WW2 World Map

World War II map provides information about the most destructive war ever, fought from 1939 to 1945 mainly between the Allies comprising of Great Britain, France, the Soviet Union, and the United States of America on one side and the three Axis Powers of Germany, Japan and Italy on the other.
Description : Map shows the Axis and Allied power countries of the World during World War II. Disclaimer

Disclaimer  :  All efforts have been made to make this image accurate. However Compare Infobase Limited, its directors and employees do not own any responsibility for the correctness or authenticity of the same.

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WW2 World Map

The World War 2 Map shows the locations where some of the most crucial battles were fought, especially in Europe, North Africa, and the Asia-Pacific.

To get an idea about the locations of various countries and cities mentioned below, one may take a look at the world map on the website before moving on to the story of this devastating war. With over 50,000,000 deaths, World War II was the most devastating conflict in human history and involved almost all parts of the world, especially Europe, Africa, Asia and the Pacific.

German Invasion of Poland

The German invasion of Poland on September 1, 1939, signaled the beginning of the war. It was not the result of an isolated event, but the result of almost three years of increasing international tensions brought about by events, such as the Spanish Civil War, the so-called Anschluss or Union of Nazi Germany with Austria, and the occupation of Czech Sudetenland by Hitler's forces. Following the German attack on the Polish territory, Britain and France declared war on Germany two days later.

Earlier, in August, Germany and the Soviet Union signed the non-aggression pact popularly called Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact and the Soviet Union accompanied the German invasion of Poland by attacking the country from the east. By the end of 1939, Poland was occupied and divided between the two invading nations. The most catastrophic war of our times had, therefore, already begun.

Invasion of France and the Blitzkrieg

After occupying Poland, the Russians pushed toward Finland, while the Germans attacked Denmark and Norway. The stage was now set for the German invasion of France through the Low Countries of Belgium and the Netherlands on May 10. The German attack comprised fast movements of armed tanks supported by sudden and surprise air raids by the Luftwaffe and this technique was popularly referred to as the 'Blitzkrieg' or 'lightning warfare' method. The German strategy was not only a novel military innovation but also proved quite effective against the much larger Allied forces. By the end of May 1940, Belgium and Holland were already occupied and Paris fell two weeks later.

Evacuation from Dunkirk

After the fall of France, the Germans advanced toward the military settlements of the British Expeditionary Forces in the French territory and therefore, it became imperative to evacuate the troops by the sea. After the Germans crossed the defensive line around Calais, the only port left to be evacuated was Dunkirk. Before the Germans could close on to Dunkirk, Hitler, quite surprisingly, ordered a halt of the German advance toward Dunkirk. This sudden turn of event provided a vital opportunity to the Allies to evacuate their troops through the English Channel port. The British made use of every possible vessel of any make and utility to evacuate as many troops as possible. The evacuation of troops from Dunkirk started on May 26, 1940, and the next day when the Luftwaffe bombed and damaged the inner harbor, most of the troops had ferried out to the open sea in small vessels to board larger ships waiting there. When the evacuation was finally completed by June 4, 1940, around 200,000 British and 140,000 French and Belgian troops had been saved. This was to become a crucial factor for the Allies in the later stages of the war. World War II Europe map depicts this well.

The Battle of Britain
After the armistice with Germany was signed in France and a puppet regime under Marshal Petain installed at Vichy, Hitler set his eyes on Britain and ordered the Luftwaffe to launch a major air offensive on British air and sea defenses and bomb British cities. This was believed to be the key to destroying the superiority of British air defenses and facilitating the proposed amphibious invasion of Britain code-named 'Operation Sea-Lion'. What followed was a series of ferocious aerial combats between the German Luftwaffe and the British Royal Air Force (RAF), which came to be collectively known as the Battle of Britain, the first battle to be fought completely in the air. The aerial Battle of Britain lasted from July to September 1940 and at the end, the RAF, mainly with the help of its radars, extracted a narrow victory. Although the German air raids and bombing of the British cities were to continue throughout the war, their range and intensity diminished subsequently and Germany was forced to indefinitely postpone any plans of invading the British Isles.

Invasion of the Soviet Union
Hitler's invasion of the Soviet Union was code-named 'Operation Barbarossa' and comprised around 150 divisions totaling 3,000,000 men, 3,000 tanks, 7000 artillery guns, and 25,000 aircraft. Operation Barbarossa, which was launched on June 22, 1941, was, therefore, the most massive and powerful invasion force ever. The Germans took the Red Army by surprise and moved fast and deep into the Soviet territory and by mid-July, they had advanced 400 miles and were only 200 miles away from the Soviet capital. The German advance somewhat slackened owing to an indecisiveness about which direction they ought to follow thereafter and in the meanwhile, the Russian winter had set in. The Germans realized, like Napoleon had done a century and a half earlier, that they were ill-equipped to survive the harsh weather conditions and soon enough the Russian forces who were adept in fighting in such conditions launched quick and decisive counter-attacks. The Eastern Front of the war was, therefore, delayed due to inactivity and the attention was now diverted to the Pacific theater with the Japanese attack on the American naval base of Pearl Harbor in Hawaii.

The word 'map' originated from the Latin word 'mappa' which meant a napkin or paper. Why so? Because these were the usual materials the earliest maps were drawn on.

Last Updated on: September 27, 2021