TIMELINE: WORLD WAR II
This is not an inclusive list of events surrounding World War II. For a much more exhaustive list, see the
timeline at http://history.sandiego.edu/GEN/WW2Timeline/. But don’t get bogged down in every little
detail as you study for the exam. Focus instead on the things that lecture and the reading emphasized.
September 18, 1931:
Japan invades Manchuria under false pretenses.(Claimed the Chinese
blew up a Japanese-owned railroad. Japanese agents were themselves
January 30, 1933:
Hitler is appointed Chancellor in Germany
August 2, 1934:
Hitler consolidates his power and declares Germany the Third Reich.
December 12, 1937:
USS Panay sunk in attack by Japanese planes.
December 13, 1937
: Nanjing falls to Japanese;”Rape of Nanking” follows.
February 20, 1938:
Hitler announces support for Japan
May 12, 1938:
Austria is annexed by Germany in the Anschluss, or reunification of
German populations of the two nations.
November 9-10, 1938
Kristallnacht in Germany. Hundreds of synagogues are vandalized or
destroyed, thousands of Jews are attacked.
March 15, 1939:
Germany invades Czechoslavakia
July 26, 1939:
FDR terminates trade treaty with Japan, effective in 6 months
August 23, 1939:
Germany and the Soviet Union sign a non-aggression pact with
provisions for dividing Eastern Europe after the war.
September 1, 1939:
Germany Invades Poland
September 3, 1939:
After Germany refuses to withdraw from Poland, Great Britain and France
declare war against Germany
September 17, 1939:
The Soviet Union invades Poland from the east.
March 3, 1940:
Soviet Union invades Finland
April 9, 1940:
Germany invades Denmark and Norway; Denmark surrenders
April 10, 1940:
The UK and France make a surprise attack on the Germany Navy at the
First Battle of Narvik. A second attack follows three days later.
May 1, 1940: