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Neville Chamberlain

Prime minister of Great Britain; believed Hitler's promises for NO MORE demands; believed that it meant peace

Adolf Hitler

Became dictator of Germany; believed that Germans belonged to an Aryan race that was superior to all others; had a plan for Germany to become a great nation


Part of Germany but it was supposed to be a demilitarized area b/c of Treaty of Versailles

Invasion of Rhineland

Hitler sent German troops into Rhineland, believing that the Western states wouldn't enforce the rules from the Treaty of Versailles!


Not allowed to have soldiers or weapons in a certain area (Rhineland)


A policy that was based on the belief that if the European states satisfied the reasonable demands of the countries who weren't satisfied, those countries would be content and they would obtain peace

Benito Mussolini

Dictator of Italy who had been wanting to create a new Roman Empire; therefore, he invaded Ethiopia Oct 1935; he welcomed the support of Hitler.

Rome- Berlin Axis

Alliance between Germany and Italy (Hitler and Mussolini) because of the dictators' common political interests


A union; Hitler desired to bring Austria into German control and unify the two countries

German advance in Austria

Hitler forced the chancellor to allow Austrian Nazis to control the government by threatening an invasion; the Nazis welcomed German troops to "help out" and soon Austria was in Germany control


An area in northwestern Czechoslovakia b/c it was inhabited mostly by Germans; expressed his willingness to risk world war to reach his objective

Munich Conference

British, French, German, and Italian representatives abandoned their allies (Czechoslovakia) by not objecting Hitler's plans to go into Sudetenland; Hitler promised he wouldn't make any more demands

Bohemia and Moravia-March 1939

Hitler was not satisfied, so he invaded Bohemia and Moravia in western Czechoslovakia, and then declared he would be the greatest German of all; then he started demanding a Polish port, and Great Britain and France offered to support Poland, but they knew they would need help from the Soviet Union, so they tried to make an alliance

Joseph Stalin

Dictator of the Soviet Union

Nazi-Soviet Nonaggression Pact-Aug 23, 1939

Hitler feared the West would make an alliance w/ Soviet Union, so he persuaded Stalin (with territorial promises) to sign this, which said that the two countries wouldn't attack each other; however, he was using the SU to invade Poland, and then he planned to attack

September 1, 1939

Date Hitler invaded Poland, b/c he now had an "alliance" with the SU


Was called Manchuria; Chinese owned, but the Japanese seized it; when the League of Nations objected, Japan withdrew from the group, and renamed it Manchukuo

Chiang Kai-shek

Leader of China; considered the communists the greater threat over the Japanese; allowed Japan to govern parts of northern China to keep them happy; when they advanced, he sent military forces but when they were defeated, he moved his government eastward


Restrictions intended to enforce national law


"lightning war"; used armored columns supported by airplanes

April 9, 1940

Date Hitler resumed the attack with another Blitzkrieg on Denmark and Norway

Ardennes Forest

May 10, Hitler attacked the Netherlands, Belgium, and France through Luxembourg and this forest; when French were defeated here, Hitler advanced and trapped Allied forces at the beach of Dunkirk

Franklin D. Roosevelt

President of US during WWII; believed the acts to keep the US isolated and neutral were only increasing Axis aggression, so he wanted the acts repealed.

Neutrality Acts

Passed in 1930s to prevent the US from taking sides and getting involved in the war; they didn't want a repeat of WWI (dragged into it); Roosevelt believed the acts were only increasing Axis aggression, so he wanted them repealed.

Battle of Britain

In Aug 1940, Hitler launched a major offensive with Great Britain with the air force by bombing; British fought back and bombed Berlin; in return Hitler started bombing cities, in hopes to stop the British retaliation, but British were able to rebuild military, and Hitler postponed invasion.

