The world hardly got over to the impacts of World War I, and it witnessed another global war, World War II. It started in 1939 and ended in 1945. Around 70 to 85 million people were killed in this war. The casualties included 6 million Jews, 50 million civilians, and 25 million soldiers. One can clearly understand that wars do not see whether the person, being killed, is a civilian or a soldier. This war was fought across Europe, Africa, Asia, the Pacific Ocean, and the Atlantic Ocean.
Blocs in World War II
The world was divided into two blocs in World War II: Axial Powers and Allied Powers. The Axial Powers were formed by the coalition of Germany, Japan, and Italy. The Allied Powers was consisting of the UK, the USA, USSR, France, China, and Poland.
“Causes of World War II”
“Treaty of Versailles”
“The Treaty of Versailles” is the foremost reason for World War II. This humiliating treaty was signed between Germany and the Allied nations and World War I was officially ended. According to this treaty, Germany had to pay financial reparations for World War I. It had to lose all its territories and give up all its foreign colonies. And Germany was not happy with it.
Germany’s militarism is another reason for World War II. Having grudges against the Treaty of Versailles, Hitler clandestinely started increasing his military and weapons. France and Britain saw it as a counterweight to impede communism’s increasing prevalence. In 1936, Hitler invaded German-speaking areas of Czechoslovakia, the Rhineland, and Austria. He made an alliance called Axial Powers with Japan and Italy.
The policy of Appeasement
In 1930, politicians in France and Britain started believing that the Treaty of Versailles was unjustifiable. This belief was called the “Policy of Appeasement”. This approach allowed Germany to integrate areas in Czechoslovakia where the German language was spoken. It was not permitted to annex the remaining parts of Czechoslovakia. In 1939, Hitler reneged on his promises and captured the whole of Czechoslovakia. France and Britain were not expecting this move. In September 1939, Germany attacked Poland. In response, France and Britain “declare war on Germany. That’s how World War II got started”.
Failure of the League of Nations
League of Nations was an organization that was formed to avoid wars like World War I. All countries were supposed to join this league. And every conflict was essentially solved through dialogues. Unfortunately, it proved unsuccessful. It was because not all countries joined. Neither it had its army to prevent any war. It could not refrain from imperialism which resulted in World War II.
Suffering from the economic depression, Japan lost its public trust. Invading China, an area enriched with natural resources, Japan found a way to meet its needs for natural resources. In this scenario, the Philippines was of greater importance, but it was the USA’s territory. Japan could not face mighty America. And took a childish move. And to minimize the USA’s aggression intensity, Japan attacked Pearl Harbor which destroyed many fighter crafts and ships. Soon after this attack, the USA also became part “of World War II”.
“World War II” badly affected every sphere of life.
- Millions of people were homeless. They were suffering from starvation. Infrastructure was destroyed altogether.
- Borders were changed completely.
- Women had to come out of their homes to earn which was a step toward women’s empowerment.
- The use of the atomic bomb destructed massive humanity and infrastructure.
- Human life was completely ruined.
- Owing to World War II, businesses were closed.
- The infrastructure was damaged. Every country was supposed to reconstruct itself. And war expenses made them weak enough to achieve this goal.
- Economies plummeted which resulted in inflation.
- Apart from the industrial sector, the agriculture sector was also destroyed because of cruel attacks.
- After the end of World War II, Russia, and the USA emerged as two superpowers which divided the world into two blocs. NATO bloc led by the USA and Warsaw bloc led by the USSE, modern Russia.
- Berlin Wall was constructed which divided Germany into “East Germany and West Germany”.
- “The end of World War II” resulted in decolonization. Owing to a massive loss in the war, imperial countries were not able to control large territories. That’s why they started giving freedom to colonized countries. A blessing in disguise right?
- Before World War II, Korea was under the control of Japan. After the war, it was also divided into South Korea, owned by the USA, and North Korea, owned by the USSR.
- Radiations of the atomic bomb by the USA on Japan caused high rates of cancer. The radiation damaged soil and crops.
- The use of the atomic bomb made many people abnormal. It affected human lives for years.