 million people, of which 2 million were transferred to Europe, and about 1,3 million American soldiers took part in the battles. The command of the American armed forces planned by the end of 1919 to increase the number of American soldiers in France by 2,5 times. In general, the US military machine should not be fully operational until the beginning of 1920. In particular, in July 1917, the United States allocated to Aviation 640 million dollars and planned to create an air force of 100 thousand people and 22 thousand aircraft. In the spring of 1918, the military department planned to build 16 large artillery plants and was planning to spend $ 2 billion on guns alone. However, these planes and guns did not reach the front, the war ended before this production was fully operational.

Thus, the United States managed to enter the war quite on time. The American soldiers escaped the most large-scale "meat grinders" 1914-1917, when hundreds of thousands of people were killed and injured on both sides. American troops avoided fighting with the German army when it was in full force. The American military escaped maximum deployment, when in the fall of 1918, it turned out that there was no longer a need for extensive military measures that were widely deployed in the United States.

Until the spring of 1918, the role of American troops in the European theater was so minimal that it could be overlooked. But in March of 1918, on critical days for the British army in Flanders and France, Lloyd George turned to Wilson with a request to strengthen the formation and transfer of American troops to Europe. The Allied Command believed that the United States should urgently prepare and ship 120 divisions across the Atlantic 40 thousand divisions each (immediately with recruits, reserves), which would have amounted to an army of 5 million people. Due to the lack of transport, the plan to transfer the American army had to be reduced by one third, but the reduced plan was a difficult task. The millionth army across the ocean has not yet been transferred. In addition, when the USA entered the war, the German submarine forces could attack the sea route from America to Europe. In 1917, the German submarine fleet caused serious damage to the Entente. The newly built ships have not yet compensated for the sunken ones. Meanwhile, it was necessary to transfer not only soldiers, but various military cargoes across the ocean. Each American soldier deployed to Europe accounted for an average of 25 kg of cargo per day.

Therefore, the Americans took fundamental measures to ensure the safety of maritime communications. As they said in the USA - “they built a bridge to France”. The American fleet did not participate in the battles and blockade of Germany, it was involved in the protection of transports that went to Europe. The United States and England have made significant progress in developing anti-submarine defense. In particular, on the initiative of American military circles, including Assistant Secretary of the Sea Franklin Roosevelt (future US President), an exit from the North Sea to the ocean was mined from the coast of Norway to the northeastern capes of Scotland. 70 thousand mines blocked the path at a distance of over 400 km. More than 80% of mines were produced in America and laid in the North Sea from American ships fleet. At the end of 1917, the transportation of troops from America to France amounted to 50 thousand soldiers a month, in May 1918 it was 245 thousand people, in July - more than 305 thousand people. Since that time, an average of about 10 thousand soldiers were sent overseas daily from the United States for several months. By July 1918, there were 1 million American soldiers in France and 2 million in October. The transports carried by American troops to Europe were virtually unaffected by the attacks of German submarines. Only one steamer with American soldiers suffered from a torpedo attack off the coast of Ireland. Of the thousands of American soldiers who were on board, 100 people died.

The Allies found an effective method against the German submarine fleet - the convoys. Transports went to France by caravans that guarded warships. The United States launched a gigantic maritime program on 1 thousand ships, of which 500 ships were ready before the end of the war. In addition, 1600 merchant ships were mobilized, which were turned into auxiliary vessels of the military fleet. In the 12 months alone — from 1 in July, 1917 of the year to 1, in July of 1918, Congress appropriated 3250 million dollars for the construction of the navy. By the end of world war, the US Navy had 2 thousand ships of various classes, in the fleet itself there were more than 600 thousand men. The US shipbuilding industry was so developed that, by the time of the truce, its productive capacity was twice as high as the productivity of shipbuilding plants in all the rest of the world. England finally lost the status of "mistress of the seas", the United States became the leading maritime power.

In France itself, the Americans launched a large military construction. The US Army identified the far right flank of the French front line, which adjoined the border of Switzerland. It turned out that it was impossible to land the American millionth army in the canal ports and deliver it through the northern departments of France. The ports were overloaded by British ships, and the roads adjoining them were blocked by various means of transport — on the northern flank of the front in Picardy and in Flanders there was an English army, and Britain was in charge of providing it. Therefore, the Americans were given French ports in the Bay of Biscay in the Atlantic and Marseille in the Mediterranean. In the Atlantic ports, the Americans expanded the old and built new docks. From the landing point from the ships to the coast, new 1600 km long railways and all the necessary infrastructure (warehouses, hospitals, barracks, etc.) were built in the direction of the front. Americans spent twice as much money on military construction in France than on the construction of the Panama Canal. From the USA they transported to France: locomotives, wagons, rails, cars, wires for telegraph and telephone, equipment for ports, military supplies, supplies, etc., in general, millions of tons of freight.

The military significance of the American army in France began to affect only in the summer of 1918. The commander of the American forces in France, General John Pershing, until the spring of 1918 was engaged in training and forming a separate independent army of troops arriving from the United States. In the spring of 1918, German troops went to the last decisive on the French front. The German command hoped to defeat the enemy before the United States would transfer a large army to Europe. For several months there were heavy fighting. The Germans again went to the Marne, approaching Paris. London and Paris asked Washington to expedite the transfer of troops. However, the alarm was in vain. Germany has already run out of steam. But this offensive intensified the transfer of American troops to France and led to the fact that the Americans entered into a big battle. On March 28, 1918, Pershing provided the Allied Commander-in-Chief, General Foch, with all the American troops in France. At the end of May 1918, the Americans helped the French stop the Germans at the Chateau Thierry. In July, the American army again stopped the enemy in the Chateau-Thierry area. In mid-July, the Allies launched a counterattack. Pershing finally formed a separate American army, which was assigned a large independent sector of the front. At the end of September 1918, an offensive in the Argonne Forest already involved 1,2 million American soldiers, 2700 guns, 189 tanks and 821 aircraft. This was the last and largest battle of the American army. American troops conducted minor operations on the Italian front.

Lloyd George noted: “The actual number of troops participating in the battles did not exhaust the full significance of the American contribution to our business during the war. The presence of more than twenty American divisions gave us not only numerical superiority over Germany. The consciousness that 20 American divisions are being formed and trained beyond our lines, and that millions of people will be redeployed from America when it becomes necessary, allowed the French and the British to throw their last reserves into battle ... and deliver the “blow with an ax” to the Germans crash them. "

Some results of the war

US people lost relatively little - on the armistice day (11 November, 1918, Germany signed an armistice agreement), about 70 thousand American soldiers were killed and about thousand 200 thousand people died. England lost 10 times more, France lost 20 and 14 times more, respectively.

Federal government spending rose from 734 million in 1916 to 12 billion. 698 million in 1918 and to 18 billion. 523 million in 1919. The deficit was 853 million dollars in the 1916 year, more than 9 billion - in the 1918 year, 13,3 billion dollars - in the 1919 year. Over the years, the United States has provided loans to foreign countries for almost 10 billion dollars. To cover the budget deficit, 5 domestic loans worth more than 21 billion were made. The first four were called "loans of freedom", the fifth - "loan of victory." The loans were distributed formally voluntarily, in fact, there were strong mechanisms for influencing citizens who did not want to sign up for a loan (for example, the so-called “public court”). The United States retained the gold standard during the war, but there was in fact no free gold circulation. The USA in the 1917 year, despite the huge positive asset of the trading and payment balance, imposed a ban on the export of gold, which operated until the middle of the 1920 year. US spending on the war amounted, according to various experts, ranging from 22 to 41 billion dollars, not counting loans to the allies. In 1928, President Coolidge said that if we take into account all the direct and indirect costs of the United States associated with the world war, the total amount will reach 100 billion dollars. The smaller figure is approximately the sum of all expenses of the US federal government during the 125 years that preceded the First World War.

However, it must be remembered that this burden fell on the American people, if the number of unemployed grew and the farm went bankrupt, then the financial and industrial elite of the USA received huge profits. In some cases, these profits grew faster than US spending on the war. According to the Federal Trade Commission, the average annual earnings of corporations in 1916-1918. were on 4 billion 800 million dollars more than the average annual income for the three years 1912-1914. For example, the common stock of the American wool company brought 1915% in 6, and 1917% in revenue in 55; profits per tonne of coal from owners of southwestern coal mines increased in a single 1917 year by 7 times compared to 1916 a year; the income generated by the common stock of the Bethlehem Steel Corporation in 1916 reached 286%; The powder breeder DuPont de Nemours paid out 1915 dollars in ordinary shares in 30, and 1916 dollars in 100 years. In several war years, the number of millionaires in America has tripled. There was even a new concept - "military millionaires."

Within a few years, the United States turned from a debtor into a creditor. From its inception to the outbreak of war, the United States brought in capital from Europe. In 1914, foreign investment in US securities exceeded 5,5 billion dollars. US debt totaled 2,5-3 billion. The war radically changed the financial position of the United States. Multibillion-dollar active trade balance in 1915-1920 allowed Washington not only to pay off its debts to Europe, but also to get a large amount of European gold and become the world's largest creditor. Active balance of US foreign trade in 1915-1920 amounted to 17,5 billion. This situation persisted after the war. By 1921, the European debt of the United States reached an enormous amount of money at that time - 15 billion dollars. In addition, the most important infrastructure in South America - rail and shipping communications, power plants, mines, etc., which previously belonged to the Europeans, were largely transferred to the Americans. The United States became a “financial octopus” that gradually entangled the whole world. This trend after the war persisted, and World War II only strengthened Europe’s dependence on the United States.