June 22, 1941

Date Hitler attacked Soviet Union so they couldn't help the British and believed they would be easily defeated; made advances, but an early winter and fierce resistance stopped them, b/c they weren't prepared for winter

December 7, 1941

Date Japan attacked Pearl Harbor, hoping the neutral acts would make them step back and give Japan the upper-hand in the pacific, but Americans were angry so they entered the war with the Allied Powers; Hitler, feeling that he could do damage in Europe while the US was busy in the Pacific, declared war on the US four days later

Grand Alliance

name of the alliance of the Allied Powers when the US entered the war; 3 major powers: US, Great Britain, and Soviet Union


German forces under General Erwin Rommel in North Africa; broke through British defenses in Egypt, then the Germans were stopped

Erwin Rommel

General of the Afrika Korps

El Alamein

Place in North Africa where German troops were stopped by the British and made to retreat across the desert; with US help, soon German and Italian forces were made to surrender


Place that Hitler wanted to conquer for resources (industrial city) and while he was advancing, the Soviets launched a counterattack and they battled Nov 1942-Feb 2, 1943; the Germans were stopped and Hitler realized they couldn't defeat the Soviet Union

Battle of Midway

US planes destroyed attacking Japanese aircraft carriers and defeated the Japanese navy

Douglas MacArthur

US general who commanded the operation that would move into the Philippines through New Guinea and the South Pacific Islands

Victor Emmanuel III

King of Italy; arrested Mussolini after the fall of Sicily; the government offered to surrender to the allies

June 6, 1944 D-Day

When allied forces under General Dwight Eisenhower landed on the Normandy beaches in France


year The Allied forces with US troops advanced from the beaches of Normandy to Paris, where they liberated the city at the end of August

Winston Churchill

Great Britain's wartime leader

Harry Truman

President of the United States at the end of WWII; took over after Roosevelt died in April; decided to use bombs on Japan to avoid invading Japan


was shot by Italian resistance fighters and then hung by American soldiers

April 30, 1945

date Hitler committed suicide, 2 days after Mussolini's death

Battle of Iwo Jima

A major battle where the US fought for and captured the island of Iwo Jima from Japan; had to capture 3 airfields on Iwo Jima

Heinrich Himmler

Leader of the SS ( German secret police); was put in charge of resettlement plans in the east


Physical extermination


Special strike forces created by Reinhard Heydrich (given the task of administering the Final Solution) to carry out the Nazi plans


The largest extermination center for Jews located in Poland

6 million

Jews killed by Hitler in the Holocaust

9-10 million

non-Jewish people killed by Hitler (Roma people and leaders of Slavic states)

3-4 million

soviet prisoners-of-war for Germany

4 million

Poles, Ukrainians, and Belorussians killed by Hitler

Baatan Death March

Forced transfer by the Japanese of 76,000 American and Filipino prisoners of war after the Battle of Baatan in the Philippines; 128 km march characterized by physical abuse and murder


The act of assembling and preparing for war


Young Japanese volunteer suicide pilots in missions against US fighting ships

General Hideki Tojo

Prime minister from 1941-1944 opposed of female employment in the war


A place that was bombed by the British from Feb 13 to Feb 15 1945; the bomb created a firestorm that killed as many as a hundred thousand people

Atomic bomb

a bomb that involves splitting an atom; first created during WWII

Cold War

A period of political tensions between the Soviet Union and the United States; was to dominate world affairs

Tehran Conference

Where Stalin, Roosevelt, and Churchill met in Nov 1943 to decide the future course of the war; it was decided to attack France through Normandy

Yalta Conference

The Big Three Powers met again in Feb 1945; discussed how the territory in eastern Europe would be spread and how the governments would be; Roosevelt asked Stalin for help with Japan and agreed to Stalin's price (territory of Japan)

Potsdam Conference

Began in mistrust in July 1945; Roosevelt had died, so Truman went in his place and demanded free election in Eastern Europe; Stalin didn't like it because he wanted to secure Communism in the surrounding states

Nuremburg War

In Germany in 1945 and 1946; condemned Nazi leaders as war criminals

Iron Curtain

Churchill had said that an 'iron curtain' had come down and divided Europe into 2 hostile camps; the world seemed to be divided over political issues ( Communism vs. Democracy)


aggressive nationalism that places the nation as more important than the individual.

