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Trenton Lambeth US History Spring 2013 - WWII Timeline

  • Selective Services Act

    Selective Services Act
    On May 18 1917 Congress passed the selective service act. This created a draft that would call upon Men 18 and older to fight in war if congress declared a draft.
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    Benito Mussolini in Power in Italy

    Mussolini came to power in Italy in the same way as Hitler. He took the frustrations of the population and used them to take power. Mussolini set up a Fascist Government and began to build an Army. He did not make any real moves in World War II without the support of Hitler and Germany. The Germans were the driving force behind the Italian military and the tactical moves they made in Africa and the Mediterranean. The people of Italy literally beat Mussolini to death after Germany surrendered.
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    Joseph Stalin in Power in U.S.S.R.

    Stalin came to power in the Soviet Union after Lenin died. He originally wanted to remain neutral with Germany by signing the Non-Aggression Pact. When Hitler attacked the Soviet Union, Stalin Responded. The Germans had the Soviets on the defensive and Stalin implemented "Scorched Earth" tactics where Soviets would burn cities or before they let German forces take them. Russian forces defeated Germany at Stalingrad and turned the tide of War.
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    Emperor Hirohito in Power in Japan

    Emperor Hirohito came into power after emperor Taisho died. In Japanese culture at this time emporers were thought of as god's(This changed after the end of WWII). During WWII Hirohito didn't make many decisions, other than agreeing to the strategies and plans laid out by the experienced military leaders. After WWII the government of Japan created a new constitution and Hirohito was no longer the ruler of Japan, but instead a figure head for their newly created democracy.
  • Kellogg-Briand Pact

    Kellogg-Briand Pact
    On August 27 1928 the Kellog Briand Pact was signed .The Kellogg Briand Pact was an attempt to outlaw war by the U.S. and France. This was really more of a symbolic agreement, as there were no actual means established in the agreement that would prevent conflict.
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    Adolf Hitler in Power in Germany

    Hitler came to power in Germany (Weimar Republic) by taking advantage of the frustration that the German people had after WWI. Hitler convinced the population of Germany that they needed to expand and claim what they were entitled to as an arian race. Hitler wanted to establish what he called the Third Reich. The Third Reich translates to "The Third Kingdom" in German. Hitler set about building a massive army, and eventually began taking over europe.
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    U.S. Neutrality Acts

    The Neutrality Acts were orginally created by the U.S. They were an agreement to not lend weapons or money in some cases to warring countries. This stopped in 1941 when a U.S. destroyer was sunk by a German destroyer. From this point on we lended money and weapons to the Allies.
  • Munich Pact

    Munich Pact
    The Munich Pact was an agreement between the Germany and Britain to let Germany take part of Czechloslovakia that was inhabited almost completely by German speakers. Germany believed that it was reclaiming what already belonged to it. Britain felt that Germany's Demands were reasonable and the agreement would help maintain peace in Europe.
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    The Manhattan Project

    The Manhattan Project was an initiative started by the U.S. Government to create atomics weapons for use in World War II. The initiative to start the project was started by communications between Enrico Fermi, Albert Einstein and FDR. Robert Oppenheimer headed up the Project and successfully created multiple nuclear devices. These devices were tested in July of 1945 in New Mexico. From this point in the project these devices were downsized and made to fit inside of weapons.
  • Non-Aggresion Pact

    Non-Aggresion Pact
    The Non-Aggression Pact was an agreement that was signed between the Soviet Union and Germany that promised that either side would not attack the other for 10 years. This agreement was voided when Germany attacked Russia in June of 1941.
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    Helping the War Effort

    Many Americans did whatever they could to help the war effort. The Government encouraged people to buy War bonds or stock in the Government. The Government also wanted citizens to ration or conserve and recycle their goods so they could be used for the War instead. To keep up with production Women were encouraged to work producing supplies. This was made famous through the poster of "Rosie the Riveter". To maintain this the War Production Board was created to regulate the production of industry.
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    Civil Rights at Home during the War

