The U.S. had two key strategic advantages over the Axis in World War II: oil and water. Although other factors played major roles in the U.S. and its allies winning the war, these two natural resources played a much larger role than recognized.
World War II was the first highly mechanized war. In the March feature “How Oil and Water Helped the U.S. Win World War II,” EARTH magazine explores how the abundance of domestic US oil and water in the South and Pacific Northwest drove not only tanks and planes, but also industrial production and technological innovation. That energy allowed the U.S. to supply its military and its allies with aircraft, armored vehicles and tanks and other heavy equipment – as well as the atomic bomb – that eventually overpowered Germany and Japan.
Read more of this historical analysis in the March issue, as well as other stories on topics such as how remote sensing helps aid agencies prepare for famine before it strikes and who should be paying for cleanup after wildfires and landslides strike, and follow along as a former NASA special investigator details a decade-plus of tracking moon rock thefts.