National German Workers' Party

real name for the Nazi party

Neutrality Act of 1935

the act made it illegal to sell arms to any country at war.

Francisco Franco

Led the1936 rebellion in Spain where the Soviets sent arms and advisors for the resistors, while Germany and Italy sent tanks, airplanes, and soldiers to help him

Japan, Italy, and Germany

Became the Axis Powers after the Anti-Comintern Pact

Maginot Line

French line of concrete bunkers and fortifications that France hoped would protect them from Germany.

Route taken for Hitler to get to France

tried to surround the Maginot Line by going through Belgium, Luxembourg, and the Netherlands

June 14, 1940

date the German army entered Paris


Germans captured all of France but this port city, and when they were about to capture it, but Hitler told them to stop

Rhineland, Austria, Sudentenland, Poland, Norway, Denmark, Belgium, Netherlands, Luxembourg, and France

Countries Germany controlled by 1940

Zoot Suit Riots

A series of riots in L.A. California during WW2, soldiers stationed in the city and Mexican youths because of the zoot suits they wore.

Rosie the Riviter

name given to a fictitious woman who served as a patriotoc woman who helped the war effort by working in factories.


term used for American soliders in WWII, derived from the term "Government Issue"

Liberty Ships

large, sturdy merchant ships that usually carried supplies or troops, but were sometimes converted to hospital ships

Bracero Program

Wartime agreement between the United States and Mexico to import farm workers to meet a perceived manpower shortage; the agreement was in effect from 1941 to 1947.

Victory Gardens

Gardens that citizens planted to raise their own vegetables, so that food could be sent to the troops.

Office of Price Administration

WWII Office that installs price controls on essential items to prevent inflation

Korematsu vs. U.S.

a 1944 Supreme Court decision that upheld as constitutional the internment of more than 100,000 Americans of Japanese descent in enampments during WW2.

Scrap Drives

World War II, collected tin cans, metal, rubber to make into bullets, tanks, airplanes


Taking items that are in short supply and distributing them according to a system. For instance, during World War II, gas, sugar, and butter were a few of the items rationed in the United States.

August 6, 1945

Atomic bomb was dropped on Hiroshima

August 9, 1945

Atomic bomb was dropped on Nagasaki

Manhattan Project

code name for the secret United States project set up in 1942 to develop atomic bombs for use in World War II

May 7, 1945

Victory in Europe Day

Divine Wind

literal translation of kamikaze, the Japanese suicide pilots who destroyed Allied ships

United Nations

an organization of independent states formed in 1945 to promote international peace and security

Executive Order 8802

In 1941 FDR passed it which prohibited discriminatory employment practices by fed agencies and all unions and companies engaged in war related work. It established the Fair Employment Practices Commission to enforce the new policy.

Blue Points, Red Points

Color coded coupons in one color controlled processed foods. Another color coupons controlled meats, fats, and oils. Other coupons controlled items such as coffee and sugar.

Britain, U.S., France, China, USSR

Five permanment members of the United Nations Security Council

Mein Kampf

'My Struggle' by Hitler, later became the basic book of nazi goals and ideology, reflected obsession

Why England Slept

John F. Kennedy's thesis at Harvard. Stated that "To ensure peace, you must prepare for war." Criticized appeasment strategy pursued in WW2. Kennedy said Chamberlain appeared weak and Hilter would pursue his goals if we don't stop him


the German Air Force before and during World War II


the airforce of Great Britain

Operation Canned Goods

German propoganda resulting in invasion of Poland, and triggering WWII


smallest element of the military with approximately 10 soldiers, commanded by a Sergeant


this element of the military has approximately 40 soldiers and is commanded by a Lieutenant


this element of the military has 100 soldiers and is commanded by a Captain


this element of the military has approximately 2,000 soldiers and is commanded by a Brigadier General

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