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World War Two

World War Two

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World War Two

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  1. World War Two 1939 to 1945

  2. Origins of the War • World War Two was caused by two linked but separate events: • 1) The Treaty of Versailles • 2) The Great Depression

  3. Hitler and the Nazi Party • The radical agenda of Lebensraum by Hitler and the Nazi Party brought a revolutionary power to the European state structure. • The efforts to accommodate Germany through appeasement would ultimately lead to the humiliation of Britain and France and war.

  4. Mussolini and Italy • Fascist ideas of war and the grandeur it brings to society led Mussolini to dream of a new Roman Empire centred on domination of the Mediterranean. • Italian ambitions clashed with France and Britain and Mussolini joined Germany.

  5. Japan and Asia • Japan’s search for raw materials led to expansion in China. • The weakness of the West due to the Depression opened the way for Japanese domination of the resources of the Far East.

  6. The Road to War In Europe • 1933 – Hitler becomes the Chancellor of Germany • 1934 – President Hindenburg dies, Hitler combines offices of Chancellor and President becoming the Führer • 1935 – Hitler announces massive German Rearmament plan, signs Anglo-German Naval Agreement to prevent an arms race with Britain.

  7. Road to War continued… • 1936 – Germans reoccupy the demilitarized Rhineland • 1937 – Hitler begins plans for German lebensraum in Eastern Europe. Lord Halifax gives Hitler the impression Britain will not intervene • 1938 – Hitler invades Austria and annexes the country; Hitler then calls for national self-determination for the Sudetenland in Czechoslovakia

  8. The Munich Agreement 1938 • Britain and France abandon Czechoslovakia hoping to avoid war with Hitler. • The defenders of democracy had become its betrayers. • The Munich Agreement is seen as the height and failure of Appeasement.

  9. The Nazi-Soviet Pact 1939 • Stalin secretly negotiated this agreement to avoid a possible war with Hitler. • Stalin hoped to gain valuable time to rebuild the Soviet military and space to protect against a German invasion. • Hitler secured himself from a two front war opening the way for war in Europe.

  10. Polish Guarantees and War • Following the complete take over of Czechoslovakia in 1939, Britain and France guaranteed the borders of Poland, Hungary and Rumania. • Hitler believed that Britain and France would not go to war over Poland and German preparations for invading Poland continued.

  11. Blitzkrieg and Sitzkrieg • On September 1, 1939, German forces crossed into Poland. • On September 3, 1939, Britain and France declared war on Germany. • Germany quickly overran Poland while Britain and France dug-in even though only a small German force was present in the West.

  12. Germany Strikes 1940 • German military action in the West began in April 1940 with the simultaneous invasions of Denmark and Norway. Denmark surrendered after 24 hours, Norway fought for six weeks. • On 10 May 1940, Hitler launched Operation Fall Gelb the invasion of the Low Countries and Northern France.

  13. Sedan and the Fall of France • Germans flanked the Maginot Line and broke through at Sedan. French resistance crumbled and the Allied armies were soon divided. • German soldiers advanced to the English Channel and began preparations to attack Paris. • On 22 June 1940 France surrendered.

  14. Dunkirk and the Battle of Britain • As France wavered and German armies advanced through northern France, the British Expeditionary Force retreated toward the sea. • The surrender of Belgium exposed the British flank and the retreat became a route as British and French forces withdrew toward Dunkirk. • Lasting from May 26 to June 4, 1940, 330,000 British and French soldiers were evacuated from the French coast. Hitler controlled western Europe.

  15. The Blitz 1940-1941 • From July 1940 to May 1941 the German Luftwaffe bombed British cities hoping to force Britain to surrender. • Starting as attacks on the RAF, the Blitz soon focused on London bombing the capital for 57 straight days. • By the end of the Blitz 43,000 British civilians had been killed.

  16. The Battle of the Atlantic • Beginning in 1939 and continuing throughout the war the Allies fought to supply goods and equipment to Britain by sea. • Germany attempted to counter Allied naval supremacy by using submarines to blockade Allied shipping to Britain. • The struggle would reach its highest intensity in

  17. Mussolini’s Adventures • As Germany overran France Italy declared war to gain a seat at the peace table. • Mussolini then set out to expand his empire in North Africa and the Balkans. • Italian troops were quickly routed at Beda Fomm and in the invasion of Greece.

  18. Subduing the Balkans • As Italian forces were being driven back in the Balkans, the Germans intervened and defeated the British and their Greek allies. Culminating with the invasion of Crete. • The Germans also overran Yugoslavia securing their southern flank before pushing the war to the east.

  19. Operation Barbarossa June 1941 • On 22 June Hitler launched an attack on the Soviet Union. • Hitler intended to conquer eastern Europe and take the resources needed for Germany. • Stalin was caught by complete surprise and Germany advanced deep into the USSR.

  20. The Battle of Moscow December 1941 • By December 1941 German Armies had advanced to the gates of Moscow. • German armies had also besieged Leningrad and taken nearly one-third of European Russia. • German troops lacked winter equipment and desperate Soviet counter attack would relieve Moscow.

  21. Japan and China 1937-1941 • In 1937 Japanese forces attacked Chinese troops in Manchuria beginning a prolonged war between the two. • Japan desiring the resources of China for industrial growth advanced further inland and by 1941 controlled virtually all of the Chinese coast. • Chinese efforts to combat the Japanese were hampered by a civil war between Chinese Communists led by Mao Tse Tung and Chinese Nationalists led by Jiang Jieshi.

  22. Pearl Harbour Dec. 7, 1941 • Following American trade embargoes on scrap iron and oil, Japanese leaders decided on a risky plan to attack the U.S. and create a Pacific empire. • On the morning of 7 December Japanese carrier aircraft attacked the US fleet in Pearl Harbour. • America and all of its resources now entered the war.

