February 15, 2023
For educational institutions
⟶ Updated 19 Oct 2018 ⟶
List of edits
Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union sign a nonaggression agreement and a secret codicil dividing eastern Europe into spheres of influence.
Germany invades Poland, initiating World War II in Europe.
Honoring their guarantee of Poland’s borders, Great Britain and France declare war on Germany.
The Soviet Union invades Poland from the east.
Italy enters the war
Italy invades southern France on June 21.
The Italians invade British-controlled Egypt from Italian-controlled Libya.
Germany, Italy, and Japan sign the Tripartite Pact.
Japan bombs Pearl Harbor.
The United States declares war on Japan, entering World War II.
British and US navies halt the Japanese naval advance in the central Pacific at Midway.
British troops defeat the Germans and Italians at El Alamein in Egypt, sending the Axis forces in chaotic retreat across Libya to the eastern border of Tunisia.
US and British troops land at several points on the beaches of Algeria and Morocco in French North Africa.
Axis forces in Tunisia surrender to the Allies, ending the North African campaign.
US and British troops land on Sicily. By mid-August, the Allies control Sicily.
The Fascist Grand Council deposes Benito Mussolini, enabling Italian marshal Pietro Badoglio to form a new government.
Allied troops land on the beaches of Salerno near Naples.
Soviet troops liberate Kiev.
Allied troops liberate Rome. Within six weeks, Anglo-American bombers could hit targets in eastern Germany for the first time.
British and US troops successfully land on the Normandy beaches of France, opening a “Second Front” against the Germans.
The Soviets launch a massive offensive in eastern Belorussia (Belarus), destroying the German Army Group Center and driving westward to the Vistula River across from Warsaw in central Poland by August 1.
Anglo-American forces break out of the Normandy beachhead and race eastward towards Paris.
US troops land in the Philippines.
The Germans launch a final offensive in the west, known as the Battle of the Bulge, in an attempt to re-conquer Belgium and split the Allied forces along the German border. By January 1, 1945, the Germans are in retreat.
The Soviets launch their final offensive, encircling Berlin.
Hitler commits suicide.
Germany surrenders to the western Allies.
Germany surrenders to the Soviets.
Allied troops conquer Okinawa, the last island stop before the Japanese islands.
The United States drops an atomic bomb on Hiroshima.
The Soviet Union declares war on Japan and invades Manchuria.
The United States drops an atomic bomb on Nagasaki.
Having agreed in principle to unconditional surrender on August 14, 1945, Japan formally surrenders, ending World War II.
The Soviet Union invades Finland, initiating the so-called Winter War. The Finns sue for an armistice and have to cede the northern shores of Lake Lagoda and the small Finnish coastline on the Arctic Sea to the Soviet Union.
Germany invades Denmark and Norway. Denmark surrenders on the day of the attack; Norway holds out until June 9.
Germany attacks western Europe—France and the neutral Low Countries. On June 22, France signs an armistice agreement. In southern France, a collaborationist regime with its capital in Vichy is established.
The Soviet Union occupies the Baltic States on June 14–18, engineering Communist coup d’états in each of them on July 14–15, and then annexing them as Soviet Republics on August 3–6.
The air war known as the Battle of Britain ends in defeat for Nazi Germany.
The Germans send the Afrika Korps to North Africa to reinforce the faltering Italians.
Nazi Germany and its Axis partners (except Bulgaria) invade the Soviet Union
Nazi Germany and its Axis partners declare war on the United States.
September 1942 Germany and her Axis partners launch a new offensive in the Soviet Union. German troops fight their way into Stalingrad.
US troops halt the Japanese island-hopping advance towards Australia at Guadalcanal in the Solomon Islands.
Soviet troops counterattack, breaking through the Hungarian and Romanian lines northwest and southwest of Stalingrad and trapping the German Sixth Army in the city.
Allied troops reach Paris.
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