The old great powers that previously claimed world domination — Britain and France, the newly formed states like Czechoslovakia and Poland, all capitalist countries became indebted to the United States. The United States has become a world banker, the personification of greatness and wealth. Washington and New York are becoming the new "command posts" of the Western civilization (project), the old Western European elites are gradually moving to the position of "junior partners." However, only the Second World War will finally fix this position. New capitalist states will increasingly look to Washington, and not to Paris or London.

Woodrow Wilson believed that "his prophetic dreams came true" and was preparing for a peace conference, which was supposed to consolidate the new world order. True, create a unipolar world, the American world order is already following the First World War, the United States will not succeed. The League of Nations could not become a “world government” led by the United States. Russia, which, as envisioned by “financial international”, was supposed to ignite the fire of the “world revolution” leading to the creation of a global slave civilization based on Marxism (false communist ideology), and could become the resource base of this new world order. The Russian Communists, led by I. Stalin, rejected the false concept and returned Russia-USSR to their own path of development - “socialism in a single country”.

Russian civilization was able to make a qualitative leap in its development, to eradicate illiteracy, to create the best mass education system in the world, domestic science, to industrialize and collectivize, which led to autarky of Russia-USSR capable of producing almost the entire product line and not paying attention to problems and the crisis phenomena of the capitalist and western world. The Soviet Union gave all of humanity hope for a different path of development, more equitable, in the interests of the majority of the population. In the long run, this led to the victory of Russian socialism (civilization) on the entire planet and the historical defeat of the Western world. Therefore, the masters of the West set a course for a new world war, created fascism in Italy and Nazism in Germany, supported the dwarf European Nazis (Finland, Romania, Hungary, etc.) and the aggression of the Japanese militarists against China and the USSR. Thus, the First World War did not resolve the basic contradictions between civilizations and world powers and became the prologue of an even more bloody and difficult Second World War.
Author:
Articles from this series:
1917 Campaign

The transition of the Central Powers to a strategic defense
Entente plans for 1917 year: bet on a decisive victory in the war
Russian army to the beginning of the 1917 campaign of the year: the approach of the general collapse
Attack without shot: Mitav operation
How Germany began the unlimited submarine war
German submarine vs UK
How the German submarine fleet tried to crush the "mistress of the seas"
The United States used the myth of "inhuman" submarine warfare to oppose Germany
Caucasian front in 1917 year. Baratov corps offensive in southwestern Persia
Mosul operation. How the British, until recently, tried to use the Russian "cannon fodder"
The war of the USA and England against Europe and Russia for absolute power on the planet
USA and World War I
How did the USA profit from World War I
"War will end wars." USA in the First World War
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  1. venaya
    venaya April 19 2017 06: 22 New
    +4
    The most beautiful analytical article by Alexander Samsonov, however, like the vast majority of his articles, as evidenced by the frequent reprint of them on other resources. This article demonstrates a deeper look at the described events than is usually accepted by other authors. The article is a definite plus (+).
    1. tanit
      tanit April 19 2017 15: 25 New
      0
      Venya, your enthusiasm for Samsonov’s articles only emphasizes that you and he are sectarians. In a good sense of the word. Facts - they are stubborn things, but to fit into the theory - you can. What Samsonov does.
      In other matters, both to you and to him - with respect. hi
  2. ligre
    ligre April 19 2017 07: 10 New
    +3
    It’s interesting, however, that before the First World War, the USA successfully pressed European countries into the world market, it was clear that sooner or later the USA would come to the fore, let’s not forget that the US Federal Reserve was created just before the war, and the drain of English capital in The United States began long before the WWII, hence the conclusion that both the WWII and WWII were actually planned and implemented by the USA.
    1. venaya
      venaya April 19 2017 07: 44 New
      +3
      Quote: Liger
      The United States and before the First World War, still successfully pressed European countries on the world market ... The US Federal Reserve was created just before the war

