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1. The War In Europe 1942-1945

1.1. Nazis Invade the Soviet Union and North Africa

1.1.1. Oil played a key role in Axis strategy

1.1.2. The Axis controlled much of Europe and North Africa at the start of 1942.

1.1.3. By June 1942, Rommel’s force had taken much of the region and driven deep into Egypt.

1.2. Nazis Begin to Persecute the Jews

1.2.1. Conquered nations suffered greatly under Nazi rule

1.2.2. After Hitler came to power, he passed laws that increasingly persecuted Jews and stripped them of their rights.

1.2.3. Hitler had long been obsessed with the “Jewish question”—how to rid Germany of Jews.

1.3. Allied Gains in North Africa and Italy

1.3.1. In November 1942, Allied forces made sea landings in Morocco and Algeria

1.3.2. American soldiers did their first fighting of the war in a series of battles in the winter of 1942–1943 in Tunisia.

1.4. The Allies Debate War Strategies

1.4.1. Invading occupied France was a possibility, because the French people would support such an invasion

1.4.2. The Italian army was fairly weak, and Italy would provide a good base for securing the rest of Europe

1.4.3. German army had a strong presence in France that would make such an invasion extremely difficult.

1.5. The Battle of Stalingrad

1.5.1. The decision to invade North Africa left the Soviet Union on its own.

1.5.2. Then, in November, the Soviet Red Army began a counterattack, sending its troops forward against the Nazi assault. In a few days, the Soviets had encircled the German troops.

1.5.3. Hitler insisted that his soldiers fight to the death

1.6. Allied Bombing Campaigns

1.6.1. Hitler’s losses in the Soviet Union left Germany with only one major source of oil—Romania

1.6.2. American pilots typically launched daytime raids.

1.6.3. British pilots relied mainly on saturation bombing, the rapid release of a large number of bombs over a wide area. They usually flew nighttime raids over enemy cities.

1.7. The Allies Liberate France

1.7.1. To meet that goal, Allies focused most of their resources in 1944 on an invasion of France. General Eisenhower directed the effort.

1.7.2. D-Day—the day the invasion began—came on June 6, 1944

1.7.3. In August, the Allies liberated Paris. In September, the first American troops crossed the French border into Germany.

1.8. The Horror of the Holocaust

1.8.1. The Nazis frantically tried to hide evidence of their concentration camps in Poland

1.8.2. Allied forces invading Germany from France stumbled upon concentration camps

1.8.3. The Nazis murdered 6 million Jews, or one-third of the world’s Jewish population. An existing word that means “sacrifice by fire”— holocaust—was capitalized to give a name to this terrible slaughter. The Holocaust was the systematic, state-sponsored, persecution and murder of Jews by the Nazis.

1.9. The War in Europe Ends

1.9.1. The Battle of the Bulge was the last German offensive on the western front

1.9.2. On May 8—Victory in Europe Day or V-E Day—the war in Europe officially ended.

2. The Road to World War

2.1. The Rise of Militarism in Japan

2.1.1. aggression: the practice of making unprovoked attacks or other military encroachments on the territory of another country

2.1.2. Japanese leaders began to believe that expansion through conquest would solve Japan’s economic problems. This belief moved Japan toward a policy of militarism

2.1.3. Japanese militarism was combined with extreme nationalism

2.2. Militarists Expand Japan’s Empire

2.2.1. When the League of Nations pressured Japan to return Manchuria to China, Japan refused and withdrew from the League. Instead, Japan turned Manchuria into an industrial and military base for its expansion into Asia.

2.2.2. More aggression followed as Japan grew stronger and the military gained control of its government.

2.2.3. By 1939, Japanese forces controlled most of northern and eastern China, including its main cities and industries. By 1941, Japan had added French Indochina to its Asian empire to go with Formosa (now called Taiwan), Korea, large areas of China, the southern half of Sakhalin Island, and several small Pacific islands.

2.3. Testing the League of Nations

2.3.1. Japan’s aggression tested the League of Nations

2.3.2. Throughout the 1930s, Germany and Italy also tested the League’s will.

2.3.3. In May 1936, Italy officially annexed Ethiopia. Hitler heartily approved of the invasion. In October, he and Mussolini joined in a treaty of friendship that forged an alliance, known as the Rome–Berlin axis, between their countries. Because of this alliance, Germany and Italy were called the Axis Powers.

2.4. Britain and France Appease Hitler

2.4.1. Hitler continued his campaign of expansion. During this time, Great Britain and France did little to stop him, choosing instead to follow a policy of appeasement.

2.4.2. appeasement: making concessions to an aggressor in order to avoid conflict

2.4.3. Munich Pact : a settlement reached in September 1938 in which Britain and France agreed to let Germany annex part of Czechoslovakia

2.5. U.S. Neutrality

2.5.1. Like Great Britain and France, the United States did little to thwart Japanese, German, and Italian aggression

2.5.2. embargo: a government order involving trade with another nation that forbids the buying or selling of something

2.5.3. isolationism : a policy of limiting a nation’s international relations so that it can exist in peace and harmony by itself in the world

3. The War in Asia 1942-1945

3.1. The Pacific War Begins

3.1.1. Japan’s string of victories in the Pacific hurt the Allies’ confidence. To boost morale, President Roosevelt asked for a strike on the Japanese home islands.

