AP Euro - WW2 Timeline Assignment

  • Rape of Nanking

    Rape of Nanking
    The Rape of Nanking was a horrific attack by the Japanese army on the Chinese city of Nanking and its civilians. Japanese troops were ruthless and determined to destroy the city to seek revenge for comrades lost earlier in the battle of Shanghai. They massacred entire Chinese families, including the elderly and infants, and tens of thousands of women and girls were brutally sexually assaulted. Nanking was left in ruins, and it would take decades for the city and its citizens to recover.
  • German Blitzkrieg

    German Blitzkrieg
    Blitzkrieg, or "lightning war," was a war tactic used at the beginning of the war by the Germans. This tactic required a heavy concentration of offensive weapons that Nazi soldiers would use to quickly conduct attacks to cause disorganization. Germans would penetrate enemy forces and then encircle them, forcing them to surrender. The strategy was successful at the beginning of the war, but over time the army was unable to repair military equipment fast enough for the quickly-paced tactic.
  • Germany's invasion of Poland

    Germany's invasion of Poland
    Germany staged an attack against a German radio station that they then used as reasoning to attack Poland on Sept. 1st. Germany and the Soviet Union signed a non-aggression pact and the Soviets invaded Poland from the East. The germans applied their new Blitzkeig war tactic and used their advanced military and machinery to defeat the outdated Polish army that lacked modern equipment. The invasion of Poland triggered the start of WW2 when Britain and France declared war on Germany.
  • Battle of Britain

    Battle of Britain
    The Battle of Britain was fought by the Nazi airforce, the Luftwaffe, and the British airforce, the RAF.After the initial attacks, the RAF bombed Berlin which led Hitler to order a bombing campaign known as “the Blitz” against major British cities.Eventually, the Luftwaffe grew weaker and couldn't keep up with the RAF's radar technology.It was the first major defeat of the war for Hitler, a turning point because Britain weakened the Luftwaffe and prevented Germany from achieving air superiority.
  • Operation Barbarossa

    Operation Barbarossa
    Operation Barbarossa was the codename for Germany's planned invasion of the Soviet Union. Hitler broke Germany's non-aggression pact with the Soviet Union when they attempted to expand territorial control into the Eastern front. Stalin refused to believe Hitler was launching an attack and Soviet troops were initially unprepared. The Germans underestimated the strength of the Soviets and they didn't prepare for the hush winter weather, which would ultimately lead to their defeat.
  • Pearl Harbor

    Pearl Harbor
    The surprise attack on Peal Harbor was conducted by the Japanese to destroy the Pacific fleet so that the U.S. wouldn't be able to interfere while Japan conquered land along the South Pacific. The Japanese failed to entirely destroy the fleet and left the base’s most vital onshore facilities, oil storage depots, repair shops, and submarine docks intact. Because of this, the U.S. was able to recover relatively quickly. The day after the attack the U.S. declared war on Japan and joined WW2.
  • Bataan Death March

    Bataan Death March
    The Bataan death march began when the American and Filipino defenders of the capital of the Philippines surrendered to the Japanese. The surrendered troops were rounded up and forced to brutally march 65 miles to prison camps where they received inhumane treatment by Japanese guards. During the march, captors starved and beat the marchers, and bayoneted those too weak to walk. An estimated 17,000 men perished during and after the Bataan Death March.
  • Battle of Midway

    Battle of Midway
    The battle of Midway began when four Japanese aircraft carriers attacked and severely damaged the U.S. base on Midway. U.S. troops at sea and on Midway forced the Japanese to abandon the battle and retreat and 4 Japanese aircraft carriers were destroyed. This was a critical victory for the U.S. because it stopped the growth of Japan in the Pacific and allowed the U.S. to begin shrinking the Japanese empire through a series of island-hopping invasions and larger naval battles.
  • Battle of Stalingrad

    Battle of Stalingrad
    The Battle of Stalingrad, between the Soviets and the Nazis, was one of the longest and bloodiest battles in modern warfare. Germany had been invading Russia towards Moscow, but Hitler re-routed the attack towards Stalingrad because of its industrial power and name. Russian forces were able to form a defensive ring around the city by late November and German troops eventually surrendered. The battle severely weakened the German army and marked the beginning of the victory for the Allied forces.
  • Operation Tidal Wave

    Operation Tidal Wave
    Operation Tidal Wave was an attempted air raid to bomb Ploiești, Germany, whose oil fields and refineries were crucial to Germany. The plan to avoid the German's radar was foiled when one bomber group flew in the wrong direction, forcing the others to break radio silence to direct them. The raid reduced Ploiești's capacity by 40%, although it was quickly repaired. Overall, the operation was considered unsuccessful due to the lack of damage it ensued and the high casualty rate of Allied soldiers.
  • D-Day (Normandy Invasion)

    D-Day (Normandy Invasion)
    D-Day, or Operation Overlord, was an allied invasion against Germany on the coast of Normandy France. Once the boat ramp went down, allied troops were to jump, swim, run, and crawl to the cliffs to breach enemy lines. Several factors stunted Hitler from sending more troops to the scene, which became an advantage for the Allies. By late August, Paris was liberated and the Germans were removed. The invasion was an extreme turning point as it marked the beginning of the end of the war.
  • Battle of the Bulge

    Battle of the Bulge
    Fought in Belgium, the Battle of the Bulge was Adolf Hitler’s last major offensive battle against the Western Front. It lasted six weeks and took place in frigid conditions that hindered U.S. troops. Hitler’s aim was that the German counter-attack would surround the allied armies and stall their offensive attack against Germany. The German troops’ failure to divide Britain, France, and America paved the way to victory for the allies by crippling the Nazi regime.
  • Liberation of Concentration Camps

    Liberation of Concentration Camps
    After the atrocious crimes that occurred in the concentration camps throughout WW2, the first concentration camp was liberated in the summer of 1944 as Soviet forces advanced westward. Six months later, Soviet troops liberated Auschwitz, one of the largest Nazi killing centers.The U.S., Soviet Union, and Britain all encountered horrific sights in the camps and their liberation of them revealed the unspeakable crimes the Nazis had been conducting on the Jewish population behind the scenes of war.
  • Battle of Iwo Jima

    Battle of Iwo Jima
    The Battle was between the U.S. Marines and the Imperial Army of Japan on the small island of Iwo Jima. The Japanese's new defensive tactic, where they hid in the mountains, surprised the U.S. upon arrival. Despite the attacks, U.S. troops were able to move past the beach and seize part of Iwo Jima’s airfields. The U.S. succeeded after five weeks and the battle symbolized how close the U.S. troops were to Japan. After this battle, America was one step away from obtaining a direct path to Japan.
  • Dropping of the Atomic Bombs

    Dropping of the Atomic Bombs
    The final step to end the war was the dropping of atomic bombs on the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. The operation was code-named "The Manhattan Project." President Truman had the option of dropping the bombs or invading Japan, which would have cost the lives of an estimated 1 million U.S. soldiers. Hiroshima was bombed first, and then Nagasaki days later when Japan failed to surrender. Japan surrendered on August 15th and there were over 200,000 deaths between the 2 cities.