World War II, or the Second World War, was a global military conflict. It began as the joining of what had initially been two separate conflicts, with the first beginning in Asia in 1937 (the Second Sino-Japanese War) and the other beginning in Europe in 1939 (the German and Soviet invasion of Poland).
The war split the majority of the world's nations into two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis. It involved the mobilization of over 100millionmilitary personnel, making it the most widespread war in history, and placed the participants in a state of "total war", which erased the distinction between civil and military resources and resulted in the complete activation of a nation's economic, industrial, and scientific capabilities for the purposes of the war effort. Over 70 million people, the majority of them civilians, were killed, making it the deadliest conflict in human history.
Mauthausen concentration camp (known from the summer of 1940 as Mauthausen-Gusen concentration camp) grew to become a large group of Naziconcentration camps that were built around the villages of Mauthausen and Gusen in Upper Austria, roughly 20 km east of the city of Linz.Initially a single camp at Mauthausen, it expanded over time to become one of the largest labour camp complexes in German-controlled Europe.Apart from the four main sub-camps at Mauthausen and nearby Gusen, more than 50 sub-camps, located throughout Austria and southern Germany, used the inmates as slave labour. Several subordinate camps of the KZ Mauthausen complex included quarries, munitions factories, mines, arms factories and Me 262 fighter-plane assembly plants.In January 1945, the camps, directed from the central office in Mauthausen, contained roughly 85,000 inmates.The death toll remains unknown, although most sources place it between 122,766 and 320,000 for the entire complex. The camps formed one of the first massive concentration camp complexes in Nazi Germany, and were the last ones to be liberated by the Western Allies or the Soviet Union. The two main camps, Mauthausen and Gusen I, were also the only two camps in the whole of Europe to be labelled as "Grade III" camps, which meant that they were intended to be the toughest camps for the "Incorrigible Political Enemies of the Reich".
The BoeingB-17 Flying Fortress is a four-engine heavy bomber aircraft developed for the U.S. Army Air Corps (USAAC). Competing against Douglas and Martin for a contract to build 200 bombers, the Boeing entry outperformed both the other competitors and more than met the Air Corps' expectations. Although Boeing lost the contract due to the prototype's crash, the Air Corps was so impressed with Boeing's design that they ordered thirteen B-17s. The B-17 Flying Fortress went on to enter full-scale production and was considered the first truly mass-produced large aircraft, eventually evolving through numerous design advancements, from B-17A to G.The B-17 was primarily employed in the daylight precision strategic bombing campaign of World War II against German industrial, civilian and military targets. The United StatesEighth Air Force based in England and the Fifteenth Air Force based in Italy complemented the RAF Bomber Command's nighttime area bombing in Operation Pointblank, to help secure air superiority over the cities, factories and battlefields of Western Europe in preparation for Operation Overlord. This machine was nicknamed the "Flying Fortress" because of its eight machine guns and three cannons.
Image 15Jews from Carpathian Ruthenia on the selection ramp at Auschwitz II, c.May 1944. Women and children are lined up on one side, men on the other, waiting for the SS to determine who was fit for work. About 20 percent at Auschwitz were selected for work and the rest gassed. (from The Holocaust)
Image 34Germany invaded Poland on 1 September 1939 which directly led to the Anglo-French declaration of war on Germany on 3 September. The Soviet Union joined Germany's invasion of Poland on 17 September. (from Causes of World War II)
Image 43British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain and Hitler at a meeting in Germany on 24 September 1938, and Hitler demanded the immediate annexation of Czechoslovak border areas. (from Causes of World War II)
Image 651935 poster of the puppet state of Manchukuo promoting harmony among peoples. The caption reads: "With the help of Japan, China, and Manchukuo, the world can be in peace." (from Diplomatic history of World War II)
Image 71Italian Social Republic (RSI) as of 1943 in yellow and green. The green areas were German military operational zones under direct German administration. (from Diplomatic history of World War II)
Aleksandr Mikhaylovich Vasilevsky , September 30, 1895 – December 5, 1977) was a Soviet military commander, promoted to Marshal of the Soviet Union in 1943. He was the Soviet Chief of the General Staff and Deputy Minister of Defense during World War II, as well as Minister of Defense from 1949 to 1953. As the Chief of the General Staff, Vasilevsky was responsible for the planning and coordination of almost all decisive Soviet offensives, from the Stalingrad counteroffensive to the assault on East Prussia and Königsberg.Vasilevsky started his military career during the First World War, earning the rank of captain by 1917. At the beginning of the October Revolution and the Civil War he was conscripted into the Red Army, taking part in the Polish–Soviet War. After the war, he quickly rose through the ranks, becoming a regimental commander by 1930. In this position, he showed great skill in the organization and training of his troops. Vasilevsky's talent did not go unnoticed, and in 1931 he was appointed a member of the Directorate of Military Training. In 1937, following Stalin's Great Purge, he was promoted to General Staff officer.
Battle of Uhtua-Kiestinki•Battles of Repola-Rukajärvi•Battle of Siiranmäki•Battle of Łuck•Battle of Równe•Battle of Włodzimierz Wołyński•Battle of Lubartów•Battle of Miedniki•Battle of Jodła•Francis Blanchain•Shinshou Draenger•Christer Lyst Hansen•Ove Kampman•League for Combat Policy•Julien Meline•Operation Bigot•Operation Mittelmeer•Operation Richard•Otto Program•Martin Poppel•Roehm's Avengers•Dorothy Tartiere•Poul Bruun•Raoul Boulanger•Serge Asher-Ravanel•Battle of West Ukraine (1941)•Battle of Zunyi•Liberation of Denmark (currently redirect) •Operation Vado (currently redirect) •Finnish 19th Division (Continuation War)•Finnish 11th Division (Continuation War)•Finnish VII Corps (Continuation War)•Finnish VI Corps (Continuation War)•Finnish IV Corps (Continuation War)•Finnish Cavalry Brigade•1st Jaeger Brigade•2nd Jaeger Brigade•Finnish 1st Division (Continuation War)•168th Rifle Division (Soviet Union)•71st Rifle Division (Soviet Union)•Group Oinonen•Operation Vesuvius (currently redirect) •Capture of Kassala (currently redirect) •Liberation of Lille•Battle of Pankow•Brandenburg–Rathenow Offensive•Japanese internment of European civilians during World War II•Miranda de Ebro concentration camp•The Holocaust in the Netherlands (current redirect) •German occupation of the Netherlands (current redirect) •Axis occupation of Monaco•Soviet home front during World War II•Labour Charter (Vichy France)•Berles-Monchel and Aubigny-en-Artois massacres•Febvin-Palfart massacre•1941 Nord-Pas de Calais miners' strike
Tobrouk (WWII)[pt]•5th Guards Fighter Aviation Regiment[ru]•Novorossiysk-Taman Operation[ru]•1943 Novorossiysk Operation[ru]•1943 Air Battles over Kuban[ru]•Battle of Rostov (1943)[ru]•Battle of Olshansky[ru]•Nalchik-Ordzhonikidzevskaya Operation[ru]•Bukrinsky Landing[ru]•Cape Tarhan Landing[ru]•1942 Sudak Landing[ru]•Mozdok-Malgobek Operation[ru]•Alexander Sergeyevich Ksenofontov[ru]•Henri de Vernejoul[fr]•André Bergeret[fr]•Battle of Nice[fr]•Liberation de Saint-Malo[fr]•Battle of Seuil Valley[fr]•René-Jean-Paul Cassagne[fr]•Cameroun's rallying to the Free French[fr]•Battle of Bouno-Misaki[ja]