Describe the mobilization of the United States for World War I.
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Part of the mobilization effort was to mobilize popular opinion for the war after four years of strict neutrality. This was achieved through two methods. First, the US government moved to silence speech through anti-sedition legislation and regulating the mail. Second, propaganda that emphasized the perfidy and brutality of the Germans appeared in the form of posters, pamphlets and government-solicited newspaper editorials. The Committee for Public Information, headed by George Creel, sent operatives around the country to give speeches in support of the war effort.
Another facet of mobilization was the shift of heavy industry to a wartime footing. Unlike in Europe, the government did not nationalize industry, but they did set quotas for production in crucial industries under the War Industries Board, led by Bernard Baruch. To avoid the necessity of rationing food, the Food Administration, under Herbert Hoover, subsidized important crops and emphasized cooperation among food distributors to avoid price gouging.
Finally, and perhaps most important, the US government instituted Selective Service shortly after declaring war. Thousands of young men were conscripted into the service and sent to training camps, where they received a quick, often insufficient training regimen before being sent to Europe. In the spring of 1918 alone, close to one million American young men were sent to France.
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