    Under the administration of FDR the U.S. created internment camps to concentrate Japanese Americans. Fred Korematsu, a Japanese American, refused to go to an internment camp.This landed him in court faving off against the U.S. Government, he went to the supreme court and still lost his case. Ironically FDR said in 1941 that the U.S. was fighting the war because we believed in the "4 Freedoms "(Freedom of Speech,Religion, Want, Freedom from Fear) for every human being.
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    Winston Churchill is Prime Minister of Great Britain

    Winston Churchill replaced Neville Chamberlain as prime minister of Britain in 1940. Churchill opposed Chamberlain's actions while he was prime mininster. Churchill thought that signing the Munich Pact was a bad move on the part of Great Britain. Churchill made it clear as soon as he was in power that Germany was the clear enemy in the War. He was able to keep Britain strong during the war and the rebuilding process after.
  • Lend-Lease Act

    Lend-Lease Act
    The lend lease act was an agreement between the U.S. and Great Britain. The agreement let Britain have U.S. weapons only if they transported them. This was a smart move on the part of the U.S. as there was a large presence of German U-Boats in the atlantic at the time that targeted any Allied ships.
  • Attack on Pearl Harbor

    Attack on Pearl Harbor
    The Japanese Air Force attacked the Pearl Harbor in Hawaii on December 7 1941.This was the "Norfolk Naval Base" of its time. The U.S. had a large part of its fleet sitting in Pearl Harbor and when the Japanese attacked it almost completely crippled the U,S, Navy, This attack prompted the U.S. to join WWII. General Douglas Macarthur would head up an island hopping campaign for the U.S. to work its way to Japan island by island.
  • Womens Army Core created

    Womens Army Core created
    The Womens Army Core was created to fill the support roles in the Army during World War II. Women between 21 and 45 were allowed to join. These women went through an abreviated version of training and served both in the U.S. and in Europe and the Pacific. These women were either nurses, mechanics, trainers, or they were involved in some aspects of production. These women did not get close to combat.
  • Battle of Midway

    Battle of Midway
    The Battle of Midway was the turning point for the war in the Pacific. The island of Midway would serve as a launching point for U.S. Naval Forces. The Japanese had planned to surprise American forces by stationing a large amount of ships around Midway. The U.S. had decoded Japanese communications by this point in the War and Admiral Nimitz positioned his ships in waiting for the Japanese Navy. U.S. forces sunk several Japan ships and devasted the ground crews on the Island of Midway.
  • Battle of Stalingrad

    Battle of Stalingrad
    The German Army moved east into Russia in hopes of capturing the city of Stalingrad. This was a poor move on Germany's part as attacking the Soviet Union would bring about their downfall. The Russian Winters were tough on German Forces and they had to do their best to adapt. Fighting was close quarters and involved heavy casualties. Many German troops ended up starving or without supplies. The fighting lasted for months but German forces ended up surrendering.
  • Casablanca Conference

    Casablanca Conference
    The Casablanca Conference was a meeting between churchill and FDR to discuss what the Allied strategy would be on the Western Front. Both men came to the conclusion that the Allies should accept no less than unconditional surrender from Germany. FDR and Churchill talked about preparation for D-Day as well as strategic bombing in Europe. They also discussed easing the pressure on Russian forces by providing them with extra supplies.
  • Tehran Conference

    Tehran Conference
    During the Tehran Conference Churchill, Stalin and FDR all met to discuss the War. The Soviet Union promised the U.S. that it would help defeat Japan. Britain and the U.S. discussed the Invasion of Mainland Europe
  • Iwo Jima

    Iwo Jima
    The island of Iwo Jima was a key asset to American Naval Forces. It would offer a place for the new B-29 bombers to land after fire missions in the Pacific. The Island was assaulted by 3 divisions of Marines (My great uncle actually fought on Iwo Jima). More than 23,000 Japanese defended the Island. The amphibious assault went well for the Marines but there were thousands of Japanese Solidiers who had taken up position in the surrounding hills and mountains on the island.
  • D-Day (Operation Overlord)

