WORLD WAR II: TIMELINE

September 18, 1931
Japan invades Manchuria

October 2, 1935–May 1936
Fascist Italy invades, conquers, and annexes Ethiopia.

October 25–November 1, 1936
Nazi Germany and Fascist Italy sign a treaty of cooperation on October 25; on November 1, the Rome-Berlin Axis is announced.

November 25, 1936
Nazi Germany and Imperial Japan sign the Anti-Comintern Pact, directed against the Soviet Union and the international Communist movement.

July 7, 1937
Japan invades China, initiating World War II in the Pacific.

March 11–13, 1938
Germany incorporates Austria in the Anschluss.

September 29, 1938
Germany, Italy, Great Britain, and France sign the Munich agreement which forces the Czechoslovak Republic to cede the Sudetenland, including the key Czechoslovak military defense positions, to Nazi Germany.

March 14–15, 1939
Under German pressure, the Slovaks declare their independence and form a Slovak Republic. The Germans occupy the rump Czech lands in violation of the Munich agreement, forming a Protectorate of Bohemia and Moravia.

March 31, 1939
France and Great Britain guarantee the integrity of the borders of the Polish state.

April 7–15, 1939
Fascist Italy invades and annexes Albania.

August 23, 1939
Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union sign a nonaggression agreementand a secret codicil dividing eastern Europe into spheres of influence.

September 1, 1939
Germany invades Poland, initiating World War II in Europe.

September 3, 1939
Honoring their guarantee of Poland’s borders, Great Britain and France declare war on Germany.

September 3, 1939
Honoring their guarantee of Poland’s borders, Great Britain and France declare war on Germany.

September 17, 1939
The Soviet Union invades Poland from the east.

September 27–29, 1939
Warsaw surrenders on September 27. The Polish government flees into exile via Romania. Germany and the Soviet Union divide Poland between them.