Hold on to Peace - Image courtesy Ira Mitchell-Kirk

Hold on to Peace - Image courtesy Ira Mitchell-Kirk

Thursday, 18 March 2010

Timeline

Below is a timeline I made when trying to get some sense of how things evolved before and during the war. It might be interesting to help put the Battle of Cassino in a much wider context. (I have included a disproportionate amount of detail for Cassino).

I am a little ambivalent about posting it, as I would rather post about peace than war. Peace is more than the absence of war. But for every war there is a background, a history, and if we look at all the trouble spots in the world today each one will have a similar story. That is why we must be proactive, educating for a culture of peace, working with children, schools, families, teaching respect and love and ensuring that they are not just empty words.

World War II Timeline


1933
Hitler becomes the Chancellor of Germany
Germany becomes a National Socialist State under the leadership of Hitler and the Nazi Party
Italy under the leadership of Mussolini is allied to Nazi Germany
With Japan, these countries form the “Axis” powers

1934

August 19 Hitler becomes the Führer of Germany

1935

March 16 Hitler violates the Treaty of Versailles by introducing Military Conscription.
September 16 Nuremburg Race Laws remove the tights of the German Jews

1936
February 10 German Gestapo is placed above the law
March 7 German troops occupy Rhineland
May 9 Mussolini’s Italian forces take Ethiopia
July 18 Civil War in Spain
October 1 Franco head of Spanish State

1937

June 11 Soviet leader Stalin begins purge of Red Army generals
November 5 Hitler reveals war plans during Hossbach Conference

1938

March 12/13 Germany announces union with Austria
August 12 German military mobilises
September 30 British Prime Minister Chamberlain appeases Hitler in Munich
Czech government resigns

1939

May 22 Nazis sign “Pact of Stealth” with Italy
August 23 Nazis and Soviets sign Pact (Nazi Soviet non-aggression pact, this paving the way for WWII as Germany then has only one front to fight)
August 25 Britain and Poland form the Mutual Assistance Treaty
August 31 British fleet mobilizes, Civilian evacuations in London
September 1 Hitler invades Poland
September 3 Great Britain, followed by the countries and Dominions of the British Empire, declares war on Germany

1940

France falls to the Axis powers, Italy declares war on Britain
July 23 Soviets take Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia
August 3-9 Italians occupy British Somaliland in East Africa

1941

Germany invades the Soviet Union
Japan attacks the US fleet at Pearl Harbour

1942 Allies agree to give priority to the defeat of the German forces

1943 North African war ends
July 10 Allies invade Italy landing at Sicily
July 25 Benito Mussolini deposed; new Italian government established under leadership of Marshal Pietro Badoglio
September 3 Units of British 8th Army land on Italy’s Calabrian coast
September 8 Italian armistice with Allies is announced
September 9 United States 5th Army lands at Salerno
September 12 Mussolini is freed by German Paratroopers

1944
January 17 American Forces commence first attack on Cassino
January 22 American Forces land at Anzio in an attempt to go beyond the Gustav Line
February 5 American Divisions are replaced by 2nd New Zealand Division and 4th Indian Division at Cassino
Feb 15-17 2nd Battle of Cassino New Zealand (Maori) Battalion at railway station, Indian Division at Cassino
March 15-16 3rd Battle of Cassino (New Zealand and Indians )
May 11-18 4th Battle of Cassino (Polish Division captures Abbey). Germans withdraw to avoid being cut off by the French breakthrough in the Aurunci Mountains and British forces now in the Liri Valley
June 6 Second front in France

1945
May 2 German forces in Italy surrender
May 4 German forces in North West Germany surrender to Allies
May 8 V-E Day (Victory in Europe). Far East war continues.
August 15 V-J Day (Victory over Japan)

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