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Events and Key Leaders
  
DKO -Speed Graphicby dok1 on Flickr

Germany invaded Poland on 1 September 1939. Britain and Australia then declared war on Germany. Australian troops fought against Germans and their Italian troops, mainly in North Africa, the Middle East and the Mediterranean Sea. Japan invaded South- East Asia to get a Empire which would supply oil, tin, and rubber, and other materials. After the attack on the U.S base at Pearl Harbor,  Hawaii, on 7 December 1941, the United States of America and Australia declared War. 
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A child watches the march, 1942by Australian War Memorial collection on Flickr

The Allies

Neville Chamberlain

Arthur Neville Chamberlain was born in Birmingham, England, on March 18, 1869.

Neville Chamberlain was Prime Minister of Great Britain in September 1939 at the start of World War II. In May 1940, after the terrible Norwegian campaign, Chamberlain resigned and Winston Churchill became prime minister.

Winston Churchill

Winston Churchill was born in Blenheim Palace, Woodstock, on 30th November, 1874.

Prime Minister of Great Britain during most of the war, from 1940 to 1945, Churchill led Britain to victory.

During the Battle of Britain, Churchill's speeches boosted the British spirits  during the darkest moments.

Joseph Stalin

Stalin was very mean leader of Russia (1928-1953). In the years before World War 2 Stalin murdered or imprisoned almost all of Russia's senior military officers, and millions of other Russian citizens.

F D Roosevelt

President of the United States of America (1933-1945). He declared war on Japan after the bombing at Pearl Harbor, but unfortunately he did not live long enough to celebrate the Allies' victory in September of 1945.

Harry Truman

Became president of the United States in the final year of World War II. He was very important in the war's final ending by making the decision to use a bomb against Japan.

Charles de Gaulle

A French general who led the French in their fight against Germany. After World War II, he became president of France.

William King

Prime minister of Canada joined World War 2 next to Great Britain when the war started.

Robert Menzies

Prime minister of Australia, joined World War 2 next to Great Britain when the war started.

Michael Savage

Prime minister of New Zealand joined World War 2 next to Great Britain when the war started.

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North American's P-51 Mustang Fighter is in service with Britain's Royal Air Force, N[orth] A[merican] Aviation, Inc., Inglewood, Calif. (LOC)by The Library of Congress on Flickr

All the countries in the world chose a side:


The Axis

  • German

  • Italy

  • Japan






The Allies

  • Australia

  • Belgium

  • Brazil

  • Canada

  • China

  • Czechoslovakia

  • Denmark

  • Estonia

  • France

  • Greece

  • India

  • Latvia

  • Lithuania

  • Malta

  • The Netherlands

  • New Zealand

  • Norway

  • Poland

  • South Africa

  • United Kingdom

  • United States

  • USSR

  • Yugoslavia


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Children inspecting a Japanese midget submarine, 1942by Australian War Memorial collection on Flickr

The Axis Power

Adolf Hitler

Adolf Hitler was born on April 20th 1889 in a small Austrian town called Braunau, near to the German border.

Hitler served in the Bavarian army during World War I and rose to become the leader of  Germany during World War II. Under his power, the  sought to make Germany the most powerful empire in the world and kill all they saw as inferior. He killed over 11 million people, the majority of them Jewish, but also including Roman Catholics, gypsies. As the war was ending, and it became clear that the Germans would not win, Hitler retreated to a bunker. 

Hideki Tojo

Prime minister of Japan October 1941 - July 1944.

Emperor Hirohito

Emperor of Japan

Benito Mussolini

Prime minister of Italy 1922-1943. He joined forces with Adolf Hitler to fight the Allied powers. Eventually, he was sacked as prime minister.

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Farewell, n.d., by Sam Hoodby State Library of New South Wales collection on Flickr

For almost six years from 1939 to 1945 Britain fought the toughest war it had ever experienced. World War II was total war - every person, every business, every service was involved.

Britain did not fight alone, the war also involved many countries. World War II involved 61 countries with 1.7 billion people.

Fifty million people lost their lives and hundreds of millions people were injured.


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