In 1939, another war that would encompass the world began in Europe. World War II began as a conflict of beliefs concerning government among countries in Europe. The United States stayed on the sidelines, unwilling to become involved in the war until Japan attacked a Pacific Fleet of the United States Navy at Pearl Harbor in Hawaii.
The American Revolution was the colonists' fight for freedom in the New World. It involved the help of spies, women, and people from other countries. The colonists fought against a giant, and they won their freedom from Great Britain against all odds. After winning the impossible, the colonists had a new battle to fight: setting up a new government and nation.
Great Britain passed the Stamp Act and the Townshend Acts, which made colonists angry. Eventually they boycotted and refused to purchase British goods. Great Britain sent soldiers to the colonies, which caused conflict like the Boston Massacre and the Boston Tea Party. "Common Sense" by Thomas Paine helped convince people that they were no longer British citizens. The foundation for the American Revolution had been laid.
When President James Madison declared war on Great Britain for a second time, the War of 1812 began. Problems started when America sent ships out to sea to trade with other countries. The war eventually ended, and the Treaty of Ghent was signed. America earned the respect of the British as a free, independent nation.
During the 1800s, the United States was in conflict over slavery. Though compromises were made, neither side was pleased. Abolitionists and pro-slavery people engaged in conflicts and often deadly clashes. With South Carolina and other southern states seceding, war was inevitable.
When Adolf Hitler began raising his army, one of the first people who sounded the alarm was Winston Churchill. After France fell to Hitler, Churchill held strong and worked to build up his army. Time and time again, Hitler offered a peace deal to Churchill in hopes that Churchill would leave him alone and back out of the war. Each time Churchill refused, knowing that it was a danger to let Hitler take over Europe.
The Cold War was a different kind of war that lasted for more than 40 years. Countries did not shoot at one another, but they spied on and competed against one another. It was a war of beliefs as the United States believed in democracy and the Soviet Union advocated communism.