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World War II, or the Second World War (often abbreviated as WWII or WW2), was a global military conflict lasting from 1939 to 1945, which involved most of the world's nations, including all of the great powers, organized into two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis. It was the most widespread war in history, with more than 100 million military personnel mobilized. In a state of "total war," the major participants placed their entire economic, industrial, and scientific capabilities at the service of the war effort, erasing the distinction between civilian and military resources. Marked by significant action against civilians, including the Holocaust and the only use of nuclear weapons in warfare, it was the deadliest conflict in human history, that resulted in 50 million to over 70 million fatalities.

The war is generally accepted to have begun on 1 September 1939, with the invasion of Poland by Germany and subsequent declarations of war on Germany by France and most of the countries of the British Empire and Commonwealth. Germany set out to establish a large German empire in Europe. During 1939 to early 1941, in a series of successful military campaigns and political treaties, Germany conquered or politically subdued most of continental Europe apart from the Soviet Union. Britain and the Commonwealth remained the only major force continuing the fight against the Axis in the Mediterranean and in extensive naval warfare. In June 1941, the European Axis launched an invasion of the Soviet Union, giving a start to the largest land theater of war in history, which, from this moment on, was tying down the major part of the Axis military power. In December 1941, Japan, which had already been at war with China since 1937, and which aimed to establish a dominance over East Asia and Southeast Asia, attacked the United States and European possessions in the Pacific Ocean, quickly conquering a significant part of the region.

The Axis advance was stopped in 1942 after the defeat of Japan in a series of naval battles and after devastating defeats of European Axis troops in the Mediterranean and at Stalingrad. In 1943, with a series of German defeats in Eastern Europe, the Allied invasion of Italy and American victories in the Pacific the Axis had lost strategic initiative and passed to strategic retreat on all fronts.

In 1944, the Western Allies invaded France, whereas the Soviet Union regained all territorial losses and invaded the territory of Germany and its allies. The war in Europe ended with the capture of Berlin by Soviet troops and subsequent German unconditional surrender on 8 May 1945. By that time, the Japanese Navy was defeated by the United States, and invasion of the Japanese Archipelago ("Home Islands") became imminent.

The war ended with the total victory of the Allies over Germany and Japan in 1945. World War II left the political alignment and social structure of the world significantly altered. While the United Nations (UN) was established to foster international cooperation and prevent future conflicts (such as World War III), the Soviet Union and the United States emerged as rival superpowers, setting the stage for the Cold War, which would last for the next 46 years. Meanwhile, the influence of European great powers started to decline, while the decolonization of Asia and of Africa began. Most countries whose industries had been badly damaged began moving toward economic recovery and across the world political integration emerged in an effort to peacefully stabilize after-war relations.

On 3 September 1939 after Germany failed to withdraw in accordance with French and British demands, France and Britain, followed by the countries of the Commonwealth, declared war on Germany but provided little military support to Poland other than a small French attack into the Saarland. See the related links below for more information.

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Q: What was World War II all about?
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Why was World War 2 known as world war?

World War II was known as the Greatest war of All Time. Before World War II, World War I was called The Great War. When everybody realized world war II was greater they changed the names. CAUZ!

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Did world war begin in Europe?

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What is Civil War II?

There is no Civil War II. There is a World War II

Sonar in World War II?

Sonar was used in World War II

What century was World War II in?

World War II was in the 20th century

How do you abbreviate World War II?

World War II WWII WW2

How was the Cold War different from World War 1 and II?

World War I and World War II were fought with soldiers, but the Cold War wasn't.

What are the names of all the wars ever?

The Civil War, World War I, World War II, American Relotution for more wikipedia it.

When were the years of the World War II?

World War II lasted from 1939 to 1945.

Did Russia surrender in war world II?

No Russia did not surrender in world war II

How did the World War 1 impact the holocaust?

World War I created World War II; without World War II the Holocaust would not have happened.

What World War II all about?

Why was world war I the most destructive war?

World War I wasn't the most destructive war. World War II was. World War II had over eight times as many casualties as World War I and also brought total war to a whole new level. It completely put Europe in ruins, but World War II was definitely the war to end all wars. After that came the Cold War, which was just political disagreement with words thrown around.

After world war ii what did many soldiers do when they came home from the war?

All of these answers are correct

What was the bloodiest war in the world?

World War II

How large was Italy's empire after World War 2?

Italy lost all of its empire colonies in World War II.

When was World War II Online created?

World War II Online was created in 2001.

When did World War II Online happen?

World War II Online happened in 2001.

Was World War II good?

No war is good but World War II was actually necessary unlike the dumb Afghanistan war.

What are the ratings and certificates for All This and World War II - 1976?

All This and World War II - 1976 is rated/received certificates of: Iceland:L Netherlands:14 (Original rating) Sweden:15 USA:PG

What year did World War II end?

"World War II ended in the year of 1945."-14jakey

What is the duration of How I Unleashed World War II?

The duration of How I Unleashed World War II is 3.73 hours.