  23. Japan Strikes • Following the success of Pearl Harbour Japanese forces attacked European colonies and American bases across the Pacific. • Japanese forces overran Malaya and Singapore, secured the Dutch East Indies for oil and defeated American defenders on Guam, Wake Island and in the Philippines. Going so far as to threaten Australia and India.

  24. The Battle of the Coral Sea • At the Coral Sea and Japanese invasion force bound for Port Moresby on New Guinea was engaged stopped by American carrier based aircraft. • The Coral Sea was the first naval battle in which opposing forces never saw each other. The entire operation was fought by planes. • The Japanese withdrawal ended further advances toward Australia as each side looked for a knock out punch.

  25. The Battle of Midway 1942 • Midway turned the tide of the Pacific war against Japan. Japanese leaders planned to capture the small atoll in the Pacific as a western base. • American Naval signals had broken the JN 25 naval code and had advanced warnings of Japanese plans. • American carries Enterprise, Yorktown and Hornet located and sunk four Japanese fleet carriers turning the strategic advantage to the Allies.

  26. Battle of Guadalcanal 1943 • In August 1942 Allied forces attacked Japanese forces on the island of Guadalcanal. The battle would extend into February 1943. • A nearly completed airfield, renamed Henderson Field was the focus for much of the fighting. However, the battle saw nearly continuous operations on land, sea and air. • By November 1942 Japanese forces had been forced on the defensive and following starvation, high combat losses and supply problems Japanese troops withdrew in 7 February 1943.

  27. Turning the Tide 1942-1943 • Three battles represented the turning of the tide of the war against the Axis. The previously mentioned battle of Guadalcanal stopping Japan. • The Battle of Stalingrad, and the Second Battle of El Alamein both of which halted German successes in Europe and North Africa.

  28. Stalingrad – Death of an Army • By July 1942 German forces had reached the outskirts of Stalingrad on the Volga River. • For the next seven months German and Soviet soldiers would struggle over control of the city. • In December of 1942 Soviet troops would completely encircle the city cutting off the 6th Army. In February 1942 the Germans surrendered.

  29. 2nd Battle of El Alamein • This battle was Britain’s follow up to the tactical victory at the first El Alamein. • British troops of the 8th Army led by general Montgomery began a series of counter attacks culminating in the collapse of German resistance.

  30. Operation Torch 1943 • Operation Torch saw the beginning of Allied offensive operations against the Axis in Europe. • Anglo American troops attacked French North Africa while British troops advanced from Egypt forcing Italian and German troops from Africa.

  31. The Invasion of Sicily and Italy • Allied forces next struck at Sicily to secure communication and transportation routes through the Mediterranean. • After conquering Sicily Allied forces struck Italy and Mussolini’s government fell. Italy then surrendered to the Allies. • German troops raced to occupy Italy and its natural defensive terrain made this a long and costly campaign.

  32. Operation Overlord June 6, 1944 • Allied armies invaded Northwest Europe as part of the plan to defeat Germany. • The Allied beaches of Utah, Omaha, Gold, Sword and Juno saw five invasion forces attack Hitler’s Atlantic Wall. • The operation was a success and the liberation of Western Europe had begun.

  33. D-Day Continued

  34. The Battle of Kursk – 5 July 1943 • Operation Citadel was the final German offensive of the war on the Russian Front. • Hitler hoped to regain the advantage held before Stalingrad, but Kursk ended any hope of a German recovery.

  35. Soviet Advances from the East • From the summer of 1943 the Red Army held operational and strategic superiority over Germany. • Soviet forces would continue to push back the Germans “liberating” Eastern Europe bringing Soviet armies to Berlin in April 1945.

  36. The Battle of Berlin – April-May 1945 • Soviet forces began the battle for Berlin on April 16. • Russian armies completely encircled the city on April 25 and Hitler committed suicide April 30. • Berlin surrendered May 2nd.

  37. Victory in Europe • On May 8, 1945 Germany surrendered unconditionally to the allies. The war in Europe was over. • The end of the war revealed the full extent of the Holocaust and the destruction of modern warfare.

  38. Island Hopping Campaign • Beginning in 1943 U.S. and Allied forces began the island hopping campaign the Pacific. • Allied naval forces would bypass Japanese island strong points and capture lightly defended islands to the rear cutting off supplies.

  39. Battle of the Philippines • The U.S. under the leadership of Douglas MacArthur attacked the Japanese occupied Philippines. • The invasion of the Philippines destroyed the remnants of the Japanese navy, and fulfilled MacArthur’s promise to return.

  40. Battles of Iwo Jima and Okinawa • U.S. attacks on these islands centred on taking bases for the American air attacks on Japan. • Japanese resistance on both islands was fanatical and Japanese soldier and civilians committed suicide rather than surrender to the Americans.

  41. Battles of Kohima and Imphal • In March 1944 Japanese forces attacked the British in India. • The battles lasted nearly five months and initial Japanese attacks turned into a route as British and Indian forces drove the Japanese back.

  42. Operation Olympic • Olympic was the proposed invasion of the Japanese home islands. • Fanatical resistance at Iwo Jima and Okinawa convinced American planners that casualties would likely top 1 million and double that for Japan. • American leaders looked for other ways to end the war.

  43. Hiroshima and Nagasaki

  44. Victory in the Pacific • On 15 August 1945 Japan accepted Allied terms for unconditional surrender. • On 2 September 1945 Japanese delegates signed the surrender documents in Tokyo Bay on USS Missouri. • World War Two was over having killed between 55 and 70 million people.