Canada and World War 2

  • Causes of War

    Causes of War
    Hitler and other fascist dictators had gradually come into power in the years following World War One. They ruled through fear, and generally made aggressive actions towards other countries. Hitler, in particular, became Chancellor of Germany in 1933, and he rebuilt the German economy and military, in direct defiance of the Treaty of Versailles.
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    World War 2

    World War 2
  • Causes, Part 2

    Causes, Part 2
    Trying to prevent another war, England and France resorted to a policy of appeasement, by allowing Germany to invade several small countries, but their inaction only made Hitler bolder. Meanwhile, the League of Nations was totally failing at preserving world peace. The League lacked a military to back up its decisions, so warrring countries such as Japan and Italy were free to attack other countries. As a result of this inaction, Japan went to war with China, and Italy attacked African colonies.
  • Canada's Response to the Threat of War

    Canada's Response to the Threat of War
    Canada became very isolationist in the years leading up to World War Two, staying out of all international affairs that did not deal with Canada’s interests. The Liberal government did not want another war and supported Britain's policy of appeasement. Canada was just coming out of the depression at this time, and the government did not want the country plunged back into wartime debt.
  • Jewish immigrants to Canada

    Jewish immigrants to Canada
    The Canadian government discouraged any non-Caucasian immigrants from entering the country prior to World War 2, in fear that they would take jobs usually reserved for native Canadians. This policy included people of Jewish descent, and the government even went so far as to refuse a boatload of Jewish refugees from Europe after they had arrived in Canada. This ship ultimately sailed back to Germany, ending in the death of most onboard. Canada still remained isolationist befroe WW2.
  • In the Beginning

    In the Beginning
    When Britain went to war in September 1939, Canada remained neutral. This displayed Canada’s newfound right to declare war independently of Britain. One week later, the Canadian Parliament voted overwhelmingly in favour of going to war. However, Canada was unprepared for war, as it only had a small, underequipped army and a pitiful air force.
  • Canadian Training Programs

    Canadian Training Programs
    The population of Canada wasquite resistant to the idea of another war, as many still remembered the horrors of World War One. Also, the Canadian government wanted to avoid the conscription crisis that had divided the country years earlier, so the Government instead sent a decreased volume of soldiers to the front, but agreed to host the British Commonwealth Air Training Plan to train pilots for war. The federal government also became more involved in the economy, creating munitions for war.
  • Axis Advances, Part One

    Axis Advances, Part One
    From September 1939 to early 1940, there was a stalemate on the French-German border. The German army delayed its attack, lending Allied troops into a false sense of security. However, the Germans soon struck home with full force in their blitzkrieg, or ‘lighting war’. With this new tactic, the Germans easily overran the Allied armies on the Western Front, and surrounded the bulk of the British army in the small seaport of Dunkirk.
  • Dunkirk Evacuation and the Fall of France

    Dunkirk Evacuation and the Fall of France
    Thanks to a large force of civilian fishing boats and pleasure craft, the entire British army escaped Dunkirk to fight another day. However, with the British army evacuated, there was nothing barring the French capital from the Germans. On June 22nd, 1940, France officially surrendered to the Germans. This left only the British Commonwealth standing alone against the massive German war machine.
  • The Desert War

    The Desert War
    North Africa was a front that had been simmering since the beginning of the war. Italian troops were attacking European colonies in the region, and Commonwealth forces were fighting them every step of the way. By December 1940, the Commonwealth troops had almost wiped out the Italian soldiers, when Hitler sent German reinforcements, which he hoped that could win the battle against English troops in Africa quickly, but instead the conflict turned into a stalemate that ended in an Allied victory.
  • Operation Barbarossa

    Operation Barbarossa
    Hitler decided to attack the Soviet Union, a country which he had signed a non-aggression pact with years earlier. The Germans had the advantage of surprise, but the Soviets had winter. The bitterly cold Soviet winter froze the German army in its tracks, mere kilometres from Moscow. Since the Germans had violated the non-aggression pact, the Soviets fought back with a vengeance, joining forces with the Allies and attacking Germany from the east.
  • The Battle of Britain

    The Battle of Britain
    The German war machine now set its sights directly on the British Isles, in order to defeat Britain like it had France. However, the country that had stood against the armies of Napoleon himself would prove to be a tough battle for the German armies. Hitler hoped to destroy the British Royal Air Force, or RAF, that Canada had helped to train. However, the RAF managed to defeat Hitler’s more numerous Luftwaffe in the pivotal Battle of Britain, which proved that Hitler could not defeat the English
  • Crimes Against Humanity

