World War Two: Five phases
The War had five phases:
Hitler conquered Poland. There was no other major activity on land, although there were actions at sea. Historians believe that this period saw very little action as all countries involved were biding their time and waiting for the other to make the first move. The governments of Germany, Britain and France began to issue propaganda. The British government even flew over Germany but, rather than dropping bombs, they dropped propaganda leaflets. Very little of military significance happened that was noticeable. However, all countries were developing their military bases and new technologies. People began to get frustrated and some evacuated children were sent home because people felt there was no point staying in the countryside when there were no bombs to worry about.
The Nazis conquered Denmark, Norway, Holland, Belgium and France. The British Expeditionary Force was trapped at Dunkirk, but managed to withdraw by sea back to Britain. On 4th June, 1940, Winston Churchill delivered one of the most famous speeches of all time to the House of Commons in Westminster. In it, he warned about the possibility of a German invasion of Britain and said to the inspiration of many:
We shall defend our island, whatever the cost may be. We shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight on the fields and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills; we shall never surrender.
We may allow ourselves a brief period of rejoicing; but let us not forget for a moment the toil and efforts that lie ahead.He was speaking of Japan, where the war would continue for three months more.
The last of our enemies is laid low.