    D-Day (Operation Overlord)
    D-Day was referred to as the "Invasion of Fortress Europe" by the allies. The operation is still to this day the largest amphibius assault in history. Hundreds of thousand of allied solidiers from America, Great Britain and Canada stromed the five beaches on the shores of Normandy France. The allies took massive casualties, but they successfully established a beach head and made it deep into France. This cost many lives but it signaled the beginning of the end of the war
  • G.I. Bill

    G.I. Bill
    The G.I. Bill offered a college scholarship to veterans. This way these men could come back to the U.S. and get a college education. The bill also offered low cost mortgages to veterans so they could purchase houses when they returned from War. This helped give veterans benefits as well as stimulate the economy after the War. Sadly benefits for Veterans from the G.I. Bill have decreased over time.
  • Battle of the Bulge

    Battle of the Bulge
    The German army made its last offensive into France at the end of 1944. The German Army had been known for their counterattacks , moving from Ardennes to Antwerp and surprising their enemies, they had done this same manuever in 1870 and in World War I. The Allies were able to stop German forces outside of the town of Bastogne. General Patton eventually drew German forces away from the city but the U.S. Army lost more than 100,000 men in the battle. This would be the last German offensive.
  • Battle of Okinawa

    Battle of Okinawa
    The largest battle of World War II in the Pacific was the Battle of Okinawa. U.S. forces faced more than 130,000 Japanese solidiers. Japan brought their largest Battleship the Yamamoto to the battle and several aircraft carriers. Like the battle of Iwo Jima, Japanese forces took up positions in caves and bunkers around the island. The Japanese lost more than 10,000 men while the U.S. lost a little over 7,000. The island would serve as a launching point for the potential invasion of Japan.
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    Germany After the War

    After the war was over in Germany, the Allies began to prosecute Nazi war criminals who were involved with illegal war activites such as genocide and crimes against humanity. Altogether only 13 trials were held, as many Nazi officials escaped beforehand. During this time the U.S. gave aid to cities such as Berlin who were devastated by the war.This was due in part of humanitarian efforts but also to win morale against the soviets who were attempting to occupy more land after the war.
  • V-E Day

    V-E Day
    This day marked the surrender of Germany and came to be known as V-E Day or Victory in Europe Day
  • Potsdam Conference

    Potsdam Conference
    The Postdam Conference was a meeting between the Allies during the closing days of WWII. The countries discussed what the conditions of surrender would be on the part of Germany. They also discussed immeidiate action against Japan.
  • First Atomic Bomb Dropped on Hiroshima, Japan

    First Atomic Bomb Dropped on Hiroshima, Japan
    The first atomic bomb came with a warning from the allies
    (Potsdam Declaration) "Surrender or face complete and utter destruction". Japan did not heed this warning, and the city of Hiroshima was annihilated. The first bomb "Little Boy" was a gun-type fission bomb, this bomb had a slighty smaller kiloton yield than the second bomb dropped "Fat Man", but it still killed thousands of civilians instantly in Hiroshima. It also left the city contaminated with radioactivty for years to come.
  • Second Atomic Bomb Dropped on Nagasaki,Japan

    Second Atomic Bomb Dropped on Nagasaki,Japan
    This was the second Atomic Bomb dropped on Japan. This bomb "Fat Man" like the bomb dropped on Hiroshima was dropped on a high population area for complete devastation and shock in hopes of scaring Japan into surrender,
  • V-J Day

    V-J Day
    This was the day that Japan Surrendered, known as Victory-Japan day or V-J day
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    The U.S. After the War

    The generation of Baby Boomers was created after the War, Solidiers came home and they started families. The economy was amazing at the time and for the first time America had a stable middle class. Homes were being built at an incredible rate as builders like the Levitt company modularized house building and created massive suburbs known as Levittowns. Just like in WWI many African Americans moved north for the Jobs in industry and to improve their quality of life.