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WWII Axis Advances


While Germany attacked from the west, the Soviets attacked from the east. ... Germany occupied N. France. ... 3 days later, Germany and Italy declared war on U.S. ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: WWII Axis Advances

WWII- Axis Advances
  • Ch 31.2

  • (Sept 1939) Hitlers blitzkrieg, or lightning
    war stormed into Poland.
  • While Germany attacked from the west, the Soviets
    attacked from the east.
  • Poland no longer existed after a month.
  • Stalins army seized Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia,
    and part of Finland.
  • French forces hunkered down behind the Maginot
    Line, which was a defensive wall that was built
    after WWI to prevent another invasion by Germany.
  • This quiet time of wait was dubbed the phony
  • Hitler launched a blitzkrieg against Norway,
    Denmark, Netherlands and Belgium, seized them all.

  • (May 1940) German forced poured into France and
    Allied forces retreated, but were trapped with
    the English Channel at their backs.
  • Miracle at Dunkirk- British sent every available
    vessel to pluck troops off the beaches of Dunkirk
    and Ostend.
  • 300,000 soldiers were ferried to safety.
  • German forces headed south towards Paris.
  • Italy sensed victory, declared war, and attacked
    from the south.
  • France surrendered and was forced to sign the
    documents in the same railroad car in which
    Germany had signed the armistice of WWI.

  • Germany occupied N. France. In the south,
    Germans set up a puppet state, with its capital
    at Vichy. Known as Vichy France.
  • Charles de Gaulle and some other French
    officers/politicians escaped to Britain and set
    up a government-in-exile. They worked to
    liberate their homeland.

The Battle of Britain
  • Hitler turned blitzkrieg towards Britain next.
  • Winston Churchill was the Prime Minister and
    rallied the British for the challenge
  • We shall defend our island, whatever the cost
    may be. We shall fight on the beaches, we shall
    fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in
    the fields and in the streets, we shall fight on
    the hills, we shall never surrender.
  • Due to his defiance, Hitler ordered Operation Sea
    Lionthe invasion of Britain.
  • Hitler sent in the Luftwaffe.

  • The smaller Royal Air Force (RAF) fought
    valiantly for a month, flying missions in their
    spitfire planes one after another with few hours
  • Radar and sonar had been invented recently and
    the British were first ones to use it.
  • Enemy planes were detected at a distance of 140
    miles. The British were rarely surprised.
  • The London Blitz- Hitler switched tactics and
    bombed the island for 57 nights in a row.
  • Much of the city was destroyed, but British
    morale was not crushed.
  • Meanwhile, Mussolini sent forces from Italys N.
    African colony of Libya into Egypt.
  • Hitler sent General Erwin Rommel, the Desert
    Fox, into N. Africa as well.

  • Rommel forced British troops backwards and he
    dominated the area for 2 years.
  • Due to Britains resilience, Hitler abandoned
    Operation Sea Lion and decided to attack the
    Soviet Union in Operation Barbarossa.
  • He wanted the rich resources there and to crush
  • The blitzkrieg of three million troops caught
    Stalin off-guard, his army still suffering from
    the Great Purge.
  • The Russians lost 2.5 million soldiers and
    Germans were poised to take Moscow and Leningrad,
    conquering the USSR.
  • However, just like Napoleons Grand Army in 1812,
    Hitler wasnt prepared for General Winter (-20

  • A two and half year Siege of Leningrad began as
    people there starved trying to defend their city.
  • Many ate wallpaper and leather.
  • Stalin is desperate and urged Churchill to open
    up a second front on the west. Churchill said he
  • Isolationalist policy remained strong in the U.S.
  • President FDR created the Lend-Lease Act to get
    around the Neutrality Acts so they could provide
    aid to Britain.
  • (Aug 1941) Roosevelt and Churchill met secretly
    on a warship and issued the Atlantic Charter
    which set goals for the final destruction of the
    Nazi tyranny.

Pearl Harbor
  • Back in 1940, Japan advanced into Indonesia.
  • To stop this aggression, the U.S. banned the sale
    of war materials, such as iron, steel, and oil.
  • Japan and the U.S. held talks to ease the
    tensions but extreme militarist and
    ultranationalist Premier Tojo Hideki did not want
  • (Dec. 7, 1941) Japan attacked a U.S. fleet at
    Pearl Harbor, Hawaii.
  • Japanese planes damaged or destroyed 19 ships,
    ground-swatted U.S. planes, and killed 2400

  • U.S. declared war on Japan. 3 days later,
    Germany and Italy declared war on U.S.
  • European and American possession/colonies in the
    Pacific fell one by one to the Japanese.
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