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WWII Vocab

Nazi Party
D: National Socialist Party. Most popular in Germany, the party was led by Adolf Hitler. The country became aggressive while they were run by the Nazi Party.
S: The Nazi party gained power during the chaos of the Great Depression. Because of the Nazi Party, Germany became an authoritarian country, with Hitler calling every shot. Hitler even called himself the greatest German of all.

Appeasement
Definition: Neville Chamberlain (British prime minister) wanted to keep peace, so he used this policy and simply gave in to all of Hitler’s demands
Significance: This allowed Hitler to take over Czechoslovakia and allowed the Nazi’s to get a stronger hold in Europe.

Blitzkrieg
D: The Battle of the Bulge was a major battle in the European theater of WWII fought in the winter of 1944-1945 in which the Nazi armies launched an offensive against the Allies in Belgium but lost.

S: The Nazi loss in the Battle of the Bulge sealed the Third Reich’s fate– the Allies were free to invade Germany, causing its downfall.

Vichy
Definition – French collaborationist government established in 1940 in southern France following defeat of French armies by the Germans.

Neville Chamberlain
1) British prime minister from 1937 to 1940. He created the appeasement policy, and granted Hitler the land that he demanded. He led England through the first eight months of World War 2.

2) His creation of the appeasement policy is his best known trait, and is one of the most significant events preceding World War 2.

Winston Churchill
6. Winston Churchill: New prime minister of Great Britian during WWII.

Sig: Led Britian to a vitcory at the Battle of Britian with his constant work to create a superior air force and technology.

Dwight Eisenhower
1.Dwight D. Eisenhower was the 34th President of the United States of America, and also the Supreme Commander of the Allied forces in World War II. 2. Eisenhower masterminded Operation Overlord, and it could be said that his bold move in executing Operation Overlord would win the war for the Allies.

Erwin Rommel
1) By mid-1940, Hitler controlled most of Europe (as a continent) and the Mediterranean; however, the Germans had not defeated Britain. The Germans expanded into Africa, with the intent to sieze the suez canal and cut Britain off from their empire in Asia. Erwin Rommel was the commander of these motorized offensives.
2) His advance in Africa was halted in the Battle of Tunis, which prevented Britain from being cut off from their Asian empire, which would have prolonged the war.

Nonaggression Pact
Def: Pact created between Hitler and Stalin in August 1939; allowed Hitler to not fight a two front war like in WWI. Military emissaries of the two dictators negotiated a division of the smaller states that separated their empires, and Stalin swallowed short-term losses to prepare the Soviet Union for the invasion that was observed as inevitable. The pact was designed to last for ten years, but only last two because of Germany’s invasion of the Soviet Union in 1941. Stalin agreed that the USSR will not step in when Germany invades Poland and fight with the Western countries.
Sig: Hitler used the Pact to buy time to prepare the way on the main target, the Soviet Union, and to avoid fighting a two front war (with the West and USSR). This pact caused the USSR to join the war because of Germany’s surprise attack of in 1941 that violated the pact.

Franklin Roosevelt
The 32nd President of the United States who led America from the Great Depression era through World War II before his death in 1945.

Sig: Roosevelt proposed the New Deal to America, which created jobs, ultimately digging America out of its Depression. After Pearl Harbor, FDR entered World War II, transported thousands of troops, and had significantly helped the Allied side towards victory. Played a major role in the Yalta conference where he proposed ideas of self-determination and contributed to the foundation for the conflict between the USSR and the US leading to the Cold War.

Manchukuo/Manchuria
1. Manchuria is an area located in northern China, and was often fought over with the Japanese, before and during World War II, who wanted complete control of it. In 1931, the Japanese seized the territory and renamed it “Manchukou” claiming it an independent state. From Manchukuo, they launched an attack into China, and were able to gain power over the majority of the country.
2. The significance of Manchukuo/Manchuria is that the Japanese invaded China, or more specifically Manchuria in the early 1930s, yet World War II formally began in 1939. Many historians claim the beginnings of the Second World War started when Japan exerted their power and aggression on nearby countries, but it is considered a “regional war”. Therefore, before the war in Europe had truly began, China and Japan, two of the worlds leading countries, were locked in a viscous war over eastern Asia, yet the attack in China is not considered part of World War II.

Battle of Britain
Def: This was Hitler’s effort to control the airspace over south Britain and the English Cannel by destroying British aircrafts and bombing British cities.
Sig: Winston Churchill made a speech to parliment to heighten British nationalism. Also, Germany didn’t succeed.

Holocaust
1. The mass extermination plan (“final solution”) for Jews and other socio-ethnic groups, such as Romas and gays, considered by Hitler to dilute the purity of the Aryan (German) race in World War Two. The systematic process of death was apparent in the many concentration camps designed to destroy utterly the above-mentioned people. At a guess, around six million Jews were killed.
2. The Holocaust remains the example of mass genocide to date with six million Jews and a total death toll of 11-17 million. The destruction of the Jewish culture also meant much immigration of the surviving Jews to areas such as the United States and the establishment of a Jewish homeland, Israel.

Battle of the Bulge
1. This was a battle in the winter of 1944-1945 between the Germans and Allied forces on the western front. 2. This war was one of the last before the surrender of Germany. It was Hitler’s last effort to repel the invadined forces. It was the single largest bloodiest battle American forces experienced, with 19,000 deaths.