      Here is the situation: in recent years, RI has just increased the rate of growth of its economic development, ahead of the United States by 1,5 times and European countries even more, by a factor of two. Both the United States and the Republic of Ingushetia had difficulties with finances, debt obligations, and only as a result of the war did the United States pay for them and the Republic of Ingushetia generally disappeared into oblivion. I think the financiers simply bet on the Americans then, and they hated the Romanovs for a long time because of their excessive independence, which greatly interferes with the global financial circles to steal steadily (to earn income).
      1. ligre
        ligre April 19 2017 07: 52 New
        +3
        Well, yes, I agree, all these wars were started by bankers and others like them, it was just that the USA before WWI was already chosen as the base and bulwark of the new financial and world order, and the rest is a matter of technology.
        1. Blackmokona
          Blackmokona April 19 2017 14: 05 New
          +4
          GDP at the end of the 19th century and beginning of the 20th century (in millions of US dollars converted to the purchasing power of the 1990 dollar)
          1. voyaka uh
            voyaka uh April 19 2017 16: 21 New
            +1
            Thank you, a very visual table.
  3. parusnik
    parusnik April 19 2017 07: 32 New
    +3
    King Kong sat on a hill and looked at the fighting tigers, when the tigers weakened, went down the hill and took off all the skins ...
    1. Reptiloid
      Reptiloid April 19 2017 09: 48 New
      +4
      And, having removed the skins of those tigers, King Kong was happy, began to pit other tigers among themselves, as well as small animals, peel the skins, sell them, occupy the territories where they lived, forced his tiger cubs to serve themselves faithfully and truthfully and getting richer and stronger day by day ....... eating carrion. Well, somehow.
  4. svp67
    svp67 April 19 2017 07: 35 New
    +1
    World War I turned the United States into a leading world power
    With all due respect to the work of the author, I still do not agree. WWI has not yet turned the USA into a LEADING world power. According to its results, it became clear to the US elite that it could become one and how to come to this.
    1. venaya
      venaya April 19 2017 07: 55 New
      +2
      Quote: svp67
      WWI has not yet turned the USA into a LEADING world power. According to its results, it became clear to the US elite that it could become one and how to come to this.

      Who is the US Elite? War is not unleashed by some beggarly state. figures, and those who have real money for these wars that they are able to spend on this not a plausible thing, and in fact, not a small investment is required. Example: Krupp company received from the ocean serious cap. infringement, as Kaiser Wilheim did not have enough money from the state. treasury, etc.
      1. svp67
        svp67 April 19 2017 08: 01 New
        0
        Quote: venaya
        Example: Krupp company received from the ocean serious cap. infringement, as Kaiser Wilheim did not have enough money from the state. treasury, etc.

        Which did not stop the “overseas partners” from strangling the same Krupp.
        Quote: venaya
        Who is the US Elite?

        As we say, "captains of big business"
  5. Olgovich
    Olgovich April 19 2017 09: 12 New
    +2
    So the USA managed to join the war on time. American soldiers escaped the largest scale "meat grinder" of 1914-1917, when hundreds of thousands of people were killed and injured on both sides.

    Does the author remember his own opuses? The USA HAD NO army or navy in 1914. It took three years to create them (according to the author). Then they entered the war. And it was absolutely logical that they tried to save people and get the benefit: it does any state.
    In the spring of 1918, German troops went to the last decisive on the French front.

    The author absolutely “doesn’t remember”, thanks to WHAT and TO WHOM this new outbreak of the world massacre was possible: perhaps the Germans gave birth to hundreds of thousands of new soldiers or raised an additional millions of pounds of bread? request
    Russia, which according to the plan of the "financial international" was to light the fire of the "world revolution" leading to the creation of a global slave civilization based on Marxism (false communist ideology), and became the resource base of this new world order, could resist. Russian communists led by I. Stalin rejected false concept and returned Russia-USSR to its path of development - "socialism in a single country."

    This thesis is the most mysterious in the last articles of the author.
    In more early articles Russian Communists led with Lenin and created a service society lol (i.e. they were good), but they clearly wanted a world revolution and were clearly Marxists. Now, according to the author, they are bad.
    But also Stalin never renounced Marxism and Lenin.

    Lenin Guard, destroyed in the 30s, is the Russian Communists or not? 75% shot by the Central Committee of the 17th Congress of the so-called parties are Russian communists or not? Somehow, the author manages with one Russian surname-Dzhugashvili, and other "Russian Communists" -builders are also interesting. yes Who are these mysterious builders? request
    By the way, Berry officially held the title “The first initiator, organizer and ideological leader socialist industry of the taiga and the North». Here he is, probably, a Russian builder! lol yes

    -
    1. Blackmokona
      Blackmokona April 19 2017 14: 07 New
      +2
      The United States did not have a fleet in 1914? wassat
      Only the Dreadnoughts were 10 pieces laughing
  6. Conductor
    Conductor April 19 2017 10: 53 New
    0
    The world's leading financial power, yes, but not military. The US Army was weak, artillery, tanks, aircraft, also not at a high level. Is that a fleet. You can, of course, recall the words of Napoleon, that in order to win the war, you need money, money, and again money. Rome and Byzantium had money))
  7. Semenov
    Semenov April 19 2017 12: 42 New
    +1
    Continuation, please. Interested in.
  8. Cycle boss
    Cycle boss April 19 2017 15: 20 New
    +1
    Sailor always have time to divide. They know when to join ... they sit, look, bargain with both those and others ... They will understand that one side is no longer creditworthy, and withers. And under a far-fetched pretext, they will declare war on her, even if for this they may have to put their people at the expense.