The Writers' War Board was privately organized for the purposes of propaganda and often acted as liaison between the government and the writers. Many of the writers involved regarded their efforts as superior to governmental propaganda,  as they regarded their material as bolder and more responsive than governmental efforts. In lasting until , prominent U. One method used in this campaign was an attempt to remove the commonly held view that the German people and the Nazi party were separate entities.
The United States used posters to advertise, and produced more propaganda posters than any other country fighting in World War II. These posters used a number of themes to encourage support for the war, including conservation, production, recruiting, home efforts and secrecy.
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Posters rarely used images of war casualties, and even battlefield scenes became less popular, and were replaced by commercial images to satisfy the "consumer" need for the war. The war posters were not designed by the government, but by artists who received no compensation for their work. Many companies ran advertising supporting the war. This helped keep their names before the public although they had no products to sell, and they were allowed to treat this advertising as a business expense. For example, Lucky Strike claimed the change from green to white in its packaging was to save bronze for weapons, and, as a result, saw its sales skyrocket.
Much of the war effort was defined by advertising, and the armed forces overseas preferred magazines with full ads rather than a slimmed down version without them. Just as is done today, editorial cartoonists sought to sway public opinion. For example, Dr. Seuss supported Interventionism even before the attack on Pearl Harbor. Comic strips, such as Little Orphan Annie and Terry and the Pirates , introduced war themes into their stories. Many superheroes were shown combating Axis spies or activities in America and elsewhere. This effort was supported by the War Department due to Mauldin's grimmer depiction of everyday military life in his cartoons.
While his cartoons omitted carnage, they showed the difficulty of war through his depiction of the soldiers' disheveled appearance, and sad, vacant eyes. Leaflets could be dropped from aircraft to populations in locations unreachable by other means; for example, when the population was afraid or unable to listen to foreign radio broadcasts. As such, the United States extensively used leaflets to convey short informational tidbits.
In fact, one squadron of B bombers was entirely dedicated to this purpose. The use of leaflets against Japanese troops was of little effect. The American Historical Association 's G. Roundtable Series of pamphlets was used to ease transition to the post-war world. In the United States, radio was so widely used for propaganda that it greatly exceeded the use of other media that was typically used against other nations.
In —43 Orson Welles created two CBS Radio series that are regarded as significant contributions to the war effort.
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Ceiling Unlimited , sponsored by the Lockheed - Vega Corporation, was conceived to glorify the aviation industry and dramatize its role in World War II. The CBS international radio network continued to support the cultural diplomacy initiatives of the State Department and the Office of the Coordinator of Inter-American Affairs throughout the s. Since radio was often a "live' media, there were restrictions. Broadcasters were warned not to cut to a commercial with the line, "and now for some good news," and reporters were instructed not to describe bombings precisely enough so that the enemy could tell what they hit, for example, they were to state "the building next to the one I am standing on," not "the First National Bank.
As a result, the Radio War Guide urged broadcasters to focus on selected themes. At first the Japanese population could not receive propaganda by radio because short-wave receivers were prohibited in Japan. However, the capture of Saipan not only shocked the Japanese because it was considered invincible, but allowed Americans to use medium-wave radio to reach the Japanese islands. Books were more often used in the post-combat consolidation phases than in combat, particularly because their intent was indirect, to mold the thinkers who would be molding public opinion in the post-war period, and therefore books had more of a long-range influence rather than an immediate effect.
And some topics were considered off limits. Books on submarines were suppressed, even ones drawing on public knowledge and made with naval assistance. In fact, attempts were made to suppress even fictional stories involving submarines. A few weeks after D-Day, crates of books were landed in Normandy to be distributed to French booksellers.
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An equal number of American and British efforts were included in these shipments. Hollywood movie studios, obviously sympathetic to the Allied cause, soon adapted standard plots and serials to feature Nazis in place of the usual gangster villains while the Japanese were depicted as being bestial, incapable of reason or human qualities. In the early '40s, as war was starting to gain importance in Europe, the goal of Hollywood studios was still to entertain.
Many productions were musicals, comedies, melodramas or westerns. Major studios kept their neutrality and showed on screen the same isolationist sentiment as their audience. After noticing President Franklin D. Roosevelt 's concern about US foreign policy , fascism began to be reported on screen by Hollywood.
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After the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor in , the studios were fully supportive of the Allied cause and its demands. Patriotic propaganda was seen as profitable by Hollywood, and it helped to transform the social and political stances of the country, while serving as an instrument of national policy. Most of movies produced had a background of war, even if their story was a complete invention.
However, there were pictures that were made especially in tie with a past event, or even a current event of that period of time that made the release of the film synchronized with the happening in real life. This picture was considered as anti-Vichy, but there was a strong debate about the fact that this position was representative or not of the American government policy.
The war happened in the moment of an important national conflict: racial segregation. White America was united in its cause but in Black America, there was opposition. To address the identity problem, the Office of War Information that had control and influence on the contents and subjects of American motion pictures.
The Nazi attack on the Soviet Union resulted in pro-Russian movies. At the request of General George C. Marshall , Chief of Staff of the U. Army, Frank Capra created a documentary series that was used as orientation films for new recruits. At President Roosevelt's urging, Why We Fight was also released to the theaters for the general public.
Movies were also useful in that propaganda messages could be incorporated into entertainment films. Miniver portrayed the experiences of an English housewife during the Battle of Britain and urged the support of both men and women for the war effort. It was rushed to the theaters on Roosevelt's orders. Furthermore, the film " The Negro Soldier ", a government produced documentary also directed by Frank Capra, challenged racial stereotypes in the ranks. Its popularity allowed it to pass over into mainstream distribution. The film The Purple Heart was used to dramatize Japanese atrocities and the heroics of American flyers.
World War II transformed the possibilities for animation. Prior to the war, animation was seen as a form of childish entertainment, but that perception changed after Pearl Harbor was attacked.
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On 8 December , the U. Army personnel were stationed at his studio and lived there for the duration of the war. The U. Army and Disney set about making various types of films for several different audiences. Most films meant for the public included some type of propaganda, while films for the troops included training and education about a given topic. Films intended for the public were often meant to build morale. They allowed Americans to express their anger and frustration through ridicule and humor.
Many films simply reflected the war culture and were pure entertainment. Others carried strong messages meant to arouse public involvement or set a public mood. Cartoons such as Bugs Bunny Bond Rally and Foney Fables pushed viewers to buy war bonds, while Scrap Happy Daffy encouraged the donation of scrap metal, and Disney's The Spirit of '43 implored viewers to pay their taxes. The most elaborate training film produced, Stop That Tank!
These fictional characters were used to give soldiers safety briefs and instructions on expected behavior, while often portraying behavior that which was not recommended. The short Spies depicts an intoxicated Private Snafu giving secrets to a beautiful woman who is really a Nazi spy. Through the information he gives her, the Germans are able to bomb the ship Private Snafu is traveling on, sending him to hell. Animation was increasingly used in political commentary against the Axis powers.
Der Fuehrer's Face  was one of Walt Disney's most popular propaganda cartoons. It poked fun at Hitler's Germany by depicting Donald Duck dreaming that he is a German war worker, eating breakfast by only spraying the scent of bacon and eggs onto his breath, dipping a single coffee bean into his cup of water, and eating bread so stale or having wood in it, he had to saw a piece off.
Disney and the U. Army wanted to depict Germans as living in a land that was a facade of the wonderful promises made by Hitler.
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