3.1.2. Although the surprise attack did little damage, it thrilled Americans as much as it shocked the Japanese. Japan reacted by putting more precious resources into defending the home islands.

3.1.3. The resulting Battle of the Coral Sea, in early May 1942, was fought entirely by carrier-based aircraft. It was the first naval battle in history in which the enemies’ warships never came within sight of each other.

3.2. The Allies Stop Japanese Expansion

3.2.1. U.S. naval forces would try to contain the Japanese by stopping their expansion in the Central and South Pacific.

3.3. The Allies Turn the Tide

3.3.1. American forces achieved this goal at the Battle of Midway in June 1942.

3.3.2. After the Battle of Midway, the Allies went on the offensive.

3.3.3. A tactic known as leapfrogging—bypassing or “jumping over” certain islands—allowed them to carry out this strategy with limited resources.

3.3.4. Despite the success of leapfrogging, many of the island invasions came at a terrible cost.

3.4. The Allies Push Toward Japan

3.4.1. The Allied push through the Pacific steadily shrank the defensive perimeter the Japanese had established around Japan. That perimeter disappeared after the Allies captured the key islands of Iwo Jima and Okinawa in early 1945.

3.5. Developing the First Nuclear Weapon

3.5.1. In 1939, German-born Jewish American scientist Albert Einstein had written to President Roosevelt explaining that scientists might be able to turn uranium into a new form of energy. That energy, he said, could be harnessed to build “extremely powerful bombs.”

3.5.2. Three years after Einstein sent his letter, the U.S. government established a top-secret program to develop an atomic weapon.

3.6. The U.S. Decides to Drop the Bomb

3.6.1. Truman now had to decide whether to drop an atomic bomb on Japan or to launch an invasion.

3.6.2. Three days later, the United States dropped a second bomb, wiping out the city of Nagasaki and instantly killing some 40,000 people.

3.6.3. The destruction of Nagasaki brought a Japanese surrender.

3.7. Two A-bombs End the War in the Pacific

3.7.1. On August 6, 1945, an American B-29 named Enola Gay dropped an atomic bomb on Hiroshima, Japan, a city of 300,000 people.

3.8. The Cost of World War II

3.8.1. As many as 60 million people died in World War II—about half of them civilians.

3.8.2. More than 20 million Europeans were made homeless by the fighting. The huge number of dead and homeless in China and the rest of Asia will probably never be known.

3.9. War Crimes Trials and Restructuring

3.9.1. Twelve defendants were condemned to death by hanging, seven received prison terms, and three were acquitted in the Nuremberg Trials. Other cases followed, including convictions of officials who ran concentration camps and doctors who carried out gruesome medical experiments on prisoners.

3.9.2. In October 1946, a separate court in Tokyo put 28 Japanese war criminals on trial. All were found guilty.

3.9.3. The Allies also set out to restructure Germany and Japan after the war.

3.9.4. After dissolving Japan’s empire and disbanding its military, the Allies worked to bring democracy to Japan.

4. The Return of War, 1939-1941

4.1. Germany Reduces the Soviet Threat

4.1.1. Hitler already planned to attack Poland and risk a general war in Europe.

4.1.2. However, Hitler needed the Soviet Union to remain neutral if Britain and France went to war.

4.1.3. Hitler and Soviet dictator Joseph Stalin signed a nonaggression treaty in August 1939.

4.2. The War Begins

4.2.1. With the Soviet Union neutralized, Hitler quickly sprang into action. On September 1, 1939, Hitler announced that Germany was annexing Danzig. As he spoke, German forces were invading Poland. Two days later, France and Britain declared war on Germany.

4.2.2. Hitler’s attack on Poland introduced a new kind of warfare—the Blitzkrieg, or “lightning war.”

4.2.3. By early October, all of Poland was under German or Soviet control.

4.2.4. Suddenly, in a series of lightning actions, Hitler struck.

4.2.5. Using Blitzkrieg tactics, a German army burst through Luxembourg and southern Belgium into France in just four days.

4.2.6. On June 22, France surrendered to Germany.

4.3. The Battle of Britain

4.3.1. The fall of France left Great Britain to face Hitler alone.

4.3.2. German planes flew thousands of air raids over Great Britain in the summer and fall of 1940.

4.3.3. In September 1940, Britain launched its first bombing raid on Berlin.

4.3.4. The British had successfully defended their homeland. Their victory raised hopes that Hitler could be stopped.

4.4. The United States Prepares for War

4.4.1. After the fall of France, the United States finally began to prepare for war.

4.4.2. In June 1941, Hitler broke his pact with Stalin by attacking the Soviet Union.

4.5. The United States Enters the War

4.5.1. While war raged in Europe, Japan continued its expansion in Asia.

4.5.2. Meanwhile, hoping to keep the United States out of the war, Hitler sought to expand his alliance.

4.5.3. Hitler hoped that the threat of a two-front war would ensure American neutrality for a while longer. However, events caused his Japanese allies to pursue different plans.

4.5.4. On December 7, 1941, Japanese aircraft carriers approached Hawaii, where the U.S. Pacific Fleet was anchored at Pearl Harbor. From these carriers, more than 300 bombers and fighter planes launched an attack on Pearl Harbor.