    Crimes Against Humanity
    During what was later referred to as the Holocaust, Nazi Germany began a genocide of Jewish, Roma, and Slav peoples. People were rounded up that fit, or rather didn’t fit, the qualifications, dictated by Hitler (Nazi leader), and they were sent to concentration camps. Around elven million people were killed. During the Nureberg Trials twelve Nazi leaders were sentenced to death-the first time that leaders of a country were charged for immoral acts during wartime.
  • Crimes Against Humanity 2

    Crimes Against Humanity 2
    Similar sentences were handed out to overseers of Japanese POW (prisoner of war) camps; they were found guilty and charged for crimes against humanity.
  • War in the Pacific

    War in the Pacific
    The Japanese wanted to expand their territory in the 1930’s and in 1941, America was the target. On December 7, 1941, Japan did a surprise attack on the US Naval Base in Pearl Harbor, on the island of Hawaii. 2400 people were killed and most of the American fleet was destroyed by the bombs dropped by the Japanese planes and the Philippines were also bombed after. Thus after Japan’s allies, Germany and Italy declared war on US, which started the Second World War.
  • The War in the Pacific

    The War in the Pacific
    Japan, an Axis power, fought a number of battles to gain territory in the South Pacific Ocean, even willing to invade European and American colonies in its quest for more resources. Knowing that the Americans were nothing to be trifled with, Japan executed a lightning-quick pre-emptive attack against the American military base in Hawaii, Pearl Harbour. America, shocked by the attacks, entered the war on the side of the Allies, turning this conflict into a true world war.
  • The Tide Turns

    The Tide Turns
    With the aid of the Americans and the Soviet Union joined with the Allies, the tide was turning and favouring less and less Germany. In 1942 the Dieppe Raid, led by Canada in an attempt to test equipment and scout, thousands were brutally mowed down by the Germans. The Dieppe Raid was a huge failure but it taught the Allies (and the Germans) how better to attack in the future. PM Churchill (of England) decided the best way to recapture Europe was through the soft “underbelly” of Italy.
  • The Tide Turns 2

    The Tide Turns 2
    Italian and German troops were fought in two main battles, the Battle of Sicily, and the Battle of Ortona. The Battle of Sicily was won by the Allies and lead to the downfall of Mussonlini, the fascist Italian dictator. The Battle of Ortona ended once again with an Ally win, due to a retreat on the German lines.
  • Canada’s Contributions

    Canada’s Contributions
    Canadians contributed to the war in all fronts. Later on Canada expanded its Navy and Air Force and went to help the Allies. The Battle of the Atlantic was an example of this, as Canada’s aid was much needed because of food and military supplies. As the war went on the German ships were destroying the Allies ships, but gradually the situation changed because Canada came to help. Due to the German U-boats destroying hundreds of supply ships, and sinking millions of tonnes of cargo. In response
  • The War at Home

    The War at Home
    Back at home in Canada women were preforming jobs that were normally reserved for their male counterparts. Loads of goods were being produced to help the war effort; this meant people had tones of money in their pockets. The problem was that all the goods were sent to Europe, so there was nothing for people to spend their new found wealth on. Inflation was going to become huge –soon- so PM King enacted the following.
  • The War at Home 2

    The War at Home 2
    Income tax was increased, wages and prices were froze, and food rationing was introduced. With the new strength of the Nazis, Canada now faced the issue of conscription as a plethora of new troops were needed to combat Germany. Canada had a vote on the matter, and voted in favour of conscription. The French-Canadians, however, were strongly opposed to the idea, creating tension between French and English Canadians.
  • D-Day

    On June 6th/1944, the Allies launched a full-scale invasion of Europe called “Operation Overload”, which was called D-Day. The allies started the attack by landing their troops on 5 beaches along an 80km stretch of the Normandy coast, all code named Sword, Juno, Gold, Utah, and Omaha. The troops had massive support, both air and naval. Paratroopers were being dropped, and targets were bombed on the beaches, the invasions were successful. The Germans didn’t know where they were going to attack, t
  • Change in Canada

    Change in Canada
    Changes in Canada came to be after and during wartime. Some of the changes include how the Federal governments Wartime prices and Trade Board were established. It controlled wages so that striking would be less effective. Workers also wanted higher wages, but also wanted to bargain. Later on, in 1945, Mackenzie King expanded Canada’s social assistance by introducing the Family Allowence program, which helped families cover the cost of child maintenance. So Canada’s policy of ‘cradle to grave’
  • Hiroshima and Nagasaki

    Hiroshima and Nagasaki
    On August 6th, 1945, the Japanese city, Hiroshima, was bombed by the Americans. The bomb used was something brand new and its extreme power was not yet known to the world. The Atom Bomb, as it was called, decimated the entire city killing tens of thousands. Three days later another atom bomb was dropped on the neighbouring town of Nagasaki, Japan surrendered on August 14th, 1945.