Q:

When did the Second World War begin and end?

A:

Word War II began in Europe on September 1, 1939, and ended on May 8, 1945. The beginning of the war was marked by the German invasion of Poland, while the end is considered to be Germany's unconditional surrender.

Most historians date the beginning of World War II in Asia to December 7/8, 1941, when Japan attacked British assets in East Asia and Pearl Harbor in the United States. The war in the Pacific ended with the Japanese announcement of the intention to surrender on August 15, 1945; the surrender took place on September 2, 1945.

Although the start of hostilities in Europe is clearly delineated by the invasion of Poland, the war in Asia is less certain, as Japan's regional hostility had been ongoing for several years with attacks on China and aggression toward smaller powers. The prevailing attitudes common at the beginning of the European war are commemorated in W.H. Auden's classic poem "September 1, 1939."


Is this answer helpful?

Similar Questions

  • Q:

    What was the "Phoney War"?

    A:

    The "Phoney War" refers to a period early in World War II, between September 1939 and April 1940, during which very little military activity occurred at an international level. This period followed Nazi Germany's successful blitzkrieg attack on Poland in 1939.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    For how long did World War II last?

    A:

    World War II lasted six years in Europe and eight years in the Pacific. American involvement in the war lasted four years from December 1941, when Japan attacked Pearl Harbor, to 1945, when both Japan and Germany were defeated.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What was the conclusion of World War II?

    A:

    World War II ended in two stages: the total destruction of the German government in Berlin in May 1945 and the capitulation of the Japanese government four months later. In each case, the victorious Allies accepted the unconditional surrender of the Axis nations' land, sea and air forces, as well as a political surrender of their civil governments.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    When did World War 2 start and end?

    A:

    Though the conflicts began much earlier, World War II did not officially begin until September 1, 1939. The massive war ended 6 years later in 1945.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:

Explore