World War II 1939-1945 LIC. LAURA FLORES
In the spring of 1939 Hitler made new demands:
- That Danzing, plus a German railway and a highway route through the Polish Corridor, be returned to Germany
- Finally Britain and France ended their policy of appeasement and pledged to defend Poland if Hitler threatened its independence
Reasons why Hitler and Stalin signed a ten-year nonaggression pact:
- Hitler wanted to avoid a two-front war.
- Stalin wanted to gain territory
- In private they agreed to divide Eastern Europe.
- Soviet Union was to have Finland and the Baltic countries of Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia. Germany and Russia would each take over a part of Poland.
Hitler’s advantage for the agreement was clear:
- Germany need not to fear a two front war like the one it had faced in 1914
Germany invaded Poland
- August 31, 1939. Hitler needed an excuse for attacking Poland:
- A small band of German soldiers disguised themselves in Polish uniforms….
- The Poles he said had violated Germany’s borders…
- September 1 st 1939 German planes roared over Poland.
- In less than 48 hours the Germans wiped out the Polish air force, army, railroads, telegraph centers and factories…they were demoralized, stunned, defeated.
- Germans using the fast moving weapons of modern war, the armor tank and the airplanes, called their sudden massive attack “blitzkrieg”
France fell to the Nazis
- The German attack on France was similar to the beginning of WWI. The German army swung west around French defenses and struck through Belgium.
- Key difference between the two wars, German attack: “ German blitzkrieg”
- Two thirds of Northern France were occupied by Nazis, Petain’s government was to hold the southern part in the city of “Vichy”
German troops blitzed the West
- In May, 1941 Neville Chamberlain was forced to resign as prime minister, his successor was Winston Churchill
- who said: “there’s no quick road to victory,I have nothing to offer but blood and tears”
Germany attacked Great Britain
- In all of Europe, only one country still held out against Hitler, this country was Great Britain
- Germans prepared for “Operation Sea Lion”
- Hitler sent his “Luftwaffe”(bombers)
British secret weapons
- America aided the Allies. Roosevelt persuaded the Congress to allowed the sale of weapons to fighting nations
- US gave Britain 50 destroyers
Hitler invaded the Soviet Union
- Valuable mineral resources
- Germans conquered the Balkans, destroyed 1000 Soviet planes and the Red Army
- Hitler’s campaign turned into a disaster