End of Year Project

This project will use the Civil War as a springboard from which to analyze various aspects of wars since.

  1. Chose one of the following topics
  2. Summarize in 1500-2000 words the panel discussion.
  3. Identify one aspect to research further.
  4. Develop a thesis that will guide your research.
  5. Attain approval for this thesis from your teacher.
  6. Research:
    • 4-6 primary sources-ID document information, inferences and outside information.
    • 2-4 additional secondary resources
  7. Develop a mini-DBQ prompt-include essay question and scoring guidelines
  8. Word process an "awesome answer essay"
    • Sample thesis: Expansion of presidential war powers began with Lincoln to a position today that would be unrecognizable to the Founding Fathers.

Presidents at War: Civil Liberties during Wartime

  1. In what ways was Lincoln a "pioneer" when dealing with the media?
  2. How have more recent presidents used the media to deliver their message?
  3. In what ways is the government and the media like a "marriage"?
  4. Does the media have an "obligation" to air all incidents they observe?
  5. Consider how the coverage of the Vietnam war compares other wars.
  6. Do we really have a "free press"? Consider role of "classified information"
  7. Is Snowden a traitor or patriot? (this option for non test takers) whistle blower protection?
  8. How hard has it been/is it to vet stories?

Presidential War-Making: Debates over War Power

  1. Identify the differences between war declarations as apposed to authorized and unauthorized wars/activities. Include branches of government’s role as well as various international bodies that have been involved in specific war engagements. Include in your analysis War Powers Resolution, Inherent, Implied v Enumerate Powers, nullification, Presidential Signing Statement, NATO, Uniform Code of Military Justice War Powers Resolution-
  2. Identify when and how war time courts have been used in American history-military tribunals, military commissions, Confiscation Emancipation
  3. How has “international law” evolved over time and how does it impact military strategy? Include the Lieber Code, Hague and Geneva Conventions

Understand the complexities of managing wars, generals

  1. What was and/or is the power structure of "real" decision making?
  2. How involved have been and/or should presidents be in managing wars?
  3. Is it fair to compare and contrast these wars and suggest one President was better at managing a war better than another? Explain


Identify Presidents who were seeking re-election while a war was "in progress". Compare and contrast their re-election bids in terms of: how was the war going, what was their campaign goals/strategies, what do you attribute their success or lack thereof to?

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