World War II

World War II
Images of WW2
From top left to bottom right: Commonwealth army in the desert; Japanese troops burying a Chinese person alive; A German submarine under attack; Soviet forces in the Eastern Front; Soviet troops fighting in Berlin; Japanese planes readying for take off from an aircraft carrier.
Date1 September 1939 – 2 September 1945 (6 years and 1 day)
LocationEurope, Pacific, Atlantic, South-East Asia, China, Middle East, Mediterranean and Africa
Result

Allied victory

Belligerents

Allies
United Kingdom United Kingdom
France France
Soviet Union Soviet Union (from 1941)
United States United States (from 1941)
Republic of China China (from 1937)

and more

Axis
 Germany
Japan Japan (from 1937)
Italy Italy (from 1940)

and more
Commanders and leaders

United Kingdom Winston Churchill
France Charles de Gaulle
Soviet Union Joseph Stalin
United States Franklin D. Roosevelt

Republic of China Chiang Kai-Shek

Nazi Germany Adolf Hitler
Empire of Japan Hirohito
Empire of Japan Hideki Tojo

Kingdom of Italy (1861–1946) Benito Mussolini
Casualties and losses

Military Dead::
Over 16,000,000
Civilian Dead:
Over 45,000,000
Total Dead:

Over 61,000,000

Military Dead:
Over 8,000,000
Civilian Dead:
Over 4,000,000
Total Dead:

Over 12,000,000

World War II (WWII or WW2), also called the Second World War and, in the Soviet Union, the Great Patriotic War, was a global war involving fighting in many parts of the world and many countries. Most countries fought 1939–1945 but some started fighting in 1937. Most of the world's countries, including all the great powers, fought as part of two military alliances: the Allies and the Axis Powers. World War II was the deadliest conflict in all of human history. It involved more countries, cost more money, and killed more people than any other war in human history.[1] Between 50 to 85 million people died.[2][3] The majority were civilians. It included massacres, the deliberate genocide of the Holocaust, strategic bombing, starvation, disease and the first use of nuclear weapons in history.

The war in Asia began when the Empire of Japan invaded China on 7 July 1937.[4] The United States reacted by placing an oil embargo on Japan. The start of the war in Europe was when Germany invaded Poland on 1 September 1939. France and Britain reacted by declaring war on Germany. By 1941, much of Europe was under German control. Only Britain remained fighting against the Axis in North Africa, the Mediterranean, and the Atlantic. In June 1941, the Axis Powers invaded the Soviet Union, starting the largest area of war in history. On December 7, 1941, Japan attacked Western colonies in the Pacific and the two wars became one.

The Japanese victories were stopped in 1942, and the European Axis victories were also stopped by 1943, both in North Africa and in the Soviet Union. After that, the Allies started to fight back from all sides. The Axis lost North Africa and, starting in 1943, were forced to defend Italy.[5] In 1944, the Allies invaded France, heading towards Germany on the Rhine River,[6] while the Soviets kept closing in from the East. Germany surrendered in May 1945. Japan formally surrendered on 2 September 1945. The war ended with the Allied victory.

After the war, the United Nations was set up to develop support between countries and to prevent future wars. The Cold War among the major winners soon started, but they did not fight each other in an actual war. Decolonization of Asia and Africa, where those countries controlled by European countries were given their independence, happened as well. This was because European power was weakened from the war. Economic recovery and the political integration (the process of uniting countries) were among other results of the war.

The two sides

The countries that joined the war were on one of two sides: the Axis and the Allies.

The Axis Powers at the start of the war were Germany, Italy and Japan. There were many meetings to create the alliance between these countries.[7][8][9][10] Finland, Slovakia, Romania, Bulgaria, Hungary, and Thailand joined the Axis later. As the war continued, some Axis countries changed to join the Allies instead.

The Allied Powers were the United Kingdom and some Commonwealth members, France, Poland, Yugoslavia, Greece, Belgium and China at the start of the war. In June 1941, Germany attacked the Soviet Union in Operation Barbarossa. In December 1941 came Japan's Attack on Pearl Harbor against the United States. These two large, powerful countries then joined the Allies.

Other Languages
Alemannisch: Zweiter Weltkrieg
Basa Banyumasan: Perang Donya II
беларуская (тарашкевіца)‎: Другая сусьветная вайна
Bislama: Wol Wo Tu
brezhoneg: Eil Brezel-bed
Chavacano de Zamboanga: Segunda Guerra Mundial
davvisámegiella: Nubbi máilmmisoahti
dolnoserbski: Druga swětowa wójna
emiliàn e rumagnòl: Secånda guèra mundièl
English: World War II
Esperanto: Dua mondmilito
estremeñu: II Guerra Mundial
Fiji Hindi: World War II
Gàidhlig: An Dàrna Cogadh
客家語/Hak-kâ-ngî: Thi-ngi-chhṳ Sṳ-kie Thai-chan
hornjoserbsce: Druha swětowa wójna
Bahasa Indonesia: Perang Dunia II
Basa Jawa: Perang Donya II
къарачай-малкъар: Экинчи дуния къазауат
لۊری شومالی: قی جھوٙنی دویوم
Lëtzebuergesch: Zweete Weltkrich
مازِرونی: جهونی جنگ دوم
Bahasa Melayu: Perang Dunia Kedua
Baso Minangkabau: Parang Dunia II
မြန်မာဘာသာ: ဒုတိယ ကမ္ဘာစစ်
Dorerin Naoero: Eaket Eb II
Nedersaksies: Tweede Wereldoorlog
नेपाल भाषा: तःहताः २
Nordfriisk: Naist Wäältkrich
norsk nynorsk: Andre verdskrigen
oʻzbekcha/ўзбекча: Ikkinchi jahon urushi
Patois: Wol Waar II
Plattdüütsch: Tweete Weltkrieg
qırımtatarca: Ekinci Cian cenki
Ripoarisch: Zweide Weltkresch
slovenščina: Druga svetovna vojna
српски / srpski: Други светски рат
srpskohrvatski / српскохрватски: Drugi svjetski rat
Basa Sunda: Perang Dunya II
Türkmençe: İkinji Jahan Urşy
ئۇيغۇرچە / Uyghurche: ئىككىنچى دۇنيا ئۇرۇشى
vepsän kel’: Toine mail'man soda
Volapük: Volakrig telid
žemaitėška: Ontra svieta vaina
Lingua Franca Nova: Gera Mundal Du