Battle of Stalingrad
Definition: Was the unsuccessful attack on the Russian city of Stalingrad by the Germans during 1942-1943.
Significance: Stalingrad, and the battle that took place there, was the farthest spot that Nazi troops ever got to in Russia. The Russians were able to hold of the Germans and then gradually push them back, starting the downfall of the Nazis.

Pearl Harbor
1) This is an American naval base located in the Hawaiian islands which was target for a Japanese air raid.
2) This is significant because it was the place of many deaths and the attack prompted the US to join the war.

Battle of Coral Sea
D:The Battle of Coral Sea was a battle between the United States and Japanese forces in the Pacific between their respective naval and air forces, that resulted in a standoff between the two sides 6 months later.

S:Although the battle resulted in a standoff between the Japanese and American forces, it set the stage for the Battle of Midway Island, in which the American forces began to gain the upper hand in the Pacific theater.

Battle of Midway Island
DEFINITION The Battle of Midway Island was fought a month after the Battle of Coral Sea. The Japanese were attempting to invade Midway Island and were attacked by the US fleet sent there to stop them. In the battle, the Japanese fleet of carriers was all sunk and the Japanese were forced to turn back. It was SIGNIFICANT because it was the decisive turning point in the Pacific War as the Allies won basically all of the battles in the Pacific after it. The Japanese also lost all of their carriers which was a devastating blow to their navy.

Hiroshima & Nagasaki
D: Hiroshima and Nagasaki are two Japanese cities upon which the united States dropped atomic bombs in the summer of 1945.
S: The atomic bombs caused unprecedented death and destruction in Japan, forcing the Japanese to surrender, and bringing about the end of World War II quickly.

United Nations
1) An organization that was an attempt to unite all people post-WWII, and represent all countries equally, even newly freed colonies that had historically been dominated by the West. At the beginning, the Axis powers were not included, but they became involved later. This was different from the League of Nations because it represented more people and the United States of America joined as well.
2) The United Nations was extremely involved in world affairs and mediation between countries after World War Two. Sometimes, the United Nations did not effectively resolve disputes (as in Palestine), but other times, they were extremely key in negotiations and discussion. Also, they have made many strides in women’s rights and the environment.

Tehran Conference
It was a meeting in 1943 among the leaders of the USA, Britain, and the Soviet Union. It was significant because it resulted in the opening of a new front in France.

Yalta Conference
1. Second post-WWII conference which occurred in the Soviet Crimea in early 1945.
2. During this conference the US gave the Soviet Union land in Manchuria and the northern Japanese islands; Britain, the US and the Soviet Union divided Germany into four zones, and France got a zone.

Potsdam Conference
D: Meeting in 1945 between the United States, Britain, and the Soviet Union. The meeting was meant to discuss how the new Germany would be split up; Allies took control of the western half, while the Soviet Union controlled the eastern half.
S: A buffer zone was created as well so that the Soviet Union would not become exposed to Western ideas. Also, East Germany became communist, with a lone pocket of democracy in Berlin.

Total War
Definition – Warfare of the 20th century; vast resources and emotional commitments of belligerent nations were marshaled to support military effort; resulted from impact of industrialization on the military effort reflecting technological innovation and organizational capacity
Significance – Was used in WWII, caused many casualties and also helped bring the world out of the Great Depression

Atlantic Charter
1. The Atlantic Charter of 1941 was an alliance agreement between the United States and Britain, which was established during World War II.
2. This agreement was significant because it included a clause, which stated that all people have the right to choose the form of government under which they live. This alliance also helped Britain in their quest to stave of Nazi forces.

Muslim League
D: A league created in 1906 to support Muslims’ demands for a separate Muslim state (aka Pakistan) upon British decolonization of Hindu-dominated India.

S: The creation and increasing support for the League demonstrated the tension within the nationalist movement in India between Hindus and Muslims; this tension led to the establishment of Pakistan and violence between the two religions.

Mahammad Ali Jinnah
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Jomo Kenyatta
1. The leader of the nonviolent nationalist party of Kenya, Kenyatta also organized the Kenya Africa Union (KAU). The association failed to win concessions in freedom owing to resistance from white settlers. After the suppression of the Land Freedom Army (Mau Mau), Kenyatta rose to power.
2. The leader of the nationalist party of Kenya and the organizer of the KAU, he was also elected as Prime Minister and the President of Kenya. He is considered the founding father of Kenya.

Kwame Nkrumah
1. He was an influential leader in Africa, after WWII, that supported the liberation of Africa. He established the Convention Peoples Party and was the leader of indpendent Ghana. He signaled the arrival of a new style of politics by organizing mass rallies, boycotts, and strikes. 2. Britian recognized Nkrumah as the prime minister of independent Ghana in 1957, concluding the transfer of power from European colonizers to Africans. He was a main reason for the success in liberation movements for Ghana.

Afrikaner National Party
Definition:
This national party was the governing party in South Africa from 1948-1994, and it was disbanded in 2005.

Significance:
The party advocated for complete independence from Britain and favored a rigid system of racial segregation, called apartheid.

Apartheid
1) This was a policy of South Africa which segregated the population by race and kept white Europeans in power.
2) This is significant because it caused much strife, demonstrated racism, and kept white Europeans in control of the nation and Africans as virtual slaves.

National Liberation Front (FLN)
A radical nationalist movement lasting from 1954-1962 with Algeria seeking independence from France.

Sig: Took place during the decolonization period following World War II. The successful attacks granted Algeria full independence from France in 1958. Also displayed the diminishing authority that the Westerners had over their colonies.

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