After the worldwide Great Depression, all across the world, millions of individuals had lost their jobs, and there was a need for strong leadership.
In 1933, Germany saw Adolf Hitler rise to dictator power. Hitler was blaming the Jews for all of Germany’s great problems.
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And Nazi soldiers started to arrest numerous Jews and send them to horrible prisons. In Italy, Germany’s ally, dictator Mussolini was a powerful man. They formed the “Axis Powers.”
Britain, France, and Poland then formed the western Allied Powers, and in the year 1939, Hitler started to invade Poland. The Western Allies then decided to declare war on Hitler Germany. And this meant: The Second World War had begun. When the war started, most Americans were against fighting, one more time, in Europe.
America Goes to War
Japan decided to join the Axis Powers in 1940 as Japan wanted an expansion of its empire across Asia. Then in 1941, Pearl Harbor in Hawaii was attacked by Japan to destroy the US Navy fleet that was stationed there.
Thousands of American service members and civilians died, and the United States couldn’t do anything but declare war on Japan.
America joined the forces of the Allied Powers, and subsequently, the Axis Powers were declaring war on the U.S. Many young American men were joining the military, and now, most Americans were in support of the war.
Americans were buying state-issued war bonds, and many women were working in factories. Many Americans could be seen collecting metal for the production of war supplies.
Still, there were also Americans who feared that Japanese Americans might help Japan, and the U.S. government locked up tens of thousands of Americans of Japanese descent to live in so-called internment camps.
Fighting the War
World War II was mostly fought in Europe, the Pacific, and North Africa. In May of 1945, Germany was finally forced to surrender, and in August of that year, America released two horrific atomic bombs on the Japanese cities of Nagasaki and Hiroshima.
The bomb that was deployed on Hiroshima had killed some 102,000 people, and Japan surrendered. Finally, World War II had come to an end.
When WW II was over, Allied troops discovered that the German Nazis had been forcing millions of Jews from Europe and other minority people into their “concentration camps,” where, in total, more than 12 million individuals perished in the camps’ gas chambers.
Over six million of these Nazi victims were Jews. We refer to this Nazi mass murder as the Holocaust.