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By Brie328
  • Benito Mussolini's Fascist Government in Italy

    Mussolini formed a totalitarian regime in Italy, where unemployment & inflation produced bitter strikes, some communist-led. Alarmed by the threats, the middle & upper classes demanded stronger leadership. Mussolini took advantage of this situation & since he was a powerful speaker, he knew how to appeal to Italy’s wounded national pride. He played on the fears of economic collapse & communism. In this way, he won the support of many discontented Italians.
  • Mein Kampf

    Hitler set forth the basic beliefs of Nazism that became the plan of action for the Nazi Party in his book. He dreamed of uniting all German-speaking people in a great German empire.
  • Japanese Invasion of Manchuria

    Ignoring the protests of more moderate Japanese officials, the militarists launched a surprise attack and seized control of the Chinese province of Manchuria. Within several months, Japanese troops controlled the entire province, a large region about twice the size of Texas, that was rich in natural resources.
  • Adolf Hitler's Rise to Power in Germany

    Hitler followed a path to power similar to Mussolini’s. At the end of World War I, Hitler had been a jobless soldier drifting around Germany. He proved to be such a powerful public speaker and organizer that he quickly became the party’s leader, & he promised to bring Germany out of chaos.
  • Storm Troopers

    There were about 6 million Germans were unemployed. Many men who were out of work joined Hitler’s private army, or also known as Brown Shirts.
  • Third Reich

    Hitler was appointed chancellor (prime minister). Once in power, he quickly dismantled Germany’s democratic Weimar Republic, & in its place he established the Third Reich, or Third German Empire. According to Hitler, the Third Reich would be a “Thousand-Year Reich”, meaning it would last for a thousand years.
  • Hitler's Military Build-Up in Germany

    The failure of the League of Nations to take action against Japan did not escape the notice of Europe’s dictators. In 1933, Hitler pulled Germany out of the League. Hitler began a military buildup in violation of the Treaty of Versailles.
  • Mussolini"s Invasion of Ethiopia

    Meanwhile, Mussolini began building his new Roman
    Empire, & his first target was Ethiopia. By the fall, tens of thousands of Italian soldiers stood ready to advance on Ethiopia. When the invasion began, however, the League’s response was an ineffective economic boycott, which was no more than a slap on Italy’s wrist.
  • Hitler Invades the Rhineland

    A year later, Hitler sent troops into the Rhineland, a German region bordering France and Belgium that was demilitarized as a result of the Treaty of Versailles. The League did nothing to stop Hitler.
  • Francisco Franco

    He led a group of Spanish army officers to rebel against the Spanish republic. Revolts broke out all over Spain, and the Spanish Civil War began. The war aroused passions not only in Spain but throughout the world. About 3,000 Americans formed the Abraham
    Lincoln Battalion and traveled to Spain to fight against
  • Hitler's Anschluss

    Austria was Hitler’s first target. Paris Peace Conference following World War I had created the relatively small nation of Austria out of what was left of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. German troops marched into Austria unopposed. A day later, Germany announced that its Anschluss, or “union,” with Austria was complete. The United States and the rest of the world did nothing.
  • Munich Agreement

    Hitler invited French premier Édouard Daladier and British prime minister Neville Chamberlain to meet with him in Munich. When they arrived, the führer declared that the annexation of the Sudetenland would be his “last territorial demand.” In their eagerness to avoid war, Daladier and Chamberlain chose to believe him. On September 30, they signed the Munich Agreement, which turned the Sudetenland over to Germany without a single shot being fired.
  • Joseph Stalin's Totalitarian Government in the Soviet Union

    Stalin firmly established a totalitarian government that tried to exert complete control over its citizens. In a totalitarian state, individuals have no rights, and the government suppresses all opposition.
  • Rome-Berlin Axis

    The war forged a close relationship between the German and Italian dictators, who signed a formal alliance known as the Rome-Berlin Axis.
  • Blitzkrieg

    The German air force, roared over Poland, raining bombs on military bases, airfields, railroads, and cities. At the same time, German tanks raced across the Polish countryside, spreading terror and confusion. This invasion was the first test of Germany’s newest military strategy, the blitzkrieg, or lightning war.
  • Nonaggression Pact

    As tensions rose over Poland, Stalin surprised everyone by signing a Nonaggression Pact with Hitler. Once bitter enemies, on fascist Germany and communist Russia now committed never to attack each other. Germany and the Soviet Union also signed a second, secret pact, agreeing to divide Poland between them.
  • Britain & France Declare War on Germany

    Two days following the terror in Poland, Britain and France declared war on Germany. The blitzkrieg tactics worked perfectly. Major fighting was over in three weeks, long before France, Britain, and their allies could mount a defense.
  • The Phony War

    For the next several months after the fall of Poland, French and British troops on the Maginot Line sat staring into Germany, waiting for something to happen. On the Siegfried Line a few miles away German troops stared back. The blitzkrieg had given way to what the Germans called the sitzkrieg, and what some newspapers referred to as the phony war.
  • Hitler's Invasion of Denmark & Norway

    Hitler launched a surprise invasion of Denmark and Norway in order “to protect [those countries’] freedom and independence.” But in truth, Hitler planned to build bases along the coasts to strike at Great Britain.
  • Hitler's Invasion of the Netherlands

    After the invasion of Denmark & Norway, Hitler turned against the Netherlands, Belgium, and Luxembourg, which were overrun by the end of May. The phony war had ended.
  • Germany & Italy's Invasion of France

    France’s Maginot Line proved to be ineffective, so Hitler’s generals sent their tanks through the Ardennes, a region of wooded ravines in northeast France, thereby avoiding British and French troops who thought the Ardennes were impassable. The Germans continued to march toward Paris.
  • Marshal Philippe Petain

    Compiègne, as William Shirer and the rest of the world watched, Hitler handed French officers his terms of surrender. Germans would occupy the northern part of France, and a Nazi-controlled puppet government, headed by Marshal Philippe Pétain, would be set up at Vichy, in southern France.
  • The Battle of Britain

    Germans began to assemble an invasion fleet along the French coast. Because its naval power could not compete with that of Britain, Germany also launched an air war at the same time. The Luftwaffe began making bombing runs over Britain. Its goal was to gain total control of the skies by destroying Britain’s Royal Air Force (RAF).
  • Pearl Harbor Attack

    A Japanese dive-bomber swooped low over Pearl Harbor. The bomber was followed by more than 180 Japanese warplanes launched from six aircraft carriers. In Washington, the mood ranged from outrage to panic.