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1945 End of World War II The 20th century World history Khan Academy
1945 reallyrepresents the final throes of World War II. In Europe, you mightremember, at the end of 1944, we have the Battle of the Bulge starting, which is an incredibly bloody battle. The U.S. forces, whichkind of take the brunt on the Allied side, loseroughly 20,000 troops, but by January, they'reable to break through
and invade Germany. So as you go into early 1945, the Allies are on their marchthrough Western Germany. Now if you go on the east, the Russians or the Soviets are also marching westward. By January of 1945, they'reable to take Warsaw, and from there, they continue to march westward towards Berlin.
Now the writing is onthe wall at this point. The Allies look likethey are going to win, and so they meet atYalta, the major powers, to discuss what happens to Europe after World War II. What happens to Germanyé Is it split upé What influence will the different
Allied victors have inthe different countries of World War IIé So this is happening inYalta in February of 1945. Let me write that down. That's in February. All the while this is happening, even though the writing is on the wall that the Allies are going to win the war,
they weren't taking anything for granted. They wanted to absolutelyforce a surrender by the Axis powers inGermany in particular. So they continue to firebomb major cities of Germany, and firebombingis an incredibly devastating form of bombing, where you're literally trying to destroy the city, set the city on fire.
The most notable of these cities that were firebombed were Hamburg and Dresden. The firebombing ofDresden, movies and books are written about it. The Nazis did also firebomb London, but that didn't have quite the same devastating effect asthe Allied firebombing of Hamburg and Dresden, and actually
World War II Crash Course World History 38
Hi, I'm John Green. This is Crash CourseWorld History and today we're going to talk about World War II. Finally, a war with somecolor film! So, here at Crash Course we try to make history reasonably entertaining, and fortunately,World War II was hilarious.said no one ever. Mr. Green, Mr. Green! Is this, like, gonnabe one of the unfunny ones where you build to the big melodramatic conclusion about howI have to imagine the world more complexlyé Me from the Past, as long as you have thateighth rate soupstrainer, I'm not even going to acknowledge your existence. theme music
Right, so you've probably heard a lot aboutWorld War II from movies and books, The History Channel, before it decided that Swamp Peoplewere History, the incessant droning of your grandparents, etc. We're not gonna try togive you a detailed synopsis of the war today. Instead, we're going to try to give a bitof perspective on how the most destructive war in human history happened, and why itstill matters globally. So one of the reasons history classes tendto be really into wars is that they're easy to put on tests. They start on one day andthey end on another day. And they're caused by social, political, and economic conditionsthat can be examined in a multiple choice
kind of manner. Except, not really. Like, when did World War II starté In September19', when the Nazis invaded Polandé I'd say no it actually started when Japan invadedManchuria in 1931, or at the very latest when the Japanese invaded China in 1937, becausethey didn't stop fighting until 1945. Then again, you could also argue 1933, when Hitler took power, or1941, when America started fighting. It's complicated. But anyway, in China the fighting was verybrutal, as exemplified by the infamous rape of Nanking, which featured the slaughter ofhundreds of thousands of Chinese people and is still so controversial today that:1. It affects relations between Japan China
and2. Even though I have not described it in detail, you can rest assured that there will be angrycomments about my use of the word â€œslaughter.â€� But the World War II we know the most aboutfrom movies and TV is primarily the war in the European theater, the one that Adolf Hitlerstarted. Hitler is the rare individual who really did make history specifically hemade it worse and if he hadn't existed, it's very unlikely that World War II would'veever happened. But he did exist, and after coming to power in 1933, with the standardrevolutionary promises to return the homeland to its former glory, infused with quite abit of paranoia and antiSemitism, Germany
saw rapid remilitarization and eventually,inevitably, war. In the beginning, it was characterized bya new style of combat made possible by the mechanized technology of tanks, airplanes,and especially, trucks. This was the Blitzkrieg, a devastating tactic combining quick movementof troops, tanks, and massive use of air power to support infantry movements. And in thevery early years of the war, it was extremely effective. The Nazis were able to roll overPoland, Norway, Denmark, the Netherlands, and then all of France, all within about 9 monthsbetween the fall of 19' and the summer of 1940. So after knocking out most of central Europe,the Nazis set their sights on Great Britain,
but they didn't invade the island, choosinginstead to attack it with massive air strikes. I mean, you look at this poster and think,â€œMan, the Queen wants me to finish my term paper, so I can do it,â€� but when this posterwas first produced in 19', it was to quell terror in the face of bombardment. The Battle of Britain was a duel between theRoyal Air Force and the Luftwaffe, and while the RAF denied the Nazis total control ofBritish airspace, the Nazis were still able to bomb Great Britain over and over againin what's known as the Blitz. STAN, NO. NO JOKES this time. Yes, the Blitz.