the second world war

The Citizen Soldier.  By 1914, Germany's young men had served mandatory military service for a century.  Japan's Empire was led by a strident military elite.  By contrast, in the years leading to the Second World War, the U.S. had one of smallest armies in the industrialized world.

From 1941 to 1945, millions of postmen, clerks, teachers--regular citizens--would find themselves in uniform facing the professional totalitarian soldiers of Nazi Germany and Imperial Japan.  Millions more, including American women, would build the arms that helped win the war. 
 

How did the Citizen Soldier fare against the professional soldiers of the totalitarian states?  What sacrifices were made at home to help defeat totalitarianism across the globe?