World war 2 title image

Canada and World War II

By elina
  • Germany invades Poland

    Germany invades Poland
    The invasion of Poland starts on September 1, 1939. Germany defeated Poland’s defence within weeks. This attack was in violation of the nonaggression pact Hitler had signed with Poland in January 1934. However, prior to the invasion (in August), Germany had signed the German-Soviet Pact with the Soviet Union, which stated that Poland should be divided between the two powers (Germany and the Soviet Union). This led Germany to invade Poland without the Soviet Union interfering.
  • Britain declares war on Germany

    Britain declares war on Germany
    Britain declares war on Germany on September 3rd, 1939 along with France. The British ambassador in Berlin negotiated with Germany, saying that if Germany did not withdraw from Poland, Britain would declare war on Germany, which they did, since Germany had no plans of terminating their control over Poland.
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    The Phoney War

    In this period of time, there were no military activities by the Allies and the Germans. As the Allied forces waited at the French border, the Germans did not make any moves, beginning this hiatus in the impending war. This lengthy period even caused people to believe that there might not be a war after all. The Phoney War ended on May 10, 1940, when the German army marched into the Nethelands, Belgium, and Luxembourg.
  • Canada declares war on Germany

    Canada declares war on Germany
    Canada declares war on Germany after the consideration and approval of the Canadian Parliament and totally independent of Britain’s decision to go into the war. However, the declaration was confirmed after the royal assent from King George VI, on September 10th.
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    Evacuation at Dunkirk

    This was the evacuation of the Allied forces from the beaches of Dunkirk, France. They were surrounded by German forces at this port, cutting off other Allied troops. All kinds of boats--merchant ships, fishing boats, pleasure crafts--were rounded up in order to try and rescue as many soldiers as possible. They were quite successful, too, because by the end, they had rescued thousands of more soldiers than was initially anticipated.
  • France surrenders

    France surrenders
    Despite the mass rescue at Dunkirk, all together France was not successful in fending the Germans off. On June 22, 1940, France surrendered to Germany, as they were no match against the massive German forces.
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    The Blitz

    The German Luftwaffe started bombing harbours and shipping facilities in England, also targeting aircraft factories in order to weaken Britain's air force. By September, the Germans started bombing civilians, destroying many lives. After a while, though, it was becoming apparent that the British air force was not defeated. They had advanced radar system that warned them of any German raids, which helped them in defeating German attack strategies. By May 1941, Hitler gives up on the invasion.
  • Axis Alliances

    Axis Alliances
    Germany, Italy and Japan sign the Tripartite Pact, which is also known as the Axis alliance. This allowed the countries to help each other and share resources in times of need.
  • Operation Barbarossa

    Operation Barbarossa
    Operation Barbarossa was named so for the invasion of the USSR. This went against the non-agression pact made in 1939, but Hitler needed to conquer the USSR in order to go forth with his plan on building the German Empire. The Germans were able to push the Soviet troops deep into the USSR. However, they weren't prepared for the harsh Soviet winter, which caused a major failure in Hitler's plans.
  • Bombing of Pearl Harbour

    Bombing of Pearl Harbour
    The Japanese navy attacked the US naval base, which was at Pearl Harbour. This was done to prevent any American interference when the Japanese attacked Southeast Asia. After the attack, they also bombed the Philippines, along with other Southeast Asian countries.
  • Hong Kong falls to the Japanese

    Hong Kong falls to the Japanese
    Canadian troops were sent to Hong Kong only months before to fight the Japanese. Had Canada assessed the situation properly, they would've ruled it out as a suicide mission, therefore, preventing their troops to go to Hong Kong. 1975 Canadians were killed or taken prisoner. By Christmas Day, Hong Kong was fully under the control of the Japanese.
  • The Dieppe Raid

    The Dieppe Raid
    The Dieppe Raid was a test run for the Allies to test out their weapons, etc. At one point, however, one of the Allies ships met a German one unexpectedly, and the noise from the short battle warned the Germans on shore. Also, the soldiers who landed on the shore landed in daylight, even though they were supposed to have reached there before dawn. With the Germans already warned, it was quite a slaughter as the Canadians and the Allied forces had not expected things to go so terribly wrong.
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    Invasion of Italy

    As per PM Churchill's decision, the Allies decided to invade Italy and Sicily. The Canadians had participated inthe invasion of Sicily on July 10 of 1943. Perhaps the most lives lost was in Ortona, where 1372 soldiers lost their lives. This particular figh lasted a month before the Germans withdrew.
  • Allies take Rome

    Allies take Rome
    On this day, after a long fight, the Allies finally took over but the fighting in Italy did not end until almost a year later.
  • D-Day ("Operation Overload")

    D-Day ("Operation Overload")
    This was the Allies' full-scale invasion of Europe. Unlike the Dieppe Raid, this invasion was planned and rehearsed to the last detail. Over 30,000 Canadians arrived on Juno beach to fight the Germans. They were faced with many obstacles, including terraneous ones, but with the Germans' poor strategic moves, the Candians were able to overtake them. It was, however, only after weeks of fighting that the Allis got to advance inland throiugh France and Belgium, and towards Germany.
  • LIberation of the Netherlands

    LIberation of the Netherlands
    The Canadian forces began their attack on the Germans in Holland in the spring of 1945 (April). By the day before Liberation Day, the Germans had been completely surrounded. Noting that they could not win in their situation, they surrendered. The people of Holland were provided food and other necessities by the Canadians. May 5 is celebrated as Liberation Day, with the Canadians hailed as heroes.